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Dolby Atmos - The Future of Sound, and Not Just For Home Cinemas

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The Dolby Atmos surround sound technology has been referred to as a revolution in the sound of cinema. After conquering cinemas around the globe, the technology is also slowly becoming a common part of home cinemas. Especially with the rising popularity of soundbars, it's easier than ever to bring the ultimate cinema sound experience to your home. In this article, we'll look in more detail at what Dolby Atmos is, how it works and how to get it into your living room.

Dolby Atmos

What is Dolby Atmos?

Dolby Atmos is a 3D object technology for reproducing surround sound. Its main advantage is that it distributes sound in space more accurately. This is achieved by using a number of channels that divide the sound (including overhead speakers that add the sensation of height) and by mixing the sound in a specific way. A larger number of channels enable the dividing of the sound into more individual components. This means that one channel may issue shooting sounds while another the sound of the gun mechanism - older technologies would play both sounds from one point even though the sounds do not really come from one point. With Dolby Atmos, the sound distribution is much more accurate and faithful to the source.

Dolby Atmos and One Data Stream

The innovative aspect of the Dolby Atmos technology is that it carries an audio signal only by a single stream of data and doesn't pre-divide it into separate channels to which the sound system must correspond. Traditional sound systems may have an inconsistent output, for example, when a five-channel mix is used with conventional stereo speakers. In such cases, the sound is not as good as it should be. The components are deprived of the oportunity to produce the incredible sound that engineers have designed with poor pairing.

That is why Dolby Atmos does not use predefined audio streams. Its single data stream is split up by a decoder to match the individual specific settings. The sound is ultimately more realistic and adapts to the speaker system at any home. As a result, you will feel like you are inside the action.

i Dolby Atmos was created in 2012
The Dolby Atmos technology was introduced by Dolby Laboratories in 2012, and it was first utilised in Pixar's animated film Brave. However, the technology is not used only in the film industry. You can purchase a number of albums recorded and mixed in this format.

Dolby Atmos expands upon the current 5.1 or 7.1 set-ups with other smaller "atmospheric" speakers that can be placed virtually anywhere - on the ceiling, behind the screen, at different heights around the room, etc. According to Dolby, up to 64 speakers can be used in a Dolby Atmos cinema. In addition, each of the speakers may produce a completely different sound. This makes it possible to create a truly realistic atmosphere that completely immerses the audience.

Dolby Atmos Demo Room

Dolby Atmos Treats Sounds as Objects

As mentioned above, Dolby Atmos is an object technology. What do we mean by this? In simple terms, this is the first cinematic audio format in which sounds exist as individual entities called objects. These components are freed of traditional channel restrictions. Usually, films feature main music and voice tracks that are fixed. They form the basis of the sound mix and their fixed position establishes important reference points for the viewer. Everything else - the sounds of rain, ocean waves or a busy street - becomes a sound object, whose position is not determined by the location of a speaker, but by so-called metadata. This is structured data that carries information about the primary data of a sound. As an example, we can use a catalogue entry in a library: A book in a shelf is the primary data; its catalogue entry is created using structured data such as the book's title, author, genre or its location.

i Where does Dolby come from?
The company Dolby Laboratories was founded in 1965 by Ray Dolby. He is currently one of the world's leaders in sound and technology innovations. The Dolby logo is in almost every cinema. It also interesting that the company does not manufacture products, it only sells licenses to its technologies.

Based on the metadata, the system calculates the position of the sound object in a given space, to match the particular available set of speakers. It does not matter how big a room you have or how many speakers you use. The object will always be exactly where the sound engineers intended to place it. This means that if it is important to specify that a helicopter will fly over the viewer's head from left to right, this information is entered into the metadata. There is no need to program each channel individually to achieve the desired sound. The information contained in the metadata is reliably processed by an algorithm.

How does Dolby Atmos sound and how is it different from earlier technologies?

Dolby Atmos brings the listener straight to the heart of the action. In contrast to older technologies, individual sounds in the Dolby Atmos format are not firmly bound to one particular direction but move in three dimensions, which creates an illusion of spatiality. What's even more, Dolby Atmos also adds a real third dimension. Earlier technologies weren't able to play sounds above you. Adding this dimension distributes the sound more accurately and provides the viewer with a more realistic listening experience.

As far as the sound quality goes, Dolby Atmos is able to create a detail-packed space with great dynamics. It can easily reproduce a whispered dialogue as well as an action scene full of explosions. All this without getting the listener lost between individual sounds, and without blending of individual channels.

Dolby Atmos In Your Home

To fully enjoy Dolby Atmos sound, you don't need dozens of new small speakers and kilometres of cables. In most cases, it is enough to add two or four ceiling speakers to your 5.1 or 7.1 system to extend it by the desired third dimension. Another option is to add smaller speakers next to the existing ones. It is also important to use a compatible amplifier.

Dolby Atmos pozice reproduktoru

Another interesting option is to use one of the compatible sound bars. Many of them are already designed to support the Dolby Atmos technology, which could save you a lot of trouble. If you plan to upgrade your system to Dolby Atmos, modern sound bars are without a doubt an elegant solution.

DENON AVR-X6400H Black
AV receiver - 11 channels, 11x 175W, Dolby Atmos, Dolby Vision, DTS: X, DTS Virtual: X, Auro 3D, CEC, 8x HDMI input, 3x HDMI output with ARC, 2x pre-out output for subwoofer, Bluetooth, WiFi, AirPlay , Audyssey Room Correction, 4K ultra HD, 2x component input, 1x component output, 2x optical input, 1x phono input, RS-232C, 1x Phono input, 1x Denon Link HD, HEOS technology,

€2,548.43 excl.VAT €2,106.14
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YAMAHA RX-A2080 black
AV receiver - 9 channels, 9 x220W, Dolby ATMOS, DTS: X™, 8 + 2 HDMI, HDCP2.2, 4K/60p, WiFi, SABRE9006A DAC, Analogue video and 4K Ultra HD upscaling, FM tuner, DAB+, Multipoint YPAO R.S.C. + 3D, HDMI Zone B, MusicCast multiroom, Airplay, Bluetooth, USB, ECO mode

€1,842.60 excl.VAT €1,522.81
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In stock 1 pcs
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Marantz SR6013 black
AV receiver - 11.2 Channels, 9x 185W, Dolby Atmos, Audyssey MultiEQ XT32, 7 + 1 HDMI IN, Dolby Vision, HLG, BT.2020 3D, eARC, 2x HDMI OUT, HDCP 2.2, 1x Phono MM, USB, AM/FM , FLAC HD/WAV/DSD 2.8, 5.6 /ALAC, TuneIn, Tidal, Spotify Connect, Deezer, AirPlay, 3-zone multiroom

€1,019.53 excl.VAT €842.59
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Arriving Soon 2 pcs
Expected 23/10/2019
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Marantz SR5013 black
AV receiver - 7.2 channel, 180W/channel, Dolby Atmos, Audyssey MultiEQ XT, 7+1 HDMI IN, Dolby Vision, HLG, 3D ARC, 2x HDMI OUT, HDCP 2.2, 1x RCA Phono MM, 1x USB A, AM/FM, WiFi, Bluetooth, FLAC HD/WAV/DSD 2.8, 5.6/ALAC, TuneIn, Tidal, Spotify Connect, Deezer, AirPlay, 2 zone multi-room

€744.65 excl.VAT €615.41
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Sony STR-DN1080
AV receiver - 7.2 with output 165W/channel and 3D support, Dolby Atmos, Dolby TrueHD, Dolby Surround, DTS: X, DTS-HD Master Audio, DTS-ES, Two-channel stereo and DTS 96/24, 6× HDMI input and 2× output, 4× analog input and 1× output, 1× optical and 1× coaxial digital input, 2× subwoofer output, ARC, FM tuner, USB, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, DLNA, NFC and AirPlay, Spotify, control via smartphone, display, remote control

€850.87 excl.VAT €703.20
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In stock 1 pcs
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YAMAHA RX-A670 black
AV receiver 7 Channels, 7x115W, 4 + 1 HDMI, HDCP 2.2, WiFi / LAN, Bluetooth, Dolby ATMOS, DTS: X, TrueHD, DTS-HD, 192 kHz /24 bit Burr Brown D/ , Internet Radio (vTuner), FM tuner with RDS, Zone B, ECO mode

€783.86 excl.VAT €647.82
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YAMAHA RX-V685 Black
AV receiver - 7 Channel, 7 × 150W, HDMI (6 in/1 out), Upscaling 4K, HDCP 2.2, WiFi/LAN, Bluetooth, Dolby ATMOS, DTS: X, TrueHD, DTS-HD, 384 kHz/32-bit Burr Brown D/A, MHL, DLNA 1.5, AirPlay, LAN, Internet Radio ( with Tuner), FM tuner with RDS, Zone 2+ EXTRA Bass, ECO mode, NAS tuner, Tidal, Deezer

€744.65 excl.VAT €615.41
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Arriving Soon 2 pcs
Expected 24/10/2019
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YAMAHA RX-V685 Titanium
AV receiver - 7 Channel, 7×150W, HDMI (6 in/ out), Upscaling 4K, HDCP 2.2, WiFi/LAN, Bluetooth, Dolby ATMOS, DTS: X, TrueHD, DTS-HD, 384 kHz/32-bit Burr Brown D/A, MHL, DLNA 1.5, AirPlay, LAN, Internet Radio ( with Tuner), FM tuner with RDS, Zone 2+ EXTRA Bass, ECO mode, NAS tuner, Tidal, Deezer

€744.65 excl.VAT €615.41
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In stock 1 pcs
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YAMAHA RX-V585 Titanium
AV receiver - 7 channels, 7×115W, HDMI (4 in/1 out), HDCP 2.2, WiFi / LAN, Bluetooth, Dolby ATMOS, DTS: X, TrueHD, 384 kHz/32-bit Burr Brown D/A, MHL, DLNA 1.5, AirPlay, LAN, Internet Radio ( with Tuner), FM tuner with RDS, 4K video upscaling for HDMI input, Zone B, ECO mode, Deezer, Tidal

€627.01 excl.VAT €518.19
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In stock 2 pcs
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YAMAHA RX-V585 Black
AV receiver - 7 channels, 7 × 115W, HDMI (4 in/1 out), HDCP 2.2, WiFi / LAN, Bluetooth, Dolby ATMOS, DTS: X, TrueHD, 384 kHz/32-bit Burr Brown D/A, MHL, DLNA 1.5, AirPlay, LAN, Internet Radio ( with Tuner), FM tuner with RDS, 4K video upscaling for HDMI input, Zone B, ECO mode, Deezer, Tidal

€627.01 excl.VAT €518.19
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