Apple Dolby Atmos Music - Absolute GAME CHANGER!

Since Apple announced they would be upgrading to lossless audio in June, I have been excited to compare it to Qobuz. This morning I read that they had finally implemented the new standards yesterday. So, going into my settings, I changed things to play in lossless audio and fired up some songs. 

But then I saw their spatial audio/ Dolby Atmos options on my apple 4k. 

To say that this is a game changer - I think - perhaps might be the biggest understatement of my lifetime. I think this has the potential to be the most profound change in the way that we listen to music, ever. Mono v. Stereo. Analog to Digital. I'm not sure that anything can compare with this. 

So, what is it like? For reference, I'm using a 7.2.4 Atmos system configured properly. But where the soundstage in stereo is in front of you - listening in Atmos now puts you IN the sound stage. Singers are still in front of you (and interestingly enough, the center channel isn't used for voicing at all, the bulk of the music / voices / instruments still come from your primary 2 stereo speakers - but now you can hear instruments, backup singers, drums, all around you. If I had to explain it visually, it's similar from moving to TV to a perfect VR headset experience. 

Pinpoint accuracy (i.e. where is the instrument playing) is sublime now - you're again not looking for it in front of you - but rather - it can be pictured in your room. It's like being in the middle of the recording studio. Depending on the song, it can be an expansive space, or incredibly intimate - with you being closer to the singer than any other band members. 

Has anyone else tried it yet? If so, what are your thoughts? Am I overselling this or do you agree? For the stereo purists out there (which I have always kind of considered myself to be but now I'm starting to question that), is it something you'd try, a gimmick? 
I’m definitely wanting to give Apple Music a try with these enhanced features! As for the purist Vs. multi-channel thing, when I was doing the 2 ch. up until the late 90s, I was curious about HT so I had HT going for up until 2019 at which time I got the tube integrated and relegated the HT to the bedroom coz I missed my “pure stereo”. 3 months ago, I shoehorned a 5.2 setup into the audio cabinet aside the “purist” rig as I missed multichannel…..loving both systems! For the OP, how is the Apple TV 4K working, in your opinion as compared with something like a Bluesound Node 2i  as a streamer of this new service and does full Atmos capability seem like a must to get any benefit from this from a multi-channel standpoint or do you think it’s something a non-Atmos 5.2/7.2/etc. system might shine with?
Atmos music sounds good. I’ve been playing rock and jazz songs from Apple Music’s spatial audio playlists. I have a 7.2.4 system with Apple TV, a mid level Marantz receiver, in-wall and in-ceiling speakers, and a pair of subs. Riders on the Storm from the Doors is a highlight, as well as most of the jazz songs that I have heard. Some of the rock songs have backup vocals coming from the side speakers which I do not like. In general, though, the Atmos music that I heard is more cohesive sounding than DTS, Dolby Digital or Dolby Surround. Listening to Atmos music will be a good change of pace from my 2 channel system, but it is still not quite as good for me. It’s getting closer, though. I bet Atmos would sound incredible in a system like the one that Kalman Rubinson has.
Fiesta - honestly, I always thought I was a purist - but now I have doubts. And I agree, without hearing it - I thought it was a gimmick, but now that I have heard it - just wow. I might be wrong. But, if you have the ability, please give it a listen - I agreed with you - this is a gimmick - but after hearing it... I don't know anymore. 

To clarify something - just like an audiophile recording, the mixing process is perhaps even more important than the actual music to make it sound good. Atmos music, is not dissimilar. Some pieces are just incredible, and others, are ho hum. Moby's Reprise Version, in Atmos, is, stunning. It's incredible! Riders of the storm, is cool, but it's just a storm in the background, the rest of it is similar to what you have in stereo. (it's also a very cool song to listen to, but not the best to illustrate Atmos IMO.) This is a really new technology in the music industry, so, I just ask people keep an open mind. But, with a great recording, and a great HT system, it's, amazing. 

To lg1 - I haven't personally heard the Bluesound, but for stereo music, I'd bet it's better than the Apple. BUT!, The apple 4k allows me to hook into my home theater system, and then get Atmos surround sound using my home theater receiver. (the bluesound and my Cambridge audio CXN cannot do that.) So, at least for right now, I'm not sure anything but the apple 4k tv into an Atmos receiver will work for the Dolby Atmos aspect of the music. I assume that future updates will allow Atmos music, and that would be interesting to compare. But the Apple 4k only feeds to Atmos signal into my Marantz Atmos receiver. And that's where the magic happens.) 

And no.... I think a standard 5.1 system with Atmos music will sound incredible too. You don't have to go to crazy with a traditional home theater setup (and I haven't heard anything from my ceiling speakers. but the surrounds - yeah, it's huge. ) What's most interesting though to me is the lack of utilization of my center channel... It's not like movies where most things come from it... It's "support music"  - the important "stuff" still comes from your stereo speakers. 

It's hard to explain - but, I really think this is maybe the biggest breakthrough in music - ever. With the right tracks and a good setup, it's just an entirely different level of immersion. 
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