My Dolby Atmos Demo was Over the Top

May 17

Written by: Jeremy Glowacki
5/17/2012 10:17 AM  RssIcon

by Jeremy J. Glowacki

Having read about the ceiling speaker aspect of Dolby’s new Atmos commercial movie theater surround sound technology, I was very curious to experience it first hand during my visit to Dolby Laboratories headquarters in San Francisco this week.

The first thing I learned after sitting down in the company’s private screening room/mixing stage for a demo, was that Atmos was never intended to be a theme park attraction. The company is treating its new format very seriously and plans a full roll out of the new technology with the hopes that studios will embrace Atmos production tools and mixing techniques and that movie theater company will start retrofitting their best rooms first, with more to follow after that.
 Atmos wall
 Atmos Ceiling
Dolby technicians added these full-range surround speakers (top photo) and ceiling surround speakers (bottom photo) into the movie theater/mixing stage at their headquarters, to showcase and mix movie soundtracks using Atmos.


I won’t delve into all of the technical details of Atmos, because that’s what a well-written white paper is for (click here for that), but I will say that in a nutshell the goal is to enable more discrete surround sound experiences (like the sound of a bird chirping in the back left corner of the theater) and create much smoother panning effects around or over a room by using new tools in the post-production process and adding full range speakers to the entire room, instead of just behind the screen.

The results were truly over the top. A custom audio clip created for a cell phone company promo featuring a engine blowing up, literally gave me chills. Then the patter an animated character running “past” the screen made me want to turn my head to see where he went. A demo to showcase the panning tool itself was most helpful in illustrating how Atmos will improve the audio experience in the theater. We were shown how a traditional 7.1 surround set up could leave gaps in the effects surrounding the audience or muddle ambient room effects in a crowded restaurant scene, for example. With the addition of a lot more surround speakers that are full-range, thus timbre-matched to the speakers behind the screen, the Atmos panning sounded seamless and balanced around and above the room. And yet for an effect where a sound needs to jump from the front of the auditorium to the back without the it carrying overhead, the system was equally effective.

The first feature film to be produced for Atmos will be Disney Pixar’s Brave, which will premiere June 22. Retrofits for a single screen in each of the major markets is underway and should be ready in time for that release.

I hope that many films and screens will be adapted to the Atmos format. It’s a lot cooler than 3D and though it may not specifically draw theatergoers to the movies, it will make the experience when they get there something they won’t forget.

Tags:
Categories:

Your name:
Gravatar Preview
Your email:
(Optional) Email used only to show Gravatar.
Your website:
Title:
Comment:
Security Code
CAPTCHA image
Enter the code shown above in the box below
Add Comment   Cancel 

 

Archive
<October 2014>
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
2829301234
567891011
12131415161718
19202122232425
2627282930311
2345678
Monthly
September, 2014 (21)
August, 2014 (13)
July, 2014 (15)
June, 2014 (12)
May, 2014 (12)
April, 2014 (14)
March, 2014 (15)
February, 2014 (14)
January, 2014 (24)
December, 2013 (11)
November, 2013 (12)
October, 2013 (15)
September, 2013 (19)
August, 2013 (18)
July, 2013 (19)
June, 2013 (12)
May, 2013 (18)
April, 2013 (17)
March, 2013 (13)
February, 2013 (16)
January, 2013 (26)
December, 2012 (9)
November, 2012 (11)
October, 2012 (16)
September, 2012 (11)
August, 2012 (15)
July, 2012 (13)
June, 2012 (8)
May, 2012 (9)
April, 2012 (10)
March, 2012 (7)
February, 2012 (11)
January, 2012 (14)
December, 2011 (5)
November, 2011 (12)
October, 2011 (8)
September, 2011 (4)
August, 2011 (7)
July, 2011 (11)
June, 2011 (12)
May, 2011 (8)
April, 2011 (6)
March, 2011 (9)
February, 2011 (10)
January, 2011 (9)
December, 2010 (4)
November, 2010 (7)
October, 2010 (4)
September, 2010 (9)
August, 2010 (7)
July, 2010 (8)
June, 2010 (12)
May, 2010 (6)
April, 2010 (8)
March, 2010 (10)
February, 2010 (11)
January, 2010 (1)
December, 2009 (6)
November, 2009 (6)
October, 2009 (11)
September, 2009 (6)
August, 2009 (4)
July, 2009 (4)
June, 2009 (5)
May, 2009 (7)
April, 2009 (9)
March, 2009 (7)
February, 2009 (9)
January, 2009 (8)
December, 2008 (9)
November, 2008 (6)
October, 2008 (7)
September, 2008 (7)
August, 2008 (3)
July, 2008 (5)
May, 2008 (1)
April, 2008 (4)
March, 2008 (3)
February, 2008 (5)
January, 2008 (2)
November, 2007 (1)
October, 2007 (4)
September, 2007 (2)
August, 2007 (3)
July, 2007 (4)
June, 2007 (6)
May, 2007 (6)
April, 2007 (4)
March, 2007 (4)

 

Skip Navigation Links.
Skip Navigation Links.
download

Is the iPod Dock a Dying Product Category?
Read More»
By Todd Anthony Puma

Sometimes the Chance Encounters at CEDIA EXPO are What Matters Most
Read More»
By Todd Anthony Puma

CEDIA 2014: The Next Wave in Surround Sound Recap
Read More»
By John Sciacca

Jumping Down the Rabbit Hole: Updating to iOS8
Read More»
By Heather L. Sidorowicz

Setting Up Small and Mid-Size Home Automation in No Time
Read More»
By Todd Anthony Puma

Slide Show

In this CEDIA Designer Award for Best Hidden Installation, integrator  ...
Slide Show

The primary objective in creating this theater by Encore Custom Audio Video, of...
Slide Show

This Home Theater Level 2: $101,000 to $150,000 project from Tec...
Slide Show

This private theater from AV Works, Sherwood Park, Alberta, Canada, won the Gol...
Slide Show

This Home Theater Level 5: $361,000 to $999,000 Gold Award winner from Hom...
Re: Defensive Affixes of the monsters
Read More»
Re: Boxer how to play the second stage of the asura tower
Read More»
Re: Many choice make guild wars 2 rangers war pet paradise
Read More»
fifa 15 coins Ce marathon n'a rien d'une course normale telle
Read More»
you necessary tools for your Xbox swtor credits for sale
Read More»
Expert Progression Football 20 is on its way within The fall of
Read More»
I merely acquired in to Fifa world cup at the start of the season coupled
Read More»
Purchase fifa 15 cash playstation 3
Read More»
Suarez was fifa 15 coins xbox one not in action at the 2007 South
Read More»
Ways to use 8% discount code SEP8OFF for buying cheapest wow gold from safewow
Read More»