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Vanessa Carlton Concert to Become First HD video Podcast with Suround Sound Print E-mail
Tuesday, 24 June 2008
ImagePodcasts are becoming extremely popular among internet users.  And with the rise in Home Theater PC popularity, HD surround sound podcasts but just send downloadable content rocketing into space.  A growing website, CultureCatch is prepared to lead the pack with their introduction of the suround sound podcast.
Richard Burns, co-founder of CultureCatch, conceived the idea of the HD podcast this past NAB convention.  He wanted to record popular musicians and stream them over the internet in surround sound.  Burns teamed up with Holophone, based out of Toronto.  Holophone are makers of surround sound microphones.  Together they are gearing up to release the first HD video podcast starring Vanessa Carlton.

The team recently recorded a small session in 7.1 surround sound.  They used Panasonic HVX-200 camcorders along with Holophone H4 SuperMINI and H2-PRo surround microphones.  The mics are completely analog, using discrete XLR outputs for each channel.  The SuperMINI include built-in Dolby Pro Logic II technology, allowing for a stereo mixdown to be sent directly to the camera.  In the case of the Carlton recording, the AIFF files were sent to a Macbook Pro workstation running Apple's Logic softwareas well as an Alesis 24-track HDD-recorder.

The final mix of the concert will be done in Toronto and output as an AC3 Dolby Digital file as well as a Dolby Pro Logic mix.  The AC3 stream is what is being called th HD podcast.  In my experience, a compressed AC3 stream, even at the max bitrate of 448kbps, hardly sounds like HD audio.  While indeed it will have more clarity and depth than a standard stereo file, let alone typical podcasts, it will most likely not hold a candle to uncompressed PCM multichannel audio or Dolby TrueHD.  Those formats I would call an HD podcast.  What will be offered will be more of just a standard surround sound podcast.

Now, the big question is...How many of you out there have 7.1 suround sound setups running through your PC and will be able to take advantage of this podcast.  Honestly, Blu-ray technology is out there.  How about a nice 1080p, Uncompressed PCM audio concert for us non-downloadablephiles?

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