Dolby Atmos streams through a real Home Cinema?

I`m trying to wrap my Head around the whole Atmos topic and just bought N11 and am pretty excited.
I’ve been a huge fan of 5.1 or 7.1 Music in the past and was wondering if the end user would be able to play available atmos streamed music back on their Home Cinema surround system, or ist only possible on airpods and similar branded smaller devices ?

That would for now defeat the main selling point of dolby atmos since it is supposed to scale so well from 2 ch. up to 64 ch. big Theaters.

How could i possibly sell an atmos production to a customer when i have to tell them, that it only works on those alexa single speakers ? Did i get it all wrong or is this a very strange marketing decision ?

Of course i would also love to listen to available atmos releases on my studio setup to learn what mixing decisions do translate well etc.
The Windows Dolby Atmos decoder supposedly only works for HP’s too without headtracking.

I also consider it important that my music downmixes to older 5.1 or 7.1 Dolby True HD setups, so the listener always gets the best possible experience.

I’m also wondering if it is losless on apple music, as others have asked before. If not, that would also be a weak selling point for me as a mixing engineer.
Still i consider it an important step for HQ Music. Hopefully we’ll get there soon.

As far as I know Nuendo outputs only an ADM file and that file can be used for further production or to author/master final delivery content - not to play back by consumers. So either your customers need to be able to play back ADM files, i.e. have some sort of production environment like Nuendo, or someone needs to take your ADM file(s) and create the final format for delivery.

It’s not strange marketing, it’s business. Dolby is just trying to make money, so they developed this and if someone wants to use the technology they pay a fee I guess.

You should do a search though on the forum and then also join Dolby’s community for developers and look there for possible solutions. I think there is some way to get from .ADM to some media file that plays back on computers/devices, and as long as they have a Dolby Atmos decoder built in it should be fine. Can’t recall exactly what format it is.

Thanks for replying but i think you misunderstood my question.
What i’m wondering is, if the enduser will be able to playback the final stream in dolby atmos for example from apple music on ther home cinema system.
I meant after i uploaded the the adm file through Avidplay or someting and the enduser wants to listen to it.

If the only way is airpods or alexa speakers that would indeed be a very strange marketing decision, since from the beginnen, dolby atmos marketing was all about scalability and back/upwards compatibility wich still would be a strong selling point

you can listen to Atmos in stereo… with every headphone
you just need a prepared file for this… a stereo downmix with binaural configuration

yeah, i knew and mentioned that you can play it back on headphones. non licensed without headtracking which is fine.

that was not my point though.
many people listen through their home cinema 5.1, 7.1 or even true atmos 7.1.4.
Will they get the atmos experience or only a stereo downmix?
that would defeat the whole purpose for me and many others if not.

again, this is not about the atmos file creation. i already dug into that.

let’s imagine one created the perfect atmos mix wiht nuendo with all metadata including binaural distance setting made correctly and of course released it through a service like Avidplay with the atmos plan.
Will a friend with a Home Cinema that has either 5.1 up to atmos and a tidal, amazon or apple subscription get what he deserves or will he/she have to give anyone in the room a pair of licensed headphones to demonstrate how cool his/her new system is ?

Your question(s) should be directed to Avid then.

AvidPlay | Distributing Dolby Atmos® Music FAQ (

Thanks for the tip with the dolby developer forum. i might find something there.

I’don’t think avid decides how it will decode for the end users as this is very likely the decision of the streaming provider and probably dolby depending on the license.

Again i am not asking about distribuiton details but playback on consumer Home Theater setups from 5.1 up to atmos 7.14 and if streamed atmos files play back as they should on such a system (amazon music obiously won’t) I do not have such an apple music or tidal playback device connected to a Home Cinema Receiver, otherwise i would have tested myself.

My Studio setup will not be able to playback atmos files in any way. Only inside of nuendo you could import those adm files and check them this way at least.
I know about the ways by cloud encoding to a True-HD Atmos file that can be muxed into an mkv but still that would not playback on a tipical studio setup as you would need an external decoder for that. Windows only does Binaural static Dolby Atmos Headphone and probably even only by placing a 7.1 mix inside a virtual room like most atmos decoders for headphones do. For now we have just to wait for progress in atmos decoding inside the OS.
This is not my main concern for now at least.

As far as i know Tidal and Amazon are highly compressed DD+ files and Amazon only works with their own speakers.
No word on Apple yet when it comes to compression. Even though they advertise losless audio it kinda seems like that doesn’t incluce Atmos losless (would be cool though)
I’m quite amazed by the fact that only so few people seem to be interested in true Home Cinema Surround playback of our hard work.
Neither the Pros, nor the Consumers. At least it seems like it.

The secret of Atmos is that it decides what’s happening at down-mix…
The ADM file describes the mix of the objects and the beds,and the decoder maps these to it’s hardware outputs, 7.1.4 all the way down to 2.0 with Ambisonics for headphones or sound bars…
So it separates the delivery file format from the playback devices…

Hi Dudelstudio,

am also looking for such solution (upload Dolby Atmos files to somewhere, to have your friends listen to it).

From what I figured, Dolby Atmos in TrueHD does not work for streaming. At least as of today. I guess, that the data rate with TrueHD ( > 5-Mbps) is too high for streaming. Perhaps that will change in the future.

DD+ with Atmos is possible. Netflix use it for movies, and Tidal for music. Max data rate is 768 kbps.

What I am currently looking for is kind of an amateur streaming service, where you can set up your own music broadcast station. The right one (for us) would be one, that supports Dolby Digital or even DD+. DD or DD+ shouldn’t matter, as the data rate for both is the same.

Am even considering to become a contributor with Tidal. I have no idea, whether this is easy or not being an amateur.

For the time being, I have to live with the USB-Stick or kind of Dropbox approach to exchange Dolby Atmos (music) with friends.

LG, Juergi

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I 'm aware what Atmos does, but will the streaming provider like apple do this too ? or will they only downscale to binaural with headtracking which would be at least somthing, but not what Atmos is supposed to be about as i explained in detail already.

Are you sure about tidal being able to transmit atmos through HDMI to a AV Reciever ? That would be somehting at least even if it is highly compressed.
The problem with dolby has always been licensing fees. This is why even today it is not that easy to even encode a simple DD 5.1 file without somewhat expensive tools.
Let’s hope that youtube adds proper Atmos and 7.1 Surround in the future.

In the Avidplay plan you get a year of atmos releases for one artist only wich is a bummer as i would love to release a catalog of music but not pay 50€ for each sinlge artist a year.
Especially when it gets downmixed to a single speaker or 2.0 by most providers.

About Atmos on Tidal:

Am pretty sure, but have no proof as of yet. They promote that their highest quality subscription “HiFi” does include Master-Tracks. And Master-Tracks include Dolby Atmos.

I have no knowledge, whether this Dolby Atmos material is e.g. 7.1.2 in DD+, or any kind of downmix to e.g. binaural 2.0 format.

Intend to evaluate it in the nearer future. Playback device will be a FireTV 4k (listed as supported by Tidal), which is connected via HDMI to a AVR with Dolby Atmos support and proper speaker layout (and Auro3D too).

Edit: Found on TIdal’s home page, that Dolby Atmos for headphones is NOT supported. It works only on DOlby Atmos enabled Android smart phones. (I know, this is partially a contradiction).

However, this implies, that Dolby Atmos is in e.g. 7.1.2 format, which is most likely DD+.

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I guess you mix up some things…

It is not that simple and some of your “ideas” are wrong…
To clarify the delivery possibilities a bit:

Thanks for digging out these infos.
7.1.2 would still be no true object based experience. at least it’s some kind of surround.

Still would love to hear your experience with Tidal and the Firestick. Any chance for Applemusic on a firestick ? probably not…
Let’s hope for the best

As i already explained in detail , i dug into the delivery possibilities.
For now it’s basically only possible as ADM file that Nuendo is fully able to output as a True Atmos File with all objects and also losless. Great !

This File also contains all the necessary metadata for binaural downmixing with atmos Headphones and Headtracking enabled channels etc. This file can can then be uploaded through Avidplay and the atmos Plan.
With the right tools this file can also be encoded into a dolby Trued HD 7.1 (atmos) file, that can be authored for Bluray or muxed into an MKV for playback on consumer devices. It is explained in another thread in more detail.

This file format has basically everything one could wish for as of now. No complaints here.
One Exception is Theatrical Atmos which is a league of its own and for now not possible for producers without their own Cinema Atmos setup and a special license and tools of course.

So no, i didn’t mixup different things.

Also delivery is not what this thread was supposed to be about as it is well documented and explained in several YT videos from steinberg and in text form on the net.

My concern is all about “playback” for the consumer on for example apple tv connected to a real atmos AV receiver that is playing back an already properly delivered atmos title.
Take an already released atmos song on one of the 3 Atmos “streaming providers”. Can you play it back in atmos 7.1.4 or similar ? or is it limited to headphone, Alexa speakers, or as Jeurgi pointed out at least 7.1.2 on Tidal through an android device supposedly.
Atmos on Amazon Music means only for a branded amazon speaker and nothing else. Not Great !

For now we can be pretty sure, all of them are also compressed, which by itself is understandable.
although apple promotes Hires up to 192khz24 in the same sentence as Atmos.

I believe for now it is still a long way to True Atmo streaming that scales from Headphones to 9.1 as was originally the goal for the whole atmos thing. Still exciting nontheless

I guess, that st10ss’ hint about “… mix up some things …” was meant for me - and he was right.

About Tidal: Did start the eval. And there is indeed quite some Dolby Atmos material to listen to. However, it is hard to find. Tidal’s search function is a bit sub-optimal.

Can’t say a lot about quality and useful quantity. Found stuff spawning from Eagles’ Hotel California live @ the forum over to Beethoven’s Symphonies conducted by Barenboim.

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So Apple Music lossless and Atmos is available now and as i suspected already, it is sadly only available through headphones and some smaller integrated speakers from apple .
Also no headtracking for now, although it will be added later to compatible HP’s.
For now Tidal is the way to go it seems if one wants to listen to surround music through a proper soundsystem.

Am i the only one who thinks that this is missing the whole point of atmos ?

As it stands now i could far easier make a binaural mix without the whole atmos hassle that works even lossless. There are very advanced tools available for binaural mixing, may i say even more advanced than the dolby atmos panner which is cool for surroundmixing, even better than anything else but if i were to mix for binaural only there are more advanced and even free tools available that sound really impressive and let me monitor instantly in binaural.
The Nuendo Atmos renderer for now cannot do binaural monitoring for now (The official Dolby suite can though). At least not the true downmix that people will get when streaming atmos on phones.

Kinda dissapointed honestly…

Edit: There is at least some conflicting information put out there by appple, as on pro tools expert it says that you can stream atmos through apple tv to an atmos receiver.
Would love to hear confirmation about that and also the specifics interest me alot

@Dudelstudio This may answer your question:

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Hello Dudelstudio, I can´t find the thread you mentioned. Can you let me know which one you mean?

on a related note, this site sells Atmos downloads as MKV files - I didn’t realise this was a consumer format (I have no idea what kind of player you need at home), but apparently there is demand for it. They ripped the MKV from the blu-ray, I don’t think they can work with the ADM files but maybe there is a format the Dolby mastering suite can export that might work. Either way, like you, I’m very interested in making Atmos easier to distribute.

Here’s an example:

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