even higher Bit & Sample rates for those wanting To Push The Ceiling?
Just use the top speakers?..
Just as soon as Dolby, who owns that stuff, changes their specifications. And not a single second sooner. Since their main target is FILM… and their specifications are 48kHz, well, also when they change their specifications… Cheers.
In theory you can buy an external renderer and work at any sample rate and config you’d like. Minimum requirements for cinema is 9.1.6 (for now ).
Thank you all! MattiasNYC, that’s why you’re in NYC & I’m here in St. Louis! noeq, you hit it on the money. Thanks for posting that pdf. Wheels, we are at the mercy of the creators…guess it’s just a wait & see mindset.
It would be an advantage if Nuendo would allow higher sample rates. But since, as already mentioned above, Dolby Atmos is only played back at 48 kHz/20-bit at the end customer anyway, Steinberg probably didn’t think this was necessary.
And when I think about the fact that higher sample and bit rates would also increase the consumption of disc space, I don’t think that Atmos on (UHD) Blu-ray will ever offer more than 48/20. (Just FYI, dts:x offers 24-bit.)
MAS, I would hope that all involved will continue to see that there are those of us that believe the future of production will alway point to a north star of higher quality. As a recent article in this month’s Mix, the days of lesser bit/ sample rates are slowly realized by more & more of the consumers. A step in the better direction!
Not just disk space, but DSP power. That is part of the Atmos issue is processing it on the client side. For a theater maybe it doesn’t matter, in theory they can pay any amount of money for a massive Dell server that can do whatever (in reality cost still matters) but for home it is a big deal. That’s part of why they do the “group everything in to 16 objects” for home theater: They want to reduce the load on the DSPs. The heavier the DSP load, the less receivers are going to be able to afford a DSP that can do it.
Well sample rate is a great way to increase DSP load for basically no benefit. Setting aside any argument about if the high frequencies are even perceptible, most HT speakers aren’t going to reproduce it. So going 96kHz and doubling the DSP load isn’t going to get you anything but a more expensive device from the perspective of consumers. Remember that to pass that signal you’d have to double ALL DSP processing including things like room correction, so you could literally be talking about doubling the number of chips, or moving to significantly more expensive chips.
As for the sample size, it also makes sense in the context of theater as most things seem to adhere to the THX spec of 105dB SPL max for the mains. Since 20-bits gets you 120dB of dynamic range, that’s enough to have 10dB of dither noise and still be below 0dB SPL for your digital noise which is unlikely to be perceptible in any real situation.
If it were “free” to have the additional data, or even if it was just storage maybe there’d be more interest, but given that it has to be processed there’s good reason why Dolby is uninterested in higher sample rates and why their licensors are likewise uninterested.
If you have the ability, check out your receivers some time: If you have any processing engaged, generally even bass management, you’ll find out that they output 48kHz even for LPCM data that is higher. They just resample it all right away, since DSP costs a lot and if the DSP is engaged they do it at 48kHz.
We have a client who uses us to author their Blu-ray audio and concert Blu-rays. This client’s discs include a 96/24 or 192/24 audio track, and since last year we’ve been adding Dolby Atmos to the disc. We promptly received complaints from customers that the Atmos track sounded much worse than the high-resolution audio track. Of course, many customers were convinced that the low sample rate and bit depth of the Atmos track were to blame for the poor sound.
Since we can’t offer an Atmos track with a higher bit depth or sampling rate, we no longer let the DEE automatically calculate the dialnorm value. Instead, we set the value ourselves. Before, the Atmos track was always too quiet in relation to the other tracks. Now it sounds almost the same. Since we started doing it this way, the complaints about this issue have almost completely stopped.
“Louder is better”. Also in 3D.
Is my guess correct, that this was with Dolby Atmos in DD+, and not Atmos in TrueD? Had seen such symptoms of “too quiet sound” too with DD+. What was the magic value to be changed in DEE?
No, in this case it’s TrueHD with Atmos. (We only use E-AC-3 with JOC when there is not enough disc space.)
Simply add the line
<custom_dialnorm> with the value
-31 to the XML file ( Filter parameters). (Or set the value in the corresponding field in the DME.) In this case, no volume reduction will take place when playing back the dolby track.
In the DTS encoder, the dialnorm value is"'disabled" by default. As a result, the volume levels of DTS and Dolby tracks differ greatly. Especially Dolby Atmos tracks often get a very “low” dialnorm value like -21. Such a track is 10 dB quieter than a DTS track!
In fact, one of the most common complaints from customers is that Atmos tracks are “too quiet”.
Dolby once wrote:
DialNorm is perhaps the single most important metadata parameter.
If it had prevailed, maybe.
But in the context of (UHD) BDs, this value is a plague. Better to “disable” it (-31).
MAS - The conversation is really well above my level of knowledge, so maybe sometime you could offer a tutorial video “Nuendo/Atmos for Dummies”. I’d buy one for sure. I really want to thank everyone that jumped into my question. I’ve gotta say, like someone standing on the beach & seeing the grand ship slip further away, I feel less & less that I’ve missed the boat. To all that have injected their thoughts/opinions I am grateful. Thanks!
Do you publish your (Atmos) mix directly for the end user? If not, then you don’t have to burden yourself with all the knowledge about encoding. (What is meant by “dialnorm” is then absolutely unimportant.) This saves you unnecessary work.
If my career as a Men’s Health model hadn’t ended so long ago, I might have taken the plunge. (There are already users here on the forum who post YT videos on the subject, for example “leobro”.)