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macrumors bot
Original poster
Apr 12, 2001

Earlier today, Apple Music began teasing a special announcement with the tagline "Get Ready – Music is About to Change Forever." This teaser comes amid a rumor that Apple is preparing to announce the third-generation AirPods alongside a HiFi, or lossless audio streaming tier for Apple Music on Tuesday, May 18.


Now, references to "Apple Lossless," "Free Lossless," "Hi-Res Lossless," and "Dolby Atmos" have been found within the Apple Music web app by 9to5Mac and confirmed by MacRumors. These references indicate that Apple is likely planning to announce that users will be able to stream songs at higher quality and potentially enjoy them in some form of Spatial Audio using Dolby Atmos with the AirPods Pro and AirPods Max.

Additional code also indicates that only certain songs may be capable of lossless, and Dolby Atmos audio streaming as Apple has references on multiple occasions to a badge that reads "Has Lossless" and "Has Atmos," which could be presented next to compatible songs within Apple Music.

References to lossless and high-quality streaming were already found in the earliest beta of the upcoming iOS 14.6 update. A report regarding a lossless, or HiFi Apple Music tier first originated in early May, and according to that report, the new tier will cost the same $9.99 as the current individual Apple Music subscription.

Article Link: Apple Music Teaser References 'Hi-Res Lossless' and 'Dolby Atmos'
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macrumors regular
Jan 10, 2016
NYC area
These references indicate that Apple is likely planning to announce that users will be able to stream songs at higher quality and potentially enjoy them in some form of Spatial Audio using Dolby Atmos with the AirPods Pro and AirPods Max.
I wouldn't be shocked if you can also enjoy Atmos music through an Apple TV 4K hooked up to an Atmos sound system.


macrumors 6502a
Aug 13, 2020
The real 3D effect is made through special microphones setup - also known as binaural recordings - or via special software, as long as the audio was recorded with at least 2 microphones.
This being said, this technology can be appreciated with any headphones/earphones, as it has nothing to do with the movement of your head; instead, our brain will recognize those particular waves and believes the sound really comes from around us.
So, I really hope apple won't stupidly limit this to the most expensive earpieces, and let anyone enjoy real 3D audio, cuz guys, it's really incredible!!


macrumors G3
Mar 7, 2007
Midwest America.
So, likely, while I'm on the table of a modern medical marvel, Apple will be rewritingg the music worldd.

Awesome. I remember taking two clips of the same music, one original release, and one 'remastered', and looking at them with an electronic oscilloscope, andd being blown away. The 'remastering' of music was striking in how it filled in the 'empty' spaces with more sound.

I tried, decades ago, to put full fidelity tracks on an iPod. It was really hard for me to gget 'full fidelity' tracks. I really wondder if 'full fidelity' tracks even exist any longer.


The reason I carry 'inferior' music is because (pre-pandemic) when I was on a plane, usually headed (at the time) to Tampa, it was on a flight full of wise people travelling with children who didn't want to pay the 'Orlanddo Tax' to fly there. The last flight, there was a mother and young child, who was feeling anxious after an hour on the plane (the child) and I wiped out my iPad with Finding Nemo on it. I went for the win for the day. The mother was very grateful I had that on my iPad. Her child was instantly zoned into the iPad and not freaking out for being trapped in the plane. As a backup, I had Ratatouille. Both movies are in my book as amazing movies. Great pops to mind.

I cann't wait to see what they release, if it happens that day. We ddon't need 'full fidelity' music clips, but there are ways to wow people.

(The duplicate letters are the result of the 'butterfly' keyboard Apple saddled us with. I LOVE my MBP, but have to reread the posts and email before I push 'Send' or 'Post reply'. Not that it's bad, but it does connsume some time)

(Oh, and my 'local' Apple Store keeps running out of the keyboard spares kit to fix this system. I may have an appointment on Wednesday to get it swapped out (for the first time))

('Wow', I know)
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macrumors 6502a
Jun 17, 2014
So pretty much means that iPhone 7 and later and any iPad revealed and released in 2018 will get the Hi-Fi feature considering these models support spatial audio

iPod Touch 7th Gen not included as that doesn’t support spatial audio
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macrumors 6502
Apr 18, 2010
Can the bandwidth of say, the Airpods Pro even handle lossless codec bitrate? Is this just going to be for people using Lightning port headphones and or Macs with sound outputting via the headphone jack?
Apple is all about wireless everything. I can’t see them introducing a new feature that requires people to bring back cords. I mean, if the AirPods Max can’t handle whatever Apple is introducing next week, that would be absolutely ridiculous.


macrumors regular
Oct 31, 2019
I hope the Music App finally get FLAC support but this "Apple Lossless" reference makes me think it's going to be ALAC. But then again it won't matter if ALAC is not able to detect file corruption since it's going to be streaming files anyway. Still excited!
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