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Apr 12, 2001
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Apple Patent on Virtual Speakers

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Macsimumnews.com summarizes an Apple filing with the European Patent Office, under the name "Audio system, loudspeaker and method of operation thereof".

The patent, accompanied by drawings, describes a speaker system used in combination with a "computing device" that controls loudspeakers to provide the effect of having five speakers when there are in fact only two. The other three are "virtual speakers". The "computing device" could be a computer located in the interior of a speaker.

"Measurement devices", with a wireless microphone given as an example, provide feedback information to the computing device in the form of sound samples so it can make further adjustments to hit the "sound sweet spot".

The listener can use a handheld device and a screen display to monitor and control the system.

Although this is a patent for an "invention" and not an actual product, it is in keeping with Apple's push into home entertainment products such as Front Row, the Apple Remote, and the iPod Hi-Fi.

 
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skwert

macrumors member
Jan 12, 2006
30
0
nothing new

cool for apple...but this is nothing new in the world of audio. i know for sure that bose does it already...possibly others?
 
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amateurmacfreak

macrumors 6502a
Sep 8, 2005
992
0
Hm... verry interesting.
If all these patents, etc. from Apple don't turn into something awesome in the next few years, someone's going to be annoyed. :p
But the virtual speakers sound very awesome. Even if I don't totally get the technology! :eek:
 
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Whistleway

macrumors 6502
Feb 16, 2005
347
0
Are we running out of news to post during the 30 year anniversary?.. comeon, it is just days away and we are talking about ipod software update, this thing and all sorts of crap.. get on with the program please ~~!!
 
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Object-X

macrumors 6502a
Aug 3, 2004
632
1
Welcome to my living room Apple. Someone turn out the lights...oh wait, my remote does that.
 
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savar

macrumors 68000
Jun 6, 2003
1,950
0
District of Columbia
AtHomeBoy_2000 said:
EU Patent for Apple audio system

What could this mean??? Part of it seems like Dolby Virtual Speaker.

Withtout reading the patent, it sounds *exactly* like many other virtual speaker technologies--none of which work to my ears.

Also, there is a B&O floor speaker which is rotatable on a motorized base and uses microphone feedback to position itself optimally, so that's nothing new either.

Still, this sounds like the making of iMac Hifi...
 
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Chaszmyr

macrumors 601
Aug 9, 2002
4,267
85
savar said:
Withtout reading the patent, it sounds *exactly* like many other virtual speaker technologies--none of which work to my ears.

I, for one, think that Bose's virtual speaker technology sounds wonderful.
 
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rogueimage

macrumors member
Apr 29, 2003
74
0
Boulder, Colorado
Chaszmyr said:
I, for one, think that Bose's virtual speaker technology sounds wonderful.

The Bose one is decent. We sold those when i worked at Sears. I wasn't a fan of the interface. No numeric volume feedback, for one thing. We had a Denon that sounded about as good and had more audiophile-type customization, for several hundred dollars less. The only problem with that one was that the DVD drive was rather noisy. Finally, we got a Sony one in that was easily the best of the three, IMO. It cost the same as the Bose, but the virtual speakers were far more effective. As long as you were standing in the sweet spot, you would swear there really were speakers behind you. It also had more inputs and HDMI output with DVD-to-HD interpolation.
 
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puuukeey

macrumors 6502
Dec 24, 2004
327
1
tristate area
these methods are almost always bs, they just throw one side slightly out of phase with some impulse response. it never works. and if it does approach working, you move your head 2 cm and your screwed
 
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BlueRevolution

macrumors 603
Jul 26, 2004
6,054
2
Montreal, QC
I thought that had been around for a long time. Apple may be going to make one that actually works, but you can't really patent "actually working". I can't see this filing getting approved.
 
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EricNau

Moderator emeritus
Apr 27, 2005
10,686
157
San Francisco, CA
I'm starting to think Apple is just patenting everything they can possibly think of, whether or not they are seriously planning on creating it in the near future.

After some of the problems they've had in this area in the past, I don't blame them.
 
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touring

macrumors newbie
Mar 10, 2006
15
0
EricNau said:
I'm starting to think Apple is just patenting everything they can possibly think of, whether or not they are seriously planning on creating it in the near future.

That's better than other companies, who publicly announce new products that they are GOING to have, before they even start making them.
 
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skwert

macrumors member
Jan 12, 2006
30
0
Chaszmyr said:
I, for one, think that Bose's virtual speaker technology sounds wonderful.

mehh, imo...bose sucks. they're overpriced, and put the same damn tiny little speaker into everything. if you're going to spend the money...please just get the real thing. there's no substitute for true 5.1
 
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Mac Fly (film)

macrumors 68000
Feb 12, 2006
1,592
4,422
Ireland
p0intblank said:
It'd be neat if Apple came out with their own 2.1 computer speakers. :)
You took the words right out of my mouth!!!:eek:
I've been wondering why they didn't do that already for a while now!
 
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boncellis

macrumors 6502
Feb 9, 2006
474
0
Salt Lake City
The "desklamp" iMac G4 included some fairly nice speakers, though I believe they were rebranded, not really original from Apple.

I think it would be cool if Apple takes on surround speakers that connect via the optical output. I just hope they are at least 2.1 (and not fixed within a brick-like enclosure).
 
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