Under the microscope: Burmester® High-End 3D Surround Sound system - Three-dimensional sound in the car

Mar 26, 2013
The optional Burmester® High-End 3D Surround Sound system provides an outstanding visual and acoustic experience.
As a visual highlight, the tweeters in the mirror triangles of the front doors are particularly sophisticated. When the head unit is switched on, they rotate by 360° and perform a screwing motion of ten millimetres towards the occupant. This ideally aligns the tweeters for an optimal sound impression.
If the ambience lighting is switched on, the two tweeters are illuminated in one of the seven available colours. The same applies to the overhead console, which is also elegantly emphasised by the ambience lighting and accommodates two of the three overhead speakers.
The Burmester® High-End 3D Surround Sound system provides its unrivalled listening experience by virtue of 24 high-performance speakers and 24 separate amplifier channels with a total output of 1540 watts. At the same time an intelligent combination of analogue and digital amplifier technologies leads to a particularly fine and natural sound together with high performance reserves. While sophisticated analogue filter settings allow the best possible fine reproduction in the mid-range and treble frequencies, the digital amplifier - despite its compact dimensions – masters the highest dynamic peaks. The result is outstanding sound resolution and fine acoustic detail, combined with impressive impulse reproduction. This provides a rounded, warm and substantial sound experience founded on an impressive bass range.
The new, three-dimensional listening experience provided by the 3D-Sound system and created by the Burmester speakers integrated into the vehicle roof is unique. In addition to the two speakers in the overhead console, another speaker is accommodated in the overhead control panel. A 3D algorithm was developed specifically for the S-Class to create the unique listening experience made possible by these overhead speakers. The aim of the developers was to add a subtle spatial effect to the outstanding listening experience.
Apart from 3D-Sound, four other preset sound modes can be selected to suit every taste and audio source:
  • Pure: audiophile sound reproduction with no additional effects, for unadulterated musical enjoyment
  • Live: appealing, dynamic sound background akin to live music
  • Easy Listening: milder sound background for relaxed listening over longer periods
  • Surround: virtual surround sound
  • 3D-Sound: three-dimensional listening experience provided by the overhead loudspeakers
Using the so-called VIP setting, the sound quality can be optimised for any of the four seating positions. This function has been carefully configured for each of the sound modes shown above.
The sophisticated sound compensation (VNC) has also been developed further. This ensures that the best possible sound impression is maintained despite changes in driving noise. VNC guarantees maximum listening pleasure at all times – whether on the motorway or in town.