AC3Filter is a DirectShow filter whose purpose is to make things easier when it comes to watching movies with AC3 and DTS audio tracks. This audio decoder and processor filter does not limit you to work only with the aforementioned formats, but it actually gives you the freedom to process any audio track.
The tool deploys a small package on your system that is installed in no time. You may opt for three different installation modes, namely Full, Compact and Custom.
The Full mode enables you to download and install all files included in the package while the Compact one skips debugging and language files. If you want to manually select the components then you can go for the Custom option.
You should pay extra attention as the utility offers to download some third-party programs which are not related to the functionality of AC3Filter.
Offline filter configuration
The tool works in an offline mode which means the configuration settings that you are currently working on are not applied in real-time to running processes. It is recommended to restart the player in order to apply the adjustments.
The configuration panel sports a multi-tabbed layout which embeds a special window for the main dedicated parameters and leaves room for additional tabs, such as Mixer, Gains, Equalizer, SPDIF, System and About.
The tool provides support for an online help manual which offers useful information about the entire tweaking process.
Main configuration settings
AC3Filter gives you the possibility to alter the output format in terms of speaker layout (by selecting the number of speakers and their layout), sample rate and sample format.
Additionally, you may enable the SPDIF mode for switching the digital output mode, work with different preset filter settings (e.g. Loud, Standard), adjust the master and gain levels, enable the DRC feature (Dynamic range compression), and check out info about the decoder, CPU usage, input and output signal levels.
Settings for the mixing control
AC3Filter lets you work with a mixing matrix. You can manually tweak the process or activate the AutoMatrix mode in order to automatically calculate the mixing matrix based on several parameters, such as Voice, Surround, LFE levels, Normalize matrix, Voice control and Expand stereo. Plus, you can save or load the matrix that you have generated and adjust the output format.
The application comes packed with several settings designed to help you activate and alter the Bass redirection feature by entering the cutoff frequency and picking the destination (subwoofer or front channels). What’s more, you can configure the delays for each output channel and tweak the input and output gains.
Working with the equalizer and SPDIF
You may activate or disable the equalizer, pick the channel that you want to monitor and analyze the audio data in the spectrum window. There’s support for a custom equalizer that lets you create your own frequency scale, and you may choose between several equalizer presets.
When it comes to controlling the SPDIF output parameters, you can alter the output format, view info about the decoder, select the audio tracks (AC3, DTS, MPEG Audio) that are sent to the receiver without any changes, as well as configure several options related to SPDIF/DTS conversion and mode, restrictions applied to SPDIF sample rate and others.
You can select the formats AC3Filter will decode, namely PCM, LPCM, MPEG Audio, AC3, AAC, DTS, Vorbis and others. Additionally, you can use the AC3Filter as your default decoder, opt for another one or disable the filter, pick the default audio renderer, as well as show tray icon that appears when the filter is active.
A reliable and essential decoder
All in all, AC3Filter proves to be a viable software solution and an indispensable processor filter for all users who need to adjust the sound in detail.
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