Audio post house Fonic will use Nugen Audio's Halo Upmix plug-in to provide upmixing for a range of TV and cinema productions. Halo Upmix automates the creation of a stereo-to-5.1/7.1 downmix-compatible upmix and includes centre channel management and spatial density controls. The software is available in Avid AAX, VST, and AU formats.
Fonic has used Halo Upmix for two high-profile animation projects — Thomas and Friends: The Great Race, released in May, and To Build a Fire, based on the short story by Jack London. The common thread on the two projects was a complex musical track, originally mastered in stereo. With Halo Upmix, Fonic was able to produce a 5.1 upmix of the music that was true to the sound of the original mix.
In addition to Halo Upmix, Fonic is using Nugen Audio's VisLM-H2 plug-in for loudness metering and monitoring, ISL 2 for true-peak limiting, and LM-Correct 2 to make fixes for loudness compliance. Fonic is also exploring the use of Nugen Audio's new 9.1 extension for Halo Upmix, which will expand its capabilities to 9.1 upmixing with overhead positioning.
"Increasingly, we're required to deliver broadcast projects in 5.1 surround audio, but most music composers still produce audio tracks in stereo," said JM Finch, dubbing mixer at Fonic. "In order to keep to tight delivery schedules, we need to be able to create surround mixes quickly and easily without degrading the sound quality. Compared to other tools we've worked with, Halo Upmix is truly unique in its ability to produce both a high-quality and great-sounding 5.1 upmix and a downmix that sounds almost identical to the original stereo source. Plus, the tool's highly intuitive user interface and extensive manual controls make upmixing fast and easy."