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DLS2 Specification, Which Will Be Supported in Microsoft DirectMusic API and MPEG-4, to Pave The Way For Digital-Quality, Interactive Audio In Games, Internet Music and Entertainment Titles

Game Developers Conference, San Jose, Calif. - March 16, 1999 - Creative Labs, Inc. (NASDAQ: CREAF) the world's leading provider of multimedia products for the PC, has played a key role in defining an upcoming standard for interactive audio which will be used in games, Internet music and entertainment titles. A new standard for wave-table instrument definition, based in part on the company's SoundFont 2.0 format, has been incorporated into upcoming standards for interactive music. In close cooperation with the MIDI Manufacturers Association (MMA), Microsoft Corp. and the MIT Media Laboratory, Creative has helped drive the development of specifications for DLS2 (Downloadable Sounds Level 2), which will soon be supported in the Microsoft DirectMusic application programming interface (API) and MPEG-4.

These new standards have been developed to provide an easy, universal way for developers and producers to incorporate and playback high-quality digital music in games, entertainment titles and Internet audio applications. "Creative's contributions to the development of DLS2 have been invaluable," said Kevin Bachus, group product manager for DirectX at Microsoft. "Our goal is to provide a universal way to incorporate high-quality music in entertainment applications and Creative is helping us get there. We look forward to supporting DLS2 in an upcoming release of DirectMusic."

"Creative is in a unique position to proliferate interactive music and enable DLS2 content," said George Thorn, director of developer relations at Creative. "We have a huge installed base of SoundFont composers who can potentially convert their compositions into DLS2 format. We also have a huge SoundFont library for developers and producers to use. With Sound Blaster Live! and professional music products from our subsidiary, E-mu-Ensoniq, we have the complete solution for DLS2 content creation."

Creative will be participating in a panel presentation at the Game Developers Conference in San Jose, CA., at the San Jose Convention Center, 410 Almaden Avenue, on the latest developments for interactive music standards - DLS2, SoundFont, MPEG-4: The Convergence. This panel presentation takes place on Wednesday, March 17, at 10:00 a.m.

Creative is committed to driving open industry standards that further the use of interactive music in entertainment that can be experienced by all consumers. Recently, the MMA ratified the specification for DLS2 and Microsoft has announced that DLS2 will be used in its upcoming DirectMusic API. The MPEG-4 committee has also voted-in the use of DLS2.

Creative's Contribution to DLS2
Creative has been a key contributor in the sub-committee focused on arriving at specifications for DLS2. The DLS2 standard is based on the DLS file format and SoundFont 2.0. This new standard allows musicians and sound designers to create their sounds and compositions for a single universal format that leverages wave-table synthesis technology. The premise behind DLS2 is to allow the sound designer more freedom and creativity while guaranteeing quality playback through a universal format. For end users it means that all music and software will be compatible with their audio solutions and Internet tools.

MPEG-4: The Pursuit of Great Quality over Low Bandwidth
MPEG-4 is an upcoming international standard being developed by an International Standards Organization (ISO) committee, which will define protocols for offering high-quality, compressed, and interactive streaming audio. This committee is focused on easily providing multimedia content to consumers over low to medium bandwidth connections such as analog modems and wireless connections. The DLS2 specification based in part on Creative's SoundFont 2.0 standard is also being incorporated into a flexible format under MPEG-4 known as Structured Audio, which involves transmitting sound by describing it rather than compressing it over a low-bandwidth connection.

Sound Blaster is a registered trademark of Creative Technology Ltd. in the U.S. and/or other countries. All other products mentioned herein are trademarks of their respective owners and are hereby recognized as such.

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