Audio specialists cooperate for wireless speaker development - Embedded.com

Audio specialists cooperate for wireless speaker development

LONDON — Audio design engineering companies APTX, Bang & Olufsen ICEpower, and Bluegiga Technologies have collaborated to produce an integrated module reference design and evaluation kit for speaker OEMs seeking to upgrade existing passive products to wireless active systems.

This module concept combines Class D amplification from Bang & Olufsen ICEpower A/S (Lyngby,Denmark), a wireless interface from Bluegiga Technologies Oy (Espoo, Finland), and audio coding software from APTX (Belfast, Northern Ireland).

The collaboration has produced an evaluation kit with proven hardware and firmware which can accelerated new product development and support the market shift to wireless and active loudspeaker systems.

“This is great news for speaker OEMs seeking to upscale their products from simple passives to cutting-edge wireless active technology,” said Stephen Wray, VP Licensing of APTX. “ICEpower was one of the first audio companies to pioneer the industry transformation from analog to high-efficiency switching technologies. With this new modular solution, electronics OEMs can now retro-fit existing passive loudspeaker systems, provide Bluetooth wireless interoperability, and deliver really professional audio quality that’s indistinguishable from wired speaker systems. This new modular solution delivers a very impressive dynamic range of more than 92dB at CD sampling rates (16bit/44.1kHz).”

ICEpower has raised the power-efficiency of the amplifier and power supply from the 50 to 70 percent found in traditional analog designs, to 80 to 95 percent thanks to advance Class D techniques.

Bluegiga supplies the WT32 Bluetooth audio module which integrates a 2.4GHz radio, DSP, battery charger, stereo apt-X audio coding, and antenna. The WT32 offers full support for the latest 2.1 + EDR standard via Bluegiga iWRAP firmware.

Bang & Olufsen ICEpower was founded by Dr. Karsten Nielsen in a joint venture with Bang & Olufsen in 1999 based on the results of Dr. Nielsen’s PhD work at the Technical University of Denmark.

Related links and articles:

APTX licenses audio technology to Creative Labs

APTX readies scalable, cognitive audio codec

APTX to expand licensing business after sale of hardware division

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