WESTLAKE VILLAGE, Calif. — Just up the strip from the Grammy Awards, one can see Katy Perry live at her residency at Resorts World Las Vegas.

A live show at this location is different because of the L-ISA immersive sound system created by Los Angeles-based pro audio manufacturer L-Acoustics.

What You Need To Know

  • L-ISA is installed at Resorts World Las Vegas, so all artist residencies will experience this spatial audio

  • L-ISA’s immersive sound captures and conveys original sound sources in their most detailed and genuine form

  • The 64th annual Grammy Awards will be held in Las Vegas for the first time on Sunday

  • Grammy-winning artists such as Bon Iver and Lorde have used the L-ISA sound system

Product and Tech Marketing Engineer Jordan Tani said it’s changing the live show experience, evolving from stereo sound, that only uses two audio channels.

“If you imagine a flashlight, or two flashlights, they’re going to overlap at some point. And that overlap is only for a small portion of that audience. The other sides, they’re missing half that experience and with immersive technologies like L-ISA we can give that sweet spot, that overlap, to as much of the audience as possible,” Tani said.

Jordan gave Spectrum News a demo of L-ISA, which stands for L-Acoustics Immersive Sound Art. He said before this technology, live sound offered a “flat” experience.

In the 60s there was only mono, where the channels of audio go into one speaker or source. So in 1965, the crowd of 55,000 at Shea Stadium was louder than the Beatles sound system.

“And that was a problem because the artist couldn’t give the experience to the audience and the audience couldn’t hear the music,” Tani said.

From mono, sound transitioned to stereo to now spatial, where it feels like you’re inside the music. L-ISA was first to market in 2016, and Grammy-winning artists like Bon Iver have used the technology, like at The YouTube Theater in Inglewood.

Frontman Justin Vernon said it’s changed how their engineer translates their music for the audience.

“The first time we got to use L-ISA, in Santa Barbara, he came right up to me and said that’s the best show you ever played and it has a lot to do with that sound system,” Vernon said.

While it’s a game-changer for the live music experience, it’s lagged behind other production elements like video and lighting that have gotten more advanced.

“It’s time that sound and audio is taking that next step for the live event world and it really is so powerful and so visceral,” Tani said.

So artists can now have more control over how their music is heard, giving audiences a deeper connection that one will need to experience live to truly feel the future of sound.