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Tutorial: Dolby Headphone Encoding, How to encode to Dolby Headphone from a multichannel source
post Dec 5 2006, 01:13
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Let me start off by saying this is actually one of the easiest things you can do, although when I first searched for a way to do this I found nothing at all. Essentially, the process is accomplished in realtime, and as far as I know there isn't a way to do it some other way like in GraphEdit.

I will first state what you need.
1) A software DVD player capable of DTS and/or Dolby Digital AND and a Dolby Heaphone DSP. I used PowerDVD7 Deluxe

2) Some way to record output audio off your computer. I use the very "cheasy" but completely lossless way... I simply take an optical audio cable and hook both ends into the Optical I/O ports respectively. There are also software programs that do this like Total Recorder. WHATEVER YOU DO DON'T LOOP REGULAR PHONO/HEADPHONE CABLE!!! You could short your sound card.

3) Some kind of recording software. It can even be the "audio recorder" thing on your computer's accesories start menu folder. You only need the recording software if you are doing the optical loop method. I use Nuendo 3 just because I have it, but anything will do.

1)First you must configure PowerDVD to output to Dolby Headphone. In the Advanced tab, select Theatre Simulation under the Dolby Headphone tab.

2) Set your output to SPDIF (if using the loop) or if not the output required by your "virtual audio loop" software like Total Recorder. Make sure to set the output on both hardware devices (input and output) to the highest possible setting, b/c as I understand it, the Dolby Headphone DSP rounds based on the output. Thus, you want to obtain floating point audio at the highest sample rate, regardless of the original media. For me this is technically 192khz/32 bit but I use 96/24bit b/c it suffices.

3) Begin your recording application at the output sample rate.

4) Play the DTS-CD or AC3-CD or DVD or whatever.

5) Save the recorded file.

6) Downsample the file to your needs. If you want to play it on your ipod, the maximum allowable rate is WAV@48khz and 32bit floating point audio. For some reason it doesn't like playing 24bit audio, it just crashes.

7) Impress your friends with a dolby Headphone encoded presentation of Band of Brothers on your ipod in full simulated surround sound.

1) If you want to edit the audio, it must be done BEFORE following the encoding process to Dolby Headphone. This means you have to burn the final tracks to an iso and mount it in Dameon-TOOLS or burn it to a DVD or CD b/c PowerDVD doens't like playing standalone audio files.

2) Why can't Dolby Headphone "encoded" tracks be edited easily? The word "encoded" is a misconception b/c in reality there is not digital encoding going on. Dolby Headphone simply applies a very complex reverb effect that also inevitably adds high frequency "imaging" sounds. By editing the final file, you damage these "imaging cues" and thus make the audio sound very different spacially. If you really have a lot of time, it can be done in a spectral editing program such as Wavelab 6, but I recommend working with the original.

3) There seems to be no way to use the Dolby Headphone filter in Graphedit. No Input or Output is recognized when loading the filter.

4) To edit files originally in DTS or AC3, you must first split the audio into its respective channels, edit it by channel, and then encode it to dts or ac3, and then follow Observation 1.

--This seems like it will work with DVD-Audio, I just have to find a way to play ripped DVD-A wavs in PowerDVD
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