CHINA 2014, BEIJING – HARMAN, the premium global audio and infotainment group, announced today that the all-new 2015 Lexus NX will be the first vehicle to incorporate HARMAN’s innovative Clari-Fi™ technology, which automatically analyzes and improves the audio quality of all types of compressed, digitalized music sources. The technology will be a feature of the available Mark Levinson Premium Surround Sound Audio System in the Lexus NX.
The audio industry has experienced a dramatic shift from vinyl LPs and CDs to compressed, digital files enabling the sharing of music across a variety of mobile devices as well as streaming music services increasingly accessed found in today’s vehicles. The compression process has made audio more mobile than ever, but at the price of audio quality. Compressing audio files can discard up to 90 percent of the original audio content captured in the studio. As a result, consumers cannot experience music in the way the artist originally intended. Clari-Fi transforms the listening experience back to a pre-compression era, by addressing this deterioration of audio quality by restoring what has been lost, to deliver a rich, uncompromised listening experience from any compressed music source.
“We are proud to continue our 13-year partnership with Lexus, and excited that the new NX vehicle will be the first automobile in the world to feature Clari-Fi,” said Dinesh C. Paliwal, Chairman, President, and Chief Executive Officer, HARMAN. “Clari-Fi is a significant technological advancement that transforms the listening experience for the millions of people who don’t want to sacrifice quality for the convenience of downloaded and streaming digital music. At HARMAN, we develop technologies that help recording artists realize their vision. We also want consumers to experience the music the way it was intended - whether at home, on the go or in the car. Now, drivers with the Lexus NX Mark Levinson surround sound system will have an unparalleled listening experience with the breakthrough Clari-Fi solution from HARMAN.”
Unlike other solutions in the market today, Clari-Fi does not simply add equalization and boost bass, or focus only on leveraging high-resolution file formats on a proprietary device. HARMAN’s approach with Clari-Fi analyzes digital audio signals in real time and rebuilds them during playback. It does not mask the effects of heavy compression by adding new effects, but instead uses an algorithm to put back what is lost during the compression process. The result? High-quality audio from compressed digital files from any playback source – including the car.
“Consumers today demand that their cars function as a place where they can stay connected to their digital lives,” said Thilo Koslowski, Vice President and Automotive Practice Leader, Gartner. “As vehicles continue to offer greater connectivity and streaming capabilities, the use of digitalized audio formats will rise and with it consumers’ desire for unprecedented in-vehicle audio experiences.”
The Mark Levinson Premium Surround Sound Audio System in the Lexus NX incorporates Clari-Fi technology across 14 speakers in 12 locations, carefully designed and located strategically throughout the vehicle cabin,to create an optimum listening experience. Powered by a 12-channel ML5 amplifier, the 835-watt audio system delivers the highest quality audio experience to driver and passengers alike.
The 2015 Lexus NX equipped with the available Clari-Fi-enabled Mark Levinson Premium Surround Sound Audio System is expected to launch in Asia and Europe later this year. Clari-Fi technology is already featured in HARMAN’s JBL Authentics Series wireless home entertainment sound systems and will be incorporated into a range of Home, Multimedia, and Automotive products in the coming year.
Visit HARMAN during the Beijing International Automotive Exhibition in Hall E2 for a demonstration of HARMAN’s portfolio of infotainment and in-car audio solutions.
HARMAN (www.harman.com) designs, manufactures, and markets a wide range of infotainment and audio solutions for the automotive, consumer, and professional markets. It is a recognized world leader across its customer segments with premium brands including AKG®, Harman Kardon®, Infinity®, JBL®, Lexicon®, and Mark Levinson® and leading-edge connectivity, safety and audio technologies. The Company is admired by audiophiles across multiple generations and supports leading professional entertainers and the venues where they perform. More than 25 million automobiles on the road today are equipped with HARMAN audio and infotainment systems. HARMAN has a workforce of 14,800 people across the Americas, Europe, and Asia and reported sales of $4.7 billion for the last twelve months ended December 31, 2013.