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Old 08-07-2008, 07:45 PM   #1
mr.hidef mr.hidef is offline
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Default Where's the 7.1 master audio?

Sooo many movies with DTS HD Master Audio (5.1), but what happened to 7.1? Any Ideas anyone?
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Old 08-07-2008, 07:59 PM   #2
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I think that most directors only made their movies 5.1 and they don't want to mess with the original audio to mix it to 7.1. I don't know, that's just a guess. I would love if every movie was 7.1 .
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Old 08-07-2008, 08:23 PM   #3
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since this thread already exists I am going to throw it out there... does the 7.1 add a lot to the rear soundstage?
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Old 08-08-2008, 02:25 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mr.hidef View Post
Sooo many movies with DTS HD Master Audio (5.1), but what happened to 7.1? Any Ideas anyone?
3 movies released with 7.1 on the 29th of July that I know about and mosy Lionsgate movies will have it.
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Old 08-08-2008, 02:36 AM   #5
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I suspect it depends on how well your 5.1 audio is set up.

5.1 speakers, with the side-speakers a little behind the ears, and a good distance away, should be diffuse enough to give a pretty full soundfield.

I actually have the capacity for 7.1 audio (HTPC with 7.1 analogue output) but never bothered to set it up.

I think, partly, the issue with sound-design, is that the audience is supposed to remain focused on the screen (and the three speakers that accompany it) anything more than a bit of surround rain or thunder, and an occasionally directional effect can start to take the audience out of the movie.
(DVE (Digital Video Essentials) has some amusing demonstrations of 'too much surround sound')

It's also, I think, very interesting to note that the THX website recommends putting the two rear speakers side-by-side, essentially reducing it to 6.1 (this has something to do with the decoding matrix on certain THX products)

Audio, I think, is really reaching its saturation point. We already have excellent sound mixes like 'The Matrix' were it's literally impossible to tell the difference between DD+ and TrueHD (although, there are still other films, like Batman Begins, were the TrueHD genuinely is useful in giving better sound) and 7.1 might just be a case of overdoing it.
It is, I suspect, comparable to the old 6 track approach (5 front speakers (and 1 surround channel) where those extra two fronts are probably pretty useless.

(Actually, sitting with a 40 degree, THX recommended viewing angle, I've always wondered if the centre channel gives any particular benefit. Wouldn't the same effect be created by putting the centre channel through the side speakers? (Like most older TVs do, anyway?) Again, I'm not sure about that last part. And my knowledge on the whole area of audio is probably not that great (I've done a little reading, but I'm not anything even approaching an expert on the subject)
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Old 08-08-2008, 04:17 AM   #6
JadedRaverLA JadedRaverLA is offline
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My issue with the whole 7.1 push is that the movies aren't initially mastered in 7.1, so what's the point? I know MANY here disagree with me, but I would prefer movies stick with 5.1 on disc, and allow people with other configurations to use their receiver to adapt the source to their system. That actually allows a far greater flexibility in how you setup your home system, and with proper processing in the receiver should allow for very little difference between the output from your system and if the studio does essentially the same thing to the soundmix for storing on the actual disc.

That's just my opinion... though I don't think its that big a deal one way or the other.

Back to the OP, though... movies are mixed initially for the theatrical run where there's no such thing as a 7.1 mix. Actually SDDS has a 7.1 configuration, but it uses five speakers across the front, so its worthless for transferring to disc for home theatre use. Some studios see value in remixing the soundtrack for 7.1 home theatre configurations... others don't. It's that simnple.
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Old 08-08-2008, 07:12 AM   #7
Darth Lavender Darth Lavender is offline
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Interesting. I suppose there is a use for 5 front speakers on the truly enormous screens.
(Actually, I just consulted Wikipedia and there is an (admittedly, unreferenced and odd sounding claim) that a lot of home theatre owners prefer that 5 2 .1 setup for 7.1 sound (for those home theatre owners with larger projector type screens, anyway)

It seems, though, there is something resembling 6.1 in theatres. The "Dolby Digital Surround Ex" system was originally created for theatres (and specifically the release of 'The Phantom Menace') That system is basically 5.1 but encoded in such a way that certain information from the surround speakers could be sent to a rear speaker (or speakers)

The next highest system (in terms of surround sound) would be "DTS-ES" which could be encoded either the same as DDex or, encoded with a completely seperate rear channel. (These two different types of DTS-ES seem to have a variety of different names)
But, I don't know if that was ever used in theatres.


As an interesting side note, which may be common knowledge. The capacity of DVD type 'Dolby Digital' and 'DTS' (if it's full-bitrate) soundtracks is actually identical to the Dolby Digital and DTS used in screenings. (Although the sound mixes themselves are sometimes changed for home viewing) Making things like PCM and TrueHD literally, unquestionably, superior on Bluray than in a theatre.
(Ironically, not knowing that, I actually thought the sound quality of 'Dark Knight' in the theatre was far better than my Lossless Audio disks. Probably because the theatre had better speakers, and at a louder volume.)
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Old 08-08-2008, 07:13 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gamma626 View Post
3 movies released with 7.1 on the 29th of July that I know about and mosy Lionsgate movies will have it.
dont forget New Line is also big on 7.1 DTS HD-MA audio
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Old 08-08-2008, 07:21 AM   #9
lgans316 lgans316 is online now
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OP,

If you are that desperate to experience 7.1ch audio why don't you pull the trigger on the Hong Kong Blu-rays that usually features double lossless audio tracks.
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Old 08-08-2008, 09:16 AM   #10
the Bass Mechanic the Bass Mechanic is offline
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Post Movies that I have with 7.1ch audio:

I have a few Blu-ray's with 7.1ch audio: '3:10 to Yuma', 'Pan's Labrynth' (in Spanish, no less), 'Golden Compass', and 'Dark City' (on the slow boat apparently, should have it soon). Ironicly, I have yet to listen to them all, even though I went to great pains to get a 7.1ch reciever and extra speakers when I upgraded my system 6 months ago. I did go through the AudysseyXT speaker EQ/auto-setup (with the mike at (the maximum) 8 different positions troughout the listening area) and use the 5.1/Multi-Ch + DPL-IIx modes all the time. It works pretty good with most 5.1 channel material, increasing the feeling of envelopment and decreasing the tendency to have attention pulled to a specific speaker durring louder ambient/surround effects.

As for the few 7.1 channel BD's I HAVE listened to; it's similar to the DPL-IIx extention of 5.1 ch. material, but even more effective! The biggest advantage (including 6.1 ch. or DD-ES or DTS-EX material) is having surround effects not just jump from one side to the other, but to have a smoother, more natural pan through the extra surronds, when the movie calls for it of course. While the upgrade to 7.1 is not absolutely nessesary (esp. if you already have dipole, or similarly difuse sorround speakers, or multiple speakers in parallel, like I used to have) it is something that does enhance the experience. I tried switching my LBS and RBS speakers off (after having gotten used to them) and found that I quickly missed having them.

I tried doing a search for other 7.1ch Blu-ray's on this site (goto <www.blu-ray.com/movies/search.php> and enter "7.1" (sans quote marks, of course) in the audio field. Sorry but I can't copy long URL's, and had to type that URL in, the full URL is just too long) and found 45 matches! The intersting thing is that while most of them are DTS-HD Master Audio 7.1 (32), some are PCM 7.1 (12), and 3 of them are Dolby TrueHD 7.1, and that adds up to 47!?!?! I checked, and 2 of the movies have 2 of the 7.1 ch lossless formats on them: 'The Final Countdown' (DTS and Dolby 7.1ch) and 'Protege' (DTS and PCM 7.1ch)! What's more; 'Protege' has Cantonese and Mandarin Dolby Digital EX 6.1ch audio too!!! One of the titles I have on pre-order 'The Nighmare Before Christmas' is one of the 3 to have Dolby TrueHD 7.1, when all this time I'd gotten so used to DTS or PCM 7.1, that I was convinced that it was DTS -HD MA 7.1ch audio.

Apparently some studios seem to favor DTS-HD Master Audio, and some prefer Dolby True-HD, I'm just glad they both take up a lot less disc space than LPCM (more room for a better video encode, and/or extras), and with no loss of signal data at all! Just out of curiosity, I also checked how many there are of each lossless audio format (5.1ch or better) and (drum-roll please!): PCM-236, Dolby TrueHD-169, and DTS-HD Master Audio-199! Most of the PCM multi-channel Blu-ray's are older titles (released mostly 2006-2007), while most of the newer titles use the Dolby and/or DTS lossless codecs! Also, most of the discs with 7.1 ch. audio are newer, and we should see more and more 7.1 ch. discs in the future,... yippie!
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Old 08-08-2008, 10:13 AM   #11
Giyomu Giyomu is offline
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I've always listened to dolby digital 5.1 until yesterday,
I just bought my new receiver

I can finally listen to DTS HD & dolby True HD tracks, PCM...

so even 5.1 is making me so happy for now
maybe I'll want 7.1 in the next few weeks or months
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Old 08-08-2008, 01:02 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Giyomu View Post
I've always listened to dolby digital 5.1 until yesterday,
I just bought my new receiver

I can finally listen to DTS HD & dolby True HD tracks, PCM...

so even 5.1 is making me so happy for now
maybe I'll want 7.1 in the next few weeks or months
Enjoy, lossless audio is great They just announced the specs for Iron Man and I was hoping for 7.1, but just 5.1 DTHD. I am still sure it is going to sound great and maybe Warner will release The Dark Knight with 7.1 DTHD.
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Old 08-08-2008, 01:09 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bases1616 View Post
Enjoy, lossless audio is great They just announced the specs for Iron Man and I was hoping for 7.1, but just 5.1 DTHD. I am still sure it is going to sound great and maybe Warner will release The Dark Knight with 7.1 DTHD.
I'll do. tonight is the start of week end, don t know what movie to begin with...
I should make a search and browse movies by their Audio.

Does anyone have a suggestion of the best uncompressed audio "sample" movie??
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Old 08-08-2008, 01:14 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mr.hidef View Post
Sooo many movies with DTS HD Master Audio (5.1), but what happened to 7.1? Any Ideas anyone?
I know that Lionsgate and New Line Cinema's are using Dts hd 7.1. Universal seems to be using 5.1 though...
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Old 08-08-2008, 01:28 PM   #15
micks_address micks_address is offline
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if you have I Robot... its DTS MA track is outstanding...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Giyomu View Post
I'll do. tonight is the start of week end, don t know what movie to begin with...
I should make a search and browse movies by their Audio.

Does anyone have a suggestion of the best uncompressed audio "sample" movie??
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Old 08-08-2008, 03:13 PM   #16
ryoohki ryoohki is offline
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Most movies are 5.1 in theater. Chinese are big fan of DTS ES on DVD and most of their blu-ray has been either PCM 7.1, DTS HD MA 7.1 or TrueHD 7.1 (there's 1 in 6.1).

7.1 movie are generally remixed for HomeTheater...
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Old 08-08-2008, 03:40 PM   #17
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The primary reason 7.1 is used, is for LARGER listening areas & that is it! Marketing is going to benifit with the sale of extra speakers & cabeling so it's in thier best interest to make out as if your going to get some new listening exsperiance out of it, or in fact that you need it....HAHAHAHAHAAAAAAAAA....iT'S ALL A CROCK OF &^%$.

In fact...you can actually do more damage than good by using 7.1 in a room that does not need it. MOST homes do not need 7.1. I would even go as far to say, that most serious Home Theater enthusiasts with a newer 7.1 amp use a 5.1 speaker setup unless in a room large enough for it.

I believe it will be some time, before its practical to change the current 3/2/1 recordings...try studdying more un "Surround Sound 101" and you will understand just how useless 7.1 is in the average home & how it's really only hype for the avaerage Joe.

It's a bit like people saying 1080i PQ sucks....hehe...They miss the point completely
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Old 08-08-2008, 03:50 PM   #18
mr.hidef mr.hidef is offline
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I just think it sucks, that they advertise "7.1 channels of pristine audio".Even most of the uncompressed tracks are only 5.1.
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Old 08-08-2008, 04:13 PM   #19
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I use 7.1. I think I have a large enough space for it, but I could care less. I had extra speaker lying around and so I used them to fill it in.
It sounds great, and has been calibrated, but I don't miss it when the movie or game only uses 5.1. I do hear the difference, as the 7.1 has better surround sound, it really gives a better feel of the environment.
Still, i would love more 7.1 titles, but i can live with 5.1
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Old 08-08-2008, 06:18 PM   #20
ClaytonMG ClaytonMG is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JadedRaverLA View Post
My issue with the whole 7.1 push is that the movies aren't initially mastered in 7.1, so what's the point? I know MANY here disagree with me, but I would prefer movies stick with 5.1 on disc, and allow people with other configurations to use their receiver to adapt the source to their system. That actually allows a far greater flexibility in how you setup your home system, and with proper processing in the receiver should allow for very little difference between the output from your system and if the studio does essentially the same thing to the soundmix for storing on the actual disc.

That's just my opinion... though I don't think its that big a deal one way or the other.

Back to the OP, though... movies are mixed initially for the theatrical run where there's no such thing as a 7.1 mix. Actually SDDS has a 7.1 configuration, but it uses five speakers across the front, so its worthless for transferring to disc for home theatre use. Some studios see value in remixing the soundtrack for 7.1 home theatre configurations... others don't. It's that simnple.
I agree!!!
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