Stereophonic sound or, more commonly, stereo, is a method of sound reproduction that creates an illusion of multi-directional audible perspective. This is usually achieved by using two or more independent audio channels through a configuration of two or more loudspeakers (or stereo headphones) in such a way as to create the impression of sound heard from various directions, as in natural hearing. Thus the term ""stereophonic"" applies to so-called ""quadraphonic"" and ""surround-sound"" systems as well as the more common two-channel, two-speaker systems. It is often contrasted with monophonic, or ""mono"" sound, where audio is heard as coming from one position, often centered in the sound field (analogous to a visual field). Stereo sound is now common in entertainment systems such as broadcast radio and TV, recorded music and the cinema.The word stereophonic derives from the Greek ""στερεός"" (stereos), ""firm, solid"" + ""φωνή"" (phōnē), ""sound, tone, voice"" and it was coined in 1927 by Western Electric, by analogy with the word ""stereoscopic"".