Audio quality continues to be the weakest link in the TV viewing experience for many people. That has only been enhanced by the dominance of flat-panel TVs, which typically can’t fit quality speakers inside due to their thin designs. Even many sound bars and the best multi-channel speakers can overcome such issues as sudden changes in audio levels.
AfterMaster TV is designed to overcome such problems. It’s a small, set-top device that gets hooked up via HDMI cables to a TV and an audio/video source including a cable or satellite box. The device uses patent-pending technology originally developed for the music industry, according to its Kickstarter campaign. It features a proprietary Digital Signal Processing chip, co-developed with ON Semiconductor, that can master and remaster audio to professional standards in real-time and, unlike other audio enhancement technologies, makes any audio source sound much better throughout its entire frequency range.
The device ships in February. Future retail pricing isn’t finalized yet, but early bird backers have been able to get a standard version at pricing starting at $80, a limited edition version with extras including a rechargeable battery at $120 and a PRO version with extras including dual HDMI inputs at $150. Final pricing will likely be $10-$20 higher for each of the three versions, says AfterMaster Audio Labs. The company is trying to raise $200,000 by Dec. 21.
AfterMaster TV seems like a near must-have device for TV addicts and home theater geeks. But with something of an audio renaissance in high-resolution audio, we may see competitors raise their game.