Dirac and ASUS Collaborate to Make Lackluster Smartphone Audio a Thing of the Past


(July 18, 2022) The home theater world's knight in audio armor, Dirac, and a company known for electronics innovation, ASUS, have joined forces to make smartphone audio quality an experience to be appreciated. The basic physics of smartphone audio (small speakers in close proximity) aren't exactly conducive to notable audio, but ASUS's new ROG Phone 6 Series is looking to change that. Using Dirac's patented algorithms woven into its Dirac Virtuo spatial audio solution, the ROG Phone 6 Series offers gamers and audio fans an expanded audio soundscape designed to deliver accurate directionality, center imaging, and optimized bass performance. The two companies assert the new phone series marks a "significant leap forward in terms of sound quality, audio immersiion, and bass performance...".

For detailed information about Dirac Virtuo and ROG Phone 6, read Dirac's full press release below.

Dirac and ASUS Push the Boundaries of Mobile Sound in the New ASUS ROG Phone 6
Swedish digital audio pioneer Dirac and ASUS, a global innovator of phones, computers and electronics, today announced collaboration on the ROG Phone 6 series, which features audiophile-level sound quality that fully immerses gamers in the heart of the action and – yet again – establishes a new standard in mobile audio.

The new smartphone from ASUS features the Dirac Virtuo™ spatial audio solution, which leverages patented algorithms to enable immersive stereo sound from the smartphone's built-in speakers while also enhancing the speakers' overall sound quality.

Dirac and ASUS previously collaborated on the ROG Phone 3 and ROG Phone 5/5s, both of which, at the time, pushed the perceived limits of smartphone audio performance and received some of the industry’s highest reviews and rankings for audio quality. Now, according to the companies, the bar for smartphone audio has yet again been raised with the launch of the ROG Phone 6 series.

“For the past two years, ASUS and Dirac engineers have continually challenged themselves to deliver better sound experiences with each iteration of the ROG Phone series,” said Mats Oberg, Chief Commercial Officer, Dirac. “Now, working with ASUS, we’ve integrated the Dirac Virtuo™ spatial audio solution into the ROG Phone 6 and 6 Pro to deliver something rare in the smartphone market — a gaming smartphone with truly immersive, audiophile-grade sound.”

Smartphone audio performance has, historically, been limited. The speakers are necessarily small and closely positioned, which can create an unsatisfactory, mono-like sound experience that lacks dynamism and immersion – even when the device features a two-speaker stereo system. Furthermore, the small speakers cannot reproduce all the deep bass frequencies found in the original content, which can leave gaming content sounding flat and lifeless.

Dirac Virtuo addresses these challenges head-on to reimagine the smartphone audio experience.

The solution enables a spatial, expanded soundscape with accurate sound localization on the ROG Phone 6 series. The directions from which different sounds appear are heard with higher precision and accuracy. For instance, when opponents move across the screen, the player can clearly hear their footsteps – smoothly entering from left, approaching the center, and continuing to fade to the right, creating a true, authentic sense of immersion and spatialization.

Furthermore, its patented technologies phase-align the dual speakers to deliver accurate center imaging with enhanced clarity, contrast, and depth rarely heard on smartphones. To optimize bass performance and enable the ROG Phone 6 series to achieve deeper levels of bass than otherwise thought possible, Dirac Virtuo features an upgraded virtual bass technology that creates a deeper and more natural bass experience, yet with minimal unwanted colorations – allowing gamers to not just hear the sound but also feel the energy and excitement of gameplay.

“Our multi-year collaboration with Dirac has repeatedly challenged the smartphone audio status quo and created entirely new listening experiences for our gaming community,” stated Bryan Chang, General Manager of the Phone Business Unit, ASUS. “Each ROG smartphone offers a significant leap forward in terms of sound quality, audio immersion, and bass performance – and the ROG Phone 6 series is no different. Thanks to our ongoing collaboration with Dirac, we’re yet again equipping our community with a sound experience that will impress even the most discerning gamer.”

More specifically, Dirac Virtuo features numerous breakthrough technologies. Patented MIMO mixed-phase speaker co-optimization technology phase-aligns ROG Phone 6’s dual speakers to improve center image, clarity, and immersion. Soundstage widening technology extends the perceived distance between speakers to create a spatial, expanded soundscape otherwise not possible. An industry-first MEMS microphone array measurement technology ensures accurate measurement of acoustic characters, while a new version of its virtual bass technology enables deeper bass from small speakers, with minimal unwanted colorations.

Together, these technologies deliver a high-quality, immersive gaming experience that even the most discerning audiophiles and passionate gamers will appreciate.

The new ROG series includes the ROG Phone 6 and the ROG Phone 6 Pro, the most powerful ROG Phones ever made. They are powered by the latest flagship Snapdragon® 8+ Gen 1 Mobile Platform with up to 3.2 GHz CPU clock speeds, up to 18 GB of LPDDR5 RAM, and up to 512 GB of storage.

The GameFX audio system on the ROG Phone 6 series features symmetrical dual front-facing stereo speakers, along with a 3.5 mm headphone jack. The smartphone will also support the ROG Cetra True Wireless headphones, which feature the Dirac OpteoTM sound optimization solution – which digitally optimizes the headphone’s sound to overcome hardware limitations and enable them to perform at their full potential.
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