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Hakon Strande - High Definition Audio in Windows Vista

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In Windows Vista you've already heard in previous interviews how there is a new audio stack, but the software is only one side of it. Here you'll hear a lot more about how you'll get a good audio experience in Vista thanks to a variety of programs and technology that lead to what we call "high definition audio."

(It's a shame the audio isn't very good in this later Scoble interview...Doh! Sorry about that. You won't experience this going forward.)

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  • figuerresfiguerres ???
    Yeah.... I just wish the drivers worked better right now.

    I know it's beta but....
  • there really good audio quality on this one, in my option! i really like the surround capability of the video camera in use. comes across nicely on my headphones even.
  • mwirth wrote:
    there really good audio quality on this one, in my option! i really like the surround capability of the video camera in use. comes across nicely on my headphones even.


    I am watching and listening to this video now and after raising the volume, had no problem with hearing the sound.

    However, I have noticed on several videos sound problems to the point that I stoped the video and exited.

    I suggest Microsoft purchase and use microphones for each person in the video to eliminate any sound problems in the future.Smiley
  • ShrageShrage Let's Tallk
    raymond wrote:
    

    I suggest Microsoft purchase and use microphones for each person in the video to eliminate any sound problems in the future.


    microphones for "each" person in the video?????  that comes up to 5 peices somestimes, that will be too expensive, i dont thingk Microsoft can afford it....Wink
  • i think using this type of camera, which obviously has great sound capabilities, and maybe turning up the sound a little bit in a post processing step will result in awesome quality. i wouldn't necessarily go as far as clipping small mics onto every interviewee but in some cases - like 5 to 10 people in a conference room - one of those desk-mics that are also used for audio conferencing would be cool, indeed.
    what happened to the nice widescreen cam, scoble used sometimes? the video quality of this one was really impressive. maybe a fare well gift to scoble? Wink

    i can just hope that the professional audio people who build and use audio synthesis software, samplers etc jump on the new vista audio bandwagon. it has always been a miracle to me why in the professional audio field only mac os based solution seem to be generally accepted nowadays. maybe this will change now...
    however i fear that producers that have been mac os audio fans for a long time won't even touch vista.."nah, it can't be that good for audio. it's windows!" that's really comparable to the (only sometimes) injust sentiments video and desktop publishing people have against the windows platform. there 's no reason certain tools are predominantly available for mac os.. but it has always been this way so why change it, people might ask.
    the new vista audio capabilities won't ring a bell with people if it marketing doesn't stress it enough. marketing should go at least so far and invite a couple of world reknown producers, speaker manufacturers etc and see for themselves and then evanglize the thing (well i suppose microsoft have done that already).
    the networking stack has a similar problem.. it's a technology under the covers.. but networking guys are in my opion more open to new technology because they can measure performance. more throughput on my leased IP line? sure, i'll take it. with audio i guess it's more a mix of persuasion, sentiments and tradition..

    this video made me think about audio and it's usage quite a bit.. i never really spent too much time on it. it's something people take for granted... this video makes me think it needs to get promoted and "evangelized" like it was a brand new invention (which, to certain extent, it is).
    great video, charles!
  • SteveBallSteveBall SteveBall
    " this video makes me think it needs to get promoted and "evangelized" like it was a brand new invention (which, to certain extent, it is). "

    Great suggestions (mwirth) -- we're exploring on these kinds of ideas even as we speak.  

    We're also working to be very careful to undersell vs. the traditional "over-promise then underwhelm" gaps that often exists between marketing initiatives and real product adoption.  

    For audio authoring, one common perception is that the Windows platform has been playing second-fiddle to the Mac for years -- but we're finally at a point now where we can begin to raise our head and proudly say we're 'in the game.'  In fact, we have some substantial differentiating features in Windows Vista:  glitch-resilience, low-latency, better device UX, and our fidelity work are each small pieces of a larger story that deserves to be heard.  

    That said, my own hope is that we can simply get Windows Vista users and our strong AV developer community to discover and tell the story themselves instead of "hiring" a paid spokesperson or pouring buckets of marketing $$ into this.   I don't actually believe that musicians or "user generated content creators" (translation: all of us) will buy or move to (say Acid, Vegas, Nuendo, Cakewalk, Audition, ProTools or even Windows Vista) because they saw an ad or a review.  They are more likely to jump if their friends or an influential person shows them what is possible from their own volition.

    Of course, there is still a long way to go in our decade-long 'just works' mission for this space, but the improvements in the platform that Hakon and David discuss in this video are a key part of our long-term, ground up investment.   

    For me, it's also great to see such passion around these 'plumbing' improvements.   Thanks for taking time to listen and offer suggestions.  
     
    * * *  
  • William Staceystaceyw Before C# there was darkness...
    SteveBall wrote:
    " this video makes me think it needs to get promoted and "evangelized" like it was a brand new invention (which, to certain extent, it is). "

    Great suggestions (mwirth) -- we're exploring on these kinds of ideas even as we speak.  

    We're also working to be very careful to undersell vs. the traditional "over-promise then underwhelm" gaps that often exists between marketing initiatives and real product adoption.  

    For audio authoring, one common perception is that the Windows platform has been playing second-fiddle to the Mac for years -- but we're finally at a point now where we can begin to raise our head and proudly say we're 'in the game.'  In fact, we have some substantial differentiating features in Windows Vista:  glitch-resilience, low-latency, better device UX, and our fidelity work are each small pieces of a larger story that deserves to be heard.  

    That said, my own hope is that we can simply get Windows Vista users and our strong AV developer community to discover and tell the story themselves instead of "hiring" a paid spokesperson or pouring buckets of marketing $$ into this.   I don't actually believe that musicians or "user generated content creators" (translation: all of us) will buy or move to (say Acid, Vegas, Nuendo, Cakewalk, Audition, ProTools or even Windows Vista) because they saw an ad or a review.  They are more likely to jump if their friends or an influential person shows them what is possible from their own volition.

    Of course, there is still a long way to go in our decade-long 'just works' mission for this space, but the improvements in the platform that Hakon and David discuss in this video are a key part of our long-term, ground up investment.   

    For me, it's also great to see such passion around these 'plumbing' improvements.   Thanks for taking time to listen and offer suggestions.  
     
    * * *  


    Sounds good and makes sense!  That said, I am looking for a great managed story ontop of this too.  Any new work on that front?  Last I heard, they had no managed story.  TIA
    --
    wjs
  • I personally have had some driver issues, but the audio quality has been worth the problems.

    Vista is able to accurately produce surround and quad sound on even my 4.1 laptop, where XP only presents a stereo experience.

    The fidelity is also a huge jump, sound on Vista from the same WMA or MP3 sounds incredibly better to even a non-trained ear. We even used the same speakers and comparable configuration between Vista, XP, and OSX. XP and OSX were pretty close to quality, but Vista made both the low range and the high range speakers stand out from the other OSes...

    I do have one concern of note, why is the Wave Midi samples in Vista the same from 1998?  I didn't get through the entire video so I apologize if this was covered.   However there is a big gap in Midi processing abilities when I can install a Roland VSC or even a Yamaha XG software based synth that is 10 times the sample quality for instruments.

    I don't expect VIsta to be full Midi synth, but the midi samples could be a lot better and also support midi after-breath, etc...
  • When the video ends theres a trrttrtt noise. If this comes from certain cameras into the recording there might be an opportunity for Movie Maker (or whatever you use to compress these) to look the last second of the video being loaded for editing for suspect noises and offer to strip them out if the user at later point attempts to save an edited part which contains the noise.

    Otherwise even if we have Vista Premium we still may be getting such noises in the future HD quality Channel 9 home videos unless a professional program is used by a skilled user to edit those out. Wink

  • SteveBallSteveBall SteveBall
    Posted by androidi // Sat, Jul 15, 2006 4:22 AM

     When the video ends theres a trrttrtt noise. If this comes from certain cameras into the recording there might be an opportunity for Movie Maker (or whatever you use to compress these) to look the last second of the video being loaded for editing for suspect noises and offer to strip them out if the user at later point attempts to save an edited part which contains the noise.  "

    Yeah, this seems like a no-brainer for cameras and/or editing apps.

    I admire how Charles and Robert really work to keep their process to a minimum (so they can focus on the people, not production.)  But it's surprising that a tiny bit of automatic hardware intelligence during capture from the camera or during encoding could not catch this kind of transition noise at the beginning and end of clips and just do the right thing?

    We've spend so much time and energy delivering sample-level fidelity from app to hardware, it's (almost) funny that at the end of this HD Audio discussion, a giant sonic @#$^& puts an big brown exclamation point on how we sometimes miss the forest while talking about trees.  

    * * *
  • NidonocuNidonocu The Poison Bunny

    (It's a shame the audio isn't very good in this later Scoble interview...Doh! Sorry about that. You won't experience this going forward.)

    Would such a problem with this video be considered ironic considering the content? Wink

  • Does anyone know if ASIO is part of the High Definition Audio specification?

    Windows XP, ASIO-supported sound cards, and ASIO-supported software have already been enjoying most of the features that Hakon Strande described for Vista. If the industry and Microsoft Windows just adopted ASIO there would be no need to create some new High Definition Audio spec. This will only bring about more confusion to the industry and frustration to buyers; ASIO is a proven technology that works very well.

    Am I missing something?

    Thanks,
    Jon
  • dnmdnm
    Well, I am one of the "few" who use Creative's X-FI series (fatal1ty), yes I am a gamer (also a developer (non-game related)). From creatives site: Quote>
    With Microsoft's decision to remove the audio hardware layer in Windows Vista, legacy DirectSound 3D games will no longer use hardware 3D algorithms for audio spatialization. Instead they will have to rely upon the new Microsoft software mixer that is built into Windows Vista. This new software mixer will give the users basic audio support for their old Direct Sound games but since it has no hardware layer, all EAX® effects will be lost, and no individual per-voice processing can be performed using dedicated hardware processing.

    EAX has become the de facto standard for real-time effects processing. It has been incorporated in hundreds of games and has become the method of choice for game developers wanting to add interactive environment effects to their titles. Some of the best selling games of all time use the EAX extensions to DirectSound 5.0 and beyond, including Warcraft3, Diablo2, World of Warcraft, Half Life, Ghost Recon, F.E.A.R. and many others. Under Windows Vista, these games will be losing the hardware support that came as standard under the previous Windows Operating Systems, and will no longer provide real-time interactive effects, making them sound empty and lifeless by comparison to the way they sound on Windows XP.

    End Quote.
    So I can't say I am too happy about this. Couldn't you find a way to not dissapoint high-end audio gamers? [C] Sad
  • BlueFirehawk02Blue​Firehawk02 I Code, Therefore, I Am
    Anybody have experience getting the HD audio to work? I have the final release of Vista installed (msdn) and the laptop Realtek HD Audio causes every program that makes a noise to crash. Turn off audio services and disable driver and no more crashing. I tried Realtek's latest Vista audio drivers from their website and these actually get replaced by Microsoft's HD audio drivers if I do a driver update via Device Manager. This is on a Toshiba Satellite with the Realtek 816 chip. Fubar.

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