Why do some studios omit Atmos tracks on the UHD/HD Blu-Ray releases? - High-Def Digest Forums
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Old 12-06-2017, 08:19 PM
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Question Why do some studios omit Atmos tracks on the UHD/HD Blu-Ray releases?

Now that I'm setting up Atmos speakers, I want to get some content to enjoy them. I was thinking back on my 3 most memorable theatrical Atmos experiences (Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, Iron Man 3, The Hobbit) and was surprised/disappointed that none of them were released on home media with Atmos.

That doesn't make sense to me. Why would studios release these discs without Atmos on them? Do they have to pay an extra licensing fee that they deem not worth it? I can understand why studios might only release the UHD disc (and not the regular Blu-Ray) with Atmos to get people to buy the more expensive disc, which seems to happen a lot, but not releasing it at all is kind of perplexing since they already put in the work to prepare the Atmos mix for the theatrical run.

Does anyone here know why studios are leaving Atmos out altogether on home media? I even Googled around but haven't been able to find the answer.
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Old 12-06-2017, 08:23 PM
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Because they suck
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Old 12-06-2017, 10:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pedram View Post
Now that I'm setting up Atmos speakers, I want to get some content to enjoy them. I was thinking back on my 3 most memorable theatrical Atmos experiences (Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, Iron Man 3, The Hobbit) and was surprised/disappointed that none of them were released on home media with Atmos.
All three of those movies were released on Blu-ray either before Atmos was possible on the format, or at least before their respective studios supported Atmos on Blu-ray. The only of the three currently available on Ultra HD is Dawn of the Planet of the Apes. I suspect the reason that disc didn't get an Atmos track is mostly due to laziness. Fox simply ported over the soundtrack from the Blu-ray without remastering it.
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Old 12-06-2017, 11:30 PM
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All three of those movies were released on Blu-ray either before Atmos was possible on the format, or at least before their respective studios supported Atmos on Blu-ray. The only of the three currently available on Ultra HD is Dawn of the Planet of the Apes. I suspect the reason that disc didn't get an Atmos track is mostly due to laziness. Fox simply ported over the soundtrack from the Blu-ray without remastering it.
I believe Iron Man 3 is available in UHD as a German Import. I'm not sure why they didn't release it in North America, but if they took the time to make a UHD disc and apply HDR etc., you'd think they would add Atmos too. How hard can it be when the track already exists? I suspect it's laziness there too. Maybe they'll do it for the wide release.

It's a shame that of the first 3 movies I thought of seeing with Atmos, 2 seemingly had lazy studios. Heck, maybe the 3rd is lazy too since they haven't bothered to release any of the Hobbit or LotR movies in UHD.
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Old 12-06-2017, 11:58 PM
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And then there is also the involvement of the filmmaker who may not see the need for upgrading the audio from DTS-HD/Dolby TrueHD or maybe created an audio design with traditional 5.1/7.1 configurations in mind. The particular filmmaker I'm thinking of here is Christopher Nolan. None of the UHD titles of his films are being upgraded as far as we know, which is a shame given that 'Inception' and 'Interstellar' would probably benefit from an Atmos track. However, the real disappointment is 'Dunkirk' not featuring an object-based audio option or Dolby Vision HDR even though it was mastered in DV and Atmos. On the flip side, the presentation will be in alternating aspect ratios, which I believe will be a first for 4K Ultra HD, but I'm not sure I'm happy with that either.
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Old 12-07-2017, 12:00 AM
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Oh, and pedram. We have a review of the Iron Man Trilogy - Ultra HD (German Import)
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Old 12-07-2017, 12:09 AM
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Originally Posted by eNoize View Post
And then there is also the involvement of the filmmaker who may not see the need for upgrading the audio from DTS-HD/Dolby TrueHD or maybe created an audio design with traditional 5.1/7.1 configurations in mind. The particular filmmaker I'm thinking of here is Christopher Nolan. None of the UHD titles of his films are being upgraded as far as we know, which is a shame given that 'Inception' and 'Interstellar' would probably benefit from an Atmos track. However, the real disappointment is 'Dunkirk' not featuring an object-based audio option or Dolby Vision HDR even though it was mastered in DV and Atmos. On the flip side, the presentation will be in alternating aspect ratios, which I believe will be a first for 4K Ultra HD, but I'm not sure I'm happy with that either.
Don't think Dunkirk was ever mastered in Atmos. While it did play in Dolby Cinemas, it was not in Atmos.
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Old 12-07-2017, 12:16 AM
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Originally Posted by eNoize View Post
And then there is also the involvement of the filmmaker who may not see the need for upgrading the audio from DTS-HD/Dolby TrueHD or maybe created an audio design with traditional 5.1/7.1 configurations in mind. The particular filmmaker I'm thinking of here is Christopher Nolan. None of the UHD titles of his films are being upgraded as far as we know, which is a shame given that 'Inception' and 'Interstellar' would probably benefit from an Atmos track. However, the real disappointment is 'Dunkirk' not featuring an object-based audio option or Dolby Vision HDR even though it was mastered in DV and Atmos. On the flip side, the presentation will be in alternating aspect ratios, which I believe will be a first for 4K Ultra HD, but I'm not sure I'm happy with that either.
Nolan is a great filmmaker, but his traditionalism frustrates me sometimes. I agree that Inception, Interstellar and Dunkirk all could benefit from an Atmos track on home media, but I doubt he'd approve going back and changing the audio on the first two. I'm very surprised that that they didn't include it for Dunkirk when it was already done for the theatrical release. With Nolan embracing Imax to further enhance that sense of immersion, I don't understand why he wouldn't want Atmos as well. At least we can count on him to film in 70mm Imax and completely fill "real" Imax screens.

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Oh, and pedram. We have a review of the Iron Man Trilogy - Ultra HD (German Import)
Yes I noticed it right after I posted my response to Josh, haha. The reviewer also laments the lack of an Atmos track on the disc. I'm hoping Disney will change that when they finally do their release of the trilogy.
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Old 12-07-2017, 12:21 AM
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Don't think Dunkirk was ever mastered in Atmos. While it did play in Dolby Cinemas, it was not in Atmos.
I think you're right - as confirmed by Dolby here. I guess that further adds to my frustration with Nolan. I was actually surprised to hear he approved an Atmos mix of Dunkirk. Made me think there might just be hope for him yet.
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Old 12-07-2017, 10:22 AM
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I believe Iron Man 3 is available in UHD as a German Import. I'm not sure why they didn't release it in North America, but if they took the time to make a UHD disc and apply HDR etc., you'd think they would add Atmos too.
The Iron Man UHDs released in Germany were put out by another distributor (Concorde), which uprezzed the original video master and applied some HDR tweaking. Concorde did not have access to the original audio stems and could not remaster the soundtrack.

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How hard can it be when the track already exists? I suspect it's laziness there too.
Unfortunately, it's not as simple as taking the theatrical Atmos track and porting it to disc. The theatrical and home Atmos formats are different than one another. The home version doesn't support as many speakers (only 24.1.10 vs the theatrical 64 channels) or as many sound objects. As a result, some sound objects have to be consolidated into their nearest neighbor. Some remastering is needed to prepare the home version, and apparently some studios don't always feel it's worth the time or investment.
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