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Old 10-28-2014, 05:32 PM   #561
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All the people talking about DTS UHD make me want to laugh out loud.

DTS and Datasat split, DTS is no longer in the theatrical side, so NO ZERO NONE of the studios are using DTS anything to make a movie. Datasat on the cinema side is just hanging in there and they saw Dolby Atmos blow by them. In a knew jerk reaction, they banded with their old other half DTS, who bough SRS and aquired MDA with it. I guess they are calling that DTS UHD now, but they may not be completely the same thing. The got together with Barco who was already pushing the channel based Auro 11.1 system, but not getting much traction, and even brought Ultra Stereo on board. They all see a steak in trying to slow Dolby Atmos to try and get a foot back in the door. So what they did, was throw out this carrot to theatre owners and studios, "Hey, we can do what Dolby Atmos does, but we will give away the codec without a license fee if you all vote to make it a standard" "PLEASE we are DYING!" OK well, I added that last part.

What they fail to say is that Dolby has been at the head of defining the standards for cinema sound for 40 years. Working closely with studios and cinemas to make things work the best they can in a realistic system. SMPTE and DCI have been holding meetings for 2 years about immersive audio, but since the creater of Auro says he coined that name, I will not use it any more unless I am talking about Auro. So the DCI and SMPTE groups have setup the ground work and they did agree there should be just one way of packaging object based audio. They are now calling it OBAE for Object Based Audio Essence.

https://kws.smpte.org/kws/public/pro...project_id=226

Dolby did not go out and stuff the Atmos data on DCP's without doing a lot of research. The way the file is carried was setup with SMPTE and is the front runner for how the standard will be packaged. SMPTE also agreed on the use of the DCP audio track 14 for the timing and control data to ensure the object audio and positional data all stay in sync with the picture. Track 13 is already in use by DBOX for the motion seats, so this made perfect sense. MDA or whatever you want to call it, did not even have their own idea for packaging or sync that I know of.

The latest development is the meta data format. This will still take a little time to flush out, but there was one fundemental difference between Dolby Atmos and MDA. MDA used polar coordinates from the center of the room to locate sound objects. Dolby and Auro have been using an X-Y-Z 3D model of the room. The group has voted, and the standard will use the X-Y-Z system. Score one for Dolby in the standard. Oh wait, that is 3 already.

The standard, contrary to all the hype DTS has been puking on the web, will not force the use of anyone's renderer. If DTS feels their MDA renderer is only worth nothing and wants to give it away, well, that is up to them. All the standard is going to do is completely describe how the audio objects are packaged, identified, synced, and located in the sound field. So once the final standard is approved, what it will mean is that anyone is free to create object audio tracks using any system they choose. They will put the audio in the proper package and include the metedata in a standard form that describes the location, size, etc. of that sound. If you are mixing in Dolby Atmos, that means you will listen to the result on a Dolby RMU as you mix in real time to hear the position and movement of the sound and lay it down in the standard package. The RMU can also create the 5.1 and 7.1 versions and allow monitoring of them as well. You could also use a mix rom setup for Auro or MDA or Iosona, or whatever. In each case, the system will put the audio in the standard carrier and format the metedata in the standard XYZ, size, etc. format. If you rmix in a room that is only rendering to 9 channels, your pans may sound fine there, but how well will in translate when it goes to a theatre and plays on a Dolby Atmos system that renders the pans out to 53 speakers? Did her really pan to 60% back in the room, or was he at 40% when it sounded right on fewer channels? This is the one drawback of this open standard. There will be a drop in the quality control of the tracks. But since most studios have already put in Dolby Atmos mixing, (over 50 dub stages now) Most object based tracks will likely be mixed and monitored in a Dolby Atmos setup.

So this leads to the next part of the upcoming standard. The standard will allow anyone to build a box to play back the object audio tracks and positional data. They are free to use whatever rendering routine they feel like. So you have a pile of objects, each one needs to be calculated in real time to mix with all the others at the correct levels at each speaker feed. Dolby Atmos has this down quite well, and over the last 2 years has refined the requirements to play it faithfully quite well. Some complain that the system is too expensive to install and they are waiting for MDA to be able to put in a cheaper system. The reality of the physics don't lie. If you use less feeds and group speakers, you could save some cash on the install, but at the cost of resolution. You could use fewer and/or smaller speakers and amps, or not put them on the ceiling to save cost, but again, you could lose resolution and headroom. A single object at 95 db panning around the room takes many speaker feeds that can each exceed 95 db. This is the fact, and if you look at the one MDA demo room, they put in even more speakers than Dolby Atmos would have recommended. So much for the fallacy of cheap object audio. If you do not want to spend the money to play object audio right, just run 7.1 and call it a day.

There are still items in the standard that need to be voted on. The current Dolby Atmos layout of 9.1 bed channels and 118 dynamic objects may not end up being the standard. It seems people want to allow more object tracks to ensure no limits, but that will make the files bigger and require more processing. It will be interesting to see how that shakes out and if beds end up in fixed in the standard or not. Dolby's lossless packing to reduce the file size is also an interesting question. Just do the math, everyone in Hollywood screams "Audio should be uncompressed!" but 128 tracks, at 24 bit 48,000 sps makes for a bit rate of 147,456,000 bits per second of just audio data with no overhead or positional data. In other words, the sound alone on a 2 hour feature would be 133 giga bytes. Sure, the DCP drives could hold it, but it is going to impact load and/or transmission times. For comparison, the Dolby Atmos DCP track on a 2 hour feature with the lossless packing is typically around 10 gig now.

Things that will not be in the standard at all are the layout of speakers. Since audio objects are completely dynamic on position, it is up the the decoder to steer it to the correct position in the room. If one system does it with 2 heights on the wall and 3 rows across the ceiling, fine, do it. If you just map 6 surround locations around the room, sure, that will work. Want to put high and low speakers behind the screen, go for it. This is one of the great things about object based audio. It removes the tie between the audio and the speaker layout completely.

Dolby did a ton of research and testing to come up with their recommended speaker layout for cinemas. To know what works in the real world, they had to test in the real world. The physics of how sound travels and is heard by humans was the main basis for what they came up with. Dolby has made the company on understanding how people hear and what is needed to make it all work. The result is putting speakers where they count. Why waste money on speakers that don't make a difference? Ensure you do put powerful enough speakers and amplifiers in to reproduce the track without overloading. And locate the speakers just close enough in each direction to be able to produce a seamless pan to most of the audience in the room.

Dolby Atmos succeeds in getting the job done. Over 200 titles in just over 2 years, 600 screens all around the world playing it, and over 50 dub stages mixing in it. This does not look like much of a battle at all. When the competition has to offer to give away their technology, it has to say something.
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Old 10-28-2014, 06:31 PM   #562
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But then we an resell our older receivers to recoup most of the difference (what I just did) so now for the next two years I will laugh at you cause I have a superior sounding system than the old one dimensional codec out now

Yes DSU is that good

:laughingatyou:
How much did you sell your Onkyo 809 for? I'm not an early adopter by a long shot (unless its available for PC). I've always used the PC as a test bed for emerging tech. My first BD player - a PC internal...funny its the only one in use anymore - sold most of my standalone players with t he exception of one - and it doesn't get any use. I don't think it will take 2 years for every thing to sort out - but I'm not going to go buy a receiver to use as a prepro - I got off that merry-go-round years ago. I may not have Dolby Atmos yet - but with a few VST's I can have Auro3d and convert existing material to an Auro3d mix on the fly (but I don't want to pay the coin for the vst yet. A new version is coming out - a friend at AVS informed me - that may have Atmos included).

I think waiting is a good thing. Early adopters keep the flow of money going, so thank you in advance. Everyone has their place - Early adopters, watchers, and software testers.
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Old 10-28-2014, 06:37 PM   #563
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P.S. I wonder what Atmos sounds like on a system thats not capable of producing the proper dynamic range? Will it sound - small, will it sound cheap, will it sound unimpressive? I believe that many of the early adopters that have decent sound systems already will sound quite impressive. However hardware makers definitely need to make speakers that will keep up with present systems (Golden Ear, Kef and JBL Sythesis are already doing it, but having an object speaker that's only has a sensitivity of say 89 and your rears put out 93 - that's a no no in Atmos - they are supposed to be identical (in sensitivity) and timbre matched).
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Old 10-29-2014, 05:57 AM   #564
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Do you think we will see movies being released in Atmos that currently already mixed that way. Similarly to the way stereo movies were released with 5.1 or 7.1 remixes.

I can see a few movies that would be great in Atmos.

Top Gun would be great because the airplanes climbing and diving
Star Wars for the space battles
Alien Quadrilogy and Prometheus, for the Aliens scrambling around in the air vents/shafts
Atmos could be used to good effect, but unless the movie is going to be re-released theatrically, I don't see it happening because Atmos (or Auro) in the home is really going to be a niche format. It's not going to drive a lot of sales.

Besides, they really can only re-mix into Atmos effectively (without adding new sounds) if the original stems exist. And they might not.

Even though THX was originally part of Lucasfilm, Lucas did not always use the state of the art sound on his releases.

In the case of "Star Wars", when they were originally released, Episode V and VI could have been released in 70mm split-surround, which would have really helped the fly-overs, but Lucas elected not to go with the split-surround format, which had been used on "Apocalypse Now" almost a year before "Empire".

And in the digital sound era, while Episode 1 was released in 35mm theaters in Dolby EX and DTS-ES, which added a center rear matrix derived channel and they did do an 8-channel mix for SDDS, for digital presentation, all of the PT were only released in 5.1, not 7.1 and they could have been. That didn't happen until the Blu-ray release.

However, almost every Disney animated film has used 7.1 and they're also been very supportive of Atmos. But they might be backing away a bit: for 2015, only "McFarland USA" is currently listed as having an Atmos mix.
Maybe it's simply too far in advance, but "The Avengers: Age of Ultron", "Inside Out", "The Jungle Book", "The Good Dinosaur", and "Star Wars Episode VII" have not yet been listed as having any kind of immersive mixes.
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Old 10-29-2014, 06:51 AM   #565
PeterTHX PeterTHX is online now
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Originally Posted by ZoetMB View Post
In the case of "Star Wars", when they were originally released, Episode V and VI could have been released in 70mm split-surround, which would have really helped the fly-overs, but Lucas elected not to go with the split-surround format, which had been used on "Apocalypse Now" almost a year before "Empire".

Since they were mixed in-house at Skywalker it's possible they didn't have the money to revamp everything they had just invested in. Split-surround for 70MM was incredibly rare, I think there was only a handful of releases for its entire existence (1978-1995ish), ironically they became more plentiful once digital 5.1 mixes were the norm. Last Crusade was 70MM 5.1

Quote:
And in the digital sound era, while Episode 1 was released in 35mm theaters in Dolby EX and DTS-ES, which added a center rear matrix derived channel and they did do an 8-channel mix for SDDS, for digital presentation, all of the PT were only released in 5.1, not 7.1 and they could have been. That didn't happen until the Blu-ray release

SDDS' 7.1 was a niche proprietary format with no home version and five front channels (which the vast majority of theatrical installations don't have) so I can understand why they wouldn't pursue that format. And don't forget Dolby EX was invented by the guys at Skywalker and Dolby was the one who came up with how to implement it.

Quote:
However, almost every Disney animated film has used 7.1 and they're also been very supportive of Atmos. But they might be backing away a bit: for 2015, only "McFarland USA" is currently listed as having an Atmos mix.
Maybe it's simply too far in advance, but "The Avengers: Age of Ultron", "Inside Out", "The Jungle Book", "The Good Dinosaur", and "Star Wars Episode VII" have not yet been listed as having any kind of immersive mixes.

Avengers: Age of Ultron's new teaser has the Atmos logo at the end. Star Wars Episode VII has the same production team as Star Trek Into Darkness so I'd bet a years pay it will be Atmos. Big Hero 6 is Atmos, no reason for Disney to change up their production pipeline.
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Old 10-29-2014, 07:11 AM   #566
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Originally Posted by AVinstallGuy View Post
What they fail to say is that Dolby has been at the head of defining the standards for cinema sound for 40 years.
Yeah, but DTS goes to "11".


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Old 10-29-2014, 02:36 PM   #567
ClaytonMG ClaytonMG is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ZoetMB View Post
However, almost every Disney animated film has used 7.1 and they're also been very supportive of Atmos. But they might be backing away a bit: for 2015, only "McFarland USA" is currently listed as having an Atmos mix.
Maybe it's simply too far in advance, but "The Avengers: Age of Ultron", "Inside Out", "The Jungle Book", "The Good Dinosaur", and "Star Wars Episode VII" have not yet been listed as having any kind of immersive mixes.
Avengers: Age of Ultron and Inside Out are listed as having Atmos mixes on Dolby's website. But I have noticed a few times where they only list a movie a month or so in advance.
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Old 10-29-2014, 04:24 PM   #568
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I don't know if they waited to add "Inside Out" to the list or what, but it did seem a bit cute that the first Atmos titles was Disney Pixar "Brave" and the 200th announced title is Disney Pixar "Inside Out"

Dolby can't list a title as being in Atmos until the contracts are signed, even if they started mixing on an Atmos Stage already. Many directors and mixers will say they are going to mix such and such in Dolby Atmos, but until it is official with a contract, it will not be listed. With the newer mix consoles, it is getting very easy to keep the object sounds on separate busses and make the final decision very late in the process without compromising the result of a true Dolby Atmos final mix.

Think of it like this.
All major feature mixes start with all of the individual sounds on hundreds or even thousands of source tracks. They can come for all kinds of sources, but they all end up on the hard drives in the system, synced up and processed to sound they way they want it. The mix system usually has an internal mix down bus to monitor it all in 5.1 or 7.1 on the stage. They can create temp dubs like this to get a good idea what it will sound like and in many cases, they still will use this work flow and create a 5.1 version pretty early. But all of the original stems, ever sound, is still a separate clip with the panner data that then renders that 5.1 result. They can take it a few steps further as well. They usually have separate 5.1 or 7.1 outputs for just the music, and special effect sounds. Maybe even separating nature sounds, foley sounds, synthesized effects, etc. In the process, they will keep track of things they feel would benefit from being a dynamic object vs just staying in the beds. Some mixers like to organize the sounds on to certain track numbers on the mix workstation. For example, dialog for each character might always stay on the first 20 source tracks. Each character on their own, this makes doing a foreign version much easier later on. Then all of the music can be a group, maybe 20 more tracks. Then sound effects, have a few dedicated to just tire screeches. In any case, every mixer uses their own technique to keep it logical in their mind. They can have the console use the existing X-Y panner data and make a 5.1 or 7.1 version right n the console and be done, but if they then decide to make the Dolby Atmos version, they can take the project to a stage that is equipped with the Dolby RMU and the individually amp'd surround speakers and some ceiling speakers. With almost no changes to the project, they can feed the 7.1 buss to the bed tracks of the RMU, use another stereo pair buss for the top L/R beds, and then start taking source object tracks off of the mix down bus and feeding them into object tracks to the RMU. The existing panner data will still tell the RMU to pan it around the ear level speakers. They just need to take over the panning on the console that now has X-Y-Z panning capability, and move whatever objects they like into the third dimension. Some newer consoles are adding height panning and even 9.1 bed support, so they can rough in the 3D pans even without the RMU but to make it a true Dolby Atmos mix, they need to at least monitor it through an RMU to be certain the pans will render as expected in theatres with a Dolby CP-850 Atmos decoder. The RMU then takes the bed and object feeds from the mix console and creates the Dolby Atmos printmaster in the correct format to then be added to the DCP package. During this step, the RMU can also create a rendered 5.1 and 7.1 from the complete Dolby Atmos object mix. This has been used on several features, but on others, they choose to use their separate version for various reasons. In some cases, they used mors objects and some louder point sounds in the Atmos mix that when pushed into a 7.1 it just does not sound right. Take a look at this web page, and watch the videos.

http://harrisonconsoles.com/site/atmos.html

It is a little funny how they mention Dolby Atmos being suited to larger rooms, and not really for the home. This is true to some extent, but the home version has shown that much of the benefit does translate pretty well.

Most modern mix consoles makers have been working with Dolby to make Atmos mixing just as easy as mixing 5.1, or maybe even a easier than that was just a few years ago.

Then next year is going to get very interesting. More and more features are being mixed in Dolby Atmos and even features that people would not think of as "big sound" movies, will start being mixed in Atmos because there is really no reason to not use it. "Dolphin Tale 2" was one of the first that made great use of Dolby Atmos on a subtle soundtrack. I hope their effort is noticed and more directors and mixers pick up on the possibilities.
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Old 10-29-2014, 05:31 PM   #569
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Originally Posted by AVinstallGuy View Post
In some cases, they used mors objects and some louder point sounds in the Atmos mix that when pushed into a 7.1 it just does not sound right.
Sounds like the early days of DVD where discs from studios like Sony/Columbia and Paramount would contain Dolby 2.0 surround tracks in addition to the 5.1 (often defaulting to the 2.0). If I recall correctly Warner even would slightly remix 5.1 titles to sound better in stereo.
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Old Yesterday, 07:04 AM   #570
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Originally Posted by PeterTHX View Post
Sounds like the early days of DVD where discs from studios like Sony/Columbia and Paramount would contain Dolby 2.0 surround tracks in addition to the 5.1 (often defaulting to the 2.0). If I recall correctly Warner even would slightly remix 5.1 titles to sound better in stereo.
I can't speak at all about the home version of Atmos really, all I have been able to hear in it is some of the demo clip and transformers so far, but in te cinema version, when they mix in native Dolby Atmos from the beginning, they need to listen to the result of the RMU rendering out the 5.1 and 7.1 version. Think about this situation. Down the right side of the room, you have a series of revving cars pulling up along side of a speeding truck. Each car is hitting 92 db as the engines scream. There are 5 from the back to the front of the theatre, the front car is just visible on the right edge of the screen. These sounds are spread from the back to the front, each engine noise is in just 2 speakers each, This room has 11 speakers up the side, so no speaker is asked to play out the noise of 2 cars at once. Now we tell the RMU that it is just a 7.1 output, it has to mix all five of these sounds into the right side surround channel. The front car is also a bit in the screen, and the back car is a little into the back wall. With the sounds all mashed together, it can become a bit loud and lose the desired effect. So to make the 5.1 and 7.1 version, they might just alter the panner data a bit for the re-render, or they could even change the sounds they use and have them more spread out to get the clarity back. The automated render to 5.1 and 7.1 do play great most of the time, but when these odd situations happen, the system allows adjustments to be made by the director and mixer to get the non Atmos mix to sound they way they want it to.
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Old Today, 03:58 AM   #571
ClaytonMG ClaytonMG is offline
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I see that the reviewer on here states the soundtrack on Hercules as being DTS-HD MA 7.1. I wonder what happened to the Dolby Atmos audio track.
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Old Today, 10:41 AM   #572
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Ralph Potts over at AVS Forums queried Paramount and they said they will release it in the future.

That's a blow and not a good move. As much as I'm excited for the format, I don't see Dolby Atmos as marketable and recognizable a gimmick as 3D. You tell me, they're reserving the 3D BD for a future release, it might work. But Dolby Atmos? No. Not on its own. Something tells me they will do it again for Ninja Turtles. Let's see what Paramount does from here.
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Old Today, 10:52 AM   #573
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I might send a message to Paramount and Dolby and see what they have to say about it.
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Old Today, 11:04 AM   #574
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My main concern about getting into ATMOS is not so much newer films produced in the format but rather the thousands of films in various sound formats. From 4.0 to 5.1 - that includes the various 4.0 mixes from the 50's to the 70's including of course Dolby Surround (mono surround tracks) to the Dolby Pro-logic and PLII and PLIIx.
Somehow, I suppose a new matrixed sound will be produced but how will it sound? I know it won't be directional, but what will the matrix decide to play? Has anyone actually test various mixes to see?
When asked this question one previous I was told if I didn't like the way it sounded than turn off the Atmos setting.
Really! I'm not going to invest in a new decoding system to turn off a setting that isn't delivering a good stable and presentable sound for hundreds of films I have compared to much smaller amount I will purchase specifically produced for it. Dolby has always been extremely careful to make sure compatibility was foremost.
I would think the same applies here, but no one has brought this up in tried and tested manner.
As a past reviewer of home theater hardware and software in the past this is something I would love to do if a company would forward me a receiver. I remember testing a Teac decoder and a Shure, one passive the other one of the first and best top of the line units. If the new Atmos feature does justice to previous non-Atmos mixes it should be presented and tried to assure the public it delivers beyond Atmos mixed films.
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Old Today, 12:57 PM   #575
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Ralph Potts over at AVS Forums queried Paramount and they said they will release it in the future.
Bologna! Paramount can say anything, unless they had told a lie in the first place. If Paramount had any intentions of releasing Hercules with a Dolby Atmos soundtrack, they would have encoded it this time. So now, it's allegedly going to be in the future. Yeah right!

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Old Today, 03:18 PM   #576
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Originally Posted by BozQ View Post
Ralph Potts over at AVS Forums queried Paramount and they said they will release it in the future.

That's a blow and not a good move. As much as I'm excited for the format, I don't see Dolby Atmos as marketable and recognizable a gimmick as 3D. You tell me, they're reserving the 3D BD for a future release, it might work. But Dolby Atmos? No. Not on its own. Something tells me they will do it again for Ninja Turtles. Let's see what Paramount does from here.
It's not suppose to be a gimmick, it's suppose to be a new standard?

Goddamnit Paramount!
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