CIRMMT Distinguished Lecture | Christian Hugonnet: The "Sound Quality" label project
Over the course of discoveries, technological and industrial progress, the loudspeaker has become a part of our daily lives and then, by becoming miniaturized, has taken a prominent place. The digital convergence represented by dematerialization and nomadism has finally allowed the generalization of listening with headphones or earpieces. At each stage, the perception of what we believed to be a certain reality of the sound world transformed our relationship to the sound. But, with these new diffusion and restitution tools, what do we listen to? In an increasingly noisy sound world, how does our listening and our hearing evolve in response to sound sources that are increasingly compressed in dynamics?
Based on an experimental study carried out in 2021/2022 by Professor Paul Avan, at the initiative of the "La Semaine du Son" association, the "sound quality" label project was launched in January 2023 with the support of the "Ecoutez Voir" foundation, in partnership with the Pasteur Institute and the Hearing Institute, Ircam Amplify and Universal Music. This label will be officially presented to UNESCO in January 2025; it concerns the recording industry, but also all audiovisual reproduction media, from radio and TV to streaming platforms.
Expert Engineer at the Court of cassation in Paris, Christian Hugonnet runs a consultancy practice in acoustics for concert hall and recording studios. In 2004, he launched the first edition of "The Week of Sound", now an annual international event supported by UNESCO as "UNESCO’s Week of Sound" that aims to educate the public and elected officials on the societal and economic importance of sound in five main sectors: auditory health, acoustics and sound environment, recording and reproduction, image and sound, musical expression.
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