Media Integration Lab: the best Focal immersive audio system


Have you heard of the Media Integration Lab in Tokyo? It is an exceptional audio system made up exclusively of Focal in-wall/in-ceiling speakers and Focal subwoofers. Dedicated to demos and acoustic research, this installation has a cumulative amplification power of 21,000 watts! An exceptional 3D sound experience!

Media Integration Lab
The Media Integration Lab is one of the most impressive auditoriums in the world. It is unrivaled for creating sound immersion with both music and movies.

Immersive auditorium for professionals

The Media Integration Lab was created by the official Focal distributor in Japan. The latter works in close collaboration with major content producers, including NHK. It is an optimal demo system for all audio tracks with object-oriented effects. Designed to produce the most immersive sound experience possible, this auditorium offers audio professionals an ideal laboratory to test the degree of immersion offered by different content, whether music or video.

Everything you need to know about immersive sound in cinema

In addition to being stereo and 5.1 surround compatible, the Media Integration Lab supports a wide variety of immersive audio formats. It decodes Sony 360RA, Dolby Atmos, Auro 3D, Hamasaki 22.2 (NHK 8K Super Hi-Vision), Ambisonics and DTS:X formats.

Focal acoustic arches and aureole

For this, this spherical auditorium adopts the best Focal in-wall and in-ceiling speakers. They are accompanied by subwoofers from the French manufacturer. Its structure unfolds like a sound bubble all around the listener.

Twelve vertical arches frame the listening position. They each accommodate two built-in speakers plus a subwoofer. The latter features a 12″ Flax driver mounted in a custom-made cabinet.

Custom 12" Focal subwoofers
In addition to the two Focal Sub 1000 F subwoofers on either side of the central channel, no less than twelve 12″ Flax cone subwoofers equip this exceptional system.

The three columns facing the listener incorporate a Focal 1000 IW LCR Utopia in-wall speaker. Above each of them is a Focal 1000 IW6 speaker. The other columns adopt a Focal 1000 IW LCR6 speaker over which a Focal 1000 IW6 is placed.

At the top of these arches, twelve Focal 1000 IW LCR6 speakers form an aureole. They distribute the vertical effects towards the listening area. Finally, a Focal 300 IW LCR6 speaker reproduces the “voice of God” channel. This is the ceiling speaker above the listener, used in Auro-3D configurations.

A speaker aureole for superior Media Integration Lab effects

Twelve Focal 1000 IW LCR6 speakers mounted in a ring distribute the vertical effects towards the listening area. At their center, a Focal 300 IW LCR6 speaker reproduces the “voice of God” channel for Auro-3D audio tracks.

Speakers built into the floor!

There are five Focal 300 IW LCR6 in-wall speakers built into the floor and positioned upwards. The listener has three in front of them and one on either side of the chair. Finally, two Focal Sub 1000F subwoofers complete the front soundstage.

The Media Integration Lab even incorporates floor speakers!
In addition to field speakers and vertical effects speakers, the Media Integration Lab uses five Focal 300 IW LCR6 speakers integrated into the floor to perfect the feeling of immersion.

High-end electronics

To power all these speakers, the technical bays of the Media Integration Lab are full of very high-end devices. There is a Panasonic DMR-ZR1 4K UHD Blu-ray player and recorder and a Panasonic DMR-UBZ2020 4K UHD Blu-ray player. Added to this is a Yamaha CX-A5100 A/V preamplifier. In addition, there is a 32-channel Innosonix MA32/D power amplifier with a total output of 9000 watts (32 x 280W). Also included is a Pro Tools MTRX audio interface, a favorite of many mixers and sound engineers in music and film.

The technical bays of the Media Integration Lab accommodate multiple amps totaling 21,000 watts of power!
The technical bays of the Media Integration Lab accommodate high-end electronic devices and extremely powerful professional amplifiers.

The Focusrite brand is also present with a Focusrite RedNet A8R eight-channel AD/DA converter. A Focusrite RedNet D64R 64-channel digital audio bridge is also included. Finally, we note the presence of six Lab Gruppen D Series 20:4 power amplifiers. They each deliver 4 x 500W of power into 2, 4 and 8 ohms, for 12,000 watts in total!

For the image, the MIL uses a JVC projector and an electric projection screen with an acoustically transparent canvas. It takes place in front of the three frontal arches.

With such a configuration able to deliver sound over 42.3 channels, there is no doubt that the immersion is total. Something to dream of for future home-theater installation in your living room… Focal is currently the only manufacturer in the world to offer such an immersive system for professionals. Immersive cinema still has a bright future ahead of it…

To learn more about the different immersive sound formats, you can consult these guides:

Dolby Atmos: home theater sound in 3D
DTS:X: immersive home theater
Understanding Auro-3D Immersive Cinema Sound

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