Dolby Atmos Apple TV and Home AV Equipment

I wish I’d digested this thread before I blew a few thousand on a new receiver and speakers today. It looks like I either:

a - wasted my money as I’ll not experience Atmos on any of the files I already have, or
b - will have to blow more money ditching the ATV and Infuse in favour of something that will work

I’m becoming so sick of tech; things rarely work as intended

Or use both. ATV and Nvidia Shield Pro.

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TLDR… A couple of years ago I was using a Dune HD. It was bulletproof; I never had any issues, but it didn’t support 4K so that had to go. I tried the newer Dune player at the time that supported 4K; unfortunately that was awful so I immediately sent it back. I had a choice back then between ATV4K (with Infuse) and the Shield (probably with Kodi). I already have everything Apple so the ATV made sense and the shield doesn’t appeal. The ATV combined with Infuse has been superb up until now. I’m ditching my existing Bose Lifestyle 650 system as it doesn’t support Atmos, E-ARC and causes issues when passing HDR10+.

Having spent the last few days trawling through/reading reviews of new receivers and speaker packages, I pulled the plug today on a new Denon receiver and Kef speaker package which will arrive tomorrow. I was really looking forward to some new kit with Atmos capability and improved sound overall. I probably shouldn’t have bothered as I just don’t want any additional complexity and that’s where it’s leading…rant complete.

You can still enjoy lossless Atmos with the ATV. If I invested big bucks on a good receiver and speaker package, I would also invest in a UHD disc player (or a disc-less clone). That’s what you need to fully enjoy a lossless UHD+Atmos experience with the best possible video and audio quality.

How? Isn’t that the nature of this thread - that it’s not possible to do lossless Atmos with ATV (or am I misunderstanding) I guess you mean connecting the ATV4K to the TV and using E-ARC. That itself will no doubt present issues. My TV has had E-ARC added to it but the HDMI port assigned to it is not 2.1 (2019 Samsung Q90R)

What’s the “disc-less clone”? I want to be able to play my existing files which have lossless audio with Atmos. In 48 hours I’ve gone from being an ATV4K fanboy to thinking it potentially has no use (other than perhaps as my Homekit hub but I also have HomePods so it’s not needed for that either)

Apologies for taking the thread off course…

I’m using a Nvidia Shield Pro and Plex for lossless Atmos UHD files. Works stable even via WLAN. I still have ATV and Infuse, but I mainly use my ATV for other apps like Twitch, etc. now.

Edit: Even with HDMI 2.1 ports, eARC can be a pain in the ass. I’m getting audio cutouts with Atmos from both my ATV and NV Shield when connected via eARC to my Denon X3800H. Connecting directly to the AVR solves everything.

That’s annoying, but also very useful to know…as it’s the Denon X3800H I ordered and it will be with me some time today.

It’s a great AVR. Just don’t bother with eARC, plug everything into the AVR.

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Sorry, I meant “lossy”.

As for the clone, look into the “Chinoppo”, which is an Oppo clone that can read UHD isos or BDMV folders from USB or SMB/NFS just like if it was reading a disc. That is also the only option that can provide full profile 7 Dolby Vision compatibility. If you don’t care about DV, then maybe you can get by with the Shield pro instead.

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In my living room I use ATV with infuse.

I’m my home theater, I was using an Nvidia shield to get my audio passthrough but then move to a Zidoo Z9X. Works flawlessly

Does Zidoo do profile 7 ISO yet? Last Zidoo I owned was the z9s and I haven’t kept up with what their latest offerings support.

No I’m pretty sure it just ignores the FEL layer

I kind of gave up on things like that. There is simply no perfect player :frowning:

But it IS coming…

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That’s the problem with A/V when you add something new, you almost certainly have to add other devices as well. I was in your shoes not very long ago so from my personal experience and opinion, the new speakers and sound system with your ATV4K + Infuse will work great in a home theatre scenario. And you will probably notice improved sound anyway because quality speakers and a receiver make a difference. I have a similar setup and the audio and overall experience I’m getting is fantastic.

If you come from the apple side of things like me I would not recommend a Nvidia Shield. It’s slow and although it can do Audio Passthrough and play 4K UHD Profile 7 rips, its just not that big an improvement over the ATV4K. Dare I say I prefer the video quality of ATV4K to the shield even when it was playing Dolby Vision Profile 7. I sent mine back after a week or so of testing.

I would say test Infuse out with your new speakers, if things look and sound great then why bother with other devices? I’ve been down this rabbit hole, and it can get time consuming and frustrating. In the end I always end up coming back to Infuse because it always works. Best of luck with your sanity! Lol

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I have an Oppo and a Chinoppo, but honestly, the sound I’m getting out of my Airpods Max in Infuse is so good it doesn’t even justify going Oppo route. I have a Japanese 9.1 Sony wireless headphone that was at that time the best of the best, and the Airpods Max just left it in the dust. The subwoofer feeling in those cans are the best for movies.
I do hope that Infuse will let you play menus in ISOs, especially when playing multi episode TV discs.

Well I thought when the Denon arrived it’d be an hour or two’s work to swap out the Bose, fit the speakers and setup. I slightly underestimated that and have been tangled up in wiring all day…Anyway:

  • I’ve connected the ATV direct to to the receiver (rather than through the TV using E-ARC)
  • It’s just as well I did as the TV (Samsung Q90R) does not see the Denon as E-ARC compatible. Obviously it is but the TV required me to switch on HDMI-CEC (which I won’t as it rarely works as it should)
  • Sound is good but I need to alter some speaker positions, re-calibrate and tweak (ran out of time)
  • Atmos from the Netflix app worked fine as expected. I also tried a lossy DD mkv file that had Atmos in Infuse and that worked great too, so I’m happy there.

It looks as though Boxy with Dune-HD might work for Atmos with HD files. They’re cheap so it might be worth a try.

@JB1970, bruh, I went down the same rabbit hole as you. I even have the same Denon AVR. Blew my mind that everything is as FUBAR as it is. Short answer: for your ripped blu-rays, host with Plex and buy an Nvidia Shield and use passthrough audio. Only then will you see the “TrueHD Atmos” light up on the Denon app on your iPhone. So I’ll source switch to the Nvidia shield when I’m the MC of movie night.

But for my family when I’m not around, I tell them to use the Plex app on ATV to find the movie or TV show they want to watch, then switch over to Infuse to actually watch it. If they’re lazy and it’s not action or sci-fi, fine just use the Plex client on ATV.

I’m surprised so many people keep bringing up the Shield around here. The Shield has broken Dolby Vision output. I’d only go Shield if you don’t care about Dolby Vision and are willing/wanting to only output HDR10.

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Majority of movies are still just HDR10, and if that is a way to get lossless Atmos, then it works.

Depends on your source, but there are certainly more movies released with Dolby Vision than just HDR10 if you’re not referring to a single source.