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  • DOLBY ATMOS... Can you tell me what this is all about?

    I've been seeing the following ads crop up in the margins of websites. For a new kind of cinema audio.



    What's it all about? What is this new effect system, what is it promising audiences, and what are the tech "secrets" behind it?



    Every paint-stroke takes you farther and farther away from your initial concept. And you have to be thankful for that. Wayne Thiebaud


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  • #2
    Hopefully it jams all cell phone transmissions in the theater, so anyone wanting to use one has to leave.



    That would be the single biggest possible upgrade to the theater audio experience IMHO!
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    • #3
      I wish Craig wasn't kidding. Though I recall hearing of a theater recently that had a promotion that gave a discount to patrons who sat through the movie without using their phone. I wonder how it works. Does an usher who sees you using a phone chop off a finger, and they ask to see your hand on the way out?



      Atmos is a surround system that supports up to 64 speaker channels. The idea behind it is that with more speakers, they can be closer together, allowing more precise location of a sound regardless of where you're sitting in the theater. The Dolby trick (there's always a trick when it's Dolby) is that not every theater has to be wired for 64 channel sound. If they have the Atmos decoder, an Atmos encoded film will play back as good as the theater speaker setup allows. The same distribution will play in a theater with just center, left, and right speakers as well as one with speakers all over the place (in the prescribed layout, of course).
      --
      "Today's production equipment is IT-based and cannot be operated without a passing knowledge of computing, although it seems that it can be operated without a passing knowledge of audio." - John Watkinson, Resolution Magazine, October 2006
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      • #4
        Sorry to be off topic, but I think that this is more interesting than higher-res surround audio...



        you don't need to jam phones, just have standards:






        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1L3eeC2lJZs
        My Business: Media Production in the Texas Hill Country

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        • #5
          ^^^^^^LOL^^^^^^



          The audacity of people, I guess she payed for a ticket to text and to hell with the movie.



          Chalk that up to the Entitlement attitude prevalent these days.

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          • #6






            Quote Originally Posted by scarecrowbob
            View Post

            Sorry to be off topic, but I think that this is more interesting than higher-res surround audio...



            you don't need to jam phones, just have standards:






            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1L3eeC2lJZs




            OMG... That is too damn funny. I lived in Austin for awhile: ALAMO DRAFTHOUSE is an arthouse cinema. haha... They're proud, I guess, of a certain snootiness...
            Every paint-stroke takes you farther and farther away from your initial concept. And you have to be thankful for that. Wayne Thiebaud


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            • #7






              Quote Originally Posted by MikeRivers
              View Post

              I wish Craig wasn't kidding. Though I recall hearing of a theater recently that had a promotion that gave a discount to patrons who sat through the movie without using their phone. I wonder how it works. Does an usher who sees you using a phone chop off a finger, and they ask to see your hand on the way out?



              Atmos is a surround system that supports up to 64 speaker channels. The idea behind it is that with more speakers, they can be closer together, allowing more precise location of a sound regardless of where you're sitting in the theater. The Dolby trick (there's always a trick when it's Dolby) is that not every theater has to be wired for 64 channel sound. If they have the Atmos decoder, an Atmos encoded film will play back as good as the theater speaker setup allows. The same distribution will play in a theater with just center, left, and right speakers as well as one with speakers all over the place (in the prescribed layout, of course).




              Thanks, Mike. I notice that my local cinema-- Santikos PALLADIUM at The Rim in San Antonio--- is apparently participating in this new ATMOS thang. Let's hope ATMOS is more thrilling than the two 3D flicks I saw there at $18 a pop. The first 3D movie I saw there broke down mid-showing. I never did find out how the damn thing ended. The second one, ALICE IN WONDERLAND, was projected in a brightness so very, very dark and low-contrasty... That I swear I couldn't make out half of what was on the screen. I guess ATMOS means louder SFX during inscrutable 3D...?





              Don't you wonder who is doing the Sound Mixing on 64 different channels? And using what app? And exporting to what kind of file?
              Every paint-stroke takes you farther and farther away from your initial concept. And you have to be thankful for that. Wayne Thiebaud


              Friend me on FACEBOOK!

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              • #8






                Quote Originally Posted by rasputin1963
                View Post

                OMG... That is too damn funny. I lived in Austin for awhile: ALAMO DRAFTHOUSE is an arthouse cinema. haha...




                Yah, AD is pretty damn cool from what I hear (I've worked on more movies in San Antonio that I have seen there; we don't get out much ). Apparently, you can get a beer and some food whilst watching movies, and they show older films in addition to current films. I have a lot of love for businesses built on providing a better experience for people.
                My Business: Media Production in the Texas Hill Country

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                • #9






                  Quote Originally Posted by scarecrowbob
                  View Post

                  Yah, AD is pretty damn cool from what I hear (I've worked on more movies in San Antonio that I have seen there; we don't get out much ). Apparently, you can get a beer and some food whilst watching movies, and they show older films in addition to current films. I have a lot of love for businesses built on providing a better experience for people.






                  They yearly screen 1939's THE WIZARD OF OZ.... with the soundtrack of Pink Floyd's DARK SIDE OF THE MOON. Austin's pierced and tatted and black-clad set line up for miles to see this ****************...
                  Every paint-stroke takes you farther and farther away from your initial concept. And you have to be thankful for that. Wayne Thiebaud


                  Friend me on FACEBOOK!

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                  • #10






                    Quote Originally Posted by scarecrowbob
                    View Post

                    Sorry to be off topic, but I think that this is more interesting than higher-res surround audio...



                    you don't need to jam phones, just have standards:






                    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1L3eeC2lJZs




                    Flippin' hilarious. I haven't been to a conventional cinema since the early 90s, and I don't expect to any time soon. But if I get the bug, I'm goin' out to Austin to the Drafthouse. (BTW, what's with the name -- is it a theatre attached to a brew bar?)
                    .

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                    • #11






                      Quote Originally Posted by rasputin1963
                      View Post

                      Thanks, Mike. I notice that my local cinema-- Santikos PALLADIUM at The Rim in San Antonio--- is apparently participating in this new ATMOS thang. Let's hope ATMOS is more thrilling than the two 3D flicks I saw there at $18 a pop. The first 3D movie I saw there broke down mid-showing. I never did find out how the damn thing ended. The second one, ALICE IN WONDERLAND, was projected in a brightness so very, very dark and low-contrasty... That I swear I couldn't make out half of what was on the screen. I guess ATMOS means louder SFX during inscrutable 3D...?



                      [...]




                      That's a darn shame. I was a little wary putting in the DVD of Alice in Wonderland, since it was a contrived sequel with reinvention on its mind and had all the Big Movie trappings (obligatory Johnny Depp appearance -- just kidding, he was great as the Hatter)-- but I found it to be quite charming, really, actually touching (OK, when the Bandersnatch gets its eye back, I got a little weepy). I've seen it a couple times now and I like it better each time.



                      PS... it looked even better on Netflix streaming, for the most part. Unfortunately, it's not up there currently. Hopefully they'll cycle it back through. I notice stuff comes and goes and comes back at times.
                      .

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                      • #12
                        Alamo Drafthouse is a great place - they even take care to show movies with the proper settings for the projectors (2D vs 3D, etc) which is unheard of these days.



                        They are expanding bigtime after decades of having just a couple locations - there is even now one about 2 miles away from where I live out just southwest of the city limits. I hope with expansion they don't start dropping their standards.



                        You sit behind a long tabletop that runs the length of the aisle. So you don't have to hear gramma's dentures clicking behind your ear while she works on her gummy bears. Yeah - beer, food, amusing preview shorts, good sound, and yes PLEASE SHUT THE #$* UP DURING THE MOVIE thank you very much. There are all the other theatres in town you can go to and text/chat/talk/and generally be irritating to your heart's content.



                        They show tons of mainstream stuff, not just college-town art house stuff by any means.



                        They do charge more - worth it IMHO.



                        nat whilk ii

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                        • #13
                          Just as a footnote: D'you know what kind of cinema I'm holding out for? Cinema-in-the-round. In which there is an 360deg movie going on all around you. Totally immersive, even scarily, unnervingly so. In the age of digital, it can't be too far away. Cinemas since 1960 have long been wondering what they could do to pry Mom, Dad & The Kids away from the home TV set.... This would do it, I'd think.



                          I attended a cinema scope showing of 1962's LAWRENCE OF ARABIA in California in the 90's.... extremely widescreen. But I'm talking about a full 360deg of seamless cinema action. (and, of course, ATMOS 64-channel audio).
                          Every paint-stroke takes you farther and farther away from your initial concept. And you have to be thankful for that. Wayne Thiebaud


                          Friend me on FACEBOOK!

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                          • #14






                            Quote Originally Posted by rasputin1963
                            View Post

                            Just as a footnote: D'you know what kind of cinema I'm holding out for? Cinema-in-the-round. In which there is an 360deg movie going on all around you. Totally immersive, even scarily, unnervingly so. In the age of digital, it can't be too far away. Cinemas since 1960 have long been wondering what they could do to pry Mom, Dad & The Kids away from the home TV set.... This would do it, I'd think.



                            I attended a cinema scope showing of 1962's LAWRENCE OF ARABIA in California in the 90's.... extremely widescreen. But I'm talking about a full 360deg of seamless cinema action. (and, of course, ATMOS 64-channel audio).




                            Disneyland had what I think they called the Circ-o-Rama (sp?) theater for a while in the early 60s (it disappeared before too long)... it was, as you describe -- although it was achieved with multiple individual rearview projection screens and synchronized projectors. I'm guessing there were probably 16-24 but it's quite hazy. I think it was all scenes of the park. It was... less than entirely compelling. Toward the end, there were often a projector or two MIA.



                            This seems similar... http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Ca...re_%28VDNKh%29





                            Not too long after the D-land Circ-o-Rama experiment, a few 'curved' screen theaters popped up in SoCal under the Cinedome branding. They were actually three separate more or less equally sized screens joined in two seams that were always slightly noticeable. For a while they were supplied with films shot in whatever that format was called, I remember seeing a European Brothers Grimm movie when they first opened. Later, when those films stopped being made, they modified the screens so they could show regular 70 mm flix. (Last time I was in one, I think, I was seeing the 1968 Oliver! in its first release. Great little movie musical. A bit dark, but I guess we're used to that by now. Directed by the great Carole Reed, who also did the Third Man and a bunch of other classics.)
                            .

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                            • #15
                              How long before the Doubly version is released?
                              Here's a tip - if you put out some horrible lo-fi recording that sounds like a Gorilla banging an antelope while using a vacuum with a bad belt drive to suck up a floor full of marbles and silverware - and folks don't line up in mass numbers to hop on your wagon... maybe it ain't us who don't "get it". - THX1138

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