Following nearly three seasons of extensive prototype testing of Audio-Technica’s 8.0 Microphone Concept at MotoGP™, the Grand Prix motorcycle racing Championship, commercial rights holder Dorna Sports S.L. have moved to make the 8.0 microphone a core audio component of its future programme broadcasting which includes ambitious plans towards remote production.
Located at Dorna Sports’ Barcelona, Spain facility, the extensive remote production suite, which is planned to be phased in through the 2024 Season, will include a custom-built 7.1.4 / 5.1.4 dedicated Audio Control Room to mix immersive audio received from the track in real time. Audio-Technica 8.0 Microphones are to be located at the podium, parc fermé, pit lane and key positions around the racetrack.
While the Audio Control Room will remain static, audio acquisition at the track needs to capture the complex dynamic audio content of the premier global motorcycling event while also being practical in terms of set-up and breakdown, given that there can be over twenty GPs around the World each season. Audio-Technica’s 8.0 Microphone Concept is designed to be lightweight and small enough not just for discreet placement in a field of play, but each of the eight 12mm elements can be removed from the core mount and packed away quickly in a compact case, making for fast deployment by a single operator.
The simplicity of the 8.0 Microphone Concept is also its advantage as producers and engineers who wish to capture immersive audio content in a real time and fast-paced environment, such as live sports, will have a practical and uncomplicated solution without the additional algorithms and decoding required in alternative immersive audio capture applications. As well as sports broadcasting, Audio-Technica see several applications for their new microphone design including concert halls and outdoor festivals.
“The ongoing design and technical feedback that we have received from the Dorna Sports audio team, who started out with just a 3D-printed prototype, has been both invaluable and instrumental to our fast development of the 8.0 Concept” states Rodrigo Thomaz, Audio-Technica Project Manager for MotoGP™; “and indeed the learnings gave us confidence to provide over twenty pieces to the host broadcaster responsible for delivering the summer fortnight of sports around the globe in immersive audio from Japan earlier this year.”
“As audiences expect and demand a more encompassing audio experience in their listening environments” continues Thomaz, “the need for real-time live immersive mixing is only going to increase. Audio-Technica are well placed to deliver the tools required at the beginning of that immersive signal chain.”
Audio-Technica plan a market release of their 8.0 Microphone in 2022. Full specifications and pricing are expected nearer to this time.
About Audio-Technica Corporation:
Audio-Technica is a Japanese brand with a rich history in audio spanning more than half a century.
From modest beginnings in 1962 with the design and manufacture of phono cartridges, Audio-Technica has grown to be a globally recognised brand of microphones, headphones and cartridges - with its ongoing core-competence in audio transducers and ever-continuing desire to deliver the best audio experiences, Audio-Technica is at both the capture and reproduction of great sound.
Present at global sporting events, live music performances and some of the world’s best know audio programmes, Audio-Technica are proud to be part of delivering some of the best audio experiences to audiences wherever they may be listening.
(Photographs show Audio-Technica 8.0 Microphone Concept prototype in use at MotoGP Jerez, Spain 2019; and Audio-Technica Project Manager Rodrigo Thomaz & Dorna Sports Sound Manager Pep Mendoza with an Audio-Technica 8.0 Microphone Concept prototype.)