AFMG Releases EASE Version 4.4 Acoustic Simulation Software
Being actively developed since the 1980’s, AFMG’s EASE simulation platform has become the industry standard for the prediction of room an...
Being actively developed since the 1980’s, AFMG’s EASE simulation platform has become the industry standard for the prediction of room and electro-acoustical parameters. With thousands of loudspeaker models listed in the extensive EASE database the software has made its way from a niche product to an indispensable tool employed by acousticians and system designers worldwide. – At ProLight+Sound fair, March 2014 in Frankfurt, AFMG will be releasing the next upgrade with a range of enhancements to the program.
The EASE software suite consists of two different program versions and three optional modules to cover all demands of acoustical simulations starting from professional sound system design with EASE JR all the way to highly intricate acoustic designs of concert halls and the like where EASE Standard together with the AURA module is the tool of choice. Stefan Feistel, AFMG’s managing director explains that, “due to the risen requirements for speech intelligibility of voice evacuation systems in all areas of public life, the recent years have shown a large increase of EASE design projects from shopping malls to airport terminals, industry plants or even oil drilling platforms.”
Next to several new products that have expanded AFMG’s product range, the company has invested a large amount of time and resources into furthering the development of EASE. The new version 4.4 adds a range of important features and enhanced functionality. Some of the more important ones are expanded import/export compatibility with Trimble SketchUp, Autodesk AutoCAD and a long list of other, DXF-compatible CAD programs as well as the update of STI calculations which are now performed according to IEC 60268-16:2011.
AURA – High-End Simulations Faster!
The AURA module is the most important add-on to EASE Standard. Along with a set of additional parameters that can be derived from sophisticated ray-tracing calculations it incorporates a range of sound scattering simulation options which can be used to achieve highly realistic results. AURA fully supports multi-threading, making best use of modern CPUs with multiple kernels. Acousticians can evaluate echograms and histograms, getting an accurate and encompassing insight into the field of reflections which can be expected at any given point in a room.
Naturally, any meticulous calculations will always be time-consuming to a degree which is proportional to the accuracy achieved by the algorithm. Nonetheless, AFMG developers have done a fantastic job in refining and optimizing the AURA engine. Computations of large projects are performed approximately twice as fast in EASE 4.4 as they have been previously!
Another interesting premium feature now available in the AURA module is the output of locally calculated impulse responses in Ambisonics B-format. This format can then be used for auralizations in specialized listening rooms to produce a very natural, full surround sound field played back on multi-channel loudspeaker setups.
InfraRed – Plan Assistive Listening Systems the Professional Way!
Already presented as a preview at InfoComm, Orlando, 2013 the final version of the all-new EASE InfraRed module is now available together with EASE 4.4. Preferably bundled with EASE JR, the InfraRed module extends the simulation powers of EASE into the world of assistive listening systems. As a project originally developed together with Sennheiser, the combined powers of leading manufacturers Listen Technologies and Williams Sound have helped to make EASE InfraRed a powerful tool for planning and specifying modern infrared systems.
“We are confident that simulating infrared performance in a venue with EASE InfraRed will guarantee the success of our AV systems designers and consultants,” says Tim Schaeffer, Vice President Strategic Development at Listen Technologies. Paul Ingebrigtsen, president and CEO of Williams Sound adds, “This is a great tool for consultants and system designers to ensure successful designs that will save their clients time and money."
EASE 4.4 – New Licensing System and Prices
EASE 4.4 supports Microsoft Windows up to version 8.1 and runs smoothly under Parallels Desktop or in Apple Boot Camp. As with all AFMG software, the minor version upgrade from 4.3 to 4.4 is free of charge for existing users and can be downloaded directly from the AFMG Download Portal.
A unique feature of all AFMG programs is the flexible “roaming” license. User Keys to a license can easily be transferred from one computer to another through the AFMG License Server. EASE 4.4 has received a significant overhaul to bring the underlying protocol layer into line with the demands of the modern internet. At the same time, the historic 2-PC license for one user has been adapted to the current, comparable 1 User Key per user system.
The prices for the different program versions and separately available modules will not change with the upgrade. EASE Standard is still available for 1760 EUR (approx. 2420 USD) while the entry-level EASE JR costs 640 EUR (approx. 880 USD).