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Blu-rays with Dolby Atmos on the disc are on the way, Transformers 4 up first

Tom Morgan
10 Sep 2014
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Dolby's object-based Atmos surround sound system just got its first confirmed Blu-ray release

Dolby Atmos will officially be coming to the home later this year, with the first Blu-ray and streaming content services confirmed to support the fledgling home cinema sound technology confirmed by the company earlier this week.

Through a partnership with Paramount Pictures, Transformers: Age of Extinction will be the first Atmos-enabled Blu-ray. It will include an Atmos soundtrack encoded in Dolby TrueHD, which can be decoded by Atmos-enabled amplifiers and output sound through new vertically-firing speakers.

Dolby will also be partnering with VUDU for Atmos-enabled streaming video, although the company expects other streaming services to follow suit soon.

The Atmos soundtrack will be fully backwards compatible, dropping down to TrueHD 5.1 on a traditional home cinema system, but for anyone with Atmos-enabled gear from the likes of Denon, Onkyo, Pioneer, Kef and Teufel you'll be able to listen with extra vertical sound being bounced around the room. According to Dolby, this creates a much more convincing surround sound effect, putting you in the centre of a 360-degree soundscape rather than keeping sound at one vertical level.

Atmos works by letting sound mixers render surround sound information based on objects, rather than channels, meaning it can adapt to a specific speaker configuration rather than be mixed as either 5.1 or 7.1.

“Dolby Atmos, the most significant audio advancement in home theatre in the last 20 years, brings consumers deeper into the story by delivering an experience that moves sound in every dimension throughout the room with amazing clarity and true-to-life detail,” Doug Darrow, Dolby's Senior VP, said of the announcement. “We have teamed up with an amazing group of industry leaders to give consumers around the world the very best entertainment experience when they choose to watch a Dolby Atmos movie in their home."

Not a fan of Michael Bay's bombastic Transformers series, but still want room-filling Atmos sound at home? Luckily Paramount has confirmed it plans to release more Atmos-enabled titles on Blu-ray and for online streaming later this year.

In the meantime, Transformers: Age of Extinction is set to go on sale in the UK from the 30th of September, as both a Blu-ray Combo Pack and Blu-ray 3D Combo Pack.

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