Intel finalizes "Azalia" audio spec
Intel has finalized a High Definition Audio spec that it hopes will replace AC'97 and also be used in consumer electronics devices and handhelds. Here's a snippet from the press release:
The HD Audio specification will provide an enriched playback experience as well as deliver better-quality input for voice and communication applications. This enablement of higher-quality audio is attributed in part to an upgraded architecture and increased bandwidth that allows for 192 kHz, 32-bit, multi-channel audio. Audio input is enhanced with increased support for multi-channel array microphones, dynamically allocated bandwidth, and audio device configuration flexibility.
HD Audio was apparently designed with the same budget-conscious principles as AC'97, too.