How to set up your gear for multi channel streaming

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Kal Rubinson

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To answer the OP‘s question, my way of streaming multi channel music is an Apple TV hosting Apple Music output by HDMI into my ATMOS ( and other multi channel) enabled Marantz 8012 AVR.
to be honest, I don’t hear an appreciable sound quality difference between that and an ATMOS Blu ray played back from my OPPO into the Marantz. I’m old, so maybe my ears are old too.
Hmmm. That is not inconsistent with what I hear. What I am complaining about are that many (not all) streamed Atmos tracks, for which there was no prior Atmos BD release, are unsatisfying.
 

ted_b

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Kal, do you notice any significantly lower sq (muddy or otherwise) with streaming classical titles that also have a BD/SACD version (which I can assume is clean)?
 

HomerJAU

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… I don’t believe there is a wide conspiracy to take stereo masters and create AI/machine mixed multi channel out of them.
There was an Atmos podcast posted here a while back with a bunch of audio engineers discussing mixing to Atmos. All start with full array speakers but they did mention they knew some engineers were mixing Atmos using the headphone mix as there only reference. I‘d guarantee most these sound ordinary on full speaker systems (There may be a few that just got lucky :))

Its just like the old days but with more ways to ruin a mix.

There will always be ordinary surround mixes. Atmos alone isn’t the panacea. It still needs a skilled mixing engineer with great mastered multitracks.
 

Kal Rubinson

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Kal, do you notice any significantly lower sq (muddy or otherwise) with streaming classical titles that also have a BD/SACD version (which I can assume is clean)?
Indeed. Almost everything I am talking about (or care about) is classical.
 

Ephi82

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The classical ATMOS recordings cited earlier in this thread sounded very good when I checked them out today. Not muddy at all.

I agree that new music releases ( those without previous surround mixes) with ATMOS vary in quality quite a bit. too many sound like they were sloppily mixed by less experienced engineers, but some are very good
 

riskylogic

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I have Yello - Point and Steve Wilson - The Future Bites on bluray and they both sound much better than the streamed versions on Tidal. They are both very busy mixes with lots of dynamic range so I suspect they don't fare as well with the low bit rate as some other titles. If Ocean to Ocean sounds better on a bluray I sure wish there was one.
 

ted_b

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Indeed. Almost everything I am talking about (or care about) is classical.
?? Kal, I know you. Classical was obviously not the operative issue here, phsyical vs streaming was. I am simply asking if your muddy comments are also about streamed versions you are previously familiar with as much clearer discs.
 

Kal Rubinson

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?? Kal, I know you. Classical was obviously not the operative issue here, phsyical vs streaming was. I am simply asking if your muddy comments are also about streamed versions you are previously familiar with as much clearer discs.
Indeed, yes.
 

LB-V

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I'm aware of actual classical multichannel mixes having been released on disc; I own many.

My question is what was done to create these Warner Classics 'Spatial Sound' Atmos releases.

Are they new remixes from the original multitrack tapes?

Are they previously released multichannel mixes presented 'as is'? (Most of the Atmos channels would be empty unless the AVR upmixes it)

Are they previously released multichannel mixes 'processed' in some way (e.g., upmixed from 4.0 to higher channel number)?

Are they two channel mixes upmixed?
Curious if there's some insight on ssully's question...?? How are the Atmos mixes developed?
 

woody

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I have Yello - Point and Steve Wilson - The Future Bites on bluray and they both sound much better than the streamed versions on Tidal. They are both very busy mixes with lots of dynamic range so I suspect they don't fare as well with the low bit rate as some other titles. If Ocean to Ocean sounds better on a bluray I sure wish there was one.
You have to crank up any stream on Tidal quite a bit. I reckon this would have an impact on dynamic range perception.

I have Yello- Point on disc and listen to it on streaming. Only main difference I could detect was low end extension, and channel separation seemed a bit easier to pinpoint on disc. (In fact I was't even sure the ability to isolate effects coming from speakers was a good thing.)

I reckon no greater than 5-10% improvement and I think I am being generous going up to 10%.

Maybe my amp does a better job at handling streaming content? Dunno.

The main point is that I never would have bought the disc if I didn't hear it on streaming first.

The cost of multichannel discs these days isn't dispensable income, it is an investment - like a premium bottle of wine. How many liquor stores let you sample their premium bottles prior to purchasing (wineries likely exceptions- but usually you have to also pay for a taste these days.) Streaming to me is akin to a winery.

Try before you buy folks. My bank account is a lot better off for it, and my cabinet still has room for gems only.
 

Ephi82

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What I’d like to be able to do is stream surround Apple Music from my IPhone into my Audi Bang and Olefsen system. The system will play 5.1 flac files off a drive through the cars USB portal. When I connect the phone the same way it defaults to Apple Airplay, which doesn’t seem to support 5.1 content.
 

mrcond

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What I’d like to be able to do is stream surround Apple Music from my IPhone into my Audi Bang and Olefsen system. The system will play 5.1 flac files off a drive through the cars USB portal. When I connect the phone the same way it defaults to Apple Airplay, which doesn’t seem to support 5.1 content.
Correct, Apple Airplay does not support Atmos playback.
 

Ephi82

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You have to crank up any stream on Tidal quite a bit. I reckon this would have an impact on dynamic range perception.

I have Yello- Point on disc and listen to it on streaming. Only main difference I could detect was low end extension, and channel separation seemed a bit easier to pinpoint on disc. (In fact I was't even sure the ability to isolate effects coming from speakers was a good thing.)

I reckon no greater than 5-10% improvement and I think I am being generous going up to 10%.

Maybe my amp does a better job at handling streaming content? Dunno.

The main point is that I never would have bought the disc if I didn't hear it on streaming first.

The cost of multichannel discs these days isn't dispensable income, it is an investment - like a premium bottle of wine. How many liquor stores let you sample their premium bottles prior to purchasing (wineries likely exceptions- but usually you have to also pay for a taste these days.) Streaming to me is akin to a winery.

Try before you buy folks. My bank account is a lot better off for it, and my cabinet still has room for gems only.
Your perspective is similar to mine. I started streaming Apple Music ATMOS at about the same time as I bought the Let It Be re mix release on Blu ray. I really couldn’t hear a difference between the sound of the Blu Ray vs streaming. However, already owning and liking the Sgt Pepper re mix in 5.1 on Blu ray, I was blown away by how much better the recently released streaming ATMOS mix sounded.

I never thought I’d be streaming music, because I’m such a die hard multi channel fan and up until recently it couldn’t be streamed. Now I’ve become a streaming addict, gorging on lots of surround content, but I’m also being exposed to lots of artists and music( in stereo and mulit channel) that I wouldn’t have bought on Disc.
 
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