Something I’m personally really excited about, Microsoft Teams is getting an option to set your sound to high fidelity. This can be used to reproduce music in high quality for things like online exercise classes, music classes or live music performances, but also to join teams meetings with more high-end microphones and not have teams compress and “optimise” the audio.
It will provide the option to turn off components such as echo cancellation, noise suppression, and gain control. These are a real challenge when you connect professional audio equipment to Microsoft Teams.
For example, I have the Shure MV7 which is a USB and XLR microphone. When connected on USB to Microsoft Teams, Teams would keep dynamically changing the microphone gain. Shure put something in their software to force fix the gain, but most USB mics don’t provide that option.
Why would you want to use a higher-end USB or XLR mic with Teams? When recording things like podcasts you can get a level of audio that can’t be matched by a headset or speakerphone.
In music mode, Teams supports up to 32 kHz sampling rate mono audio at 128 kbps, Teams will automatically adjust the audio bitrate based on the available bandwidth, going down to 48 kbps if needed.
High fidelity mode might also have use cases in healthcare where a remote doctor wants to hear the remote patients cough or heartbeat. There are even Digital Stethoscopes for this scenario.
I am curious if this is using the new Satin Codec. Satin is the evolution of SILK and operates in wideband voice mode within a bitrate range of 6 kbps to 36 kbps. Or if it kicks back to a less compressed codec.
It is supposed to be rolling out this month. I’ll update the blog when I get hands-on. Subscribe here for updates
Roadmap ID 83520