The digital age has allowed people to enjoy and expect a high level of video and audio quality from the various devices they receive their entertainment from. A number of manufacturers produce the hardware and software for these devices. Digital surround sound is one facet of this improved home audio in stereo systems and other components, and SRS Surround Sound is the product of one particular company.
SRS (Sound Retrieval System) Labs was established in 1993 in Santa Ana, California with the purchase of technologies from Hughes Aircraft Company. They specialise in advanced audio enhancement, voice processing and surround sound technologies, and their products are designed to enhance sound in mono and stereo sources as well as the multichannel sources that utilise SRS Surround Sound.
SRS Surround Sound technologies have been integrated into a variety of different audio-relaying devices for home entertainment, including digital and HD televisions, A/V receivers, DVD players, set-top receiver boxes and speaker bars. In addition, SRS sound technologies are also found in portable media players, car stereos, mobile phones and speakers for both desktop and laptop computers.
The term "surround sound" usually implies a multichannel stereo and speaker system, with separate and distinct audio signals being sent to each speaker to create the overall surround sound experience. SRS developed Circle Surround for such home theatre systems, to decode and process 6.1 channels of digital audio from television broadcasts and DVDs, among other sources. Circle Surround is designed to improve dialogue clarity and achieve a deep bass, even with the smaller speakers of some stereo systems.
SRS has also developed technologies to deliver a surround sound effect to two-speaker (or headphone) components, including televisions, computers and portable media players. TruSurround products enhance the audio coming from the two speakers to better simulate a multichannel system by processing the multichannel audio input and distributing it in a way that makes the listener perceive that the sound is coming from different areas, including boosting the frequency range of dialogue to help it rise above the other sounds.
SRS has different variations within the TruSurround line of audio technologies for different devices, including TruSurround XT, TruSurround HD for high-definition televisions and TruSurround HD4 for HDTVs with more than two integrated speaker drivers. Each variation is applied to the capabilities of the particular component to best re-create surround sound audio through its limited speaker system.