Atmos Confusion

To play a Dolby Atmos “MUSIC” binaural headphone mixes on my Windows 10 machine do I need an additional decoder?

The fact that Dolby doesn’t like to differentiate between, Music, Film, VR, etc, makes it all the more confusing.

On the playback side there is no need to differentiate between Music, Film, VR.
Your hardware and your player software need to support Atmos.

If you’re using Nuendo, you don’t even need a special Atmos decoder. You can simply export a WAV file.

  1. Set the internal renderer to “Binaural”.

  2. In the ADM tool, set the binaural mode to your preferred settings.



When you perform an audio mixdown, your audio file will contain the same binaural information that you hear when monitoring with the Atmos renderer.

You can play the file with any hardware that has a headphone jack. An Atmos decoder is not required. :innocent:


To answer your original question the only thing you need to “listen” to a binaural mix is a set of headphones. To mix binaural in Nuendo you don’t even need Dolby Atmos. Import a mono or stereo file, send it to a 3rd Order Ambisonics group track, assign that to the stereo master and put some headphones on and pan around the original audio file. That’s it.

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I don’t want to be opinionated, but this is a bit like the answer to the question "How do I play an AC-3 file? - “By using the DTS track”. :wink:

If I’m using Nuendo to create a binaural Atmos mix, the easiest way to monitor it is to use Nuendo itself. Just set the internal renderer to “Binaural”, put on your headphones and you’re done.
If I also want to check the mix with external hardware, I recommend the method described above. That way you are independent of a decoder.

If you want to play an Atmos file from a third party, you will need the Reference Player or Dolby Access, for example, on a Windows computer.

Of course, there is nothing wrong with using Ambisonics instead of the proprietary Atmos.

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