JVC K2 Technology
This is a better kind of digital


Introduction

Theoretically, it has always been believed that digital audio sound quality
will remain the same as long as the codes do not change. But, in reality,
the characteristics do change when different digital equipment and digital
media are used. This is due to the non-code components added during
transmission – components which the K2 Interface (developed by JVC) is
designed to remove. The following will discuss a music mastering system JVC
created which makes use of the K2 Interface technology. This system allows
the production of compact discs with rich ambience and high resolution.

Digital Audio in Music Production

The digital signal transmission is supposed to cause no changes in sound
quality. But in reality, it does. It is also assumed that no signal
degradation occurs, regardless of the transmission system the digital signal
passes through, so long as there is no code error. This too has been proven
wrong: digital optical cables produce differences in sound quality.
Vibrating cables can also cause a change in sound quality. Discs and tapes
sound different depending upon their condition. All this means sound quality
changes, even if only slightly, according to the hardware and media used.

Discovering exactly why the sound quality changes in a digital signal
transmission system, JVC believed, was one of the most important clues to
improving the quality of digital audio. Following this belief, JVC conducted
an analysis of a digital signal transmission system as it relates with the
sound quality. JVC discovered that non-code components – wave form
distortion and jitter (variations in clock cycles) – contained in the
digital signal have much to do with sound quality. JVC also learned that
such non-code components are transmitted to the analog signal processing
circuit where they cause distortion.

In a digital signal transmission system, even if the code – 0 or 1 – does
not change, the non-code components with frequencies extending to a high
range over a wide band are transmitted to the analog signal processing
circuit where they cause interference and intermodulation distortion –
ultimately changing the sound quality.

Ideal Music Production System

Ideally, the sound the listener gets from a compact disc should be the same
sound the mixing and mastering engineers intended to create. Engineers
combine various sounds, balancing one with the others to create an original
sound – a sound that is close to the real thing. But as explained, in the
process that starts with recording and ends with compact disc cutting, a
sound so carefully created and balanced undergoes subtle changes, even if it
is in a digital form.

JVC has developed the K2 Interface with the aim of removing from a digital
signal transmission system the factors that alter sound quality – and
providing listeners with the sound the musicians, producers, studio and
mastering engineers intended for them to enjoy during playback at home.

K2 Interface

In essence, the K2 Interface detects just the code – 0 or 1 – of a digital
signal as controlled by an independent clock signal. It does so instantly,
totally unaffected by the non-code components contained in the wave form.
Then a totally new code is engineered in an analog signal processing block
that is completely separated from the preceding digital signal processing
block.

Components of the K2 Interface

The K2 Interface has three major features:
• Separation of the Transmitting Block from the Receiving Block
The K2 Interface has two blocks – the transmitting block (first
stage) and the receiving block second stage) – that are separated from each
other electrically, electrostatically and
electromagnetically.
• Transmission Code
There is a “one-way” transmission element (optical coupling) for
sending code from the transmitting block to the receiving block. A timing
control circuit is contained in the receiving block for terminating the
transmission of the code in the briefest possible period.
• Transmission of Timing Information
There is a signal transmission element for communicating timing
information between the timing control unit and the transmitting block.


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