More than three years ago, we initiated an European collaboration project called “ORPHEUS” along with our audio colleagues from BBC R&D. Our aim was to develop and establish an end-to-end workflow for object-based audio broadcasting, based on open standards. So we teamed up with major European companies and institutions, which are all experts in their fields, to cover all stages with expertise and tools for a complete broadcast workflow.
Recently, the project ended after 2.5 years and we had successfully completed all our objectives. For instance, we’ve produced and published large-scale pilots as well as smaller trials for the public including:
- The world’s first ever live object-based interactive radio drama “The Mermaid’s Tears”
- The ORPHEUS App for iPhone, featuring multiple object-based programmes
- An example of interactivity for an object-based radio drama, rendered in the browser
We’ve also published a detailed documentation of the project and contributed to several important documents like
- EBU Tech Report 042 (“Example of an end-to-end OBA broadcast architecture and workflow”)
- EBU Tech 3388 (“ADM Renderer for use in NGA Broadcasting”)
And besides the products of our industry partners, we even published open-source or free-to-use software
- Reference implementation of EBU Tech 3388 (EBU ADM Renderer)
- ADM (ITU-R BS.2076) handling C++ library
- Broadcast Wave 64 (ITU-R BS.2088) C++ library
- ADMix tools for the production of object-based audio
And eventually, we organised a large workshop at IRT in Munich where we presented our achievements and demos to a broad audience of 120 international audio experts. The recordings of the presentations and the slides are also available here. During this workshop, we produced a short video explaining the basic concepts behind object-based audio and the achievements of the ORPHEUS project. Don’t miss this out:
If you are interested in object-based audio and want to dive deeper, I recommend to check out this page for further information. You may also want to check the Zenodo community page of the ORPHEUS project, where additional resources are archived.
For everyone involved, the ORPHEUS project was a massive success with perfect timing. The feedback, we continue to receive from stakeholders, is highly encouraging as well. Thus, we’re proud to have laid the foundation on which we’ll continue to provide guidance and support for the transition to an open object-based audio workflow in broadcast media.