What is Dolby Atmos?

Posted on 26th June, 2014

What is Dolby Atmos?

Audio-visual manufacturers have been desperately adopting new technology and bundling it into their products to obviously sell more products; but will Atmos entice a round of upgrades from AV enthusiasts?

Originally designed for cinema, Atmos was introduced in 2012 and promised a new listening experience well and truly building upon the 'surround-sound' platform, immersing the listener in sound from up to 128 independent channels, or 64 individual speakers.

With Dolby Atmos, filmmakers can precisely position and move sounds anywhere in a theatre, even overhead, hightening realism and the impact of every scene.

Atmos equipped cinemas have already rolled out around the globe, including a handful already established in Australia and by all reports the experience is remarkable.

Now, it seems Atmos is coming to home cinemas with a number of manufacturers already announcing their Atmos compatible receivers, and it's not as daunting an upgrade as you may think.

There are a number of ways to get the Atmos experience at home if you are willing to install speakers in your ceiling and most serious AV enthusiasts would have no trouble with this.

Otherwise, a simpler option is adopting Dolby Atmos-enabled speaker modules that complement your existing speakers. Dolby says that creating the sensation of sounds above your head even when there are no speakers physically installed there is complicated, but comes down to understanding the physics of sound waves and understanding the way your brain interprets those sound waves.

The other good news is that you likely won’t need a new Blu-ray player as existing players that fully conform to the Blu-ray specification will be able to support Dolby Atmos content on a Blu-ray Disc. Atmos uses the Dolby TrueHD standard which is already part of Blu-ray, with Atmos data encoded that will be ignored by existing surround decoders, but combined with Atmos enabled products.

Dolby has already begun working with studios and production houses to release a select range of Atmos soundtracks and this catalogue is expected to ramp up dramatically in 2015.

Dolby Atmos
Futureworks Mixing Studio in India is certified for Dolby Atmos.

For more information visit Dolby.

Marc Rushton's avatar

Marc Rushton

StereoNET’s Founder & Publisher and still buried deep in the review room auditioning everything from docks to soundbars, amplifiers and headphones. Marc is also the founder of the annual International HiFi Show.

Posted in: Home Theatre
Tags: dolby  atmos 

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