More Dolby Atmos details - start saving up, guys!

Discussion in 'Speakers' started by DanH1972, Jun 27, 2014.

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  1. DanH1972

    DanH1972 Second Unit

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    News Flash!

    Due to some confusion over the features of the upcoming consumer Dolby Atmos format, Brett Crockett of Dolby Labs has just replied in a new blog post answering some of our various concerns.

    Current consumer Atmos can accommodate up to 24 fronts and surrounds plus 10 on-ceiling/top speakers via the updated and expanded Dolby TrueHD codec.

    There are products planned that will output the full array of speaker/sub locations.

    http://blog.dolby.com/2014/06/dolby-atmos-home-theaters-questions-answered/

    Pretty cool!

    Now, let's see what DTS has up its sleeves. :D
     
  2. andySu

    andySu Cinematographer

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    Frankly I don't think 32 is enough.

    9 screen

    Above 3 screen
    Middle 3 screen
    Below 3 screen

    When most sound images on screen often leave the screen they often have the sound panning along the stage to surrounds and often a lot of films I have watched and listened to don't sound correct enough to the on-screen to off-screen.

    Point is there needs to be more and more for the surrounds or at least

    Upper corner left and right (panning though) x4
    Middle side wall left and right (panning though) x4
    Below corner left and right (panning though) x4

    Overhead surrounds x4 or more speakers are cheap least to me.

    Below surround x4 spread around underneath my cinema seats so at least I can hear sound of rain landing on the floor to make me least at thing I'm standing outside. While rain drops land on tree leafs at different side wall arrays and above if standing underneath a tree. Rain is complex sound effect to convince me that the artificial fabricated sound to be realistic enough.

    Back wall

    Upper corner left to right (panning though) x4
    Middle wall left to right (panning though) x4
    Below corner left to right (panning though) x4

    FLFE.1 Front Low Frequency Effects,would be omnidirectional (can be summed up with multiples to create a uniform coverage)
    RLFE.2 Rear Low Frequency Effects would be omnidirectional (can be summed up with multiples to create a uniform coverage)

    55 I can fit that in my room. :P

    The scene with the train from The Peacemaker where the train is cuff-puffing on screen centre and then moves off-screen the train on-screen exits the screen form below and would make some visual sense of the tunnel puffing the smoke up from below my cinema seats, then puffing on the rear back lower corner to the floor.
     
  3. DanH1972

    DanH1972 Second Unit

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    I think 34 will be plenty, as long as the software tracks can support it. :D
     
  4. Wayne_j

    Wayne_j Screenwriter

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    of course from the photos he's been posting lately andysu has more speakers in his home theater than I have seen in most commercial ones.
     
  5. andySu

    andySu Cinematographer

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    Well you have 34 and I'll have 55. :P

    Its funny how a home cinema can sound like mono when you step out of the room. When I step into the kitchen it sounds like mono in the kitchen. When I step back in I'm immersive with it.

    I think the rule book for film dialogue should be directional to where it is on screen and off screen. GRAVITY is the best I have listened too in decades I don't see that being equalled on the dialogue panning side for many years.
     
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  6. ahollis

    ahollis Producer

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    Actually the picture you of your theatre set up you downloaded a few days ago scared the heck out of me. I like things to be a little less obtrusive. But each to there on.
     
  7. vidiot33

    vidiot33 Stunt Coordinator

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    Too much is never enough...
     
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  8. Dr Griffin

    Dr Griffin Cinematographer

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    Are there any Atmos specific ceiling speakers for home theater out there or will it be a situation where anything would work? I know there will eventually be some preferred design that may rise to the top, but what looks best for now? I have a lower ceiling, so I'm thinking about an in-ceiling setup.
     
  9. DanH1972

    DanH1972 Second Unit

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    Wait for CEDIA. I know that Triad will be debuting various Atmos compatible speakers there. I'm sure there will be more than just the one brand. The ceiling speakers, at least in the professional arena, are wide dispersal monopoles.
     
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  10. zoetmb

    zoetmb Stunt Coordinator

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    Dialogue panning was done in the early years of 70mm 6-track mag, but quickly abandoned just as "ping-pong stereo" was abandoned for music recordings. It's considered trite and tacky.

    Off-screen dialogue, such as the radio in Gravity is another story - I think that makes sense, but you really only need one channel for that. If that came from the surrounds, it would be more than enough. (When I saw it in LieMAX, it came from the rear surrounds).

    A long-time rule in film mixing is to never distract the audience by having a sound take their attention away from the screen. When I saw "Close Encounters of the Third Kind" in its original run at the Ziegfeld in NYC, where they brought in much extra equipment for the presentation, in the scene where the sound from the ship blasts out the window in the viewing tower, the sound appeared to come from the rear right (facing the screen), even though surround was mono in those days. Frankly, I don't know how they accomplished that, unless it was by sending the audio to the right front and surround at the same time or if there was a guy in the booth manually panning (which they actually used to do for the original Cinerama presentations). In any case, when that window blew out, the sound was so realistic and so directional, the entire audience turned their heads to the right. That's considered a "no-no' in film mixing. I believe I noticed that it was not as directional for the special edition and it's also not that directional on the Blu-ray mix, even though it could have been.
     
  11. zoetmb

    zoetmb Stunt Coordinator

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    I don't see why almost any speaker wouldn't work. The special Atmos speakers that have been announced so far are "ceiling" speakers that mount on top of front and rear left and right and point towards the ceiling so that you don't have to mount speakers on the ceiling. But if can mount speakers on the ceiling, that's probably going to be better. I keep going back and forth in my head of whether they should be wide dispersion or narrow dispersion. Guess it depends upon the size of the room and how many ceiling speakers one is going to mount.
     
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  12. FoxyMulder

    FoxyMulder 映画ファン

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    I would have loved to have been there, it's a shame the blu ray doesn't have that mix and it's one reason why i think Dolby Atmos might fail, if sound mixers don't make use of these extra speakers then i see no point buying into it, i could almost be talking about 3D here, i don't think we have enough truly immersive sound mixes, occasionally a great one comes along like Gravity.

    I wonder how good the Atmos mix for Gravity in the home would be if it got re-released. A lot of mixes these days are using the low bass but not enough have directionality and good high end sound, it doesn't pull me out of a film when i have sounds coming from all around me, instead it makes everything better, it can pull me into the film more.
     
  13. DanH1972

    DanH1972 Second Unit

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    They didn't just have the radio dialog panned. They had main dialog panned to the front wide surrounds when an actor was just off screen. I didn't get distracted or pulled out of the story. On the contrary, I get distracted with the dialog is mono-centric no matter where the actor is in or outside of the action going on in front of me. In The Amazing Spider-Man 2, they had a scene where Spidey swung into the frame from the ceiling surrounds. It added to the experience. It didn't detract.

    Some of this trepidation in sound mixing needs to come to an end. Quite a few soundtracks are extremely timid when the scene clearly doesn't call for it. Atmos can even be used for subtle environmental cues, not just bombast. A great example was Forrest Gump. You would have a huge battle sequence erupt and it mainly sounded like it was in stereo with almost zero surround activity... and this movie was released when they had 5.1 surround available.
     
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  14. Mr645

    Mr645 Stunt Coordinator

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    Is it just me, or do others find that a pair of high quality, well placed speakers can deliver an amazingly accurate front soundstage
     
  15. DanH1972

    DanH1972 Second Unit

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    But only if you sit in the sweet spot.
     
  16. DaveF

    DaveF Moderator
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    A new system will go from 5.1 to 15.3 (roughly speaking). Are speaker prices dropping by 66%? Is this solely a high-end niche option, or will there be cheapie Atmos speakers that are adequate for fleshing out a quality 5.1 base?
     
  17. FoxyMulder

    FoxyMulder 映画ファン

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    I wonder about that too, i think it might be that speaker manufacturers start making some cheaper ceiling speakers, fairly lightweight and small in size so they can be screwed into ceiling joists, i'm thinking the speaker frequency response would be 80hz and upwards, you already see these on Amazon, i think timbre matched to the same brand would be ideal.

    I'm also thinking 24 speakers is much nicer, built up over time, 35 even better, depends on room size and placement.

    Maybe flat panel speakers will be made, you can already buy some like that, they could go onto ceilings and walls and maybe be less conspicious, i think Dolby Atmos is an exciting development for sound but it needs to be affordable.
     
  18. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    I can't imagine this being nothing more than a niche market.
     
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  19. Dr Griffin

    Dr Griffin Cinematographer

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    While 7.1 still hasn't fully taken the place of 5.1, I see the Dolby Atmos (and related systems) mainly being a new build consideration. Though the enthusiasts will, of course, be more than happy to add it. I'm going from a 5.1 to an 11.2 system (4 in-ceiling speakers) in my 12X26X8 room. 35 speakers would be insane in my room. The cabling and powering would be daunting, but even with all the $$$ and work involved, I would not totally rule it out in the future.
     
  20. DanH1972

    DanH1972 Second Unit

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    Check that. It's 34 outputs in the upper tier consumer Atmos gear.

    On some equipment you'll also get the sub outputs for the surround speakers since all the speakers can be hit with full frequency sounds with Atmos. The bass managed sub outs are for those with speakers that can't handle low bass.
     

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