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Ray Dolby: Wikis


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Dolby (left) is inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame.

Ray Dolby (born January 18, 1933) is the American engineer, movie director and inventor of the noise reduction system known as Dolby NR. He was also a co-inventor of video tape recording while at Ampex. He is the founder and chairman of Dolby Laboratories.



Dolby was born in Portland, Oregon. He was raised in San Francisco, California.

As a teenager, in the decade following World War II, Dolby held part-time and summer jobs at Ampex in Redwood City, working with their first audio tape recorder in 1949. While at San Jose State University and later at Stanford University (interrupted by two years of Army service),[1] he worked on early prototypes of video tape recorder technologies for Alexander M. Poniatoff and Charlie Ginsburg. As a non degree-holding "consultant",[1] Dolby played a key role in the effort that led Ampex to announce quadruplex videotape in April 1956.[1]

In 1957, Dolby received his B.S. in electrical engineering from Stanford. He subsequently won a Marshall Scholarship for a Ph.D. (1961) in physics from Cambridge University, where he was a Research Fellow at Pembroke College.

After Cambridge, Dolby acted as a technical advisor to the United Nations in India, until 1965, when he returned to England, where he founded Dolby Laboratories. In that same year, 1965, he officially invented the Dolby Sound System, although his first U.S. patent was not filed until 1969, four years later.

Dolby is a fellow and past president of the Audio Engineering Society. Ray Dolby is a member of the Forbes 400 with an estimated net worth of $2.9 billion in 2008.[2]

Ray Dolby and his wife Dagmar have two sons, Tom and David.

Dolby noise reduction

Dolby noise reduction works by increasing the volume of high-frequency sounds during recording and correspondingly reducing them during playback. This reduction in high-frequency volume reduces the audible level of tape hiss.

Awards and honors


  1. ^ a b c Wolpin, Stewart. "The Race to Video". Invention & Technology, Fall 1994.
  2. ^
  3. ^ a b List of AES Awardees
  4. ^ List of SMPTE Progress Medal winners
  5. ^ List of Masaru Ibuka Award winners
  6. ^ Ray Dolby Receives Charles F. Jenkins Lifetime Achievement Award

US patents

External links



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