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CARA 2.1/2.2 PLUS - Computer Aided Room Acoustics

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CARA (Computer Aided Room Acoustics) is an advanced program suite for computing and optimizing room acoustics. CARA automatically optimizes the positioning of your loudspeakers and the listening place -- improving sound coloration (linearizing sound pressure frequency response), stereophonic sound localization, and speech intelligibility. CARA is based on the sound source imaging method in combination with a backtracing procedure.

CARA 2.1/2.2 PLUS...

...analyzes and improves room acoustic influenced sound coloration in a two step procedure:
  • determination of the basic acoustic properties of the room (Acoustic Ambiance) in combination with suggestions regarding the furnishings (wall materials, furniture) in order to linearize the reverberation time spectrum,
  • automatic Positional Optimization for the loudspeakers and the listener to minimize sound wave interferences (standing waves) in the listening area.

  • ...calculates the total sound field data at 1,000-3,000 equally distributed grid points in the room. The evaluation of the sound field data concerns:
  • the modal structure (steady state sound pressure distribution),
  • the room response of a Dirac-Pulse excitation in the time domain,
  • the distribution of sound coloration,
  • the sound imaging (stereophonic sound localization),
  • the speech intelligibility.

  • ...provides the expert with a great number of room acoustic reference numbers derived from the sound pressure frequency responses or transient room responses/reverberation diagrams:
  • frequency dependent reverberation times,
  • sound coloration,
  • speech intelligibility,
  • lateral sound level,
  • stereophonic sound localization.

  • ...has a special function, Auralization, which modifies a user selected input wave file, causing it to represent the way that wave file will sound in the designed room. A special player allows you to listen and compare the original wave file with the modified one. This can be used to evaluate effects such as how different loudspeaker positions or a change of materials can change the quality of sound at the listening place. Any piece of two channel Stereo music may be used as the input wave file.

    What you get with CARA 2.1/2.2 PLUS

    (New functions in CARA 2.1/2.2 PLUS are italic and underlined)

    CARACAD - Acoustically Relevant Room Design

  • arbitrary floor plans such as L-shaped rooms, coupled rooms, and bay windows allowed,
  • maximum room size 100 m x 100 m,
  • New Room Design Wizard offers a number of predefined floor plan templates,
  • converter window for changing dimensions from standard to metric,
  • inside walls, partitions, columns, false ceilings, raised flooring, and ceiling beams can be added,
  • sloped ceilings and floors, ramps, and stairways are easily created,
  • furniture database contains popular sizes of tables, cupboards, armchairs, etc.,
  • custom furniture can be built and saved using grouped 3D objects,
  • material surfaces defining windows, pictures, wall hangings, etc. can be defined on any surface,
  • Materials Editor allows definition of customized sound absorbing materials,
  • preset loudspeaker configurations: Stereo, Quadro, Surround (analog, digital: 5.1, 6.1, 7.1, 8.1), PA (Public Address),
  • loudspeaker database contains precise models of over 200 proprietary loudspeakers,
  • new models can be downloaded from the internet free of charge,
  • for loudspeakers not in the database, generic models are available,
  • custom loudspeakers can be modelled using the built-in Loudspeaker Editor, which handles unique things such as: cabinet styles with sloped walls, 1-5 way loudspeakers, act./pass. subwoofers, and dipole radiating flat panels,
  • positioning regions (for use in Positional Optimization) can be L-, T-, or cross shaped,
  • a 3D viewer allows you to see and walk around in the room design.

  • CARACALC - Precise Room Acoustic Calculations

  • automatic positional optimization for the loudspeakers and the listening place,
  • can define symmetry constraint options such as equal spacing to front and side walls,
  • room sound field calculations use between 1000-3000 grid points equally distributed in a level plane at the listening height above the floor,
  • optimized calculating times, now "easy" rooms are calculated 1000 times faster than before!
  • calculates using either real or complex reflection coefficients (real is faster computationally, complex is more like the real world),
  • calculate and evaluate the "Acoustic Ambiance" of the room desgin using the reverberation time spectrum,
  • suggests room modifications to improve the "Acoustic Ambiance" of the modelled room,
  • find out how the room acoustics influence music in the modelled room using "Auralization,"
  • a special player to compare two wave files and hear how room elements affect the acoustics.

  • ETS2DView & ETS3DView - Presentation of Results

  • representation of the optimized positioning of the loudspeakers and the listening place,
  • displays the room acoustics reference numbers: sound coloration, location, speech intelligibility, reverberation time and lateral sound level.
  • ETS2DView...2D-XY Diagrams

  • sound pressure level frequency responses,
  • location diagram,
  • reverberation diagram,
  • frequency dependence of the mean sound absorption coefficient,
  • frequency dependence of the reverberation time,
  • frequency dependent diagrams use Sabine, Eyring, Kuttruff, or CARA-T10 coefficients.
  • ETS3DView... 3D Diagrams and Animations

  • 3D representation of the frequency and time dependence of the modal structure of the sound pressure in the room,
  • 3D representation the temporal propagation of the sound wave fronts in the room,
  • 3D sound coloration, location and speech intelligibility maps of your sound room.

  • CARA Training CD... detailed walkthrough and valuable references

  • Step-by-step guidance on how to create room designs, perform calculations and optimize your settings!
  • Easy browser-like interface allows you to choose lessons in any order you wish.
  • Sample room designs match the finishing designs of many lessons.
  • Fully transcripted for quick lookup.
  • CARACAD and CARACALC help files added as a printable reference.

  • *requires Windows 2K or XP, 800x600 resolution, and 512MB disk space.

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