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Apple lossless official announcement

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Does this statement from Apple really say that you can listen to Atmos on any headphone?

I thought you needed an Atmos decoder built in to a headphone for it to work properly.

Any thoughts?

https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT212182

View attachment 134710
I would assume it does dolby atmos for headphones processing, similar to the application you can download on windows? They seem to clarify it a bit in this article: https://appleinsider.com/articles/21/06/08/how-to-listen-to-dolby-atmos-music-on-apple-devices

The spatial tracking that is available with some airpods and beats is apparently coming at a later date.

I'm not too bothered about music in atmos, from the few tracks I gave a go in Tidal a while back I preferred the stereo recordings. If we get to a point where music is regularly being recorded with a native atmos mix being in mind from the start then I'd be interested to give them a test. I imagine there probably are a few releases that have been done this way currently but they are most likely few and far between.
 

Katji

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If one is at all concerned about fidelity to the master recording, this is a nonostarter.
It is just a DSP "enhancement" like [most] phone music players have and Windows 8.1> has.
.........And again, refer to Apple market/demographic whatever.


And now you finally have this bullshit Spatialize Audio? What is this? One of those virtualization of multichannel things? Actual Spatial Audio as originally used (the headtracking augmentation on an automated level?).
Spatialize Stereo. Spatialize, the verb...\
I suppose so, but I would say simulation rather than virtualisation ["but that's just me."]
 

mononoaware

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I am pretty sure Apple’s “Spatial/Spacialize” function just uses accelerometer in both/either phone/headphones to give the illusion that the sound is coming from a point source in space (your phone/tablet/TV screen etc) like you would naturally hear it if you were using your ears.

So when you turn your head to the left you hear the sound coming from the screen mostly with your right ear.
It gives this virtual experience of hearing sound in a space.
At least that’s how I understood it when it was first explained.

The new version mentioning Dolby probably does the same but with more (point sources) channels.
So (with Apple TV) you turn your head to the left and voices are coming from the TV (right ear) while the helicopter’s are coming from behind you (left ear).
Giving a virtual cinematic experience when watching a movie on the iPhone as well etc.

Edit: Am I wrong here? I read some comments about whether it properly converts "Stereo" sound to "Dolby" equivalent, but to my understanding it does not claim to do that.
 
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I think Spatial Audio for Music (not movies) also works on other headphones than Apple devices because at the end of the day it is „just“ a modification of the Stereo signal. The Airpods also only have one dynamic driver per side, so no way to discretely output the sound to distinct speakers/drivers.

And yes, it also works with my RME ADI and my L&P W2 with wired IEMs and full-size headphones.
 

Beershaun

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John Darkos latest video sums up the problems with lossless and hi res streaming in all the mobile operating systems well.

 

Beershaun

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I watched a bit of that, regardless imho bit rate is much more important than sample rate.
The issue it illustrates is the complications and confusion about how to get the actual files out in a bit perfect way to take advantage of the new content because of the operating system owners and app owners limits they have placed in their systems.
It's simpler to buy the files, download them, and play them off a hard drive. Or just buy a CD. Convenience goes out the window.
 

acbarn

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The issue it illustrates is the complications and confusion about how to get the actual files out in a bit perfect way to take advantage of the new content because of the operating system owners and app owners limits they have placed in their systems.
It's simpler to buy the files, download them, and play them off a hard drive. Or just buy a CD. Convenience goes out the window.
As I stated earlier in the thread, Darko completely skipped over an obvious solution, whether purposely or in ignorance. If a person wants to stream bit-perfect Apple Music Lossless and Hi-res, any iOS device plugged into a USB DAC will do that for you with zero complications or confusion. An entry-level iPad makes an excellent dedicated streamer when used in this way.

23395C11-7614-4AB0-8325-BF30BE88F039.jpeg
 
OP
SKBubba

SKBubba

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Thread Starter #732
Cross posted from roon:

My take. Apple is just checking the lossless box. They don’t really care about “audiophiles,” even those fully in their ecosytem. Unless you are listening on a phone and airpods or whatever. Maybe?

Just like amazon, they don’t have any good way to play lossless to your home hi-fi.

I got Apple’s free trial a couple of weeks ago just to see, in anticipation of the lossless launch. The phone and tablet apps are nice. They have some nice playlists and nice recommendations and whatnot.

But I have Windows and Android. The only way I could find to play anything to my hi-fi was chromecast. That worked ok. AAC didn’t sound bad, in spite of whatever happened to it between my phone and chromecast.

Then Apple lossless went live. Except for Android. That’s ok, I thought. I’ll wait. Then, curiously, about the same time, chromecast stopped working. When I tried to play something, it skipped through a bunch of tracks and popped up a message saying Apple Music is not supported on this device at this time.

Ok, I guess the message is buy an iPhone? No thanks.

So I deleted the app and canceled my Apple Music subscription.

Then I got curious about Amazon Music HD. I had tried it before, but it had the same problem of not being able to play lossless to my home hi-fi. But I thought I’d check in again to see if anything had changed.

I discovered that I was indeed able to play from the Amazon app to my Denon Avr. And it appeared to be playing CD quality flac. Which is close enough for me. Bonus, you can add local files. So I fooled around with that all day, and had much better results than Apple Music.

Alas, the situation deteriorated after a few hours. The app kept getting out of sync or just stopped playing. Restarting the app fixed it, but not for long.

So, I have tried Amazon app, Apple app, Tidal app, Qobuz app, and Spotify app in various configurations. Spotify came closest, with their excellent app and discovery and their ubiquitous connect feature, but no lossless. Not that I can hear much difference. I guess I’ll see what Spotify comes up with, but I’m not holding my breath.

So anyway, every time I look around I keep coming back to Roon+Qobuz. As far as I’m concerned this is the current state of the art for music playback, sound quality, library management and curation. No other software or service comes close. (And that includes Qobuz without Roon as a front end.)

I’m riding with Roon+Qobuz until one of us dies. Hopefully, that won’t be for a long time. But then again I’m pretty old.

P.S. Apple and Amazon seem to be starting a price war to drive competitors out. Doing my math, Roon+Qobuz cost me about $25 per month. Right now, Apple, Amazon, Tidal, etc. don’t offer anything close to the value I get from Roon+Qobuz, even at less than half the price.
 

dmac6419

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I think Spatial Audio for Music (not movies) also works on other headphones than Apple devices because at the end of the day it is „just“ a modification of the Stereo signal. The Airpods also only have one dynamic driver per side, so no way to discretely output the sound to distinct speakers/drivers.

And yes, it also works with my RME ADI and my L&P W2 with wired IEMs and full-size headphones.
I'm anti Spatial, death to Spatial Audio P.S. Sike (SIKE means "Fooled You!" or "Only Joking!" ) be cool grammar police it's a actual word.
 

acbarn

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Cross posted from roon:

My take. Apple is just checking the lossless box. They don’t really care about “audiophiles,” even those fully in their ecosytem. Unless you are listening on a phone and airpods or whatever. Maybe?

Just like amazon, they don’t have any good way to play lossless to your home hi-fi.

I got Apple’s free trial a couple of weeks ago just to see, in anticipation of the lossless launch. The phone and tablet apps are nice. They have some nice playlists and nice recommendations and whatnot.

But I have Windows and Android. The only way I could find to play anything to my hi-fi was chromecast. That worked ok. AAC didn’t sound bad, in spite of whatever happened to it between my phone and chromecast.

Then Apple lossless went live. Except for Android. That’s ok, I thought. I’ll wait. Then, curiously, about the same time, chromecast stopped working. When I tried to play something, it skipped through a bunch of tracks and popped up a message saying Apple Music is not supported on this device at this time.

Ok, I guess the message is buy an iPhone? No thanks.

So I deleted the app and canceled my Apple Music subscription.

Then I got curious about Amazon Music HD. I had tried it before, but it had the same problem of not being able to play lossless to my home hi-fi. But I thought I’d check in again to see if anything had changed.

I discovered that I was indeed able to play from the Amazon app to my Denon Avr. And it appeared to be playing CD quality flac. Which is close enough for me. Bonus, you can add local files. So I fooled around with that all day, and had much better results than Apple Music.

Alas, the situation deteriorated after a few hours. The app kept getting out of sync or just stopped playing. Restarting the app fixed it, but not for long.

So, I have tried Amazon app, Apple app, Tidal app, Qobuz app, and Spotify app in various configurations. Spotify came closest, with their excellent app and discovery and their ubiquitous connect feature, but no lossless. Not that I can hear much difference. I guess I’ll see what Spotify comes up with, but I’m not holding my breath.

So anyway, every time I look around I keep coming back to Roon+Qobuz. As far as I’m concerned this is the current state of the art for music playback, sound quality, library management and curation. No other software or service comes close. (And that includes Qobuz without Roon as a front end.)

I’m riding with Roon+Qobuz until one of us dies. Hopefully, that won’t be for a long time. But then again I’m pretty old.

P.S. Apple and Amazon seem to be starting a price war to drive competitors out. Doing my math, Roon+Qobuz cost me about $25 per month. Right now, Apple, Amazon, Tidal, etc. don’t offer anything close to the value I get from Roon+Qobuz, even at less than half the price.
Apple is never going to prioritize and optimize their music apps for Windows or Android, which would go against their larger business strategy of locking users into their ecosystem for the long haul. This causes problems for those users who are on the outside, just as we Mac users have suffered through using sub-optimal versions of MS Office on our Macs forever. This is all a normal part of the decades long platform wars between the big tech companies.

I was a Roon+Tidal+Qobuz user for a year or so, running ROCK on a NUC to various endpoints. It’s a solid system. The Roon controller apps on iOS are sub-optimal though, being designed primarily for desktop use and ported to iOS without any attention paid to the standard gestures used on that platform. Because my controllers are primarily touch optimized mobile iOS devices, Roon became extremely annoying after a time, and particularly after the 1.8 update. I also often stream music from BandCamp and SoundCloud, both of which are unavailable on Roon. All of this led me to look for other alternatives that were more flexible and optimized for the Apple ecosystem. Apple Music Lossless came along at the perfect time for me.

All this is just to say that we all have different needs based upon how we listen to music, what types of devices we prefer, which platforms we’re invested in, and so forth. There is no one “best“ solution for all situations.
 
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Taddpole

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Then Apple lossless went live. Except for Android. That’s ok, I thought. I’ll wait. Then, curiously, about the same time, chromecast stopped working. When I tried to play something, it skipped through a bunch of tracks and popped up a message saying Apple Music is not supported on this device at this time.

Ok, I guess the message is buy an iPhone? No thanks.

So I deleted the app and canceled my Apple Music subscription.
I think you were bit impatient. Works for me. Though sceptical about it playing lossless over chromecast.

Certainly been more stable for me than Amazon to chromecast.
 

DavidMcRoy

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I think Spatial Audio for Music (not movies) also works on other headphones than Apple devices because at the end of the day it is „just“ a modification of the Stereo signal. The Airpods also only have one dynamic driver per side, so no way to discretely output the sound to distinct speakers/drivers.

And yes, it also works with my RME ADI and my L&P W2 with wired IEMs and full-size headphones.
My understanding is evolving, but I think that to get the full “Apple Spatial Audio” effect, as opposed to just “Dolby Atmos,” you need a headphone/earpiece equipped with a gyro or some such to determine in which direction your head is facing at any given moment, in order for the system to creat the illusion that the soundstage appears to remain fixed in space as your head moves about. This suggests to me that the 2-channel signal is altered based on feedback from the sensor built into the headphone, something conventional headphones don’t have?
 
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As I stated earlier in the thread, Darko completely skipped over an obvious solution, whether purposely or in ignorance. If a person wants to stream bit-perfect Apple Music Lossless and Hi-res, any iOS device plugged into a USB DAC will do that for you with zero complications or confusion. An entry-level iPad makes an excellent dedicated streamer when used in this way.

View attachment 134806
It seems that it is possible to test with an RME DAC for bit perfect playback. Wondering if you have checked for this? Also, there is no good solution to remotely control the iPad from another iOS device right? The switch control stuff seems too limited from what I can tell and too complicated.
 

acbarn

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It seems that it is possible to test with an RME DAC for bit perfect playback. Wondering if you have checked for this? Also, there is no good solution to remotely control the iPad from another iOS device right? The switch control stuff seems too limited from what I can tell and too complicated.
Yes, I’ve tested for bit perfect playback from the iPad; it passed at all rates.

Correct regarding remote control. Switch Control is not a great solution. Personally, I don’t see a need for remote controlling a device with such a good touch interface. I usually only use remotes on devices that are difficult to control otherwise.
 

jhaider

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Apple has no more magical Atmos file's than Tidal or Amazon, end quote.
Do you have a catalogue comparison handy? I’m genuinely curious. I picked three albums I knew were remixed in Atmos - 2 because I own the Blu-Rays, one because they released a video-augmented version on iTunes - that I could not find on Tidal.
 

Spocko

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Not only lossless, but hi-rez.

"For the true audiophile, Apple Music also offers Hi-Resolution Lossless all the way up to 24 bit at 192 kHz"
aka a container that shows 24 bit 192 kHz but no proof or provenance that the source was recorded and mastered end to end in hi-rez before being packaged as "24 bit 192kHz"
 
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