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Has anyone heard and/or mixed for Dolby's atmos format?
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MikeRegan
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15th June 2012
Old 15th June 2012
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Has anyone heard and/or mixed for Dolby's atmos format?

Read about it today being rolled out with Pixar's Brave.

Dolby Atmos: Will Your Theater Be Next Up For New Sound System?: via HuffPost http://huff.to/LpMWvM

I would be so interested to see if anyone here knows about how the mixing process is handled for a 128 channel surround system.

Cheers!

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15th June 2012
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I think in entire europe there is only one stage equipped with atmos. And not a single cinema (apart from dolby's own demo theater in London).


but I could be wrong.
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15th June 2012
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Dolby atmos as a complete system is pretty much still in lab phase. They have fitted a couple of theaters with their system but everyone can install a s**tload of speakers and amps in a theater and call it the next big thing.

A company called immsound have been doing exacly the same for several years now. If you read the papers they are almost identical. Except there are already a good number of theaters installed and working today. Now they are showing upmixed material, but the first true immersive movies are being mixed now. I've been to a tech demo and the mixing process is very simple and elegant. You don't have to think about channels, only about 3D space. You have a typical Pro Tools session and on every track you place one of imm's plugins, which act either as an advanced 3D panner or a simple panner or a "direct to speaker" router. The audio from the tracks gets then streamed via the plug-in to an app where you can visualize and move the position of the audio in 3D. You can control it via an ipad as well. the 3D position appears as automation lines within PT, as if it were a regular panner. The mixing process is really not that different from a regular 5.1 mix in terms of workflow, except you have much more spatial definition.
The app streams audio via MADI to a propietary computer, which encodes all the info to an "extended" DCP format.

Although this info refers to immsound's system, atmos will be very similar.

It may seem I'm endosing imm but I'm just explaining what I know from them, and being from my home city makes me sympathize with them in this David vs Goliath situation . They were very "surprised" when atmos was announced because it is exactly the same concept as theirs.

Cheers!
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21st June 2012
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Brave has been mixed for Atmos by Gary Rydstrom. Will be screening in LA at the new Dolby Theatre (old Kodak Theatre). Hope to check it out when I'm there in July.
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21st June 2012
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23rd June 2012
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So Atmos apparently will/can do 7.1 or 5.1 downmixes from the native atmos configuration file.

I heard Brave tonight at the local multiplex and it sounded great in 5.1 - I wonder if that was a downmix or a deliverable they "hand-made" while still implementing the full feature set at skywalker?

The will-o-wisps were tops!
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23rd June 2012
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23rd June 2012
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I too am fascinated with this new format.

If anyones here has any more intel on exactly how one mixes for this format, I'm all ears.

I'm guessing that there must be some kind of real time panning playback going on. Unless they expect that we'll be printing 64 channel stems anytime soon....

Perhaps some kind of plug-in that interfaces with your DAW that allows you to pan within the 64 channel soundfield?

The videos on the Dolby site sort of give you a broad overview but are far too basic...
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24th June 2012
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I might be wrong here but from what I've read it seems to be a magical new dolby box.
It stores timecode locked object based positional information which is generated by plugins inside protools (maybe other ways, but that's all Ive seen in videos so far). It knows where speakers are in the room and figures out the panning according to speaker positions after interpreting the object's movement through the space.
There's also a "bed" which I think is in 9.1 or 9.2 of general non-moving sound being fed into the box.
That's all just from memory after watching all the videos and reading blog posts and twitters about it and of course being so new and under constant development who knows how much of that is fixed even if it is accurate!
Oh and the surrounds being full bandwidth...now that's a brilliant step forwards!
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24th June 2012
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Yea that's what I figured. There must be a chunk of printed "objects" that are specifically panned within the soundfield in each theater.

I guessed there also must be some kind of bed for music and ambiences as well..

Very excited to go check out Brave when I get a chance!

Does anyone in LA know if you have to specify a certain theater at the AMC in Century City? The guest services chick didn't really seem to know what I was talking about....
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24th June 2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pedantic Sound View Post
I didn't see any locations there, is at least one of those theaters in NY?
According to the press release, the closest thing to NY is in New Jersey. Interesting that there isn't a theater in the city with an Atmos install.
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25th June 2012
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i found an article on the local newspaper
they put speakers on the roof

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25th June 2012
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I just saw it an AMC Disney here in Florida (1 of the 14 with Atmos installed).

It was quite impressive. Panning motion was very smooth.
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25th June 2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pmcgowan88 View Post
I too am fascinated with this new format.

If anyones here has any more intel on exactly how one mixes for this format, I'm all ears.

I'm guessing that there must be some kind of real time panning playback going on. Unless they expect that we'll be printing 64 channel stems anytime soon....

Perhaps some kind of plug-in that interfaces with your DAW that allows you to pan within the 64 channel soundfield?

The videos on the Dolby site sort of give you a broad overview but are far too basic...
In the atmos webpage they have two pdf, one of then explain the overall concept and proposed workflow.

If I understand it right, music, backgrounds, and maybe even "normal dialogues" are proposed to be mixied like we do nowdays, where we do thing it as been panned thru a certain range of discrete channels - LCR, 5.1, 7.1...

The effects or other elements to be treated multi-dimensionality will be put together in those objects, that will be positioned across the room, within this multispeaker enviroment. The whole ideia is that aren't discrete channels just the afore mentioned postional reference, so the system could be scalable, from few extra speaker two a lot of then...

By the away, of course all the thing will happen thru a new dolby encoder-decoder process, and to use atmos a new kind of license fee should be issued, like in the "old days" of the MO Print Master.

Some of that info is in the papers, some other I take from a quick chat with one dolby consultant.
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25th June 2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jaymz View Post
I just saw it an AMC Disney here in Florida (1 of the 14 with Atmos installed).

It was quite impressive. Panning motion was very smooth.
Caught it at the Arclight Sherman Oaks and really liked it. The overall effect was subtle but more enveloping, with the height channels really adding to the experience. I'm excited to see where we go from here.
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25th June 2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rcutz View Post
In the atmos webpage they have two pdf, one of then explain the overall concept and proposed workflow.

If I understand it right, music, backgrounds, and maybe even "normal dialogues" are proposed to be mixied like we do nowdays, where we do thing it as been panned thru a certain range of discrete channels - LCR, 5.1, 7.1...

The effects or other elements to be treated multi-dimensionality will be put together in those objects, that will be positioned across the room, within this multispeaker enviroment. The whole ideia is that aren't discrete channels just the afore mentioned postional reference, so the system could be scalable, from few extra speaker two a lot of then...

By the away, of course all the thing will happen thru a new dolby encoder-decoder process, and to use atmos a new kind of license fee should be issued, like in the "old days" of the MO Print Master.

Some of that info is in the papers, some other I take from a quick chat with one dolby consultant.
Thanks for the intel!

I'll definitely be checking it out sometime this week, can't wait to delight my ears!
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4th July 2012
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