2015

AFMG Becomes Sponsor of the Newman Student Award Fund

2015-11-11 10:03

Honoring outstanding students in the field of architectural acoustics

The Newman Student Award Fund is a program to honor outstanding students at schools of architecture and architectural engineering throughout the world.

The support of education and especially of research projects and of students in the field of acoustics and simulation has always been of high importance to AFMG and its sister companies. Already in 2003, the founders of AFMG Dr. Wolfgang Ahnert, Dr. Rainer Feistel, and his son Dr. Stefan Feistel decided to endorse outstanding students with grants to fund projects relevant to the field. For this reason, the AFMG Foundation was established.

Inspired by Professor Robert C. Coffeen, a long-time friend and partner of our company, AFMG has decided to extend its engagement to support students and become a sponsor of the Newman Student Award Fund. The fund which operates in honor and memory of Robert Bradford Newman, professor and faculty member of the School of Architecture and Planning, MIT, and of the Graduate School of Design, Harvard University for thirty years, regularly awards students for their achievements in projects relevant to architectural acoustics.

Visit the Newman Fund website at http://www.newmanfund.org/

AFMG Celebrates One Year of Cloud-Based Technical Support

2015-09-04 16:02

Frank Siegmann, one of AFMG's best-known employees, heads the international support team.

Since 2011 when AFMG took up distribution of its own software products in Germany at first, then internationally since September 2012, software sales and, consequently, the need for support have risen continuously.

Frank Siegmann, who is working for the AFMG group in his 17th year now, overlooks the support team of the company, "As AFMG became more successful in the recent years we have been facing a growing number of support cases as well. Our first reaction has been to add more members to the support team. These are strategically located in different countries in order to react to inquiries from different time zones quickly. This, again, brought the necessity to coordinate and streamline support efforts. We understood that a good system was needed here."

After close evaluation of several different helpdesk systems, AFMG decided for Help Scout, a solution from the like-named Boston company which offers all key elements important for AFMG and to our customers:

  • High reliability
  • Short server response times
  • Compliance with data privacy standards
  • Online knowledge base
  • Support for fast internal communication and case escalation

Help Scout was introduced in September 2014 and immediately proved a valuable tool for the AFMG support team. Looking back on the year, Frank Siegmann comments, "Our decision was good. Cooperation with our colleagues from the United States and Brazil became so much easier. All team members can access a ticket's history easily and customers receive quick answers even outside regular office hours of their respective time zone."

Additional Algorithms Patented for SysTune

2015-08-06 14:14

AFMG has been granted another patent for the algorithms used in our real time audio measurement software SysTune. (Patent No.: US 9,060,222 B2)

AFMG is proud to announce that another patent has been granted for the sophisticated algorithms we developed for SysTune, our professional audio measurement software.
 

Method for determining an averaged frequency-dependent
transmission function for a disturbed linear time-invariant system,
evaluation device and computer program product.

 

We simply call it the SSA Filter.

 

When is the SSA Filter Useful?

With the SSA Filter, AFMG has come up with a unique tool to help users achieve reliable, stable measurements even in noisy environments and when using a measurement signal like speech or music which does not continuously provide sufficient signal content on all frequencies. Usually, this is the case during soundcheck while others keep working and making noise or during live performances with frequent announcements or loud audiences.

What Makes the SSA Filter so Helpful?

The best thing about the SSA Filter is that it will make sure that no irrelevant information (e.g. noises from truss hammering, a starting fork lift or a screaming audience) will contaminate the measurement. The user can simply continue measuring while SysTune will analyze each measurement cycle according to three different criteria to distinguish bad data from good, valid measurements. Only the good data will be used for further processing.

How Does the SSA Filter Work?

The SSA Filter consists of three filter stages. In general, SysTune measures the transfer function of a system continuously. Each time new measurement data is available, the current estimate of the transfer function is updated. When the SSA Filter is active, only those frequencies are updated where the new data passes through all three filter stages. The frequencies of the new data which do not pass the filters are considered dominated by noise and are rejected. This way, some measurement cycles may not yield any new valid data but, most importantly, existing older data is not spoiled by invalid new data.

The first filter stage is the so called Signal Threshold Filter. It filters out all frequencies where the power density of the excitation signal is below some user-determined threshold. All measured signal content on frequencies which are not significantly excited is likely due to some external noise and is therefore ignored.

The second filter stage is the Excursion Filter. This filter assumes that very fast changes to the transfer function of the system are unlikely. It rejects the new data for all frequencies that would cause a sudden, large change in the transfer function. Reasons for measurements that show sudden differences to the data collected before might be a slamming door, a falling stack of chairs, or a spontaneous cheer of the crowd.

The third filter is called the Coherence Filter. The coherence is a parameter to indicate how closely the measured signal correlates to the signal used for excitation. The Coherence Filter rejects new data for all frequencies where the coherence is below a user-defined threshold. For these frequencies, the measurement results can be expected to be strongly contaminated by some noise uncorrelated to the excitation signal. Consequently, the frequencies will be disregarded and not enter the averaging with the previous measurements.

Together, these three filter stages form a valuable tool to help sound engineers do an efficient and reliable job. Continuous measurements do not need to be re-done when disturbing noises appear, invalid data will automatically be rejected whilst at the same time not the full measurement cycle will be lost. Good data will still accumulate on those frequencies that pass the filter. The combined filter algorithm was therefore named Spectrally Selective Accumulation (SSA) Filter.

(Patent No.: US 9,060,222 B2)

Important: Upgrade Instructions for Microsoft Windows 10

2015-08-04 15:13

Windows 8.1 Logo

All AFMG software is compatible with the newest Microsoft Windows operating system. However, Microsoft’s latest release for Windows, the Windows 10 upgrade, applies changes which may interfere with the checksums of AFMG’s licenses. In order to safely upgrade to Windows 10 without losing installed User Keys, it is usually necessary to upload all your AFMG User Keys for all programs back to our licensing server before performing the Windows upgrade!

 

EASE
  
  

Please use the EASE Guard to upload your User Key.
To do so, start EASE. In the main window select HELP / REGISTER.
Click “Upload License”.
  
EASERA
  
  

Please use the EASERA Guard to upload your User Key.
To do so, start EASERA. In the main window select HELP / REGISTER.
Click “Upload License”.
  
AFMG SysTune, EASE Evac,
AFMG SoundFlow, AFMG Reflex
EASE SpeakerLab 

Start the AFMG License Manager.
Select the programs you have installed from the list.
Click “Upload License”.
Do so for every program.

Now, perform the upgrade of your operating system to Windows 10.

After you have performed your Windows upgrade visit your account in our Download Portal.
If there is a new version for any of the programs, download and install them.
Now you can safely download your User Keys again.

Note: AFMG's free simulation tools EASE Focus (versions 2 and 3) and EASE Address do not use a licensing system. The above mentioned precautions are not necessary for these programs.

 

EASE Online Goes Offline

2015-07-29 17:10

In preparation for updates to the internal server architecture, AFMG shelves the support for online services which have become obsolete with the availability of newer AFMG software. "EASE Online", "DLS Designer", and "Speaker Reader" have been online tools that have aided freelance engineers and small consulting offices for over a decade.

AFMG continues to offer free, professional software for direct sound prediction. Please check out...

1.)    EASE Focus for line arrays, steered column loudspeakers, and conventional point source speakers.

2.)    EASE Address for distributed ceiling loudspeaker systems.

If you have been looking for EASE, the Enhanced Acoustic Simulator for Engineers to create 3D professional simulations of room acoustics and loudspeaker systems please follow this link to be taken to the EASE website.

New Features of EASE Focus 3 presented at InfoComm 2015

2015-06-25 11:43

RAVE Publications recorded a nice video of AFMG's director of Marketing & Sales Thilo Schütz giving a preview of the new features in EASE Focus 3.

At last week's InfoComm Show in Orlando, Florida, AFMG has shown the demo of the upcoming release of EASE Focus 3. During their visit to the booth our friends of RAVE Publications watched Thilo Schuetz, Director of Marketing & Sales at AFMG, give a tour of the new features that will be included in the software.

The convention as a whole has been very successful for AFMG. We are seeing a substantial rise both in company recognition and the demand for our software. Many interesting talks revolved around various subjects regarding EASE, AFMG's industry-standard simulation tool for room and electro acoustics. Software demos mainly centered on AFMG SysTune, our patented real time measurement solution and, of course, EASE Focus 2 and 3 with FIRmaker optimizations. EASE Focus 3 has been presented as a Beta 4 version in many successful demos. The final release is now expected for fall this year.

169th ASA Meeting, Pennsylvania, with several AFMG contributions

2015-05-29 15:56

Last week the 169th meeting of the Acoustical Society of America took place. The organization gathers people from all areas of acoustics from around the world biannually in a week of academic and practical knowledge exchange.

AFMG was represented by our North American team in several paper presentations.

Session 4aAAa “Architectural Acoustics Potpourri” was chaired by AFMG’s Ana M. Jaramillo together with Christopher L. Barnobi, consultant at CSTI Acoustics.

Ana was also invited to present at session 4aAAb “Up and Coming Architectural Acousticians: Past Student Paper Award Winners Report”. Her paper entitled “Teaching acoustics to people with non-scientific backgrounds” dealt with the use of graphical tools, especially room modeling, in teaching.

During session 4pAA “Classroom and Other Room Acoustics” two more papers were presented by Ana Jaramillo and Bruce Olson, consultants at Olson Sound Design and part of the AFMG North America team.
“St. Bartholomew’s parish hall acoustic analysis” was presented by Ana Jaramillo and Christopher L. Barnobi (CSTI Acoustics) as a case study where acoustic treatment was recommended to improve the room’s reverberation time and intelligibility and acoustic simulation proved to be a useful tool for better prediction of post-treatment conditions.
“What is the necessary level of detail for an acoustic model?” was presented by Ana Jaramillo and Bruce Olson to get deeper into the topic of acoustic simulation for post-treatment room prediction by looking into the level of necessary detail to obtain accurate data.

EASE Trainings Announced for August to December 2015

2015-04-08 09:48

AFMG EASE trainings are valued occasions for engineers world wide to gain knowledge and expertise on acoustic simulation with EASE.

AFMG's spring trainings for EASE, the Enhanced Acoustic Simulator for Engineers, have been sold out within a few weeks. Even an additional training scheduled for May filled quickly and has closed registration.

For all customers interested in the trainings we are glad to be able to announce further trainings in the second half of the year. Knowing that long-distance travel for a one-week training is not always possible for everybody, we are especially proud that some of our partners have also scheduled trainings.

Here is the list of upcoming EASE seminars:

June 09-12 Canberra, Australia
July 21-23 Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
August 9-13 Cairo, Egypt
August 24-28 Singapore
August Pondicherry/Auroville, India
September 21-25 Berlin, Germany
October 05-09 Minneapolis, USA

5 Years of AFMG at PLS Frankfurt

2015-03-24 14:24

In 2015, AFMG is celebrating a little anniversary at the upcoming prolight + sound fair in Frankfurt, Germany. We are attending the major show for the fifth time this year.

It has become a tradition that each year one of our international partners joins us at the booth. From April 15th to 18th Pasi Kokkonen will be part of the team at AFMG’s stand. Pasi was born in Finland, lives in the UK and works in India a lot. His calm manner and his knowledge of SysTune and EASE have been appreciated by his students when being a SysTune instructor for AFMG.
 

EASE Focus 3 now allows simulation of sub-arrays both in linear form and in manually placed constellations.      The new Overlap-Regions in EASE Focus 3 make tweaking of splay angles an easy thing.      AFMG will be exhibiting at ProLight Sound show for the fifth time in 2015.

EASE Focus 3 - Preview

To satisfy our users’ curiosity, AFMG will be presenting a preview of EASE Focus 3 at the show. The program will offer several interesting new features along with a substantial performance boost:

  • Complex summation between different sound sources to show effects of phase
  • Modeling, tuning, and alignment of sub arrays
  • Enhancements to the top and side views
  • Polar coordinates and relative entry of audience areas
  • Extended copy & paste functions
  • Gain grouping for line array elements
  • Extended FIRmaker optimization features

EASE Focus 3 is currently in beta phase and will be released in summer 2015.

All our customers, partners, and friends are invited to drop by at our booth. You can find us as usual in Hall 8.0 / Booth E 34.

FIRmaker in the Press: Hahnenkamm Ski Races

2015-02-13 12:00

Mountains are always a challenging setting for open air sound reinforcement, especially if the goal is to play the sound up the mountain. At the 75th Hahnenkamm Downhill and Slalom Races in the Austrian ski resort of Kitzbühel this year, a winter blizzard and sub-zero temperatures added an extra level to the difficulties.

Austria's rental company Murdock Event and Media was able to employ the brand-new K-Array Firenze KH8 Series loudspeakers to tackle the challenge. KH8 loudspeakers are easily rigged in straight frames that allow tilting the speakers both down- and upwards within the frame. This provided the perfect solution to reach the audience which lined the slopes up the mountain. - In addition, AFMG's FIRmaker technology calculated optimized FIR filtersets for the 12 transducers in each loudspeaker. This way, the setup was optimized to allow a constant and cristal-clear coverage over a distance of 200 meters (220 yards) - an exceptional performance!

Please find the full article here: http://www.prosoundweb.com