I recently had an argument with a friend that I would rather go blind than deaf because sound is the most important of the five senses. My reasoning is that being blind is no big deal, but could you imagine not being able to listen to music? Further, sound provides all of the context for movies. You can turn a horror movie into comedy, or vice versa, just by swapping out the soundtrack. He didn’t agree, but I digress.
For the sound lovers out there, the news that Dolby Laboratories have invented a next-generation sound delivery system for movie theaters, named Dolby Atmos, should be exciting. Reports Nick Bilton for NYT:
In the new system, rather than sound being pushed out from the left and right side of the theater, as happens in movies today, the new Atmos system will also deliver sound from above in a theater and will be able to swirl sound around in any direction.
During a demonstration at Dolby’s San Francisco headquarters, Stuart Bowling, senior technical marketing manager for Dolby Laboratories, said the new Atmos speaker system is one of the most advanced technical jumps the company has made in 20 years and will create an entirely new viewing experience for theatergoers.
“You can imagine watching a scary movie, and it’s a scene when someone is hiding in a basement and there are footsteps on the floorboards above,” Mr. Bowling said. “The Atmos system will actually play that audio from above people in the theater.”
Fuck. Yes. Best news I’ve encountered all week.