Dolby Atmos – Will It Ever Come To Our Homes?

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What is Dolby Atmos?

Dolby® Atmos™ introduces powerful new listening experiences for the movies, with sound that truly envelops you and allows you to hear the whole picture. With Dolby Atmos, filmmakers can now precisely position and move sounds anywhere in a theatre—even overhead—to heighten the realism and impact of every scene.

Dolby Atmos Benefits

– Delivers a powerful and dramatic new cinema-sound listening experience
– Allows sounds to move around the theatre to create dynamic effects
– Reproduces a natural and lifelike audio experience that perfectly matches the story
– Adds overhead speakers for the most realistic effects you’ve ever heard
– Reflects the artist’s original intent, regardless of theatre setup
– Employs up to 64 speakers to heighten the realism and impact of every scene

The Dolby® Atmos™ Cinema Processor CP850 brings Dolby Atmos audio playback capabilities to your digital cinema. It enables theatres to fulfill the Dolby Atmos promise of a more natural and enveloping sound experience, one that best matches the artistic intent of the filmmakers:

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Versatile Audio Processing Plus Comprehensive Tech Support

The Dolby Atmos Cinema Processor CP850 offers a wide range of powerful capabilities to meet the audio needs of your digital cinema.

Technical Features

Dolby Surround 7.1 and 5.1 playback
Dolby codec support for alternative content (Dolby Digital Plus™, Dolby TrueHD, and Dolby E upmixing of non-DCP content)
16 channels of DCI PCM audio input
Support for 64 speaker feeds, configurable between 16 analog outputs and a Dolby Atmos Connect (DAC) output
Flexible I/O for a wide variety of content sources (16-channel AES, S/PDIF, optical, stereo analog, public announcement microphone)
Dolby Show Manager integration and web APIs to easily integrate with TMS and NOC systems
Simplified installation, maintenance, and day-to-day operation of cinema sound systems for exhibitors
Sophisticated EQ processing to improve cinema audio playback

Optimum Performance in Any Theatre

The CP850 optimizes playback of Dolby Atmos soundtracks in every cinema regardless of the number of channels available in the sound system. It also renders a Dolby Atmos soundtrack to match the content creators’ original intent as accurately as possible in every room. Its automated calibration tools simplify installation, easily correct problems that might arise, and ensure consistently high-quality playback over time.

Dolby Commissioning Service

Each CP850 includes the Dolby Commissioning Service, a complimentary speaker configuration design review and initial room equalization. Our Content Services consultants will review your design drawings and equipment selection to ensure that your theatre delivers the highest-quality experience possible.

Dolby Atmos Interface DAC3201

The Dolby Atmos Interface DAC3201 allows you to use legacy amplifiers in Dolby Atmos installations. The DAC3201 employs Dolby Atmos Connect, an audio-over-Ethernet protocol, to receive the Dolby Atmos stream from the Dolby Atmos Cinema Processor CP850. It then converts the stream to analog audio for connection to amplifiers. Each DAC3201 supports up to 32 analog outputs. A CP850 together with a single DAC3201 can support up to 48 output channels. Installations with more than 48 output channels will need two DAC3201 units.

First theatre with Dolby Atmos:  Dolby Theatre in Hollywood (used to be known as Kodak Theatre):

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Inside Dolby Theatre during the construction of the Dolby Atmos over-the-head speaker arrays

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Dolby Atmos for Content Creators

Dolby® Atmos™ is a revolutionary new audio platform. It allows for more powerful storytelling by giving content creators unprecedented control of the placement and movement of sound within the movie theatre. Combining products, services, and technologies, Dolby Atmos represents a complete end-to-end audio platform for movies now and well into the future.

New Possibilities and New Efficiencies for Audio Postproduction

Dolby Atmos adds the flexibility of dynamic audio objects to the traditional channel-based workflows used to create movie soundtracks. These audio objects allow content creators to control discrete sound elements in the theatre, no matter the speaker configuration. Objects can be static or can move, and they are controlled by metadata.

A Simplified Approach to Cinema Sound

Dolby Atmos also brings new efficiencies to the audio postproduction process. It allows sound mixers to efficiently capture the director’s vision and then monitor or automatically generate 5.1- and 7.1-channel versions in real time.

Distribution is simplified, too. With Dolby Atmos, all the artistic intent is embedded in a file within the Digital Cinema Package (DCP), which can then be faithfully played back in a broad range of theatre configurations.

Dolby Rendering and Mastering Unit

The Dolby Rendering and Mastering Unit (RMU) is the brain of the Dolby Atmos platform. It provides the rendering engine for the mix stage, as well as tools for room configuration, management, and print mastering. With multichannel audio digital interface (MADI)–based audio connectivity, the RMU connects to the Dolby Atmos mix client through Ethernet for metadata communication and monitoring.

Dolby Atmos Panner Plug-in for Avid Pro Tools

The Dolby Atmos Panner plug-in is an AAX Native plug-in for Pro Tools® 10 systems or later. As with any plug-in, it can be controlled directly from any control surface compatible with Pro Tools.

Capabilities include:
– Three-dimensional panning control for audio objects within the Dolby Atmos mix
– User control for object size
– Preset elevation modes for easy overhead panning

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Dolby Atmos Monitor Application

The Dolby Atmos Monitor application enables communication with the RMU. It provides:

– Metering and monitoring control
– Visual feedback and mix information for the mixer
– Print-mastering controls
– Transport control for playback of existing print masters on the RMU

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Inside Futureworks Studio, World’s First Dolby Atmos Mixing Suite:

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One of the first Dolby Atmos commercial theatre (Traumaplast Backnang, Germany):

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Maximum Audio Performance for Movie Theatres

Dolby Atmos redefines the cinema experience by offering content creators new ways to tell their stories. It adds the ability to control distinct sound elements in a soundtrack to the traditional channel-based approach for mixing, and it ensures that the audience experience is always the best possible for the specific playback environment.

A Scalable Solution for Theatre Owners

For exhibitors who want to get the most from their theatres now and in the future, Dolby Atmos is the ideal solution. Upgrades can be made at once or incrementally, and at every point Dolby Atmos maximizes the audio performance of the theatre.

Technology Highlights

– Works across a wide array of speaker configurations and auditorium shapes and sizes
– Simplifies distribution with a single DCP inventory
– Combines distinct sound elements with channel-based audio content
– Captures all of the director’s intent and can generate 5.1 and 7.1 deliverables automatically
– Integrates easily into existing audio postproduction workflows
– Supports up to 128 simultaneous and lossless audio streams (channels or sound elements)
– Allows for up to 64 discrete speaker feeds

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