Music 2.0: Engineers unveil MT9 format

Korean computer engineers are introducing a new digital music format that has a six-channel audio equalizer and separate controls on the sound volume for each musical instrument, such as guitar, drum, base and voice. The new format, which has a file extension format of MT9 and a commercial title of "Music 2.0", is poised to replace the popular MP3 file format as the de-facto standard of the digital music source, its inventors say.

The MT9 technology was selected as a candidate item for the new digital music standard at the last regular meeting of Motion Picture Experts Group (MPEG), the international body of the digital music and video industry.

Ham says that the music industry should change its attitude to the market as music is becoming a digital service, rather than a physical product. Samsung Electronics and LG Electronics are both interested in equipping their mobile phones with an MT9 player and their first commercial products are likely to debut early next year, he said.

Unlike other digital formats exclusively used by big companies, Audizen (the venture company behind the development) allows users to copy the MT9 files, making it a more attractive format. "Its like having a CD or cassette tape. Once you buy it, you can lend it to your friends. We dont want to be too fussy about DRM (digital right management),"" said Ham Seung-chul, chief of Audizen.

View: Korea Times

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