How to Immerse Your Home Theater Installation in Stunning Sound
The Story of Surround Sound
If you’ve ever sat in a movie theater and marveled at the audio that seemed to swirl all around you, you have two men to thank: Walt Disney and George Lucas.
No, neither of them invented surround sound technology. In fact, neither of them was even an expert in audio formats.
But in 1940, to accompany the “Flight of the Bumblebee” sequence in Fantasia, Disney contacted Bell Labs to create a system that moved sound around the audience, instead of just playing in front of them.
Bell’s system (a version of which was already in development by 1940) was too expensive for most theaters, and it wasn’t until after the release of George Lucas’ Star Wars in 1977 that the technology became cheap enough, manageable enough, and in-demand enough to warrant a nation-wide upgrade.
Today, you can not only enjoy surround sound in your own home theater installation; you can fully immerse yourself in Dolby Atmos audio. How has surround sound developed over the decades, and how can you get the most out of it in your Raleigh, NC home? Find out here.
How Dolby Changed the Game
The name “Dolby” is synonymous with sound -- particularly in the movies. Today, the Dolby Atmos system has changed the way we listen to films, both in theater and at home. The Atmos process begins long before you play a movie in your private cinema though. It starts with the movie’s sound editor.
Unlike traditional surround sound (like the kind popularized in the 1980s by Dolby Stereo Surround), Atmos offers a more fluid and realistic approach. Rather than assign audio to specific speakers, or “channels,” the editor is given a visual interface from which they can position the “sound objects” in 3D space.
That means when you’re listening to your system, sound travels naturally around you, whether it’s in front of, to the sides, or even above you.
That last point is Dolby’s other innovation. “Downward-firing” or “height” speakers are placed overhead to create a sense of depth, which immerses the viewer in a world of sound. The best part? An Atmos system doesn’t require a lot of space, and you can enjoy the same feeling you would in a commercial theater right in the comfort of your own home.
Immerse Your Home Theater in Atmos
It’s not hard to enjoy an Atmos system in your own theater. You just need the right equipment and the right installer.
One great thing about Atmos is that the codex is available in many of your favorite audio components already. For instance, the latest flagship receiver from Marantz, the AV8805, offers full compatibility with Atmos-certified content.
Featuring 13 processing channels, a 15.2 channel pre-amp stage, seven HDMI inputs, dual subwoofer outputs, wireless streaming options, and native Amazon Alexa compatibility, the AV8805 was designed with audiophiles in mind.
Thankfully, you don’t need specialized speakers to listen to Atmos. That means you can get the most out of your system with top-quality speaker construction, like the Visual Performance line from Sonance.
Developed for home theater applications, VP speakers feature angled drivers, coaxial midrange and tweeters, along with dual and quad 5.25-inch woofers to offer quality sound reproduction. Drivers are made from carbon fiber and rohacell, which offer crisp sound. And cabinets are constructed to minimize echo and sound transfer.
With quality components, your home theater can sound better than ever. But it takes more than just the right gear; you need the right installer to simplify the process, answer all your questions, and help guide you to the best choices.
If you’re in the market for a home theater surround sound system, let’s talk!
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