Dolby Labs licenses Dolby Digital EX

Yesterday, Dolby Laboratories announced that the Dolby Digital Surround EX technology, originally developed in conjunction with Lucasfilm THX for 1999’s “Star Wars Episode I”, has been made available for consumer electronics licencing under the new name Dolby Digital EX.

The new licensing agreement follows similar rules as previous Dolby licences allowing the technology to be incorporated into a wide range of audio receivers as well as incorporation directly into DVD players. The intent of Dolby is to introduce the technology into as many homes as possible through DVD players, computers, and bundles home theater setups.

Dolby Digital EX is an enhancement above Dolby Digital 5.1 which adds a center rear surround channel to the 5.1-channel format, and provides a new tool for delivering greater sonic realism and excitement to home theater systems. Over twenty DVD titles currently contain Dolby Digital EX tracks (for a current list of titles, check here). Like all Dolby setups, EX encoded setups are completely backwards compatible, meaning an EX encoded track can still be played on a Dolby Digital, Dolby Pro Logic, or stereo setup to the extent that those technologies allow.

No new players or receivers have been announced as of yet which will carry the EX technology under this new licensing agreement, but keep your ears open, with this new push Dolby EX is definitely coming home.

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