Generally surround sound requires placing an audience in the center of a room with speakers facing inwards. Think of a standard theater or home entertainment system. You are likely familiar with the experience of sounds moving past as you sit in the middle of a group of speakers while watching a movie.
But what if an audience isn’t seated in one central location? What if instead speakers are mounted in a grid overhead and an audience is walking through a space? Or what if you want to have sound emanate out of a large sculpture that people can walk around? Or any other unusual speaker arrangement you dream up...?
Enter MIAP4L, a custom audio plug-in we created for use in Ableton Live. The plug-in effectively allows us to compose and spatialize audio for any kind of sound system in one fluid software environment. Literally any number of speakers can be placed in any type of arrangement and sounds can be freely panned through them.
In the studio we continue to employ a variety of spatialization softwares: Dolby Atmos, Ambisonics, Pyramix, and Spat to name a few - but none of of these completely satisfied our need for flexible audio spatialization. So we were pleased to discover SpaceMap, an audio software developed by Meyer Sound. SpaceMap uniquely provides the ability to pan audio through a variety of speaker arrangements.
Thanks to Zachary Seldess’s Max tools we were able to adapt SpaceMap for use in our own custom configurations. The final result allows us to compose and spatially mix soundscapes through custom designed sound systems - effectively creating one seamless pipeline for endless immersive audio possibilities.