Poll: Atmos Music: Are You Going to Listen at Home?

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Atmos Music: Are You Going to Listen?


  • Total voters
    146

Goona

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Mar 6, 2019
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711
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Mgees Crossroads North Carolina
My main reason for the Atmos set up is for movie watching and there are some incredible Atmos /DTS X movies..
Listening to Atmos/Auro 3D is an added bonus, agree the quantity of music is very sparse.
Steven Wilson album is a great start, lets hope very soon we get abundance of Atmos choices.
 

AYanguas

Well-known Member
Joined
Apr 10, 2020
Messages
189
Location
Spain
My main reason for the Atmos set up is for movie watching and there are some incredible Atmos /DTS X movies..
Listening to Atmos/Auro 3D is an added bonus, agree the quantity of music is very sparse.
Steven Wilson album is a great start, lets hope very soon we get abundance of Atmos choices.
People reason, in general, could be motivated if their Home Cinema room is also their main music listening room or they have other music listening room as a traditional HI-FI stereo.

There is no technical restriction to deliver Dolby Atmos Music, the same way film soundtracks are delivered. Via Bluray, streaming, downloads or whatever. We all in this forum would be great consumers of Dolby Atmos music as well as are consumers of multichannel 5.1 music. It is a market demand state of the question.

The problem for us is that there are two different things, with a very similar market denomination:

1) Music in Dolby Atmos
Like a film soundtrack in Dolby Atmos codec format. The soundtrack being a song or an album as usual. These are the "few" releases we are talking about.

2) Dolby Atmos Music
Just a brand name that uses the known word "Atmos" from Dolby to name a "minor" codec to deliver music to "smart gadgets" (phones, headphones, amazon echo studio, etc.) with the promise of being surround sound.

The recent announcements of Dolby partnership with Universal Studios for future music production is the Second One. I'm not interested at all.

There must be a licensing issue to release the "cheaper" Dolby Atmos Music for 2 speaker gadget devices, instead of the full "Music in Dolby Atmos for Home Theatres" via streaming services like Amazon.

I hope that Dolby strategy would be a good one to make evolve the market demand for Dolby Atmos in music, by delivering the 2 speaker gadgets for the mainstream mass first. The same productions could eventually be rendered as true Dolby Atmos and delivered later, possibly at a higher price level.
 

MagnumX

Senior Member
Joined
Sep 19, 2020
Messages
283
Location
Ohio
That's the problem though. If many supposedly Atmos mixes are just going to be heard folded down to 5.1 or 7.1, that's honestly and truly going to follow that discrete intentional 5.1 or 7.1 mixes will better them. Now where the hell are we?

It really does work that way too. Folding down is a compromise. It may be small. It may be very well done. The ambisonic-like scaling in these 3D systems may be a legitimately clever idea and done well. But at the end of the day, there's either the original mix or a compromised version of it. In the same way that a 5.1 mix folded down to stereo can be lesser than an intentional stereo mix due to the artifacts that sometimes generates (yes, there are exceptions), there's going to be a divide between a full discrete 3D mix and a folded down render of it.
Two things. One is that most Atmos music titles on disc come on Blu-ray and it often (almost always) comes with a dedicated 2-channel mix and often a separate dedicated 5.1 or 7.1 mix as well. So it doesn't have to use a downmix in that sense (streaming would depend on what they want to offer).

Two is that at least on my Carver ribbon speakers with Sonic Holography, the 2.0 downmix of the Atmos version of Yello's Point album is vastly superior sounding to Boris' own 2.0 channel mix (that is an option as well on the sane disc).

This is because all the sweet changes that were made to the album (like even deeper/louder bass hits or having centered vocals on Big Boys Blues) are still present in the downmix and the heck if my Carvers don't try their best to imitate the surround effects found in that version with sonic holography. Things that were in the surround speakers appear IN FRONT OF the Carver speakers almost to the listening location!

I had NEVER heard anything image directly in front of those speakers before in over 20 years with them! I was gob smacked! Yes, things would image off to the sides with many albums even wrapping around to practically 90 degrees to my sides with the help of Carver's Sonic Holography, but never directly in front of me yet in front of the speakers (rather than behind them).

But things often image in that location using front wides with my full 17.1 (11.1.6) home theater system downstairs. But this was a derived 2.0 mix! The official 2.0 track doesn't do anything like that on the same system so as far as I'm concerned, the Atmos derived 2.0 downmix is vastly superior in this case. Still, it's nice to be able to choose.

Steven Wilson's The Future Bites has a separate 5.1 mix from the Atmos mix. Once level matched, I'm not sure it's "better" or even that different sounding than the Atmos 5.1 downmix.

Of course, Yello's Point album sounds awesome (mind bogglingly so) in Atmos 11.1.6, but I have to say the 5.1 and 7.1 downmixes sound pretty darn awesome too. You just end up with the overhead stuff at ear level instead, but it's in the same x,y locations. It sounds awesome in 4.0 too (Carver ribbons + Klipsch surrounds).

It's all win win here, IMO.
 

sjcorne

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Southern NY
Steven Wilson's The Future Bites has a separate 5.1 mix from the Atmos mix. Once level matched, I'm not sure it's "better" or even that different sounding than the Atmos 5.1 downmix.
I analyzed both versions and found the distribution of instruments/vocals throughout the five speakers to be completely different. Here are a few examples:
  • "Self" - there's a prominent lower-register (possibly pitch-manipulated?) vocal overdub isolated in the rears on the 5.1 mix. That same part seems much more subdued in the Atmos 5.1 downmix, and it's audible in both the front and rear speakers.
  • "12 Things I Forgot" - the opening acoustic guitar stays in the front speakers on the 5.1 mix, whereas it moves around-the-room on the Atmos 5.1 downmix
  • "Eminent Sleaze" - the female backing vocal parts during the chorus are isolated in the center speaker on the 5.1 mix, whereas they are entirely absent from the center speaker and seemingly come from all four corners on the Atmos 5.1 downmix
I suppose that The Future Bites is unique in that the 5.1 and Atmos mixes are entirely different animals, mixed at different studios at different dates by different people (Dolby engineer Jake Fields is given a co-credit along with SW on the Atmos mix, whereas SW gets the sole credit for the 5.1).
 

MagnumX

Senior Member
Joined
Sep 19, 2020
Messages
283
Location
Ohio
I analyzed both versions and found the distribution of instruments/vocals throughout the five speakers to be completely different. Here are a few examples:
  • "Self" - there's a prominent lower-register (possibly pitch-manipulated?) vocal overdub isolated in the rears on the 5.1 mix. That same part seems much more subdued in the Atmos 5.1 downmix, and it's audible in both the front and rear speakers.
  • "12 Things I Forgot" - the opening acoustic guitar stays in the front speakers on the 5.1 mix, whereas it moves around-the-room on the Atmos 5.1 downmix
  • "Eminent Sleaze" - the female backing vocal parts during the chorus are isolated in the center speaker on the 5.1 mix, whereas they are entirely absent from the center speaker and seemingly come from all four corners on the Atmos 5.1 downmix
I suppose that The Future Bites is unique in that the 5.1 and Atmos mixes are entirely different animals, mixed at different studios at different dates by different people (Dolby engineer Jake Fields is given a co-credit along with SW on the Atmos mix, whereas SW gets the sole credit for the 5.1).
Come to think about it, I may have done most of the 5.1/7.1 comparisons with Personal Shopper. I'm probably thinking of the INXS disc where even the Atmos playback didn't strike me as much different than the 7.1 playback forced by KODI not being able to handle the high bitrate of the bluray and having to play them straight off the disc instead.

In any case, bluray is nice in that there's plenty of room to include multiple mixes if the artist so desires.
 

R8der

Member
Joined
Aug 11, 2003
Messages
34
My main reason for the Atmos set up is for movie watching and there are some incredible Atmos /DTS X movies..
Listening to Atmos/Auro 3D is an added bonus, agree the quantity of music is very sparse.
Steven Wilson album is a great start, lets hope very soon we get abundance of Atmos choices.
I'm a little late to this thread. I just discovered Atmos music about 6 months ago....need to get on this forum more frequently! I installed Atmos in 2015 for movies, never knowing there would be Atmos music as well! Atmos for movies was the impetus to finally upgrade my old Sunfire Cinema Grand to my current Marantz AV8802a.

Looking forward to future Atmos music releases!
 

MagnumX

Senior Member
Joined
Sep 19, 2020
Messages
283
Location
Ohio
I'm a little late to this thread. I just discovered Atmos music about 6 months ago....need to get on this forum more frequently! I installed Atmos in 2015 for movies, never knowing there would be Atmos music as well! Atmos for movies was the impetus to finally upgrade my old Sunfire Cinema Grand to my current Marantz AV8802a.

Looking forward to future Atmos music releases!
At the moment, I'd say Yello's Point album along with both Booka Shade albums (if you can find 'em) are the most impressive in terms of imaging all over the place followed by Lichtmond's The Journey and Steven Wilson's The Future Bites.

There are other Atmos and Auro-3D titles that are more "room" type recordings (e.g. John Williams Live in Vienna or Hans Zimmer live and some somewhere in-between like Roger Waters' The Wall Live. I hope more become available soon. Stereo sounds so flat by comparison and 5.1, while often quite good isn't quite as impressive (lack of rears and overheads).
 

R8der

Member
Joined
Aug 11, 2003
Messages
34
I have Yello's Point, and I originally got it simply as an Atmos demo disc. That disc, along with Abbey Road, has one of my friends completely revamping his home theater to get Atmos. The Yello album has really grown on me....I love the music as well as the Atmos!
 
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