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Do i need dolby atmos speakers for dolby atmos audio??

Discussion in 'Beginners, General Questions' started by Ashik, Sep 8, 2019.

  1. Ashik

    Ashik Auditioning

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    If i have an A/V receiver which supports dolby atmos... Can i play dolby atmos audio at any speaker ?? Or do i need to get specific speaker model which support dolby atmos??
     
  2. JohnRice

    JohnRice Executive Producer

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    Your receiver will decode the Atmos (or DTS:X) soundtrack, but if you have a 5.1 system, it won't really be much different from a regular 5.1 soundtrack. Having said that, my personal observation is that there often actually is an improvement with an Atmos soundtrack, even when playing back on a 5.1 system. I suspect this is simply because the Atmos codec is more sophisticated, even if your system can't take full advantage of it.
     
  3. RobertR

    RobertR Executive Producer

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    You don't need a "Dolby Atmos speaker" to play Dolby Atmos, any more than you need an "HD antenna" or "4K antenna" to receive those broadcasts. You will need to buy separate height speakers to add to your existing surround sound setup to get the proper effect, but they don't need to be labeled "for Dolby Atmos".
     
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  4. Ashik

    Ashik Auditioning

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    So i can buy any bookself speakers to get a dolby atmos surround sound ... Right?
     
  5. RobertR

    RobertR Executive Producer

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    Yes. You should do research to find out which models work best for the height channels, but don't worry about them being labeled "for Dolby Atmos".
     
  6. Message #6 of 15 Sep 8, 2019
    Last edited: Sep 8, 2019
    JohnRice

    JohnRice Executive Producer

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    No, not really. To take advantage of actual Atmos, you need at least one pair of on-ceiling or in-ceiling speakers. Not just a pair of "height" speakers above the fronts. That or a reflecting pair of "Atmos Enabled" speakers, which aren't nearly as effective, and might not work at all, depending on your room and ceiling.

    [EDIT] So, to clarify, I answered “No, not really...” because you don’t use bookshelf speakers for Atmos. You either use in/on-ceiling, or special Atmos Enabled reflecting speakers.

    There's a lot of creative marketing going on with Atmos, and a lot of misunderstanding regarding how to implement it as well. I've seen setups as bad as simply placing a pair of speakers, aimed forward, sitting directly on top of the front speakers. That won't really do anything.

    You might just want to start with your 5.1 "Virtual Atmos" system, then move on from there if you want, but any 5.1 setup isn't really Atmos.
     
  7. JohnRice

    JohnRice Executive Producer

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    As you can see, there's isn't even agreement here.
     
  8. JohnRice

    JohnRice Executive Producer

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    For some assistance, HERE is the official Dolby page showing a wide variety of Atmos speaker configurations. You'll notice that none of the actual Atmos configurations have "height" speakers, though there is a 9.1 example at the beginning that does, but that's not Atmos.

    The Atmos configurations all have on-ceiling, in-ceiling or reflecting speakers to achieve the actual Atmos effect. All of the Atmos setups that lack overhead/reflecting speakers are referred to as "Virtual" Atmos.
     
  9. John Dirk

    John Dirk Cinematographer
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    Welcome!

    Atmos isn't so much about the speakers you choose it's about where they are placed to provide the sound environment the audio engineers intended for a particular mix. As with most endeavors, compromises are sometimes unavoidable when planning an Atmos room. If you're serious about Atmos spend some time on the Dolby site studying their diagrams.

    In-Ceiling speakers are clearly not practical for many but they are [without a doubt] the optimal configuration. If your situation doesn't allow for them there are "Atmos Enabled" speakers which are designed to sit atop towers and bounce their sounds from the ceiling back to your ears with room correction systems such as Audyssey doing their best to firm things up. Other than their physical design, there is nothing special about Atmos Enabled speakers compared to others.
     
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  10. JohnRice

    JohnRice Executive Producer

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    John is the only person I know here who has fully implemented Atmos in his own system in two different ways, and heard the difference it makes. First with height speakers, then with in-ceiling speakers. The fact that in-ceiling (or on-ceiling) are vastly superior is why I said that regular bookshelf speakers really aren't the solution, since bookshelf speakers aren't designed for in/on-ceiling use. They also aren't designed ideally to be used for reflecting off the ceiling. So, like John said, the only designated "Atmos" speakers you might need are "Atmos Enabled" ones, if you decide to go for reflecting them off the ceiling.
     
  11. Ashik

    Ashik Auditioning

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    Thanks a lot for the info brother.....
    By the way can u please tell me the differences among dolby digital vs dolby true hd vs dolby atmos??? These are confusing me a lot and dont know Which one is better....
     
  12. Message #12 of 15 Sep 10, 2019
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2019
    JohnRice

    JohnRice Executive Producer

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    That would require a LOT of typing and explanation.

    Maybe you could just enter "differences between dolby digital vs dolby true hd vs dolby atmos" into a search engine.

    But the very simple answer is, those are an evolution. Dolby Surround was first (30+ years ago), then Dolby Pro Logic, then Dolby Digital, then True HD, then Atmos.

    Anything that can reproduce the later codec, can also reproduce the earlier ones.
     
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  13. Ashik

    Ashik Auditioning

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    Thanks a lot for this useful info
     
  14. Ashik

    Ashik Auditioning

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    If i get a Dolby true hd AV Receiver and play a dolby atmos soundtrack ; will i get dolby truehd surround sound or i will get nothing...??
     
  15. JohnRice

    JohnRice Executive Producer

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    You'll get True HD, which is embedded in the Atmos soundtrack.
     

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