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Spatial Audio Enhanced 3D Lossless Whatevah

abdo123

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I'm very excited for object based audio (Atmos) to become the norm, I have been experiencing first hand how powerful it is with video games for decades now and it might provide a breath of fresh air to the declining innovation in mainstream music.
 

Tks

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Airpods Pro do the head tracking spatial audio as well, I believe. So I doubt they would bother with special binaural tracks, there's no need and I can guarantee Apple does not care about people unless they're buying their most premium, newest products :p

But honestly, no clue. Saying "will change x forever" is what Apple says about everything they do. They could change the color of the iPad and they'd say it was revolutionary. It could easily just be another stupid hi-res lossless format.

Yeah, they do as I mentioned a few posts ago, and it works. What I meant by the binaural comment is that if they're finally partnering with Dolby to provide Atmos, it allows a single release in multiple listening device configurations. So if you have a soundbar, there can be a mix for that, 5.1, a mix for that, and also for headphones/IEM's a binural mix. This is somewhat trivial to achieve with object based audio mixing (in the sense that you don't have to mess around with many sort of recording configurations in reality, and instead handle it all in-software by way of virtual channel positioning).

Pair that with spatial audio, and you suddenly could perhaps get the sort of experience only really possible in real-time VR gaming audio offerings (where turning your head to the sound now is convincing). So basically if a guitar is playing a bit on your right, and you turn to it, it would now project as you might imagine in real life. Basically putting you in the music so to speak (or in front of it).

If this isn't what they got in store, then I have no clue wtf they're up to. But we'll see soon enough.
 

abdo123

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If Apple does anything new or special, I will be surprised. They are good at recognizing a tidal wave trend and differentiating themselves before it hits land. I can't think of a single importantant innovation where Apple deserves credit.

You seem to forget that Steve Jobs was the person who pushed record labels to break down albums into tracks in iTunes.

they also were the first to make the first popular online music store (iTunes) that was made technically possible by their impressive AAC encoder at the time.
 

Helicopter

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You seem to forget that Steve Jobs was the person who pushed record labels to break down albums into tracks in iTunes.

they also were the first to make the first popular online music store (iTunes) that was made technically possible by their impressive AAC encoder at the time.
Napster was already doing this. It probably had more to do with the technical limitation of the time it took to download music on dial up than some marketing innovation.
 

maverickronin

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Napster was already doing this. It probably had more to do with the technical limitation of the time it took to download music on dial up than some marketing innovation.

Definitely this. Back in the day when I first got a "broadband" internet connection I was amazed that I could download MP3's faster than they could be played.
 
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Hello Guys,
I think that you focus on the surround thing too much and forget the "boring" excellent news.
At the moment, if we want to stream lossless music we either have:
- the very good quality sound with too small a library : aka Qobuz.
Or
- the tricky (bad in my opinion) sound quality with very good library.

Also, in these streaming services, namely "tidal, qobuz, spotify hifi (soon) and amazon hd", the middle tier (sometimes top tier) subscription offers up to 44.1khz/16 bits only.
And there is a growing request for a proper 48khz/24bits to eleviate any doubt regarding dynamic range etc. (Especially since 44.1 wasn't based on any study like you know, but was a hardware limitation at the time).

Now from what I gather, Apple (I am not an apple fan. will test this on android/linux raspberry) decided to:
- offer a mid tier (maybe entry) subscription with lossless format.
- offer a bitrate of 24bit/48khz for that tier.
- use an ALAC format (so nothing shady)
- bonus (not for me) : offer a top tier subscription with up to 192khz/24bits alac files.
-all that married with their excellent library.

I don't see a comparable package from the competition.
Honestly, even though my way of consuming technology and apple's vision of technology are at odds, I should say that I am very excited for this announcement regardless of the surround stuff hype.
 

Tks

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Don't worry, news of Apple's move has sparked an instant reaction from Amazon

Also, Apple isn't offering any "tier", what this announcement was about was simply offering lossless streaming (up to 24-bit 192kHz), and Dolby Atmos official support that will create a curated and slowly expanding library of Atmos Music that will supposedly work with Spatial Audio head tracking in some fashion.

There won't be any new subscription tier or whatnot, it will simply be added into existing subscription service.

There's also bits here and there about proliferation of Atmos compatible studios (since Atmos for independent and smaller creators is basically a non-starter due to cost prohibitiveness).

Also, the lossless service will not be available on any Apple listening devices (their headphones and IEMs) because Bluetooth isn't lossless (nor does Apple support LDAC). For lossless, you're going to need compatible hardware, and for Hi-Res you'll obviously need an external DAC.

Another interesting thing is over 70 million songs will be offered through ALAC by year's end. Now that comes to consumers by opening up what seems to be their entire catalogue of lossless for streaming customers.

So basically, Apple is offering lossless and Hi-Res all under one price ($10) undercutting everyone, and also pushing in some features that people will be really happy with (Spatial Audio + Atmos support, with a seemingly serious commitment of having Atmos not be some niche as much as it has been in the area of music).

The only downside to this versus other streaming lossless providers, is player integrations (you're not going to be able to have Roon/JRiver control any of this stuff obviously). But everything else, seems like it slapped every other streaming platform out of relevance, especially seeing as how there will be no price increase. $10 for this coming in June is going to be a no brainer. I guess Spotify has the crown in terms of catalogue, but we'll see how long that lasts if any of the Atmos stuff starts spreading, and if Spatial Audio in tandem with it does what people imagine it would for surround emulation but in a proper VR type of experience.
 

DavidMcRoy

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Don't worry, news of Apple's move has sparked an instant reaction from Amazon

Also, Apple isn't offering any "tier", what this announcement was about was simply offering lossless streaming (up to 24-bit 192kHz), and Dolby Atmos official support that will create a curated and slowly expanding library of Atmos Music that will supposedly work with Spatial Audio head tracking in some fashion.

There won't be any new subscription tier or whatnot, it will simply be added into existing subscription service.

There's also bits here and there about proliferation of Atmos compatible studios (since Atmos for independent and smaller creators is basically a non-starter due to cost prohibitiveness).

Also, the lossless service will not be available on any Apple listening devices (their headphones and IEMs) because Bluetooth isn't lossless (nor does Apple support LDAC). For lossless, you're going to need compatible hardware, and for Hi-Res you'll obviously need an external DAC.

Another interesting thing is over 70 million songs will be offered through ALAC by year's end. Now that comes to consumers by opening up what seems to be their entire catalogue of lossless for streaming customers.

So basically, Apple is offering lossless and Hi-Res all under one price ($10) undercutting everyone, and also pushing in some features that people will be really happy with (Spatial Audio + Atmos support, with a seemingly serious commitment of having Atmos not be some niche as much as it has been in the area of music).

The only downside to this versus other streaming lossless providers, is player integrations (you're not going to be able to have Roon/JRiver control any of this stuff obviously). But everything else, seems like it slapped every other streaming platform out of relevance, especially seeing as how there will be no price increase. $10 for this coming in June is going to be a no brainer. I guess Spotify has the crown in terms of catalogue, but we'll see how long that lasts if any of the Atmos stuff starts spreading, and if Spatial Audio in tandem with it does what people imagine it would for surround emulation but in a proper VR type of experience.

If all this plays out, I’ll be dropping my Qobuz subscription. I’m already on a free 3-month trial of Apple Music.
 

Tks

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If all this plays out, I’ll be dropping my Qobuz subscription. I’m already on a free 3-month trial of Apple Music.

If you have an iPhone, I see no reason to be on anything else anymore really. Aside from Spotify since their catalogue is obviously the largest, but with this whole Spatial Audio + Atmos + lossless... Yeah, not making much sense to me to stick with Spotify if you're an iPhone user.
 

wgb113

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My Roon subscription will likely not get renewed this year after dumping Tidal Masters and this announcement being made. All of my CDs and vinyl have been ripped into iTunes and instantly having Apple Music in hi-Rez as part of our Apple One bundle sealed the deal.
 
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