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Apple to Launch "High-fidelity" Audio Streaming (incl. Atmos)*

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by DigitalL.A., May 1, 2021.

  1. DigitalL.A.

    DigitalL.A. Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    From the article:

    "Apple will announce a new high-fidelity audio streaming tier in the coming weeks at the same $9.99-per-user price point as its standard plan, label sources are telling us.

    The announcement is expected to coincide with the launch of the third-generation AirPods. Whether these will be compatible with the new, improved audio offering is unknown."

    APPLE GOING HI-FI? : HITS Daily Double

    The article does not define "high-fidelity." Nor does it say whether Apple intends to offer downloads in that format.
     
    Tim Bucknall and Paully like this.
  2. vinylontubes

    vinylontubes Forum Resident

    Location:
    Katy, TX
    Redbook 16/44.1 is HiFi. It's been high fidelity since the first CD was released in the '80s.
     
    coepc, Tim Bucknall, Bemsha and 4 others like this.
  3. DigitalL.A.

    DigitalL.A. Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    I've got no problem with 16/44.1. It would be great if Apple offered it. I am concerned most about the mastering. Generally, I have heard good things about Mastered for iTunes (are they calling it Apple Digital Masters now?), so I am curious whether Apple will offer for downloads 16/44.1 in that series. Presumably, it will. For people who care about sound, provenance is king, but none of the companies offering downloads provides much information about mastering, etc. I suspect that 99 percent of Apple's customer base has no interest in provenance.
     
    Tim Bucknall likes this.
  4. motionoftheocean

    motionoftheocean Forum Resident

    Location:
    Circus Maximus
    not really relevant since Apple doesn’t stream at 16/44.1

    also, the thread topic is being discussed over here:

    Apple Music
     
    Tim Bucknall likes this.
  5. sunspot42

    sunspot42 Forum Resident

    Location:
    San Francisco
    Apple Music has released a teaser. Somethin's up:

    Apple Music Teaser: 'Get Ready – Music is About to Change Forever'

    The Browse tab in the Music app across Apple's platforms has started displaying a prominent teaser hinting at an upcoming major announcement for Apple Music. Under the heading "Coming soon," the headline says "Get ready – music is about to change forever." An accompanying "Tune-In Video" simply shows an animated ‌Apple Music‌ logo.
     
    Coltrane811 likes this.
  6. AirJordanFan93

    AirJordanFan93 Forum Resident

    I for one hope they offer 16/44.1 as iTunes purchases and don't just tie it to the subscription service. There are certain things that are a pain to find on the secondary market that I would much rather just purchases from iTunes if it was in higher quality than 256kpbs.
     
  7. audiomixer

    audiomixer As Bald As The Beatles

    I don’t care. So many other & better streaming options. They are too late to the game.
     
  8. HotelYorba101

    HotelYorba101 Forum Resident

    Location:
    California
    A lot of people in the Apple ecosystem may benefit and be happy about it, ultimately a big name streaming service offering lossless IMO is a good thing
     
  9. AirJordanFan93

    AirJordanFan93 Forum Resident

    Maybe so but they are Apple and people will gravitate towards it because they are Apple. They probably should have been at least offering CD-quality audio for the last 10 years rather than 256kb.
     
  10. Galley

    Galley Forum Resident

    Looks like they will support spatial audio.
     
    Tim Bucknall likes this.
  11. Meyer

    Meyer Heavy Metal Parking Lot Resident

    Location:
    Napa, CA, USA
    That is so f’ing annoying... just make the f’ing announcement.
     
    Tim Bucknall likes this.
  12. audiomixer

    audiomixer As Bald As The Beatles

    And people complain about MQA on Tidal?!? Hocus-Pocus. Spatial Audio?!? No thank you!
     
  13. audiomixer

    audiomixer As Bald As The Beatles

    :biglaugh: :hurl: :hurlleft:
     
  14. MemoInPR

    MemoInPR Señor Memo

    Apple Music announces Spatial Audio and Lossless Audio

    Apple Music announces Spatial Audio with Dolby Atmos; will bring Lossless Audio to entire catalog

    The next generation of sound on Apple Music is coming to subscribers June 2021 at no additional cost

    CUPERTINO, CALIFORNIA: Apple today announced Apple Music is bringing industry-leading sound quality to subscribers with the addition of Spatial Audio with support for Dolby Atmos. Spatial Audio gives artists the opportunity to create immersive audio experiences for their fans with true multidimensional sound and clarity. Apple Music subscribers will also be able to listen to more than 75 million songs in Lossless Audio — the way the artists created them in the studio. These new features will be available for Apple Music subscribers starting next month at no additional cost.

    “Apple Music is making its biggest advancement ever in sound quality,” said Oliver Schusser, Apple’s vice president of Apple Music and Beats. “Listening to a song in Dolby Atmos is like magic. The music comes from all around you and sounds incredible. Now we are bringing this truly innovative and immersive experience to our listeners with music from their favorite artists like J Balvin, Gustavo Dudamel, Ariana Grande, Maroon 5, Kacey Musgraves, The Weeknd, and so many more. Subscribers will also be able to listen to their music in the highest audio quality with Lossless Audio. Apple Music as we know it is about to change forever.”

    Spatial Audio with Support for Dolby Atmos
    Apple is bringing Spatial Audio with support for Dolby Atmos to Apple Music. Dolby Atmos is a revolutionary, immersive audio experience that enables artists to mix music so the sound comes from all around and from above. By default, Apple Music will automatically play Dolby Atmos tracks on all AirPods and Beats headphones with an H1 or W1 chip, as well as the built-in speakers in the latest versions of iPhone, iPad, and Mac. Apple Music will be adding new Dolby Atmos tracks constantly and will be curating a special set of Dolby Atmos playlists to help listeners find the music they love. In addition, albums that are available in Dolby Atmos will have a badge on the detail page for easy discovery.

    At launch, subscribers can enjoy thousands of songs in Spatial Audio from some of the world’s biggest artists and music across all genres, including hip-hop, country, Latin, pop, and classical. Apple Music is working with artists and labels to add new releases and the best catalog tracks, as more artists begin to create music specifically for the Spatial Audio experience. Together, Apple Music and Dolby are making it easy for musicians, producers, and mix engineers to create songs in Dolby Atmos. Initiatives include doubling the number of Dolby-enabled studios in major markets, offering educational programs, and providing resources to independent artists.

    “Today marks the introduction of Dolby Atmos on Apple Music — a new music experience that is transforming how music is created by artists and enjoyed by their fans,” said Kevin Yeaman, Dolby Laboratories’ president and CEO. “We are working with Apple Music to make Spatial Audio with Dolby Atmos widely available to all musicians and anyone who loves music.”

    J Balvin said: “I’m really excited to be part of this project with Apple Music because I always want to be a step ahead and I think this is one of those steps. With Lossless, everything in the music is going to sound bigger and stronger but more importantly, it will be better quality. Hearing myself and my music in Dolby Atmos for the first time, it was just crazy, it blew my mind, it’s indescribable. I think fans will really love this new experience.”

    Gustavo Dudamel said: “There are no words to describe the immersive, overpowering experience of being a conductor, leading a performance of Mahler’s towering ‘Symphony of a Thousand.’ But now, technology is advancing to bring that experience closer to our ears, our minds, and our souls. Share with me this monumental, live performance with my beloved Los Angeles Philharmonic, remastered in Dolby Atmos audio technology for the first time on Apple Music alongside my collection of Deutsche Grammophon recordings with the LA Phil, in rich, remarkable 3D sound.”

    Grammy Award-winning producer, songwriter, and composer Giles Martin said: “Since recording began, artists, producers, and engineers have tried to paint pictures with sound, transporting listeners to worlds they never knew existed, even when the sound came from a single speaker. Now with the dawn of immersive audio, we can take the music lover inside the music. From the feeling of hearing your favorite artist in the same room as you, to the experience of sitting directly in the middle of a symphony orchestra, the listening experience is transformative and the possibilities for the creator are endless. This is a quantum leap in technology – I have so far had the pleasure of mixing some of the greatest artists in history in Dolby Atmos. With this work I have found myself falling into albums I love. There is a unique experience of being able to fully immerse myself in music that, although is familiar, suddenly sounds new, fresh, and immediate. As a creator, it is beyond exciting that we can now share this incredible experience through Apple Music.”
    Mixing engineer Manny Marroquin said: “Spatial Audio gives music a new identity. Every time I mix in Atmos it gives me goosebumps. The future has arrived.”

    Lossless Audio
    Apple Music will also make its catalog of more than 75 million songs available in Lossless Audio. Apple uses ALAC (Apple Lossless Audio Codec) to preserve every single bit of the original audio file. This means Apple Music subscribers will be able to hear the exact same thing that the artists created in the studio.

    To start listening to Lossless Audio, subscribers using the latest version of Apple Music can turn it on in Settings > Music > Audio Quality. Here, they can choose different resolutions for different connections such as cellular, Wi-Fi, or for download. Apple Music’s Lossless tier starts at CD quality, which is 16 bit at 44.1 kHz (kilohertz), and goes up to 24 bit at 48 kHz and is playable natively on Apple devices. For the true audiophile, Apple Music also offers Hi-Resolution Lossless all the way up to 24 bit at 192 kHz.1

    Producer Piper Payne said: “The soul and life of the mix is sitting in the extra bits of data that are stored in the lossless file. As a mastering engineer, having the ability to convey the music to the listener at its highest quality is the end goal of what I work for every day.”

    Availability
    Spatial Audio with support for Dolby Atmos and Lossless Audio will be available to Apple Music subscribers at no additional cost.

    Thousands of tracks will be available in Spatial Audio with Dolby Atmos at launch, with more added regularly.

    Apple Music’s catalog of more than 75 million songs will be available in Lossless Audio.

    More information, including a comprehensive list of compatible devices, is available at apple.com/apple-music.
     
  15. Trixmay 988

    Trixmay 988 Demere's Dreams

    Location:
    Perth, Australia
    Welp, there goes one of the few, and certainly the biggest reason to ever use Tidal. Lossless for less than half the price of a hi-res Tidal subscription? I'm glad I've stuck to Apple Music as my streaming platform of choice...
     
  16. Pali Gap

    Pali Gap 'Why did you throw the Jack of Hea-arts awayyy?'

    Location:
    Bermuda
    Awesome. I resisted for many years but since joining the Apple eco-system life has been a breeze, and it just got better...
     
  17. Trixmay 988

    Trixmay 988 Demere's Dreams

    Location:
    Perth, Australia
    Giles Martin, hey? I hope that's a hint at The Beatles' remixes in Dolby Atmos.

    Sorry... only 3 posts in and I'm the one to mention The Beatles. I'm excited, okay? :oops:
     
  18. JCRW

    JCRW Forum Resident

    I applaud Apple for providing this update at no additional cost. Other streaming services like Tidal, Spotify, etc will now need to follow suit or see a loss of sales upgrading to hi-fi. Amazon Music seems to be following suit. As for whether the sound will be better that is another debate for another thread.
     
  19. Trixmay 988

    Trixmay 988 Demere's Dreams

    Location:
    Perth, Australia
    The 'audiophile' community is always growing, so I imagine this will convert many people, even if most people couldn't give a toss.
    I'm hardly an Apple fanboy... but I have to admit that this is a hell of a deal. I'm one of those people that can't tell the difference between 320kbps and FLAC, but I can still appreciate this free update regardless. This is no small update, that's for sure.
     
  20. rockin_since_58

    rockin_since_58 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Simi Valley, CA
  21. MemoInPR

    MemoInPR Señor Memo

    Two items that the press release doesn't mention:

    1) If you have purchased songs and albums via Apple Music, can you download or redownload them as Apple Lossless (ALAC) or even Apple Hi-Resolution Lossless?

    2) If you have a iTunes Match subscription, can you download everything that you have uploaded as ALAC or ALAC-HiRez?
     
    goer, LivingForever, JeffMo and 3 others like this.
  22. crispi

    crispi Vinyl Archaeologist

    Location:
    Berlin
    You can’t purchase songs via Apple Music (unless you mean downloading for offline playing). I think you mean iTunes, which is something else and most probably not supported. Same goes for the 2nd question.
     
    Tim Bucknall and Freebird like this.
  23. Kristofferabild

    Kristofferabild Forum Resident

    Location:
    Denmark
    If only Bluesound had real support instead of Airplay. Amazon has already lowered their price, I wonder if Qoubuz and Tidal will do the same...
     
    Tim Bucknall and woodpigeon like this.
  24. Hogues

    Hogues Forum Resident

    I was just about to start another thread to see how people were going to incorporate into their system and what hardware they are going to use. I'm going to assume no Roon or Bluesound so I'm not sure how best to do it.
     
  25. Groovy

    Groovy Forum Resident

    Yes, but it's no longer called iTunes, it's called simply Music. So do they now have two products called Apple Music?

    Will they now provide lossless downloads too?
     

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