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What is the surround music and what’s the real difference with the home theater

helloworld

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#1
Hi @amirm, to my knowledge, those av receivers use Dolby and DTS technology to decode the signal so that we could mainly hear the dialogue from the center speaker and the background from the main speakers. When I saw a lot of pro audio interface claim the surround monitoring(for example 5.1), I thought they are not for music but for movie audio. But I saw this article https://benchmarkmedia.com/blogs/ap...7-creating-a-high-resolution-5-1-music-server
I am not sure if I understand correctly, Benchmark did not talk Dolby or DTS decoding in their setup and only focus on music, it looks like to me as long as the 5 speakers and the subwoofer are placed correctly, we will get a decent surrounding music with several good dacs. There’s no need of so-called Dolby or DTS HD to enjoy the surrounding music. Am I right?
And one more question, with benchmark’s setup or use any pro multichannel interface, does our pc have some kind of software that could decode the DTS or Dolby so that we get a much better AV receiver to watch movies? Thanks
 

amirm

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#2
Hi there. I will comment and I am sure some of our other members who enjoy multi-channel music will chime in just as well.

Dolby and DTS' contributions is in the form of audio compression which is written into the specifications of optical media. Dolby has also gotten adoption for broadcast/streaming just the same.

With respect to music, that can of course be encoded using the same codecs and distributed on optical media. While there are some features specific to movie sound (like dialog norm in Dolby), it would all work fine for music as well.

For the purpose of home-hifi outside of optical media though, there is no reason to use Dolby or DTS as you mention. We already have free compression the form of flac for audio files. A number of independent music labels distribute multi-channel music (mostly classical). You simply buy the music and download as you would stereo material.

Playback requires software that can handle it. JRiver and later versions of Roon do this. There may be others that I don't know about. You will then need a multi-channel DAC or software that can cluster them together. OS support is there for the former and the latter has to be in the application.

Last bit which others can comment on is that while for movies speakers configurations are standardized, there is less of that in music. Where the surrounds are, whether the center is used, etc. may be things to deal with.

If you use an AVR, you would need to have one that accepts multi-channel analog if you external DACs. Otherwise you can use HDMI out of the computer and use the DACs inside the AVR.

This should get the discussion started. :)
 

NorthSky

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#3
A 4K Blu-ray movie like this one for example:



Audio
English: Dolby Atmos (7.1.4)
English: Dolby TrueHD 7.1 (48kHz, 24-bit)

It has a separate audio soundtrack (music score only).
24-bit and 48kHz ain't too shabby either, and you can use more than five channels, like eleven for example, plus couple subwoofers, or more.

If your SSP or AV receiver decodes Dolby Atmos and DTS:X and Auro-3D, you are in the highest and latest surround music mode for both movies and music.

You can also get music only from Blu-ray Audio (Pure Audio).
Like this one for example (Beck - Sea Change):

Audio
English: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 (192kHz, 24-bit)
English: LPCM 5.1

Now we are @ 192kHz resolution (audio sample rate), and with the same 24-bit depth.
Plus you have the choice to multichannel LPCM (44/16).
 
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NorthSky

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#4
There is no real difference with a well setup home theater.
Or the onscreen moving images when watching movies, but you don't have to turn your front projector or your OLED TV on, if you want only the surround sound of the music score.
* Amadeus on DVD has a separate only music audio soundtrack.

The audiophile surround music gurus don't need to buy five of the same full range loudspeakers. They can buy five of the same satellite monitors and matched them with a couple subwoofers, using a sophisticated acoustic room EQ and bass management...in the digital domain, like Dirac Live for example, or Trinnov, or ARC from Anthem, or Audyssey advanced MultEQ XT32 with fine tuning adjustments and preprogrammed specific target curves. The Wizard REW is a free program with measurements and graphs for audio scientists and professional music recording engineers and surround sound music lovers, from both movies and music...in ultra high definition and ultra high resolution. The sampling rate up to 96kHz in multichannel, and the bit depth @ 20 and 24-bit.
 

DonH56

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#5
True surround movies and music use separate tracks for all of the channels so they are not necessarily derived but are discrete channels. There are a number of schemes to matrix/create surround and center channels from two-channel source material but that is two different things.
 
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andymok

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#6
Yes, audio recording usually use one of these techniques to get an overall surround mix (I'm sure there should be more than these)

Fukada Tree, Hamasaki Square, Wide Cardioid Surround Array
 
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