Netflix Installs New Meyer Sound Tech Paired with Sony’s Crystal LED Display (Exclusive)

Stranger Things - Season 3- Publicity still - H 2020
Courtesy of Netflix

Meyer Sound is introducing Ultra Reflex, a patent-pending system for accurate reproduction of audio on large direct-view video displays, for uses including in home-cinema, postproduction studios and commercial theaters. At launch, it's paired with Sony’s Crystal LED displays, the latest of which are being featured this week as part of the virtual CES show.

The first joint installation for the two technologies is a reference-level screening room and lab on the Netflix campus in Los Angeles. In this setup, its designed for viewing and audio mixing, as well as to accommodate VIP screenings. The room features a 17-feet wide by 9-feet high HDR-capable 4K Crystal LED from Sony.

Audio challenges have been an issue with large direct view displays because they are solid and therefore manufacturers can't put a speaker directly behind the image, explains Miles Rogers, Meyer Sound business development manager, cinema and content creation markets. He notes that this created a need to figure out a new way to accurately reproduce the sound; the Ultra Reflex system combines of prediction software with loudspeaker technologies.

Netflix has already demoed the new system for some of Hollywood's respected sound pros, including four-time Oscar nominated rerecording mixer Jon Taylor. "I was shown a clip from The Revenant. Having mixed this film only a few years ago, I was very aware of how the spatial dynamics should be represented, and I was absolutely blown away by the quality of sound and picture," he said of the system. "When the lights came up I was shocked to learn that the Sony solid screen was actually reflecting the audio from the Meyer Sound speakers that were right above my head. I had no idea they weren’t behind the screen in front of me."

Added supervising sound editor and rerecording mixer Will Files, "Playing clips from my mix of Stranger Things, I was truly shocked at how close it sounded to the studio where we had mixed it. I wouldn’t hesitate to mix on this system in the first place, it’s that good."

Netflix director of creative technologies Jimmy Fusil was project lead on the new screening room, along with production sound technology specialist Ozzie Sutherland and manager Scott Kramer.