Figure 557. The Surround section.The Surround section lets you specify the surround format, speaker assignments, bass management and downmixing settings.The Surround section contains the following settings:You can save your current settings as a preset. This allows you to easily move between different surround configurations.5.1 (SMPTE/ITU) should be the default template.All signals below the cutoff frequency are directed from the main channels to the LFE channel output.
Center Level. Center channel content is distributed equally into left and right channels of a 2-channel downmix with one of a choice of three levels. Each level is how much of center is mixed into both left and right. The alternatives are:
-3 dB. This is the right amount to distribute into two acoustic sources to reach the same sound power level, thus keeping the far-field level (in the reverberant listening field, as is typical at home) equal. This is the amount by which a standard sin-cos panner redistributes a center panned image into left and right, for instance.
-4.5 dB. Since -3 dB and -6 dB represent the extreme limits (of power addition on the one hand, or of phase-dependent vector addition on the other), an intermediate, compromise value was seen as valuable, since the correct answer has to be -4.5 dB +/- 1.5 dB.
-6 dB. This covers the case where listening is dominated by direct sound. Thus, the two source signals add up by 6 dB rather than by 3 dB, because they add as vectors, as voltages do, rather than as power does.
Surround Level. Surround Downmix Level is the amount of Left Surround to mix into Left, and Right Surround to Right, when mixing down from any surround-equipped format to 2 channel. The available options are:
-3 dB. The amount by which mono surround information, from many movie mixes before discrete 5.1 was available, mixes down to maintain the same level as the original.
-6 dB. An amount that makes the mixdown of surround content not so prominent, based on the fact that most surround content is not as important as a lot of front content. This helps to avoid competition with dialog box, for instance, by heavy surround tracks in a mixdown situation.
-INF. Necessary for cases where the surround levels are so high that they compete with the front channels too much in mixdown situations.
LFE Level. Choose -INF or -12 dB.
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