How often have you travelled in a car, not liking the music
being played by the person driving the car? Leading audio and infotainment
systems manufacturer Harman’s Individual Sound Zones (ISZ) is a new in-cabin
technology that enables drivers and passengers to create sonic zones, ensuring
that all occupants only hear what matters to them
While there are many different sounds generated in-vehicle,
not all of these sounds are relevant to all passengers. Today's explosion of
portable electronics and in-vehicle technologies like navigation, hands free
calling and Bluetooth connections have dramatically altered our driving habits
and in-cabin experience. Navigation prompts and phone calls are important for drivers,
but interrupt the music for passengers. Games, audio books and digital videos
for one passenger result in a cabin filled with sonic clutter for all. Harman’s
new ISZ technology can help reduce that clutter, ensuring that all occupants in
the vehicle hear only what matters to them.
“Individual Sound Zones and the HALOsonic technology suite
enable automakers to offer enhanced experiences to passengers, as well as
imagine new possibilities as the car itself continues to evolve in use beyond
the traditional ‘people mover,’” said Michael Mauser, president, Lifestyle
Division, Harman. “With Harman’s science-based architecture and acoustic
precision, we’re pushing the barriers of sound and creating the ultimate
personalized experience throughout the vehicle cabin.”
ISZ is an innovative acoustic design and complementary
digital signal processing that maximizes speaker directivity and minimizes
crosstalk in and between the zones in a vehicle for a more personalized
in-cabin experience. ISZ does not eliminate all sound signals, but tunes the
vehicle to ensure passengers audio experience is optimized for their location
in the vehicle and current mode of listening.
ISZ utilises a vehicle’s existing audio system speakers with
the addition of headrest speakers equipped with micro speaker technology, along
with thin and flat Electro Dynamic Planar Loudspeakers in the vehicle ceiling.
The digital signal processing has been specifically adjusted to the vehicle
cabin and speakers such that it will temper the signals from other zones,
regardless of whether they are music, voice or other noises. Each passenger can
activate and control their “zone.” Passengers can still hear other sounds in
the cabin, but those sounds are controlled in a way that limits the
interruptions and distractions to each passenger’s own sound experience. The
configuration can be customised based on the cabin design and layout of
vehicles, as well as type of vehicle (i.e. sedan vs. minivan).
Individual Sound Zones can be integrated into any Harman in-car
audio system via the amplifier, providing automakers limitless possibilities to
further enhance in-car listening experiences. It is available now to all
HARMAN designs, manufactures and markets premier audio,
visual, infotainment and enterprise automation solutions for the automotive,
consumer and professional markets. The company’s leading brands include AKG,
Harman Kardon, Infinity, JBL, Lexicon, Mark Levinson and Revel.
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