Sensor solutions and analog IC provider Ams AG has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Incus Laboratories Ltd, a UK-based privately-held provider of intellectual property (IP) for digital active noise cancellation in headphones and earphones.

The acquisition of Incus strengthens Ams’ position in the market for active noise cancellation (ANC) products. Ams, which supplies ANC to headphone and earphone OEMs, plans to leverage Incus’ IP as well as its expertise in acoustic characterisation and its suite of noise cancellation system design tools for a new range of digital ANC products.

ams’ existing analog ANC products offer acoustic performance and low power consumption while its upcoming digital offerings will provide additional benefits in reduced system cost and size, and improved design flexibility.

Incus’ IP can run on a variety of general-purpose DSP cores while providing the core ANC functionality in DSP-based solutions found in many bundled and aftermarket earphones and headphones today. Incus solutions are notable for their high level of noise attenuation across a broad frequency range, benefiting from a phase-shift technology which compensates for latency in the digital signal processing chain. Incus’ IP also supports the use of advanced speakers and micro-speakers for outstanding Hi-Fi quality audio reproduction.

Ams will take full ownership of Incus which is based in Buckinghamshire, UK, including all of its patent-protected IP. The parties to the transaction have agreed to keep the consideration confidential. Incus’ staff, including the founders and executive management team, will transfer to Ams.

The existing Ams portfolio of analog ANC solutions includes products based on feed-forward, feedback and hybrid topologies, in both single-ended stereo and mono bridge tied load (BTL) versions.