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post #1 of 318 Old 04-05-2016, 04:48 AM - Thread Starter
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Is Dolby Atmos worth it?

Should I upgrade my receiver to get Dolby Atmos? Is it really worth it.
Thanks
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post #2 of 318 Old 04-05-2016, 05:01 AM
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post #3 of 318 Old 04-05-2016, 05:56 AM
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Caveat: I just installed my Atmos AVR a few days ago, so I'm still giddy over it.

Pros: Seamless enveloping sound at 7.2.4. My wife was hugely impressed (no small feat). As big a leap to Atmos from 7.1, as Dolby Digital 5.1 was from Pro-Logic—at least to me.

Cons: I own two, count 'em, two Atmos Blu Rays + the Dolby Atmos demo disk. Can be relatively pricey to go all the way to 7.1.4 or 7.2.4. And it's a' whole 'nother dollar level to go higher. My old fat PS3 (bought as a Blu Ray player) doesn't bitstream audio, so I ended up springing for an Oppo.
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post #4 of 318 Old 04-05-2016, 06:56 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by audiophile33 View Post
Should I upgrade my receiver to get Dolby Atmos? Is it really worth it.
Thanks
Yes, no, maybe?

Many factors at play. What is your current setup/system? What is your room layout and is it ideal for Atmos? What is your budget?

For me, I am planning an Atmos system but I would not sacrifice the quality of the front left, right, and center speakers + sub to get there.
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post #5 of 318 Old 04-05-2016, 07:04 AM
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For those that who have done Atmos/DTS:X - yes absolutely.

For those who need justification to not upgrade or be hassled - no it is a fad/gimmick rooted in an evil conspiracy to dupe the naive consumer to buy more hardware and speakers
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post #6 of 318 Old 04-05-2016, 07:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by audiophile33 View Post
Should I upgrade my receiver to get Dolby Atmos? Is it really worth it.
Thanks
Though the title doesn't tell you anything about the topic, the discussion will help (along with the threads linked with this thread)

https://www.avsforum.com/forum/89-spe...ste-money.html

**************************
back to your thread .......When you post a generic question like is it worth it??

It's really hard to answer without any understanding of you current HT set up, expectations and budget. You haven't provide anything for us to go off of (since we don't know you) to help put your question in context.
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post #7 of 318 Old 04-05-2016, 07:13 AM
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In December I upgraded from 7.2 to 7.2.4. My setup is using 4 ceiling mounted speakers (SVS Prime Satallites) for my Atmos channels. I've got a Denon x6200 as well as a Emotiva XPA-5 as my additional AMP. That should give you a very basic idea of my setup for comparison sake.

My views on immersive audio (it seems that Atmos has become synonymous with immersive audio) is that it is worth it only if your theater is at the right point for it. My feeling is that if you're going to be serious about home theater audio there are a handful of things that are important. A good front sound stage, multiple high quality subs, and room treatments are all important to deal with. Atmos isn't a cheap upgrade, my setup cost about $3500 after everything (AVR, wiring, the AMP, and speakers). If you have a single 8 inch subwoofer, you would be spending your money much more intelligently on going out and picking up dual high end subs. Personally I saw a big improvement when I worked on acoustic treatments in my room, enough that I consider that an important step.

If you've put in the time and money and you're 7.2 system is in the place where you want it, then Atmos is a awesome upgrade. It makes the room sound bigger and makes it that much easier to get lost in the movie. Watching Everest in my theater you start feeling cold after two hours of being surrounded by wind and snow. It's a great effect that adds to the movie in much the same way that 3D added to a movie like Gravity. Like I said above however, my theater was at a place where I was happy with everything else and Atmos seemed like an appropriate upgrade. I would focus on the core elements on the theater before considering something like Atmos. If you're theater is where you want it, by all means upgrade and enjoy!
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post #8 of 318 Old 04-05-2016, 10:06 AM
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First I think if you have the ability to go demo an Atmos setup some where I would do that. A local HTS had a room setup with an AVR and 4 ceiling speakers. After listening to the some of the Atoms demo disk and clips from some movies I was personally hooked. Its definitely a "to each their own" thing though similar to IMO what speaker sounds you like.

Over the past few months I have moved from 5.1 to 7.2.2 with the option to go to 7.2.4 with an extra amp. I like the way Atmos sounds but also what DSU and DTS X produces when upmixing content. I probably enjoy the upgrade just as much if not more for gaming. I have been playing Division quite a bit as of late, and the move from 7.2 to 7.2.2 was more substantial IMO then moving from 5.2 to 7.2. But to echo what AllenA07 I think other things being up to stuff first are more important and make more impact then going to Atmos. For example I went from 1 small sub (Polk PSW111) to dual subs (SVS PB-1000/Sunfire HDS-12) I got really good deals on both other wise I would have 2 of the same but regardless the first was a big improvement over the PSW111 but I was really surprised what a second sub bought to evening out the sound. I skipped the acoustic treatments only due to lack of knowledge so I am circling back to that and finding a way to do in a wife approve manner.
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post #9 of 318 Old 04-05-2016, 12:50 PM
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I started a thread as well about atmos. Im definitely a noob when it comes to home audio so this might be a dumb question.Your avr is a 9 channel avr. Don't you need a 11 channel avr for 7.2.4?
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post #10 of 318 Old 04-05-2016, 12:52 PM
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That question was to the#7 post. Tried quoting it.
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post #11 of 318 Old 04-05-2016, 12:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by otis28 View Post
I started a thread as well about atmos. Im definitely a noob when it comes to home audio so this might be a dumb question.Your avr is a 9 channel avr. Don't you need a 11 channel avr for 7.2.4?
There are a number of 9 amp AVRs that process 11 channels. To get to 7.2.4, they need an external two channel amp.
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post #12 of 318 Old 04-05-2016, 12:59 PM
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So I could add a 2 channel amp to my 7 channel avr to go from 7.1 to 7.1.2?
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post #13 of 318 Old 04-05-2016, 01:02 PM
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So I could add a 2 channel amp to my 7 channel avr to go from 7.1 to 7.1.2?
Only if it has Atmos, and it can process 9 channels.
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post #14 of 318 Old 04-05-2016, 01:26 PM
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Originally Posted by audiophile33 View Post
Should I upgrade my receiver to get Dolby Atmos? Is it really worth it.
Thanks
IMO:
- If you're buying a new AVR anyway... Yes
- If you're simply looking for an upgrade to improve your audio experience.... Yes

But if your just gettin it to get it, and will probably be in the market for a new receiver in about a year or so, holding off won't kill you... immersive audio is here to stay and will eventually be offered in most 7 channel capable receivers (7 channel receivers will cover 90%+ of the market in the next year or so) and prices will just continue to drop as the technology and incursion into the market increases.

One thing I will say for sure is that I'd even choose 7.2.2 with only Front Heights over the old 9.2 with matrixed Front Heights every time, the discrete nature of the sound is just far superior.

*Warning* None of my suggestions, ideas or even thoughts have any WAF, in any way!
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post #15 of 318 Old 04-05-2016, 01:35 PM
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Originally Posted by audiophile33 View Post
Should I upgrade my receiver to get Dolby Atmos? Is it really worth it.
Thanks
I watched my first dolby atmos movie (mission impossible - rogue nation) yesterday, the sound was good but not mind blowing.

I noticed the difference as I could hear some overhead sounds coming from the top ceiling speakers, when i asked my wife about the experience, she said she found no difference with or without atmos..

I think it is worth only if you are passionate about sound.
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post #16 of 318 Old 04-05-2016, 01:43 PM
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Let me preface by saying that I absolutely love the Atmos/DTS:X experience. However, if I didn't have a dedicated room, I would not have gone Atmos and mounted the ceiling speakers. I value aesthetics and speakers hanging from the ceiling is very hard, if not impossible, to integrate into most decors unless you have an in ceiling, flush mount speaker. If you have a dedicated room I think Atmos is well worth the endeavor. If your home theater is a shared living space, it becomes a trade-off of aesthetics and spousal approval. My wife loves the Atmos/DTS:X experience in our dedicated room; however, I brought up upgrading the living room TV/sound system and the first thing she said was, "Don't even think of hanging speakers on the ceiling; I am not having that "crap" in my living room." Keep in mind this is a woman who loves movie nights and gave no objection to building out our theater room. I am just trying to give some honest perspective.

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post #17 of 318 Old 04-05-2016, 01:57 PM
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I wouldn't do it just for atmos but if you can do it for other reasons I think it does become worth it. In my case I moved to 4k with HDR so I needed a new AVR anyways.

Also if your system doesn't sound awesome now I would work on first because sprinkling some sugar on a bad cake is still a bad cake.
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post #18 of 318 Old 04-05-2016, 02:00 PM
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Atmos is no doubt technically very good, the problems come from practicality and expense -

1. if you have 7.1, moving to Atmos means a 3x more expensive receiver at least + possibly external amps
2. upfiring modules don't work as well as ceiling speakers
3. most of us can't do ceiling speakers

I'm going to wait a few years and let things normalize, there will be lot more content as well.

And no movie will ever sound as good as the Atmos demo disc
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post #19 of 318 Old 04-05-2016, 05:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Molon_Labe View Post
Let me preface by saying that I absolutely love the Atmos/DTS:X experience. However, if I didn't have a dedicated room, I would not have gone Atmos and mounted the ceiling speakers. I value aesthetics and speakers hanging from the ceiling is very hard iif not impossible to integrate into most decors unless you have an in ceiling, flush mount speaker. If you have a dedicated room I think Atmos is well worth the endeavor. If your home theater is a shared living space, it becomes a trade-off of aesthetics and spousal approval. My wife loves the Atmos/DTS:X experience in our dedicated room; however, I brought up upgrading the living room TV/sound system and the first thing she said was, "Don't even think of hanging speakers on the ceiling; I am not having that "crap" in my living room." Keep in mind this is a woman who loves movie nights and gave no objection to building out our theater room. I am just trying to give some honest perspective.
I agree. I have a full atmos system in my dedicated basement theater and i would never consider going back. In my living room with a vaulted ceiling i have a modest 5.1 system and would never even think of trying to install a full atmos system. My wife would divorce me. Luckily she lets me do what i want down there. Within reason of course.

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post #20 of 318 Old 04-06-2016, 05:37 AM
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I agree. I have a full atmos system in my dedicated basement theater and i would never consider going back. In my living room with a vaulted ceiling i have a modest 5.1 system and would never even think of trying to install a full atmos system. My wife would divorce me. Luckily she lets me do what i want down there. Within reason of course.
He said "she lets me do what I want down there." All kidding aside, I am in the same situation and totally agree.
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post #21 of 318 Old 04-06-2016, 06:10 AM
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I agree. I have a full atmos system in my dedicated basement theater and i would never consider going back. In my living room with a vaulted ceiling i have a modest 5.1 system and would never even think of trying to install a full atmos system. My wife would divorce me. Luckily she lets me do what i want down there. Within reason of course.
If that were my wife, all I have to say is that I sure would miss her
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post #22 of 318 Old 04-06-2016, 06:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dan webster View Post
I agree. I have a full atmos system in my dedicated basement theater and i would never consider going back. In my living room with a vaulted ceiling i have a modest 5.1 system and would never even think of trying to install a full atmos system. My wife would divorce me. Luckily she lets me do what i want down there. Within reason of course.
I agree with you "I will never go back from Atmos", and I am in the same boat as you with the wife. I have my Atmos HT room that I too "Luckily she lets me do what i want down there"LOL choose your words carefully here, and a 2 channel living room space that I am trying to figure out a way to do Atmos in that room without getting a divorce . Only recently realized how much I love DSU for music listening. It is such a game changer.
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post #23 of 318 Old 04-06-2016, 06:54 AM
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Other people have mentioned a dedicated theater being all but required for Atmos, which is something that I would generally agree with. I think if you're trying to get away with Atmos in a living room environment, the reflection speakers might make more sense. I've only heard the reflection speakers at Best Buy, so I'm far from an authority on it, however I can tell you that I was less then impressed. In fact, the first time I really considered Atmos was back around June of last year, then I got a chance to demo the speaker modules, and decided Atmos was a gimmick that I didn't want to implement. A few months later at CEDIA I heard Atmos demo's with ceiling based speakers and got much more interested in what it could do. I quickly decided that I wanted Atmos, but that it had to be with in-ceiling (these later became ceiling mounted) speakers. I would love to hear a properly setup room that uses the speaker modules, but at this point I'm just not sold on those being a great solution.

I personally think that one of the biggest challenges that Atmos faces is the fact that a good looking setup is hard to achieve. I've got a dedicated theater room and I'm not really one for an aesthetically pleasing theater. I've embraced my theaters ugliness and I have grown to love it. My Atmos install certainly didn't help make things look prettier. Outside of my theater however, I do care about aesthetics. In fact, if you took a tour of my house and didn't see the theater, you would have no idea whatsoever that this a hobby of mine. Other then Sonos, you won't find another speaker in my house outside the theater, just a few cheap soundbars (a $100 soundbar is still better then TV speakers). There really isn't a universe where I would want to have ceiling mounted speakers in the living room, when I've worked hard to keep electronics down to a minimum.
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post #24 of 318 Old 04-06-2016, 07:18 AM
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I've got a dedicated theater room and I'm not really one for an aesthetically pleasing theater. I've embraced my theaters ugliness and I have grown to love it.
Maybe we should get a function over form support group with the "ugly theater of the month" spotlight and award . At least I would have a chance of getting featured in that thread
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post #25 of 318 Old 04-06-2016, 09:07 AM
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Originally Posted by g_bartman View Post
He said "she lets me do what I want down there." All kidding aside, I am in the same situation and totally agree.
I think this is the most reaction to any post i have ever made. I should rephrase . She allows me to equip and maintain the theater as i see fit. It works well as long as she never notices all the "upgrades" i constantly do.

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post #26 of 318 Old 04-06-2016, 10:29 AM
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Originally Posted by audiophile33 View Post
Should I upgrade my receiver to get Dolby Atmos? Is it really worth it.
Thanks
OP, you really should be participating in your own thread. More information is needed and there have been questions posted for you to answer (to help you). Please take a moment to read through the responses and if possible, the follow up with the information requested

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post #27 of 318 Old 04-06-2016, 07:00 PM
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Maybe we should get a function over form support group with the "ugly theater of the month" spotlight and award . At least I would have a chance of getting featured in that thread
My living room has ceiling speakers. Ask for forgiveness, not permission, has been my approach. Can't say my wife is "happy" with the room, but she's happy that I'm happy with the room. I live in a small house without space for a dedicated theater, so it is the living room or nothing. And nothing was not an option .

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post #28 of 318 Old 04-06-2016, 07:18 PM
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My living room has ceiling speakers. Ask for forgiveness, not permission, has been my approach. Can't say my wife is "happy" with the room, but she's happy that I'm happy with the room. I live in a small house without space for a dedicated theater, so it is the living room or nothing. And nothing was not an option
You know if you sold that house in NJ and moved to Texas you would have a ton of room for that theater

Room looks awesome though buddy - great job, very tasteful. Sadly, there is nothing tasteful about my big, ugly JBL SCS8 Atmos speakers hanging from the ceiling. But they do look small compared to a room full of 4722's.
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post #29 of 318 Old 04-06-2016, 07:54 PM
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Originally Posted by Molon_Labe View Post
You know if you sold that house in NJ and moved to Texas you would have a ton of room for that theater

Room looks awesome though buddy - great job, very tasteful. Sadly, there is nothing tasteful about my big, ugly JBL SCS8 Atmos speakers hanging from the ceiling. But they do look small compared to a room full of 4722's.
We have relatives in Texas and I had a job lined up some years ago to move down there. We looked at many houses and you're right, I could be living in a literal mansion down there for the cost of my hobbit house in NJ. That's no exaggeration either, straight up. Backed out at the last moment, was a mistake I think. Should have left this liberal basket case of a state when I had the chance.

Love your room though, it's all perspective .
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post #30 of 318 Old 04-08-2016, 08:04 AM
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It was worth it for me at least...Here is my Dolby Atmos story:

Started out wanting a new receiver, went to BB, got a display Marantz SR7009 that was very inexpensive, my son said get it Dad, that's when my venture into the rabbit hole begun...started upgrading my older legacy speakers to ML, bought a second sub ML 1500. Then I bought some on-ceiling speakers, two at first, now I'm at Dolby Atmos 7.2.2, then I wondered about adding two more to get better immersion, bought two more on-ceiling speakers and a crown 2 channel amp (my older Rotel 2 channel amp went south), thinking I could always return if it is not a significant sound improvement. Atmos 7.2.4., was significantly better, so beware, just save yourself some time install 4 speakers, the immersion effect is much better.

I still listen to 2 channel music, but every now and then, DTS Neo:X Music, sounds great...In all I spent significantly more money than I thought or should have, but I am totally happy with my results. BTW, I have a dedicated HT room with acoustical paneling and my wife hardly even comes down, but that doesn't bother me that much, because I can upgrade without much fanfare.

This is my hobby, some play Golf, some ride Motorcycles, etc...I'm certain when I sell this house, they will want to keep the HT room intact, which should make the house more appealing to a buyer. My friends come over and love it, then they ask can I help them build one. I ask "are you sure", some say yes some say no. I don't mind providing consults for my friends.

In total when I finished, (took about 6 months), I've spent ~$3500K, didn't start out that way..BTW, all my upgraded ML speakers, were out of box pricing, good thing I couldn't afford full price. Remember in HT and IT, "buy cheap buy twice"...Hope this story helps you or someone else along the way, YMMV, of course...

Peace and blessings,

Azeke
AllenA07 likes this.

Last edited by Azekecse; 04-09-2016 at 06:51 AM.
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