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A Guide to Dolby Atmos in the Home

iangreasby

Well-known Member
noob question, what upmixing means and how to activate on a denon for example?
Not sure how to activate it on your Denon, but toggle through the sound modes for DTS Neural X. If the audio track isn't Dolby Atmos or DTS X, then DTS Neural X is the next best thing. It sounds fantastic on my set up for non-Atmos content. It should bring your Atmos speakers into the sound mix.
 

dante01

Distinguished Member
noob question, what upmixing means and how to activate on a denon for example?

Upmoxing is the process of creating additional channels that were not present within the discrete mix. You used to use legacy processing such as Dolby Pro Logic and DTS Neo to create pseudo 5.1 audio from audio that only consisted of 2 discrete channels. The modern day equavalents would be Dolby Surround Upmixing and DTS Neural:X. Such processing can not only create pseudo surround channels, but also create pseudo 3D imersive effects that utilise height or ceiling speakers.

Dolby Surround Upmixer
When you invest in a Dolby Atmos home theater, you expect to get full use of all the components, even when the content you are playing is not mixed in Dolby Atmos. This includes taking advantage of overhead and Dolby Atmos enabled speakers to further enhance the playback experience.

Included in the Dolby Atmos technology bundle is a new advanced upmixer designed to be compatible with traditional channel-based as well as Dolby Atmos speaker systems. The Dolby surround upmixer expands the audio of channel-based content, including native stereo, 5.1, and 7.1 content, for playback through a Dolby Atmos system-regardless of speaker number or placement-while simultaneously honoring and maintaining the artist’s intent for the mix.

The Dolby surround upmixer analyzes and processes multiple perceptually spaced frequency bands, accurately steering each individually. The result is a surround playback experience characterized by precisely located audio elements and a more spacious ambience.

In a Dolby Atmos system, the channel-based mix is fully honored. Dolby Atmos enabled speakers and overhead speakers are employed to lend a sense of atmospherics or room effect to the listening experience. This new technology will process and upmix channel- based content to as many as 17 speaker locations at listener level and to 10 Dolby Atmos enabled or overhead speakers. Note: To maintain an accurate frontal audio image, the upmixer will not send upmixed audio to the left wide and right wide speakers or any speakers that are located between the left, center, and right speakers. Audio is not upmixed to the center surround speaker.
 

sebna

Well-known Member
I am preparing to expand my 5.1 to 5.1.4 and I have a question about height / ceiling speakers.

The setup will comprise of 8x Definitive Technology ProMonitors 1000 and 1x ProCentre 2000.

They are compact size speakers which allows me to mount the height speakers either as height speakers pointing at MLP from ceiling or I could mount them down firing from ceiling as quasi ceiling speakers.

Which option would be better in your opinion?

In terms of placement they will not adhere to Dolby guidelines. First pair will be exactly over the front speakers and in one line with face of the TV and 2nd pair will be half way between front top ones and MLP as after that the ceiling starts to slop down. The distance between top front and top surround will be about 1.5m.

Or would you say it is better to put them at the lower point in relation to from top speakers due to slope but at further distance and because of that closer to the MLP?

So two setup questions to discuss :)

Cheers
 

gibbsy

Moderator
I am preparing to expand my 5.1 to 5.1.4 and I have a question about height / ceiling speakers.

The setup will comprise of 8x Definitive Technology ProMonitors 1000 and 1x ProCentre 2000.

They are compact size speakers which allows me to mount the height speakers either as height speakers pointing at MLP from ceiling or I could mount them down firing from ceiling as quasi ceiling speakers.

Which option would be better in your opinion?

In terms of placement they will not adhere to Dolby guidelines. First pair will be exactly over the front speakers and in one line with face of the TV and 2nd pair will be half way between front top ones and MLP as after that the ceiling starts to slop down. The distance between top front and top surround will be about 1.5m.

Or would you say it is better to put them at the lower point in relation to from top speakers due to slope but at further distance and because of that closer to the MLP?

So two setup questions to discuss :)

Cheers
If you can place them on the ceiling in a down firing position then this is going to be the best. Main thing would be their safety in that position, something which I sure you've looked into. Place them as outlined in the Dolby guide.

 

Scoutfinch

Novice Member
Many of you know the technical details behind the sound packaging off Atmos in respect of the metadata configuration i.e via "True HD...and Digital Plus". However, isn't the bottom line that if my TV and 4K player does not support Atmos (FZ802 Pana unlike the 2019 GZ950) through it own internal apps (e.g. Netflix or Prime), then the AV amp Atmos 'sound process' won't be enhanced to the same level (what ever processing is taking place) when compared to an Atmos film played through an genuine Atmos source such as my Xbox Netflix app or an app via Apple TV 4K?

I ask to clarify this point because many retailers (when I have pointed this out) and bloggers on sites fail to acknowledge the instant different in sound you can hear through the Netflix Xbox app (which displays the Atmos logo on the 4K plan - as evidence when available - but not available on the HD plan).

What I am asking is since the sound on the Xbox is considerably louder and detailed against my own TV apps, will the same not be the case once I purchase a AV Atmos Amp and view that content or via my Pana 420 4k player which doesn't also support LG i.e. better sound but still compromised in comparison to a TV or player which does support Atmos?

Many thanks
 
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dante01

Distinguished Member
Connect the source directly to the AV receiver. THe receiver doesn't rely upon your TV's Atmos handling capabilities to determine whether or not a source would be able to output Atmos to it.

technically, all a TV needs to be able to do is bitstream DD+ in association with its onboard apps and streaming services. This should allow the DD+ audio package inclusive of the Atmos metadata to be bitstreamed out to an Atmos enabled AV receiver. This is however complicated by many of the TV manufacturers who've messed with ARC or not implemented their audio output in conjunction with how services such as Netflix expect it to be implemented. Some earlier TVs do therefore have issues either accessing Atmos via apps or outputting it to an AV receiver via ARC.

There's no difference in audio quality dependant upon the device used to access the streaming service. It is basically the exact same audio irrespective of the device used to run the app. The app accesses audio being streamed by the associated service and services such as Netflix stream the same audio irrespective of the device being used.. Any retailer suggesting that a certain TV or device will decode the same audio stream differently is basically lying! Its the exact same PCM data packaged whether the source device does the decoding or the AV receiver does it. You have no choice in the matter if wanting Atmos via an Xbox or an Apple TV though because they need to use Dolby MAT to output Atmos and this requires that the channel based element of the audio package be decoded by the source and output as PCM along with the Atmos metadata. DEvices not reliant on Dolby MAT have adversaely no option to decode the audio themselves and have to bitstream the Atmos metata within the DD+ or TeueHD audio package for the AV receiver to decode.

The audio you'd get via your Xbox is the same audio you'd get via your TV. The only difference is the device given the task of decoding the audio package. Both the source and the AV receiver are using the exact same codecs to facilitate the decoding so why would the source doing it result in better PCM data?
 
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Scoutfinch

Novice Member
Thanks for the quick reply.:clap:

This is very useful and this reconfirms what people have said before about the package of the format / bitstream. Nonetheless, how do you explain the difference in sound (and Atmos available on some film sources and channels and not others) I hear on Netflix b/w the TV app and Xbox sound, as surely that will be evident more when using the AV via both sources and if that wasn't the case even HD subscribers could access Atmos?

Similarly, the spec for the 450 Pana on their site notes support for Atmos but not on the 420 (even though reviewers commented it but no doubt in the context of the disc format version) so again I don't see the Atmos logo or hear any difference until I listen via Xbox? See spec below which reconfirms this:

450

420

On a related point. I was looking at an interim solution for a AV amp that was moderately priced but decent for music also understanding it will never be good as a stand alone stereo amp but may be close to a budget/mid. I was considering the Denon X2600 and the Onkyo NR696. Any thoughts on these options (sub £500), including speaker options (I currently use some old B & W 602 s2 and NAD c350).

Thanks
 

dante01

Distinguished Member
It is difficult to determine exactly what could be causing the differences if any? One possible explanation is the fact that you are obviously accessing the same audio via 2 different sources so the AV receiver could potentially be implementing a configuration rlative to one source that isn't the same for another source?

A player doesn't require intrgral support for Atmos and I suspect the Atmos support outlined by Panasonic relates to the Netflix app onboard the more recent players? Older models lacked any ability to access Atmos via their implementation of the Netflix app, but newer models now support this. Both the old and the new models facilitate accessing Atmos found on Blu-ray and UHD discs. The players are not decoding Atmos and are simply bitstreaming it to an AV receiver. All UHD disc players can bitstream TrueHD and or DD+ if accessed via Blu-ray or UHD discs. Most older Blu-ray players predating UHD are also able to bitstream TrueHD and have no issues bitstreaming Atmos metadata if packaged with TrueHD encoded audio. The player needs no special Atmos decoding abilities in order to do this. The only Blu-ray players I've encountered that have an issue are some of Sony's players that lack the ability to bitstream TrueHD.

Atmos decoding isn't required onboard the source. All the source needs do is bitstra=eam the DD+ or the TrueHD audio package within which the Atmos metadata is included. I've Blu-ray players and media players that can do this that pre date Atmos and or DTS:X. No mention of Atmos is made in their literature or by their manufacturer. The source needn't even be aware that the audio package includes Atmos metadata.


Onkyo vs Denon. I'd suggest Denon based upon the better Audyssey room EQ correction. The Onkyo AccuEQ is not well regarded and causes major issues with many setups. Denon also have a better support and update record than Onkyo.
 
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Scoutfinch

Novice Member
It is difficult to determine exactly what could be causing the differences if any? One possible explanation is the fact that you are obviously accessing the same audio via 2 different sources so the AV receiver could potentially be implementing a configuration rlative to one source that isn't the same for another source?

A player doesn't require intrgral support for Atmos and I suspect the Atmos support outlined by Panasonic relates to the Netflix app onboard the more recent players? OLder models lacked any ability to access Atmos via their implimentation of the Netflix app, but newer models now support this. Both the old and the new model fascilitate accessing Atmos found n Blu-ray and UHD discs. THe players are not decoding Atmos and are simply bitstreaming it to an AV receiver. All UHD disc players can bitstream TRueHD and or DD+ if accessed via Blu-ray or UHD discs. Most Blu-ray players able to bitstream TrueHD also have no issues bitstreaming Atmos metadata if packaged with TrueHD encoded audio. THe player needs no special Atmos decoding abilities in order to do this.

Atmos decoding isn't required onboard the source. All the source needs do is bitstra=eam the DD+ or the TrueHD audio package within which the Atmos metadata is included. I've Blu-ray players and media players that can do this that ppre date Atmos and or DTS:X. The source needn't even be aware that the audio package includes Atmos metadata.


Onkyo vs Denon. I'd suggest Denon based upon the better Audyssey room EQ correction. The Onkyo AccuEQ is not well regarded and causes major issues with many setups. Denon also have a better support and update record than Onkyo.
Thank you. I understand your point about the BR as the Atmos info is coded in the respective individual discs or remaster.

However, in respect of the apps, given I don’t have an AV amp, it appears logically that the Xbox Atmos function being available (but not on both my tv or BR player apps as noted) surely explains the sound gap and lower quality. To that end even a relatively new TV like mine are frustratingly reliant on third party apps supported via Sky (which unhelpfully doesn’t display Atmos info) or a device like Apple?

Useful to know whether you or others have compared a like for like comparison using your own Atmos AV equipment on two similar sources?

Good points on the Denon. Any speaker suggestions? Cheers
 

dante01

Distinguished Member
The Xbox uses Dolby MAT because it couldn't bitstream TRueHD and its ability to output Atmos was added post the introduction of Atmos via a firmware update. The XBox doesn't use MAT through choice, but because it was the only option open to Microsoft or rather because it was the cheapest option they had. THey also do it this way to still allow them to output game audio as PCM data. Doing so enables them to add in souds generated by the console, something that wouldn't be possible if bitstreaming the audio for the AVR to decode.

Much the same ideology is in place relative to the Apple TV, Apple suggest they used Dolby MAT in order that additional audio such as Siri could and can be mixed in with the outgoing PCM data.

The PCM data is derrived from the exact same audio encoding regardless of which device does the decoding. The decoding can only result in the data that was encoded within the format being decoded and both the source or the AVR are using the exact same codecs to decode the encoded formats. These codecs are licensed from the likes of Dolby and or DTS and aren't developed by the manufacturers of the source devices. The same codecs are used irrespective of the device doing the decoding.

You are not getting higher bitrate audio or audio with higher sample rates in decoding it onboard the source.

Besides which, the PCM data doesn't hold any infot=rmation relative to what is to be designated as being objects or where those objectsshould be mapped in association with your particulat Atmos configuration. THe Atmos metadata holds this information and only your AV receiver decodes this and has any indication of how it should use this information.

It's a mute point anyway because you get no choice in the matter if wanting Atmos. Some devices require that you use Dolby MAT if you want Atmos and will not bitstream the audio while others only give you access to Atmos if you bitstream. It isn't within the listeners control as to which option they use.
 
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Scoutfinch

Novice Member
This is a very comprehensive response and a bit over my complete understanding. But from what you are saying the sound difference is due to the Dolby MAT in use which my TV and BR player do not use. That may be the case but either way, it means the Atmos being broadcast is superior and surely is like to be more so when used with the AV amp?

Please note, does what you say stand, also bearing in mind, I am talking about the Xbox Atmos sound comparison when using the paid for Xbox Atmos app which I downloaded (not the regular firmware update), without which the Atmos logo and sound difference would not be available on certain programmes and Netflix would sound the same as my TV?
 

dante01

Distinguished Member
It is the exact same audio. The onlty difference is the device being used to decode the channel based DD+ aspect of the audio.

No, the audio being streamed to those devices using Dolby MAT isn't in any way different or superior to the audio being streamed to the devices that bitsream the audio. It is the exact same audio.

When audio is bitstreamed to your AV as an encoded format (TrueHD or DD+ for example) then the AV receiver decodes it and the result will be the same PCM data you'd have gotten had the source decoded the format. The only difference is that this happens in the background onbard the AV receiver without you being informed of it. The recever has to decode the formatted audio in order to allow it to process it and for it to then input it into its DAC.
 
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Scoutfinch

Novice Member
Great - in other words the difference in sound via Bitstream when played through an AV (when I get it) will disappear and be neutralised across sources.

From what you have described, given the TV app is always more superior in picture quality than many device apps, the only downside will be not seeing the "Atmos" logo, i.e. as is the case with me currently when using the Xbox paid for Atmos app, recognising some newer AV amps display an Atmos logo on their display when available.

To that end, given even AV enthusiasts will not always have their AV amps switched on and/or choose to do so, for instance during the day time hours if watching a dramas or documentary through the TVs own internal speaker. Am I correct in concluding that when a viewing is taking place through the TVs own app - instead of through an external source like Xbox or Apple TV - users like me will always be comprised by sound quality (ironically not picture) than say an owner of a 2019 GZ or equivalent equipped Atmos enabled TV model?
 

dante01

Distinguished Member
No. if not bitstreaming the audio in association with those devices not employing Dolby MAT then you'd simply not get Atmos. Even if using Dolby MAT, the AV receiver would detect the presence of the Atmos metadata and indicate the presence of Atmos on the receiver's display. Whether bitstreaming the Atmos audio or whether the source is using Dolby MAT, Atmos will be shown on the receiver's display when the associated Atmos metadata is detected as being present.

If you were however to configure a device to decode audio using a device not equipped to output Atmos using Dolby MAT then all you'd ever get would be PCM or multi in displayed on the receiver's display. You'd not be getting Atmos at all.

If Atmos metadata is present when the audio stream reached the AVR then you'd always get Atmos displayed on the AV receiver.

Only a select few devices use or have the facility to use Dolby MAT. Conventional Blu-ray player and or TVs do not use Dolby MAT and have to bitstream the audio in order to convey the associated Atmos metadata.

If using the TV's speakers then the only thing compromising the sound would be the TV's speakers. It is the exact same audio you'd have gotten if output the audio to an AV receiver or if accessing the same content via an XBox. The platform doesn't determine the audio format or how it was encoded.

You get better performance and portrayal via the AV receiver when compared to the TV simply because of the speakers you can drive using that receiver. You'd also be able to portray Atmos using correctly located height or ceiling speakers.

Some TV's have an inbuilt ability to portray Atmos, but this ability relies upon virtualisation of both surround and or height speakers. This would prove to be not as good a means by which to portray such audio when compared to portraying it via an AV receiver setup using physical speakers located in their ideal locations.

The audio itself has the same bit depth and sample rate irrespective of the device decoding it. THe only time that there is potential for the audio to be of a lesser quality is in instances where the source lacks the ability to handle DD+ encoded audio. Even is such instances, you'd be hard pushed to tell the difference and there may in fact be no difference? DD+ has a DD core that a dvice would revert to if unable to decode or handle DD+.

As to using an AV receiver during the day. Why not? I've not used a TV's inbuilt speakers for over 20 years now and would never want to return to having to do so. The audio is no louder if you adjust the volume accordingly and sounds far better via the AV receiver and the associated speakers than it does via even some of the higher tier TV models. What are you gaining by not using the AV receiver?

I personally bitstream all audio from my TV to my AV receiver and use the TV's integral Amazon Prime, Disney+ and Netflix apps. I don't access any of these these services via external devices and nor would doing so result in better audio. Dolby Digital Plus (DD+) is output from my LG C9 TV via ARC to my Yamaha RXA1050 AV receiver relative to these services and I get Atmos if and when the associated content includes such audio. The AV rceiver either says Dolby Digital+ or Atmos on its display depending upon whether the audio is inclusive of Atmos or not.
 
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Donovan84

Standard Member
Setting up a 5.1.4 set up with Atmos speakers in-ceiling speakers. According to the Dolby page the width left to right looks about equal to the front left and right main speakers, easy enough, I'll do those about 8 feet apart. As far as the depth from front wall it shows 45 degrees for both front and back from the listeners ears, easy enough my ears are about 6 feet below the 9 foot ceiling, so, 6 feet in front and 6 feet behind the listening position which will be approx 10 feet from front wall, so, these will be 4 feet and 16 feet from the front.

Now here's my question, according to the photo these Atmos speakers don't look anywhere near the depth they should. The fronts look about 3-4 feet in front of the listener and the rears about a foot behind. Should I ignore the photo?
IMG_0286.jpg
 

dante01

Distinguished Member
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The above is however dependant upon the overheard speakers being used. The speakers do not nescessarilly need to be angled if trye wide dospersion speakers. If the chosen overhead speakers have a wide dispersion pattern (approximately 45 degrees from the acoustical reference axis over the audio band from 100 Hz to 10 kHz or wider), then speakers may be mounted facing directly downward. For speakers with narrower dispersion patterns, those with aimable or angled elements should be angled toward the primary listening position.

Figures 3 and 4 show the preferred locations of the four overhead speakers as seen from above. The horizontal width should be about the same as the horizontal separation of left and right speakers placed at ±30 degrees. If this guidance is followed, the overhead side-to-side separation should be 0.5 to 0.7 of the width of the overall layout, depending on the distance to the screen and the front three speakers, relative to the surrounds. It is best to keep the overhead arrangement centered, front to back, over the listening area, even if the front speakers and screen are at a greater distance than the surround speakers.
 
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Scoutfinch

Novice Member
No. if not bitstreaming the audio in association with those devices not employing Dolby MAT then you'd simply not get Atmos. Even if using Dolby MAT, the AV receiver would detect the presence of the Atmos metadata and indicate the presence of Atmos on the receiver's display. Whether bitstreaming the Atmos audio or whether the source is using Dolby MAT, Atmos will be shown on the receiver's display when the associated Atmos metadata is detected as being present.

If you were however to configure a device to decode audio using a device not equipped to output Atmos using Dolby MAT then all you'd ever get would be PCM or multi in displayed on the receiver's display. You'd not be getting Atmos at all.

If Atmos metadata is present when the audio stream reached the AVR then you'd always get Atmos displayed on the AV receiver.

Only a select few devices use or have the facility to use Dolby MAT. Conventional Blu-ray player and or TVs do not use Dolby MAT and have to bitstream the audio in order to convey the associated Atmos metadata.

If using the TV's speakers then the only thing compromising the sound would be the TV's speakers. It is the exact same audio you'd have gotten if output the audio to an AV receiver or if accessing the same content via an XBox. The platform doesn't determine the audio format or how it was encoded.

You get better performance and portrayal via the AV receiver when compared to the TV simply because of the speakers you can drive using that receiver. You'd also be able to portray Atmos using correctly located height or ceiling speakers.

Some TV's have an inbuilt ability to portray Atmos, but this ability relies upon virtualisation of both surround and or height speakers. This would prove to be not as good a means by which to portray such audio when compared to portraying it via an AV receiver setup using physical speakers located in their ideal locations.

The audio itself has the same bit depth and sample rate irrespective of the device decoding it. THe only time that there is potential for the audio to be of a lesser quality is in instances where the source lacks the ability to handle DD+ encoded audio. Even is such instances, you'd be hard pushed to tell the difference and there may in fact be no difference? DD+ has a DD core that a dvice would revert to if unable to decode or handle DD+.

As to using an AV receiver during the day. Why not? I've not used a TV's inbuilt speakers for over 20 years now and would never want to return to having to do so. The audio is no louder if you adjust the volume accordingly and sounds far better via the AV receiver and the associated speakers than it does via even some of the higher tier TV models. What are you gaining by not using the AV receiver?

I personally bitstream all audio from my TV to my AV receiver and use the TV's integral Amazon Prime, Disney+ and Netflix apps. I don't access any of these these services via external devices and nor would doing so result in better audio. Dolby Digital Plus (DD+) is output from my LG C9 TV via ARC to my Yamaha RXA1050 AV receiver relative to these services and I get Atmos if and when the associated content includes such audio. The AV rceiver either says Dolby Digital+ or Atmos on its display depending upon whether the audio is inclusive of Atmos or not.
Thank you - I understand this a lot better. As noted, your C9 and equivlant Pana GZ950 apps official support Atmos but not my FZ802.

To be 100% clear, from what you said, using the TVs internal speakers, you agree there is a sound difference if you do not have an official Atmos supporting device, but to be 100% clear, you say that difference disappears when AV amp is on, as long as the broadcast in Atmos such as through specific programmes on the 4K Netflix UHD package. In other words buying a Atmos TV or device is only relevant in terms sound enhancing if you do not intend buy an external AV equipment?

I tested this originally with staff at RS across a few stores / call centre and they also thought logically that the difference in sound would follow through to the AV amp or soundbar because of my TV and Blu-Ray manufacturer spec Atmos limitations. Moreover, given you also have a C9 which supports Atmos within its inbuilt speaker and I do not via my FZ802, it may not be possible to hear this diffrenece and may explain some of the gaps b/w our equipment. For this reason, can I ask if you have tried the following test.

Have you yourself done a comparative sound test with the AV amp switched off on a non Atmos TV (using the TVs own speaker only) and then with the AV amp switched on: firstly using a non Atmos source like my Blu-Ray player and in-built Netflix app or Xbox - the latter did not display the Atmos logo until I purchased the MS Atmos app - to an app/source on a Atmos capable TV that officially does (where you will hear the difference for the reasons you say about the TV's virtualisation and Dolby MAT or DD+ processing)?
 

dante01

Distinguished Member
Basically, you'd get the same audio irrespective of whether you are sourcing it via an external device connected directly to your AV receiver or if bitstreaming it via ARC from a TV,

The digital data is the same, the only difference if using MAT is that the source decodes the channel based element of the audio package. You'd get the same PCM data irrespective of which device does the decoding.

The only possible and legitimate one would be a blind test. You'd need to listen without knowing which option you were listening to.

My TV doesn't portray Atmos as Atmos is intended irrespective of its Atmos compliance. My AV receiver and the associated 5.1.2 speaker layout is what portrays Atmos as intended. The TV plays no part in facilitating this and isn't processing any audio.

If connecting a Blue-ray player directly to a TV and if not using an AV receiver then you'd be limiting the audio formats you can access to those that the TV can decode and portray. You'd not be able to portray TrueHD audio or HD formats in such a scenario. TV's unable to process Atmos themselves would simply portray and default to the DD+ aspect of the audio package and woukdn't even detect the presence of Atmos metadata. Despits lacking the data or hardware to create the immersive effects associated with Atmos, the DD+ would result inbaudio with the exact same bitrate and sample rate as that you'd have gotten via an AV receiver, even one that gave you Atmos decoding. The difference would be the lack of the Atmos elements, surround channels and the additional speakers. The TV would be basically portraying the DD+ element of the audio via just its own inbuilt stereo speakers.

Atmos isn't associated with superior audio quality and its benefits are those associated with the way it is portrayed. It is a more immersive experience generated by the additional speakers and the AV receiver to map predfined objects to the speakers present in a setup. The quality of the audio itself is still defined by the underlaying DD+ or TrueHD audio's encoding.
 
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Scoutfinch

Novice Member
Thanks.

Everything you say makes sense. However, one issue I must pick you up with and which goes to the heart of the reason before I purchase AV is this.

Technically I agree the C9 and other TVs won’t portray full Atmos when used without your AV which is evident, but I must make clear your C9 supports Atmos and my FZ802 does not. Hence, why I get enhanced sound only when watching Netflix via the Xbox app, BUT ONLY AFTER I I bought the paid for Dolby Atmos app. It’s not the usual blind test but a clear difference I hear, which is why this discussion is such a moot point and has been raised by others in other discussions.

You may not hear a difference for the reasons given, as you can’t compare TV sets, but the AV forums respective C9 and FZ802/952 reviews clearly set out that the inclusion of Atmos on your 2019 model but not on my 2018 model.

This explains my concern and potential Atmos sound ‘gap’ I am fearing if I purchase Atmos AV if not viewing via an Atmos supported app. If this should arise, this means annoyingly having to access an external app source, which as you identify is never ideal and reduces picture quality. I do hope you are correct about the inclusion of Atmos via the AV source when using my own TV, but I have pasted the relevant LG and Pana TV sound extracts and links/ full reviews from AV Forums to help square the circle in this discussion.

LG C9
Both Netflix and Prime (in a few instances) support Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos, and Apple TV also supports Dolby Vision, with LG promising Atmos support later in the year. LG will also add Disney+ when that services launches in the UK on the 24th of March.”


FZ802/952 2018 models (note the 952 had a soundbar but still did not offer Atmos support, but like your C9, both have been superseded by the 2019 GZ950 and 1500 which now support Atmos)

No Dolby Vision or Dolby Atmos support

“The only issue we could find, and this is purely from a future-proof and box ticking point of view, is the lack of Dolby Vision HDR and Dolby Atmos sound.”


 
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dante01

Distinguished Member
If wanting to access streaming services that include Atmos then you'd need to use external devices as opposed to the apps nboard your TV if the implimentation of the apps on your current TV cannot fascilitate you with Atmos.

This is where devices such as an XBox, an Apple TV or one of the various streaming boxes come into play. These act as a platform for the streaming apps and many facilitate accessing Atmos via some if not all services that include it and outputting this as eith Dolby MAT or bitstreaming it as part of the associated DD+ formatted audio package.

You'd connect the external sources of the Atmos audio directly to one of the AV receiver's HDMI inputs. THe source would output both the video and associated audio to the AV receiver. The AV receiver would deal with processing the audio, amplifying it and outputting it to the speakers connected to it while passing the video through and out to the TV.


LG have included the abilty to access Atmos via apps such as Netflix and the ability to bitstream it via ARC for some time now. It isn't just their newer models that have this ability. I've an older LG SJ800V that also includes the same abilities when it comes to accessing Atmos via Netflix and bitstreaming the DD+ formatted audio inclusive of the metadata to an AV receiver via ARC.
 
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Scoutfinch

Novice Member
Yes, but hasn’t that been the foundation of my original query. You were originally suggesting I would still get the same Atmos ‘experience’ and enhancements once I switch to an AV amp with or without an Atmos supported app if the film/programme included the metadata eg Netflix on the Xbox would sound the same as my non supported Atmos TV app.

However, now you appear to agree with me that I need to use an external supporting Atmos TV because of my TVs deficiencies. This is evidently a compromise for someone like me with an older TV, as it inflates the cost of the TV or compromises the picture, depending on the source being used.

Given the mainstreaming of Atmos that is taking place it is a major flaw, and much more negatively impactful to the average consumer than the unresolved numerous debates that take place on many audio visual forums in regards to the merits of Dolby Vision and 2.1. Those features will by and large will be dependent on the source transfer and availability, including picture processing power of individual sets that really can only be viewed on a side by side comparison.

Whereas, for Dolby Atmos, having a 2019 TV or pre 2018 TV makes all the difference for such a key sound feature that can also adversely impact the wallet if it means going down the road of buying respective Atmos supported equipment. Apart from anything else, it means having to access different devices, creating even more faff and clutter eg Sky not supporting HDR is one further example which we won’t go into now.

Many thanks
 

dante01

Distinguished Member
Nope, I've never suggested that you;d get Atmos sans an app or platform that fascilitates accessing Atmos.

Your questions related to whether there was a quality difference between using Dolby MAT or bitstreaming Atmos packaged with an audio format.

You need to use an external device simply because that would be the only means by which to access Atmos.
 

Scoutfinch

Novice Member
But my reading of your helpful info below and other supporting points you made throughout, was that any difference in sound that is evident in the TV speakers would disappear once I got an AV amp providing the film have Atmos encoded. But we clearly agree it’s not solely the amp alone which determines Atmos, but the availability of Atmos on the TV. Yes AV will enhance sound, but the quality would be better if played through an equivalent newer TV with Atmos support or a Atmos supported app/device. This is why I posted my Blu-ray player spec as that years model didn’t support Atmos, again something I presented up front.

You said:

“If using the TV's speakers then the only thing compromising the sound would be the TV's speakers. It is the exact same audio you'd have gotten if output the audio to an AV receiver or if accessing the same content via an XBox...

Basically, you'd get the same audio irrespective of whether you are sourcing it via an external device connected directly to your AV receiver or if bitstreaming it via ARC from a TV...”


Fair enough if I misunderstood, but staff at stores, manufacturers and other specialists have been giving incorrect info at times. I’m no expert, but I have been correct then about the limitations of TVs like mine if not using an external Atmos source ie not getting the full capability of the sound using my TVs own apps.
 
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