Dolby Cinema: the movie theater of the future?


Mis à jour le 26 February 2019.


Dolby Cinema: Dolby Vision Imaging Technology

In a Dolby Cinema movie theater, a Dolby Vision HDR picture is projected on the screen. Since 2017, nearly a hundred films have been produced using the Dolby Vision HDR format, which dramatically expands the dynamic range of the image. The difference between the darkest and lightest parts of the image is considerably greater, thus enhancing both contrast and colorimetry. In order to bring Dolby Vision films to the silver screen, a new type of projector had to be created as the brightness of standard video projectors was insufficient. In fact, Dolby requires the use of not one but two laser projectors. This pair of projectors is able to project 2D and 3D images with previously unheard of brightness levels. What?s more, the image is uniquely projected in 4K (compared to 2K for most other theaters).

Dolby Cinema: Dolby Atmos sound

To reinforce the immersive effect of the image, the audio installation of a Dolby Cinema certified movie theater must meet Dolby Atmos standards. In addition to the speakers situated behind the screen and the surround speakers installed on all sides of the theater, multiple speakers are installed in the ceiling above the audience. In all, 64 channels ensure a completely immersive audio experience. The 24-bit, high-definition soundtrack is mixed on 7.1 channels and enhanced by approximately 50 vertical channels.

Dolby Cinema: the experience

Beyond the image and the sound, Dolby Cinema certified theaters?which are all identical’offer the viewer an unprecedented sensory experience. First of all, the viewer is led past a curved screen to a comfortable, reclining seat equipped with a tray (for drinks and snacks). Each row of seats is set apart from the next by 6.5? (2 m), providing enough space to truly get comfortable. The theater is exceptionally dark in order to ensure a completely immersive visual experience.


Dolby Cinema: for home theater installations?

Today, it is possible to create a home cinema installation which is compatible with both Dolby Vision films and Dolby Atmos soundtracks. As for image projection, Sony is the leading manufacturer of 4K projectors, yet laser technology is far from being widespread. Meanwhile, since home projector screens are much smaller than those used in movie theaters and the projection distance is much shorter, the brightness level required to enjoy a Dolby Vision HDR image is already largely achievable. As for TVs, most of the latest Ultra HD displays are compatible with Dolby Vision films (often following an update).

Since many multi-channel receivers handle the Dolby Atmos soundtracks integrated into Ultra HD Blu-ray discs, finding a Dolby Atmos compatible playback device is easy. Dolby Atmos speakers, which may be placed on top of the speakers you already have in order to deliver sound objects which reflect off the ceiling so that they seem to come from above, are also available. That being said, the ideal solution consists in installing on-ceiling or in-ceiling speakers.

In short, all you need to do is make sure your home theater room is dark enough to enjoy a captivating experience.


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