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NAMM Sneak Peek

S/MUX

Pronounced “Ess – Mucks,” S/MUX in an acronym for Sample Multiplexing. The technology is licensed by Sonorus and is used to transmit high bandwidth digital audio using existing lower bandwidth technology. Thus a 24/96 digital audio stream can be transmitted through a protocol based on lower bit depths and/or sample rates, but capable of more channels. It works by using demultiplexing (see WFTD Multiplex) to join together multiple digital audio channels to represent a single higher bandwidth channel. For example, an eight channel Light Pipe connection – which is normally a 20 or 24 bit, 44.1 or 48kHz protocol – can be used to transmit two channels of 24 bit, 96kHz digital audio information. Further, that information can be recorded on an ADAT tape and later decoded (multiplexed) back into a 24/96 signal. This is a similar concept to a process known as bit splitting; however, S/MUX divides the data in such a way that individual samples stay in tact as they are transmitted, which means it is possible to apply basic level changes or dithering (so long as they are applied identically to each channel in the data stream) to the demultiplexed signal and still be able to reconstruct a valid, yet processed, signal at the other end.

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