Abbey Road Red’s Monthly Round-up – July 2022 Edition

Abbey Road Red’s Monthly Round-up – July 2022 Edition

9th August 2022

What are the music tech stories you should know about from July?

Here’s the fifth instalment of a new series sourced by our innovation arm Abbey Road Red and their research across the music technology and start-up ecosystem. Each month, Abbey Road Red's Karim Fanous and David Fong will present a short overview of their top stories — view this month's selection!

  1. Bluetooth audio’s biggest upgrade in years is coming soon to headphones 

Bluetooth technology has become the preferred option for connected hearables and portable speakers since the first Bluetooth headphones were launched using the SBC codec in 2004, with the latest specification currently in its fifth version. Bluetooth's upgrade to the Bluetooth LE Audio spec will boost the quality of hearables with its new LC3 codec which will enable higher audio quality to be transmitted at half the bit rate of the SBC codec. This will allow hearables to sustain longer battery life while reproducing higher quality audio. Moreover, a new ‘one-to-many' feature will enable multiple users to connect to one audio stream, for example several users in a gym connecting to one television screen. Alongside Qualcomm’s high quality AptX standard, Bluetooth’s biggest upgrade in years will future proof it and offer better and new experiences to listeners.

  1. Novation’s Launchpad 2.0 adds widgets that adapt to your DAW shortcuts, expanding customisation

Continuing the trend towards greater hardware-software integration, Novation has given its grid-based MIDI controller for Ableton a significant update. Pushing the boundaries of DAW controllability, Novation's new features will allow creators to rely on the mouse less than ever before through its Custom Mode keystroke widget. Custom mode transforms a Launchpad controller into a blank canvas in which a user can drag and drop widgets onto the screen and arrange them as they see fit with modules including drum grids, chromatic or scaled keyboards, and faders. The other default factory controller mappings such as Session, Note and Sequencer modes used to control key DAW functions remain unchained, thus making the controller much more versatile.

  1. Steinberg release SpectraLayers 9

The potential for AI to assist creators and editors in professional audio editing tasks is being realised as more product launches harness its capabilities, including iZotope's industry-standard RX application. Steinberg's own AI-powered spectral audio processor SpectraLayers, already very powerful, now features AI algorithms to identify and reduce bleed or spill across multiple tracks that may feature these artifacts.

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