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Amazon Music HD's "3D Music" offerings

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4-earredwonder

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This is why it got me all hot and bothered-
This statement was on the Amazon Echo Studio web page:

"All of your interactions with Alexa are encrypted in transit to Amazon’s cloud where they are securely stored."

Best case scenario is it sparks an interest in music lovers to go deeper and seek out true surround sound.
NOT when the average joe figures out what a TRUE ATMOS system really goes for.....and the complexity in setting it up. Amazon's echo 'studio' harks back to the days of those fancy KLH table radios ..... just with more speakers...and sans the 'surveillance!' Who wants BIG SISTER Alexa listening in to my conversations?????

See the source image
 
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LuvMyQuad

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I’ve tried playing these a number of ways in my system, using several different streamers. No joy. I think you’re right - so far the only way (ostensibly) to get 3D is to use multiple Amazon-supported speakers. I have yet to hear anyone, anywhere, who’s actually done this.
But even if you did that, wouldan't the whole thing be some kind of upmix?
 

J. PUPSTER

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NOT when the average joe figures out what a TRUE ATMOS system really goes for.....and the complexity in setting it up. Amazon's echo 'studio' harks back to the days of those fancy KLH table radios ..... just with more speakers...and sans the 'surveillance!' Who wants BIG SISTER Alexa listening in to my conversations?????

See the source image
AWS - Who do you think is paying for all those Blue Origin rocket ships?
* Heck, I'm fine with Amazon making lots of money (lord knows I buy plenty from them) and supporting the venture to the "Final Frontier", but just not at the expense of my privacy.
 

humprof

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But even if you did that, wouldan't the whole thing be some kind of upmix?
Not clear. If what they purport to be "Atmos" tracks are truly mixed in Atmos, then in playback they will (in principle) "adjust" the Atmos object-placement data for whatever sort of speaker system they detect, whether it's an Echo Studio, a soundbar, a 3.1 system, an 7.4.2, or a 128-speaker cinema system. But if Amazon has worked out some kind of proprietary deal with Dolby whereby you can only actually play these tracks over the Amazon Music HD streaming service with Echo Studio speakers, then yeah...to get anything like what we think of as "proper" Atmos, you'd have to buy multiple Echo Studio speakers. I've read that you can pair them (and even add an Echo Studio subwoofer), but can you combine multiple pairs with a subwoofer and actually have them function as a true multichannel system? Why should you even want to, especially if you've already got a perfectly good multichannel system? This is misbegotten on so many levels...
 
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humprof

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Ain't dropping NO PESOS on BEZOS' FOLLY!
For all the crapping we've been doing on Amazon, I think Adam's question deserves an answer: does anybody here already have a subscription to Amazon Music HD? If so:
  1. have you found any way to get these ostensibly Atmos-encoded streaming tracks to your Atmos-ready AVR? And if the answer to that is "yes," then:
  2. does your AVR "recognize" them as Atmos them and play them back properly? (If, say, any of those tracks are from Abbey Road and you have the box set, then you could do an A/B comparison, no?)
 
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stormchaser

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For all the crapping we've been doing on Amazon, I think Adam's question deserves an answer: does anybody here already have a subscription to Amazon Music HD? If so:
  1. have you found any way to get these ostensibly Atmos-encoded streaming tracks to your Atmos-ready AVR? And if the answer to that is "yes," then:
  2. does your AVR "recognize" them as Atmos them and play them back properly? (If, say, any of those tracks are from Abbey Road and you have the box set, then you could do an A/B comparison, no?)
Unfortunately, the only connection I have from computer to AVR isn't HDMI. So, I can't test this. My streaming Roku App that works with my AVR directly doesn't seem to recognize the Amazon HD addition to my account.
 

humprof

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Unfortunately, the only connection I have from computer to AVR isn't HDMI. So, I can't test this. My streaming Roku App that works with my AVR directly doesn't seem to recognize the Amazon HD addition to my account.
One of the accounts I read (and maybe quoted from above?) says you can do it with a Fire Stick. But then you'd still be sending the streaming signal to the Fire Stick via Wi-Fi, no? I would've thought Atmos would require a lot more bandwidth.
 

steelydave

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It's my understanding that there's currently no way other than the Echo Studio (which to me looks like it's basically a 3.1.1 Atmos device - L/C/R/LFE/mono height) but that these Atmos tracks will roll out on a wider basis in the coming year. It makes no sense for UMG to spend money having music mixed for Atmos and then restrict playback to a single device from one hardware manufacturer.

I think this is, in part, due to Amazon probably paying for an exclusivity window for this content, but even more due to the fact that the labels want a water-tight DRM solution for streaming this stuff so that it can't be ripped. It's akin to why both Netflix and Disney+ restrict streaming of 1080p/4k and 5.1 content to their respective apps - they can institute nearly (at least at this current point in time) unbreakable DRM whereas video streaming within a browser is notoriously easy to subvert. I'm sure all the major labels are fully aware of the amount of music piracy that goes on and the ease at which it's done, so if they're going to roll out a new format like this they want to make it as difficult as possible for people to share it (or even rip it for their own personal use) so that they drive monthly subscriptions to music streaming sites and I can't blame them for that really.

Regarding streaming Atmos, it's my understanding that there are two "flavours" of Atmos, the lossless one that uses TrueHD and is between 2 and 6 megabits/second (depending on channels/sampling rate) and the lossy one that uses Dolby Digital Plus, which can range from 640kbps up to 1536kbps - I believe the Atmos stuff on Netflix uses 768kbps DD+. So, there's plenty of bandwidth flexibility on how streaming services can deliver this stuff.
 

humprof

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It's my understanding that there's currently no way other than the Echo Studio (which to me looks like it's basically a 3.1.1 Atmos device - L/C/R/LFE/mono height) but that these Atmos tracks will roll out on a wider basis in the coming year. It makes no sense for UMG to spend money having music mixed for Atmos and then restrict playback to a single device from one hardware manufacturer.

I think this is, in part, due to Amazon probably paying for an exclusivity window for this content
That was my understanding, too. I think it's why the content was originally announced in connection with Amazon and Tidal, but then Tidal's participation was subsequently postponed. Gonna take a while for the tide to move all that water back up the estuary, evidently.

but even more due to the fact that the labels want a water-tight DRM solution for streaming this stuff so that it can't be ripped. It's akin to why both Netflix and Disney+ restrict streaming of 1080p/4k and 5.1 content to their respective apps - they can institute nearly (at least at this current point in time) unbreakable DRM whereas video streaming within a browser is notoriously easy to subvert. I'm sure all the major labels are fully aware of the amount of music piracy that goes on and the ease at which it's done, so if they're going to roll out a new format like this they want to make it as difficult as possible for people to share it (or even rip it for their own personal use) so that they drive monthly subscriptions to music streaming sites and I can't blame them for that really.
Economically you can't blame them, I guess, but apart from my annoyance with all the confused "messaging" about Atmos, this is actually my biggest fear: that the companies are conspiring to make the vast majority of "mixed-for-Atmos" music available only with streaming subscriptions. That way it'll be like Adobe software: you can never own it, just rent it.

Regarding streaming Atmos, it's my understanding that there are two "flavours" of Atmos, the lossless one that uses TrueHD and is between 2 and 6 megabits/second (depending on channels/sampling rate) and the lossy one that uses Dolby Digital Plus, which can range from 640kbps up to 1536kbps - I believe the Atmos stuff on Netflix uses 768kbps DD+. So, there's plenty of bandwidth flexibility on how streaming services can deliver this stuff.
That sounds right--and as always, I admire your research and your technical precision. I have trouble keeping straight what I've read from one Dolby resource to another, not least because (or so I imagine), they sometimes implicitly contradict one another, or they don't consistently use the same terminology, or they change their story from one iteration of a developer document (or a consumer press release) to another. And then the tech journalists, who all too often don't really know what they're talking about, confuse things even further. (The latest document I read, this morning, was this one, which--sure enough--confirms that "Blu-ray Discs deliver Dolby Atmos using Dolby TrueHD [with Dolby Digital Plus as an available alternative], and broadcast and streaming services deliver Dolby Atmos using Dolby Digital Plus.")

Anyway...not worth getting exercised about, really. I've got plenty of music to listen to already without succumbing to FOMO about the music that Jeff Bezos might be trying to keep from me!
 
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JediJoker

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One of the accounts I read (and maybe quoted from above?) says you can do it with a Fire Stick. But then you'd still be sending the streaming signal to the Fire Stick via Wi-Fi, no? I would've thought Atmos would require a lot more bandwidth.
WiFi is capable of quite high bandwidth these days. I would venture to say that most people streaming anything, video or audio, are doing so over WiFi (or even cellular).
 

MrSmithers

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Yep, just to give my thruppence worth, I'm pretty sure there's no way to hear the discrete Dolby Atmos versions of these so called '3D' listed albums yet. The only choice is pseudo surround from the Amazon Echo Studio fartbox or pseudo surround listening to headphones... :(

It's exciting at what could become available but equally frustrating that there's no way to hear it properly right now... Just before launch of the Echo Studio you could search for Dolby Atmos in Amazon Music HD and it showed some of the albums we know for sure have been remixed and released in Atmos. Now it's disappeared and you just get the 3D symbols in a rather sporadic sense and various songs in 3D playlists...

Some of the albums from Sony are also listed as 3D, like the classic quads from Edgar Winter, Aerosmith, Paul Simon which would be mega if they are just an extension of those classic mixes?! 🤯 I can't see how Paul Simon would give the ok for a new 3D mix, so it must be the original quad, right?!? I just really really hope they don't Ed Balls it up and it's just a timing issue for the mo...

Here's a video from Javier Foncilas of Dolby talking to AV forums at CES this year giving some info on the whole thing. He's asked just after the 5m 40 mark if/when the proper versions will be made available and gives a pretty vague answer I'd say... 🤷‍♂️

 

fredblue

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Yep, just to give my thruppence worth, I'm pretty sure there's no way to hear the discrete Dolby Atmos versions of these so called '3D' listed albums yet. The only choice is pseudo surround from the Amazon Echo Studio fartbox or pseudo surround listening to headphones... :(

It's exciting at what could become available but equally frustrating that there's no way to hear it properly right now... Just before launch of the Echo Studio you could search for Dolby Atmos in Amazon Music HD and it showed some of the albums we know for sure have been remixed and released in Atmos. Now it's disappeared and you just get the 3D symbols in a rather sporadic sense and various songs in 3D playlists...

Some of the albums from Sony are also listed as 3D, like the classic quads from Edgar Winter, Aerosmith, Paul Simon which would be mega if they are just an extension of those classic mixes?! 🤯 I can't see how Paul Simon would give the ok for a new 3D mix, so it must be the original quad, right?!? I just really really hope they don't Ed Balls it up and it's just a timing issue for the mo...

Here's a video from Javier Foncilas of Dolby talking to AV forums at CES this year giving some info on the whole thing. He's asked just after the 5m 40 mark if/when the proper versions will be made available and gives a pretty vague answer I'd say... 🤷‍♂️

the Quad of Aerosmith's Get Your Wings was also included in Sony's 360 Reality Audio on Deezer Hi-Fi fwiw.. so much for Paul Simon being anti-surround btw, as has been suggested.. unless he is unaware, which i doubt.
 

MrSmithers

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the Quad of Aerosmith's Get Your Wings was also included in Sony's 360 Reality Audio on Deezer Hi-Fi fwiw..
Yeah they have that and 'Rocks' listed as 3D in Amazon HD, but no 'TITA' for which they have a choice of 2 mixes?! And no way to play them properly?! What a bunch of 'TITS'...😄

so much for Paul Simon being anti-surround btw, as has been suggested.. unless he is unaware, which i doubt.
The Paul Simon I noticed is the 'debut' S/T... The others aren't listed yet... I remember all the stuff on QQ about when the Bridge Over Troubled Water SACD got cancelled - but I don't recall hearing/seeing anything definitive on why it happened? It was all just a bit confusing? Whether it got cancelled because he's anti-surround or some other technicality?

For the record I have Amazon Music HD and an Atmos receiver and despite my repeated banging on the flux capacitor I just can't get it to work... 🤖
 

beerking

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Some of us old cynical types know a load of old horse droppings when we see it.
This is just a ploy by Amazon to get folk to buy the Surround 'Fartbox' and then get to hear Atmos in it's true one dimensional format....grrrrr

On the brighter side of the coin, is the chance,that there really are new, true Atmos mixes out there.

Ooh I'm soo peeved, I could crush a grape. :):mad:🥴
 
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