DSP Mixed Signal Solutions for Multi Channel Audio

Posted on Feb 5, 2014

The drawback of this architecture is that it disregards the differences between the various channels. First, the subwoofer channel has a reduced bandwidth and its signal is often generated in real time by summing the low-frequency components of the full-bandwidth channels. Second, when a stereo source is played through a multi-channel system, only the front left (FL) and front right (FR)

DSP Mixed Signal Solutions for Multi Channel Audio
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signals are provided by the source; all remaining channels are generated from these two in a process known as multi-channel expansion. The reverse process is known as down mixing and is used when a multi-channel signal is recorded onto a stereo medium. These mixing and filtering requirements are difficult to implement using traditional stereo components, where the individual channels are mutually independent. One approach is to aim for a system-on-chip solution that integrates all functions on a single chip, requiring only passive external components. While this is perfectly feasible using today`s mixed-signal CMOS technologies, it does not always yield the highest-performing or most cost-effective solution. For analog circuitry, the ideal trade-off between performance, die size, power dissipation and cost is invariably obtained with larger process geometries than those best suited to digital-circuit blocks. As a result, system architects are faced with a difficult choice between conflicting requirements. Using a more advanced fabrication process means that lower supply voltages must be used. This reduces the voltage swing available for analog elements, worsening their signal-to-noise ratio (SNR). Moreover, the characterization of new processes is often incomplete, making it difficult to run the accurate simulations necessary to optimize the performance of analog circuits. Conversely, using an older process with larger...

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