Dolby Approves First Software Implementation of Real-Time Dolby Digital 5.1 Encoder for PCs Using C-Media Chipset


Dolby Laboratories announced that it is demonstrating C-Media’s newest chipset to run a PC game at the 2003 International CES trade show in Las Vegas. Dolby has certified C-Media Electronics’ software-based implementation of the real-time Dolby Digital encoder for the CMI9739 6CH AC97 chipset.

For the first time, PC users with Intel- and AMD-based PCs equipped with C-Media’s award-winning chipsets will have access to the benefits and convenience of the high-quality, exciting multichannel audio experience that only Dolby Digital provides. (C-Media chipsets are used on more than 25 percent of all motherboards manufactured worldwide.)

“By creating a software implementation of the real-time Dolby Digital encoder technology, C-Media has made it possible for PC users to enjoy more entertainment than ever before in multichannel audio,” said Greg Rodehau, director, PC and games technology marketing, Dolby Laboratories. “This development marks a new milestone in the advancement of the real-time Dolby Digital encoder because for the first time, Intel- and AMD-based PCs will be able to take advantage of this exciting multichannel audio technology.

“With this software implementation of the real-time Dolby Digital encoder technology, existing and future customers who are using C-Media’s PCI or AC97 audio chips can obtain high-quality Dolby Digital audio from the S/PDIF output much more easily and from more sound sources than ever before,” said Eric Cheng, president and CEO of C-Media. “Better yet, not only is the digital signal free from the usual problems present in traditional analog outputs, but it also reduces the number of wires needed between the PC and a home theater system. With the real-time Dolby Digital encoder technology, data is digitally transmitted from the PC to the home theater system via a single cable, instead of the three pairs of cables used with previous multichannel analog outputs.”

Real-time Dolby Digital encoder technology renders interactive game sound effects with the same surround sound quality offered in DVDs. For game players, this means that systems utilizing this technology can provide Dolby Digital 5.1 during actual game play, immersing the player in high-quality, interactive surround sound and essentially making users feel closer to and more involved with the gaming action. The technology can also enable other future entertainment capabilities from the PC, because of the ability to deliver any audio source via a single digital interface to an existing home theater system.

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