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Tidal brings Dolby Atmos Music to home theater systems

Dolby Atmos Music, which offers an ultra-immersive sound experience, will start rolling out today to Tidal subscribers’ home theater speaker systems, Dolby Laboratories and Tidal announced Thursday.

Support for these new devices will be rolling out over the next few days via an update to the Tidal app. You can get Dolby Atmos on your home theater system if you have a Dolby Atmos A/V receiver (and the necessary speakers) or a Dolby Atmos-capable soundbar and a compatible media streamer.

Apple TV 4K, Fire TV Stick 4K, Fire TV Cube, Fire TV Stick (2nd gen), Fire TV (3rd gen), and Nvidia Shield TV or Nvidia Shield TV Pro (2019 or newer models) are among the streamers supported at launch.

Until now, Atmos Music has only been available on a tiny selection of specific devices, including some Dolby Atmos-enabled smartphones and tablets, as well as Amazon’s Echo Studio 3D smart speaker.

Alternatively, if you have a Dolby Atmos-enabled Android TV from Sony or Philips, you can run the Tidal app on your TV. The TV’s speakers will deliver a basic Atmos Music experience, but you can also connect an Atmos soundbar or A/V receiver via HDMI ARC for a more immersive version of Atmos Music.

You’ll also need Tidal’s HiFi subscription tier, which normally costs $20 per month. To encourage new listeners, Tidal is offering an extended 60-day free trial of its HiFi tier, which also includes the Sony 360 Reality Audio format, as well as Tidal’s collection of hi-res, lossless MQA Masters tracks.

Dolby Atmos Music offers a more immersive sound experience for those with compatible audio gear because songs are produced in the studio to take advantage of Dolby Atmos’ spatial audio technology. Each element of the song can be precisely positioned in the space around the listener and can move around a room.

When done well, Atmos Music can be a profoundly different listening experience than stereo or even 5.1 surround sound. If you have the necessary gear, we strongly suggest you audition Dolby Atmos for yourself.

On Tidal, Atmos Music tracks are highlighted on the home page, but you can also find them by searching for “Dolby Atmos.”

Tidal hasn’t said how many tracks are in its Atmos Music library. In a joint press release with Dolby Laboratories, Tidal said its Atmos library “continues to expand in size, and now features recently acclaimed albums and songs including Ariana Grande’s 7 rings, The Weeknd’s After Hours, and Shawn Mendes and Camila Cabello’s Señorita.”

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Simon Cohen
Contributing Editor, A/V
Simon Cohen covers a variety of consumer technologies, but has a special interest in audio and video products, like…
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