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Dynamic EQ automatically adjusts bass and treble for optimal audio

Gracenote announced a new digital signal processing product for cars, Dynamic EQ, which recognizes individual songs and automatically applies equalizer settings.

This story is part of CES 2016. Our editors bring you complete CES 2016 coverage and scour the showroom floor for the hottest new tech gadgets around.
Gracenote Dynamic EQ image

Gracenote's Dynamic EQ applies preprogrammed bass and treble settings to individual songs.


Ahead of CES, Gracenote announced a new audio technology that can automatically apply equalizer settings, changing bass and treble for specific song tracks. The technology, designed for cars, can be implemented by equipment suppliers in automotive stereo equipment.

Gracenote has built its business on audio recognition technology and a music catalog. Its existing technology can recognize a track from a CD, for example, and apply the correct genre, artist name, album name and song title, either from a cloud-based or onboard database.

Dynamic EQ builds on this technology, by including a set of optimal equalizer settings tailored for every every song. Equalizer settings boost or lower specific frequencies, so that you hear more or less bass and treble. Dynamic EQ might, for example, boost the bass on a rap song or highlight treble for a violin solo.

Gracenote co-founder Ty Roberts told CNET in a phone call that Dynamic EQ uses a software-based five band parametric equalizer, which can not only adjust levels but also adjust the breadth of a frequency being affected for a better listening experience.

Roberts pointed out that one benefit of Dynamic EQ would be eliminating the need of the driver to fiddle with bass or treble controls, which in modern cars are often buried under menus on a touchscreen interface.

As with Gracenote's music database, the company will partner with automakers and equipment suppliers to implement its Dynamic EQ technology. As such, it will likely be a model year or two before it becomes available in a production vehicle.