Receiver mixed

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Overcoming audio description’s technical hurdles

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Following the 2012 trial on ABC1, Media Access Australia has compiled a briefing paper outlining how Australia’s television industry can overcome the technical challenges of broadcasting audio description (AD).

Below are some of the potential hurdles that have been presented and our explanation of how they can be overcome.

Not everyone will receive the AD

While only those with an AD-ready digital TV or set-top box will be able receive the audio description, the trial proved that AD could successfully be transmitted to all parts of Australia

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Receiver-mixed and broadcast-mixed audio description

Audio description  is delivered as a second audio stream to your television or set-top box, and can be either 'receiver mixed' or 'broadcast mixed'.

With receiver-mixed audio description, the normal audio stream for the program is broadcast, while the second audio stream consists of the audio description narration only, along with signals that lower the sound level on the primary audio stream so that the descriptions can be heard.

With broadcast-mixed audio description, the second audio stream contains both the original soundtrack and the descriptions mixed into it.

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