Surround Music: What comes after the Future? (Music Only)

QuadraphonicQuad

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kfbkfb

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Apparently I asked my Father "what comes after the future" when I was very young (don't recall the answer).


I was wondering what you think the state of Surround Sound will be in 2026 or 2031, for example.

Dolby Atmos will be more popular (or fade away as other Surround Sound concepts have)?

Surround Sound (possibly just 5.1) will become the norm for new music (audio only and music videos)?

Car Radio (AM, FM, Streaming, Satellite) will be Surround Sound encoded (maybe Involve Audio QS), possibly using downmixed Atmos to 4.0?

Someone will invent Quadraphonic Earbuds (modeled after the Quad Headphones from ~45 years ago), thereby allowing Quad/Surround Sound listening from Smartphones.

(anything else)?


Kirk Bayne
 
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ar surround

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A very interesting question. In 2026 we will still be waiting to get Animals in 5.1. Other than that, I still expect to see big box sets with surround sound dribbling out from time to time.

Atmos may or may not be a part of surround sound music, but I suspect it will still hang around as it hangs on the coattails of easily streamed Atmos videos.

By 2031, l don’t know (and may be too old to care). I mean who would have thought ten years ago that we’d be getting a steady stream of high res quads from DV?
 

mrcond

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I believe Atmos music is here to stay, since there now appear to be many audio mixers and studios embracing it and mixing studios are adding Atmos capabilities all the time. The evidence of this to me is that the list of Atmos mixes available on Tidal continues to grow, in a variety of formats, but most importantly, with current popular artists. Streaming will rule the day. Physical releases may continue to be released for anniversary collections of legacy artists, perhaps, but by and large, new music will be primarily streaming. Hopefully, services like Amazon, Qobuz and Spotify will join Tidal in offering these on their platforms and future technological enhancements will improve sound quality and reliability, and increase the number of devices capable of delivering the content.

The challenge, as it always has been, will be the playback hardware. There will continue to only be a very small percentage of people willing to put speakers in the ceiling and all around them, so I expect the "fake Atmos" hardware will continue to be developed and produced, i.e. soundbars, smart speakers etc. But the effect will never reach what a true setup is able to achieve.
 

marpow

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I was having my URC remote upgraded and when the tech was here I sort of asked him that same question.
He see's the first big thing will be wireless everything, including power going into homes. People hate wires, he said.
Sounds scary when there is that rare occurrence when your house turns into a microwave.
 
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