Today at the start of IBC 2016 Nugen Audio have announced another update to their Halo Upmix plugin on its first birthday. The key new feature is the support of multi-channel formats as inputs, because up until now Halo could only upmix from stereo source content.
A Lot Happens In A Year!
One year Ago Nugen Audio released their Halo Upmix plug- designed to provide great sounding downmix compatible upmixes of stereo content ready for IBC 2015. Watch my preview video as I take the stereo to 5.1/7.1 Halo Upmix for a test drive.
Then on the run up to BVE 2016 in February Nugen Audio announced support for 9.1 and 7.1.2 for Dolby Atmos from stereo source content. Watch our exclusive interview with developer Paul Tapper from Nugen Audio on the show floor at BVE 2016.
Now just one year after Halo Upmix was announced Nugen Audio have added multichannel support so you can upmix other multichannel content to higher channel formats,. I have tried it with format upmixes like LCR to 5.1, LCR to 7.1, LCR to 7.1 and all I can say is it is brilliant. All of the benefits I identified with the original version translate across to being able to upmix content that is more than stereo.
By combining several technologies including frequency and time-domain energy distribution and neural network artificial intelligence, Halo Upmix enables you to produce stable surrounds, exact downmix matching, as well as dialog isolation.
In addition to using Halo on stem and groups, the Halo Upmix's center channel control and management enable you to create believable upmixes when there is no access to the original stems using the detailed center channel control includes Nugen Audio's proprietary neural network-based dialog extraction.
In addition, Halo Upmix uses powerful real-time analysis of the original multichannel material to identify and extract locational cues. In my upmixing work this is very impressive with elements of the mix appearing where I might have placed them myself when creating a surround mix from scratch. And it does it naturally without introducing artificial reverberation, chorusing, or delay into the down mix all of which goes a long way to making sure the down mix will not be compromised.
To make sure Halo Upmix upmixes will downmix well, (and trust me not all upmixing plugins do) Halo has the feature to compare the original, upmix, and downmix versions all within the plug-in which is really useful especially in TV repurposing. However this doesn't have to compromise the need for a more immersive, "big cinematic sound" experience with full control available for upmixing all the way up to 7.1, 7.1.2 and 9.1.
I am sure that once Avid increase the channel format support for Pro Tools beyond 7.1, Nugen will quickly support these additional immersive sound formats and with the growth in Ambisonics how about support for the Ambisonics formats too.
Halo Upmix has been a brilliant upmix plugin from the starting blocks creating great sounding yet natural upmixes from stereo content. Now with the support for 9.1 and 7.1.2 for Dolby Atmos in February and today support for multichannel source material, I am delighted to award the Nugen Audio Halo Upmix, the Pro Tools Expert Editor's Choice Award.