While people are locked down in the coronavirus-induced quarantine, a WhatsApp message talking about ‘8D’ audio is currently doing the rounds. And it’s causing quite a stir in the same fashion as ASMR did.

The WhatsApp message reads: ‘It is the new music of the Pentatonix, composed with 8D technology. Listen to it only with headphones. It will be the first time that you will listen to that song with your brain and not with your ears. You will feel the music from outside and not from the headphones. Feel the effects of this new technology.’

8D audio gives the illusion of it coming from multiple directions or “8 dimensions”.

It’s a possible game changer on the way people listen to sound. For the first time you’re listening with your brain, not your ears.

Fans describe the 8D experience as mind-blowing music that is swirling over their head. Some listeners also liken it to being in a live concert of the artist they are listening to.

It’s a bit like watching a 3D movie versus the regular flat version.

The technology involved creating the 8D sound edits a stereo track with a special reverb tool that makes it sound like the audio is moving around your head. And the illusion only works when you’re wearing headphones.

Critics argue that this sound effect existed as early as the 1970s and was initially called Ambisonics. To put it simply, it runs on the idea that you can create a three-dimensional sound by recording it using real or virtual microphones coming from different directions.

Anyway, we’re too bored to worry about when it originated, all we know is that it’s hot right now. You can find playlists dedicated to 8D sound are everywhere from YouTube to Spotify, and the list is growing – enjoy!

Some of our favourites

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