The Preferred Volume—All the Time
Common Problem, Sophisticated Solution
It happens all the time—you're jolted out of your seat by a loud advert, or you switch from the TV to a DVD, and bang—the volume is loud enough to wake your neighbours. Aside from the disruption, it's incredibly annoying.
Now there is a remarkable solution to your frustration—Dolby® Volume.
Dolby Volume allows you to enjoy all of your entertainment at the same volume level without having to adjust the setting every time you change programmes or sources. You can spend more time enjoying your movies and TV shows, and less time fiddling with the remote.
What's more, Dolby Volume provides you with the same vibrant audio performance at any playback level—all of the nuances of the original recording remain intact. You'll hear the same vibrant details at low volumes as you would at higher settings.
Modelled After Human Hearing
Dolby Volume preserves the integrity of the original recording by measuring, analysing, and maintaining volume levels based on how humans perceive sound. Engineers at Dolby have spent years developing algorithms capable of determining when important auditory events occur—like when a word begins, or when a piano chord trails off.
Monitoring and adjusting the volume in real time, Dolby Volume intelligently compensates for the human ear's changing sensitivity as gain levels increase or decrease. Loudness adjustments are applied independently to different frequencies and channels only when needed. As a result, you hear a consistent sound level that's true to the original recording whether you're listening to music in stereo or watching a movie in 7.1 surround sound. You get the incredible sound you expect at the volume of your choice.
As volume decreases, human hearing becomes less sensitive to bass and treble. There have been many attempts to compensate for this, most notably the "loudness" button on many receivers.
The problem is that most low-volume compensation techniques simply (and inaccurately) apply a fixed bass and treble boost as you lower the volume. They don't take into account what's happening within the audio signal and individual frequency bands, nor do they account for content. This standardised approach can make explosions and car crashes sound muddy, while cymbals and laser blasts sound tinny.
Dolby Volume monitors and adjusts perceived loudness in up to 40 frequency bands per channel based on the content in those bands. It's far more intelligent than a simple bass and treble boost.
By monitoring discrete frequencies, and the content within those frequencies, Dolby Volume makes adjustments only where necessary. The result is a more natural, true-to-the-original listening experience all the time.
A Consistent Problem
The biggest annoyance for home viewers and listeners has been the significant differences in volume levels as you switch between channels or sources on your televisions and in your home entertainment systems. Variances in volume levels in DVD and Blu-ray Disc™, digital music files, compact discs, and broadcast entertainment programming each compound the problem, forcing you to reach for the remote controls to adjust the volume.
Once the volume is turned down, a second problem arises. Human hearing is sensitive to human voices at all sound levels. At lower volumes, people can decipher midrange sound, but high- and low-frequency sounds are lost. Adding to the complexity is the fact that most content that you listen to or watch is rich with sounds that have different levels—and these levels need to balanced with the main content.
Want to Learn More About Dolby Volume?
Are you a Dolby licensee or looking for more technical details? Learn more about Dolby Volume implementation and specifications