Continental and Sennheiser present speakerless audio system at CES 2020

by Autocar Pro News Desk , 08 Jan 2020

In the latest action from CES 2020, Continental and audio specialist Sennheiser present a speakerless 3D immersive audio system for vehicle interiors. This system fills the vehicle with immersive sound by exciting surfaces within. The two partners are integrating Sennheiser’s patented AMBEO 3D audio technology with Continental’s Ac2ated Sound system.

Continental’s Ac2ated sound reduces weight and space by up to 90% in comparison to conventional systems making it a great fit for electric vehicles where saving space and weight is a high priority. With Ac2ated Sound, many components are unnecessary because the surfaces in the vehicle vibrate just like speaker diaphragms. Actuators cause components such as the A-pillar trim, door trim, roof lining and rear shelf to vibrate so that they emit sound in different frequency ranges.

Helmut Matschi, member of the Executive Board and Head of the business area Vehicle Networking and Information at Continental said, “For Ac2ated Sound we have brought together the highest levels of expertise in the areas of acoustics, infotainment and vehicle design. In Sennheiser we have found an audio expert who helped us make our pioneering audio system even better.”

Dr Andreas Sennheiser, co-CEO of Sennheiser explained that “We are delighted to bring our audio expertise and AMBEO Mobility software into the pioneering Ac2ated Sound system from Continental, calibrating and fine-tuning the sound quality to deliver a completely immersive and natural sound experience that opens new audio perspectives and realities.”

It is inspired by the technology of classical string instruments, which use their wooden body as a resonance chamber, specially developed actuators excite specific surfaces in the vehicle interior. Daniel Sennheiser, co-CEO of Sennheiser added: “By intelligently analysing the content, the patented algorithm artistically remixes the sound to provide an emotional experience, transporting the listener into the music.”

The invisible audio technology gives vehicle designers and manufacturers the freedom to do more with an automobile’s interior, as they no longer need to account for large speaker faces taking up valuable space.

Founded in 1871, Continental offers safe, efficient, intelligent and affordable solutions for vehicles, machines, traffic and transportation. It generated sales of 44.4 billion euros in 2018 and currently employs more than 240,000 people in 60 countries and markets. Sennheiser, founded in 1945, is one of the world’s leading manufacturers of headphones, loudspeakers, microphones and wireless transmission systems. Its 2018 turnover was 710.7 million euros.