Ray Dolby, Dead At 80: 5 Fast Facts You Need To Know



Ray Dolby, famously known as the founder and engineer behind Dolby Laboratories and pioneered noise-reducing and surround-sound technology, has died at the age of 80.

Here are five fast facts you need to know about Ray Dolby…

1. Ray Dolby Founded Dolby Laboratories

Dolby founded Dolby Laboratories in 1965 in the UK. The same year as the company’s creation, Dolby invented Dolby Sound System, but he didn’t patent it until 1969. The environment he created within the company, according to the Financial Post, was one where scientists and engineers could continue the pursuit of engaging audio and visuals through state of the art inventing.

Some of the company’s early inventions include the professional and consumer noise reduction systems for tapes, cassettes, FM transmission and broadcast, as well as digital audio encoding and compression formats.

The company also branched out into physical audio mediums, including top of the line headphones, speakers, and mobile sound systems.

2. Dolby Pioneered Noise-Reducing and Surround-Sound Technologies

Dolby’s company is most known for its work in noise-reducing and surround-sound technologies. The technologies were so good that they became standard use in movie theater and Hollywood movie audio production. In less than 10 years, 6,000 movie theaters had adopted and equipted the technologies.

The first film to utilize Dolby’s sound advancement was the in 1971 classic, A Clockwork Orange. The production team used the laboratory’s noise reduction on all of the film’s audio pre-mixes and masters.

In 1977, Dolby received acclaim with the use of Dolby Stereo technology in Star Wars.

3. He Was A Billionaire, And On The Forbes 400

Ray Dolby has left a multi-billion dollar fortune in his wake. According to Forbes, he sits at #221 richest in the United States, #464 richest in 2012, and #190 on the Forbes 400.

4. Dolby Had A B.S. & Ph. D.

According to Forbes, Dolby had a successful and impressive education. He first received a B.S. from Stanford University. Dolby later went on to complete a Ph. D. in physics at the University of Cambridge, where he was a Research Fellow at Pembroke College, according to his bio.

5. He Is The Former Technical Adviser To The U.N. In India

According to Dolby’s bio on his company’s website, he held the position of technical adviser to the U.N. in India for a two year period. He took the position after receiving his doctorate, and held it until 1965, when he moved to Britain to start Dolby Laboratories.