VI-grade and BlackBerry QNX team up to enable real-time active sound design

Partnership represents a significant step forward in sound design.

VI-grade has partnered with BlackBerry QNX to enable real-time active sound design for the entire vehicle soundscape by integrating QNX’s Active Sound Design software (QNX ASD) with VI-grade’s NVH Simulator. 

This partnership represents a significant step forward in sound design. Until now, vehicle sounds have been designed in a studio, separate from the natural vehicle sounds from engine, motors, tires, wind and other sources. These sounds were then auditioned and tested on physical prototypes, which was both time and cost-intensive, and often resulted in going back to the drawing board to create new sounds more suitable for the actual vehicle sound environment.

Thanks to this partnership, the QNX ASD software is now integrated with the VI-grade NVH Simulators, allowing designers to work interactively with a complete NVH simulation of the target vehicle and to experience the sound design in a highly realistic way. The VI-grade NVH Simulator connects QNX ASD to other sound and real-time data sources in the vehicle, so that tests and modifications can be performed much earlier in the design process. This drastically reduces the need for physical prototypes and saves development time and costs.

“We are thrilled to announce this partnership with VI-grade,” said Len Layton, Acoustics Business Development Manager, BlackBerry QNX. 

“The integration of QNX ASD with the VI-grade NVH Simulator allows automotive sound designers and NVH engineers to design and tune sounds for vehicles much faster and more efficiently than ever before, eliminating slow and costly development on prototype vehicles and moving this development to the desktop.

By designing sounds with the full vehicle soundscape as context, better sounds can be designed and implemented faster.”

QNX Active Sound Design is a comprehensive vehicle sound solution that allows designers to create the next generation of dynamic automotive sound designs with an interactive workflow. Designers can design sounds interactively on the desktop using the QNX LiveAMP sound design and tuning tool and then deploy directly to automotive embedded systems with the full confidence that their intended results will be realized in production.

QNX LiveAMP is a graphical tool running on Microsoft Windows designed for tuning, diagnostics, configuration and analysis of the QNX Acoustics Management Platform.  This tool enables you to perform real-time and interactive adjustments to all system parameters, including the injection and streaming of signals and vehicle data at multiple tap-points in the system. It has dedicated vehicle sound design functionality with a unique and intuitive graphical signal flow interface.

With the integration with the VI-grade NVH simulator, QNX ASD adds another level of capability that allows designers to work interactively with a complete NVH simulation of the target vehicle to experience their designs in a highly realistic way. 

“Design of ASD sound profiles, whether for engine sound enhancement, electric vehicle sound enhancement or exterior sound for meeting Acoustic Vehicle Alerting Systems (AVAS) standards, used to be performed separately from the noise and vibration aspects of the vehicle platform.

The ASD sound profiles were first developed in the “vacuum” of the studio, and then were combined with the rest of the vehicle sounds only on actual vehicles, which of course requires prototype vehicles and significant time horizons” said Dave Bogema, Director NVH Solutions, VI-grade. 

“With this combination of technology, sounds can be designed and tuned on a computer, in the context of all other vehicle sounds, over the entire operating envelope of the vehicle and evaluated with a free driving, driver-in-the-loop simulation, drastically reducing the need for prototype vehicle testing and tuning.”

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