Since the focus of the next series of articles will be focusing on THX’s Achromatic Audio Amplifier (AAA) technology (see our interview with THX’s SVP of Audio Research, Laurie Fincham), I thought it fitting to note (no pun intended) that THX has regenerated their iconic ‘Deep Note’ audio logo with a 30th anniversary edition. The updated deep note is called “Eclipse.”
THX has posted the new deep note here. It’s part of a gallery that THX has created that collects all of the variations of the ‘Deep Note’ trailers from the past three decades.
The updated ‘THX Deep Note’ was composed by its creator, Dr. James ‘Andy’ Moorer, thirty years after its iconic original debut. The regenerated ‘THX Deep Note’ will be available to audiences in certified theaters worldwide beginning in April. The iconic sound will also launch the company’s highly-anticipated cinema trailer, THX ‘Eclipse’.
Moviegoers are no stranger to the ‘THX Deep Note’, the familiar sound that introduces a feature film in THX Certified venues and on certified DVD and Blu-ray discs. It was first composed by Dr. Moorer, a Lucasfilm sound engineer, in 1982 and debuted in the THX trailer Wings, screened before the 1983 premiere of Star Wars: Episode VI – Return of the Jedi. Since then, the ‘THX Deep Note’ has permeated the film industry to become one of the most iconic audio logos in the world.
“When I created the ‘THX Deep Note’ I wanted a big sound; I had no idea that sound would have such a big impact,” says Andy Moorer, now a Principal Scientist at Adobe Systems. “I’m astonished by how widely-recognized the ‘THX Deep Note’ has become.”
With the essence of the piece remaining true to the original, Dr. Moorer resynthesized the ‘THX Deep Note’ using modern technologies and mixing it in current cinema audio formats at the historic Skywalker Ranch. Due to technology limitations of the time, the original piece is a four-channel recording that has been adapted over the years for various trailers in up to a 5.1 mix. Without the technical hurdles he faced thirty years ago, Andy Moorer has developed variations of the ‘THX Deep Note’ in three different lengths (30 seconds, 45 seconds, and 60 seconds) all in stereo, 5.1, 7.1 and Atmos mixes. Faithful to the original character, the resulting audio is intensely more complex, taking the audience on an epic sensory journey unlike anything they’ve experienced before.
“It’s more than a logo, it is an essential part of the moviegoing experience,” explains Louis Cacciuttolo, THX Executive VP of International Business Development and Brand Strategy. “I am amazed at how Andy was able to preserve the spirit of the original ‘THX Deep Note’ in his rejuvenation; and the visual complement of the THX ‘Eclipse’ trailer will further enrich the experience. I have no doubt that the renewed Deep Note will continue to resonate with movie lovers for years to come.”