Where is Atmos?

vipergts2207

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Apr 7, 2009
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I'm another on the list of those patiently/impatiently waiting for ATV to support Atmos. I have a 5.1.4 system at home that I love. I'm picky about what films I buy because I don't want my physical collection pushing too far over 300. I think it's a huge shame renting films (through the ATV) with 5.1 sound when a decent atmos track exists for it, but there's no way to rent physical these days, so I'm forced to buy a copy then trade it on, which costs a lot more than a rental.

Practically every film is released with an Atmos or DTS:X track these days, so it's weird to be so behind (even if only a small amount of us currently have a capable system).

My question though, is; if when Atmos is supported, would DTS:X be too, or are they completely different beasts? Would be weird if I could stream a Star Wars film with atmos (when it does happen), but still had no access to Jurassic Park's new DTS:X mix for example.
Probably not, since the Apple TV doesn't support any other DTS formats either.
 

loekf

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Mar 23, 2015
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I hope, but don't expect anything tonight.

Apple broke bitstreaming audio for anything other than DD in tvOS 10.3 and higher. If they take themselves seriously they should support bitstreaming for Atmos, DTS-X, TrueHD, DTS-HD MA etc.

AFAIK, Atmos and DTS-X are object based, so the mixing to the discrete channels should be done by a component in your Home Theatre knowing your speaker setup. The AppleTV doesn't know this, maybe it's possible to query the info via HDMI-CEC (?).

Devs asked about bitstreaming and got the answer it was intentionally broken (as is not supported anymore). However, if you want to support Atmos (or DTS-X) for e.g. 4K streaming (playback) I don't see as possible w/o bitstreaming support.
 

Audit13

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Apr 19, 2017
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If Apple really wants to make the Apple TV 4K a premium product, I think adding HD audio would be a great premium feature. A DTS-HD or TrueHD soundtrack is about 3 to 4 GB in size so it's not unreasonable when people have gigabit connections from their internet service provider, unlimited data caps, and they are already watching 4k files from iTunes.
 

BODYBUILDERPAUL

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Feb 9, 2009
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If Apple really wants to make the Apple TV 4K a premium product, I think adding HD audio would be a great premium feature. A DTS-HD or TrueHD soundtrack is about 3 to 4 GB in size so it's not unreasonable when people have gigabit connections from their internet service provider, unlimited data caps, and they are already watching 4k files from iTunes.
ABSOLUTELY - AND don't forget AV1 in a year or so which will save up to 30% size compared to HEVC.
I really want Apple to do this with audio as it'll make them the best on the market from every angle.
PS HAPPY BIRTHDAY iTUNES MOVIES - 10 YEARS OLD TODAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Now that should see an audio upgrade surely :)
 
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loekf

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Seems like Dolby only allows LICENSED surround mixers from now on. This could mean Apple has to fork money to Dolby if they want to support TrueHD and specially Atmos.
 

Audit13

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I have a htpc that can send TrueHD and Atmos (not lossy Atmos like Netflix) to a receiver via DVI from an nVidia 1050Ti from BluRay rips. Does this mean nVidia and Netflix have to pay something to Dolby?
 

cardsdoc

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While I would love to have it I don't think Apple will ever add bitstreaming for HD audio at this point. While many of us use it for local playback of blu-ray and UHD rips The ATV is not designed for that with the focus on streaming. There are currently no streaming service with lossless audio. The Shield is one of the few boxes that can do it but it is even marketed as a Plex machine with built in server so clearly the intent is different. I doubt Apple would ever encourage disc ripping. So at this point I'm just hoping for bitstreaming of DD+ so we can get Atmos from Netflix, Vudu, and hopefully iTunes if they upgrade the audio. I think this has to happen at some point to stay competitive but not holding my breath for HD audio so I will likely continue to use multiple devices including the Shield. I use my LG OLED built in Netflix and Vudu apps for streaming Dolby Vision and Atmos but it would be nice if I could move those over to the ATV.
 
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HobeSoundDarryl

macrumors 604
Seems like Dolby only allows LICENSED surround mixers from now on. This could mean Apple has to fork money to Dolby if they want to support TrueHD and specially Atmos.
It has to be a trivial amount though. There's plenty of devices out there retailing for <$100 that have DTS & TrueHD playback. Wild guessing based on low, low retail pricing, I'm guessing on a per-unit level, it probably could not be more than a few dollars. I'd even bet it would probably be in the cents-per-unit range, especially if a huge client like Apple negotiates it for upwards of all Apple devices.

Anyone with insider info know what it costs to license DTS and True for consumer devices like this?
 

Snoopy4

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Think outside of 'the box' my friend - data allowances change so fast. I remember when 500MB a month was considered generous! I also remember my broadband company giving me a 2GB a month limit in 2010!!! Now it's a basic of 750GB a month with a 350mbps speed!
Once again? Where? More urban centrisism.
[doublepost=1528168459][/doublepost]
I'm another on the list of those patiently/impatiently waiting for ATV to support Atmos. I have a 5.1.4 system at home that I love. I'm picky about what films I buy because I don't want my physical collection pushing too far over 300. I think it's a huge shame renting films (through the ATV) with 5.1 sound when a decent atmos track exists for it, but there's no way to rent physical these days, so I'm forced to buy a copy then trade it on, which costs a lot more than a rental.

Practically every film is released with an Atmos or DTS:X track these days, so it's weird to be so behind (even if only a small amount of us currently have a capable system).

My question though, is; if when Atmos is supported, would DTS:X be too, or are they completely different beasts? Would be weird if I could stream a Star Wars film with atmos (when it does happen), but still had no access to Jurassic Park's new DTS:X mix for example.
Star Wars (1-6) are mastered in DTS now. Not sure what that means for object based formats. Do they go back and do Atmos or stick with DTS?
 

ahoydecoy

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Apr 24, 2015
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Star Wars (1-6) are mastered in DTS now. Not sure what that means for object based formats. Do they go back and do Atmos or stick with DTS?
I believe I have seen new editions transition from DTS to Atmos, and Disney seem to be sticking to Atmos, so if the original Star Wars trilogies get a 4K upgrade (please, God, let it be soon) then I would assume it would be Atmos.

That said, I don't know enough to understand the technical difference between supporting Atmos and DTS:X (aside from a small license fee). Should we assume DTS:X support is still far off?
 

loekf

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Mar 23, 2015
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I believe I have seen new editions transition from DTS to Atmos, and Disney seem to be sticking to Atmos, so if the original Star Wars trilogies get a 4K upgrade (please, God, let it be soon) then I would assume it would be Atmos.

That said, I don't know enough to understand the technical difference between supporting Atmos and DTS:X (aside from a small license fee). Should we assume DTS:X support is still far off?
Atmos requires you have to upfiring speakers, otherwise it switches to a traditional surround mixer (so for 5.1 or 7.1).

DTS:X works with any speaker layout.

I got the feeling that for 1080p (HD) Blu-ray most releases were DTS-HD or MA. For Ultra HD it's more or less 50:50, or 60:40. Universal prefers DTS:X it seems (e.g. the recent Jurassic Park releases). Disney is indeed Atmos. DTS:X took some time to pick up, but I see now more releases.
 

vipergts2207

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Apr 7, 2009
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Atmos requires you have to upfiring speakers, otherwise it switches to a traditional surround mixer (so for 5.1 or 7.1).

DTS:X works with any speaker layout.

I got the feeling that for 1080p (HD) Blu-ray most releases were DTS-HD or MA. For Ultra HD it's more or less 50:50, or 60:40. Universal prefers DTS:X it seems (e.g. the recent Jurassic Park releases). Disney is indeed Atmos. DTS:X took some time to pick up, but I see now more releases.
Even though they may not be required, without height channels you’ll get lackluster results with DTS:X. Sure you’ll get the object-oriented audio, but the sound field will still be in a 2-dimensional plane, instead of 3-dimensional space.
 

priitv8

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Jan 13, 2011
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Even though they may not be required, without height channels you’ll get lackluster results with DTS:X. Sure you’ll get the object-oriented audio, but the sound field will still be in a 2-dimensional plane, instead of 3-dimensional space.
You can also run Atmos without the height speakers, or why is it different? That is the basic idea of object-based decoder - it computes the best signal distribution to channels for object placement, for the speaker layout at hand.
 

Audit13

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Apr 19, 2017
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I'm not currently set up for Atmos or DTS:X, only 5.1. I was looking into upgrading but the receiver I want is around $2000 CAD before adding more speakers :(

I'm very happy with my current 5.1 set up for DTS-HD and TrueHD. Until the Apple TV officially supports Atmos, I have an excuse to delay upgrading:D
 

vipergts2207

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Apr 7, 2009
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You can also run Atmos without the height speakers, or why is it different? That is the basic idea of object-based decoder - it computes the best signal distribution to channels for object placement, for the speaker layout at hand.
Yes you will have the object-oriented audio which is a plus, but Atmos and DTS:X won’t really shine until you add height channels. That processing can’t make things sound like they’re coming from outside the 2D plane until there are height channels to utilize.
 

ahoydecoy

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Apr 24, 2015
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Atmos requires you have to upfiring speakers, otherwise it switches to a traditional surround mixer (so for 5.1 or 7.1).

DTS:X works with any speaker layout.

I got the feeling that for 1080p (HD) Blu-ray most releases were DTS-HD or MA. For Ultra HD it's more or less 50:50, or 60:40. Universal prefers DTS:X it seems (e.g. the recent Jurassic Park releases). Disney is indeed Atmos. DTS:X took some time to pick up, but I see now more releases.
Thanks for the reply, but I didn't mean the difference between Atmos and DTS:X themselves, but the difference in something such as the Apple TV being able to decode/passthrough them. If it can handle Atmos, is anything technical standing in the way?
 

benji888

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Sep 27, 2006
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What Apple does now is decode whatever audio comes in, mixes system sounds, outputs PCM. So, it's possible they will decode DD+ Atmos, mix system sounds, and then output DD+ Atmos. ...Yeah, sure they could bitstream, but, that would mean audio interruptions when system sounds are needed or someone presses the siri button, so, they may not go for that. I could be wrong, they did give us frame rate matching and dynamic range matching, so, maybe there is a slight chance they will pass audio with bitstreaming.