Perceptual Audio Coding (PAC)

Workshop Date: 
Mon, 08/18/2014 - Fri, 08/22/2014
Marina Bosi and Richard Goldberg                                               

Description: Perceptual audio coders are used in many applications including Digital Radio and Television, Digital Sound on Film, Multimedia/Internet Audio, Portable Devices, and Electronic Music Distribution (EMD). This Workshop integrates digital signal processing, psychoacoustics, and programming to provide the basis for understanding and building perceptual audio coding systems. The first part of the workshop presents the basic principles underlying all the core components of a perceptual audio coding system. In the second part, design choices applied in state-of-the-art audio coding schemes, e.g. AC-3 (aka Dolby Digital); MPEG Layers I, II, and III (MP3); MPEG Advanced Audio Coding (AAC); MPEG-4 are presented; time permitting MPEG Surround and Unified Speech and Audio Coding (USAC) will be also discussed. In-class demonstrations will allow students to hear the quality of state-of-the-art implementations at varying data rates and they will be programming their own simple perceptual audio coder during the workshop.

This workshop is intended for: Musicians/composers interested in exploring widely used digital audio technology; Anyone looking to know more about media technology used in our every-day lives; Engineers/computer scientists/product designers interested in exploring the principles and practices of audio coding standards.

Workshop structure: The workshop will consist of half-day lectures, half-day supervised lab sessions, and classroom exercises and discussions. In addition to addressing basic theory and implementations, classroom sessions will feature state-of-the-art audio coding demos. Participants are encouraged (but by no means required) to bring their own laptop computers. Knowledge of basic digital audio principles and programming experience is expected. The lab sessions will be carried out using Python -- a high level, easy-to-use programming language with syntax that will feel familiar to any programmer of C/C++, Java, or Visual Basic. (Prior Python programming experience is not required or expected.)

IMPORTANT NOTE:  The instructors require the students to follow the textbook,  Introduction to Digital Audio Coding and Standards, and read in preparation for the class.  An additional $150 is added to the cost of the workshop to include the purchase of the book, which will be made available on the first day of class.

Marina Bosi, Richard E. Goldberg are co-authors of the book, Introduction to Digital Audio Coding and Standards.