Accordingly, DSX is specifically designed to work with existing 5.1-channel material (it does not work with stereo inputs), while leaving the door open for future 7.2-to-11.2-channel mastering techniques.
DSX uses DSP technology to create expansion channels that augment the usual 5.1-channels found in most surround soundtracks (and multichannel music recordings). The additional expansion channels serve two purposes: first, they fill in perceived gaps to the left and right sides of the surround soundstage, and second, they convey height information that helps make the soundstage feel more like a 3D hemisphere of sound rather than a relatively flat circle of sound that presents lateral sound information only.
How Will DSX Appear On the Market?
The roll-out of Audyssey DSX will occur in three stages.
Stage 1: 7.1-channel versions of DSX
Audyssey’s new DSX feature will first appear in two new Denon AVRs that were announced this week: the AVR-4310CI and AVR-3310CI. The concept is that, in these 7.1 channel AVRs, what would normally be Surround channels can instead be assigned as Audyssey DSX Wide or DSX Height channels, depending on the owner’s preference. Later on, DSX features will follow in other Audyssey manufacturer’s AVRs and A/V controllers
Stage 2: 9.2-channel versions of DSX
Later on, expect to see 9.2-channel AVRs and AV controllers that will be capable of driving both DSX Wide and Height channels simultaneously.
Stage 3: 10.2 or even 11.2-channel versions of DSX
Even further down the road, expect to see ten or eleven-channel AVRs that can support DSX Wide and Height channels, plus either one or two Center Back Surround channels (but again, remember that DSX research shows the greatest sonic benefits come from adding the two new sets of front channels.
In part 3 of this blog series, I’ll discuss the sound of Audyssey DSX, questions that the DSX experience raised for me, and other new technology developments from Audyssey. Stay tuned for more.