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What is Spatial Audio? – Audio46 Headphone Store

If you like to keep up with audio technology, then you’ve definitely heard the term Spatial Audio before. But what is Spatial Audio? Is it worth buying? We’re here to give you the full rundown on spatial audio technology.

Surround Sound On The Go

Spatial Audio is Apple’s answer to Dolby Atmos, a new technology that aims to simulate the experience of listening to a 5.1 surround sound setup, all within your own headphones. With compatible headphones, you can have the home theater experience without the cost or hassle it takes to set it up. In the case of some Apple devices, it can also track your head’s movement to simulate positioning in a 3D space.

How Does Spatial Audio Work?

Spatial audio uses tracking from your iPhone or iPad in order to determine your relative position in the room and simulate a 3D listening environment. Rather than having all of the channels being in a static position, the channels in the surround sound mix are simulated to exist in the same “place” in the mix by panning them relative to your head. It’s like listening on an actual surround sound system. This technology aims to make the user experience more immersive. This tracking feature is currently only available on compatible Apple devices (AirPods Pro, AirPods Max, AirPods (3rd generation), or Beats Fit Pro).

What’s the Difference Between Spatial Audio and Dolby Atmos?

Spatial Audio and Dolby Atmos are meant to be complimentary. Atmos is meant to simulate the 5.1 Surround Sound environment, and Spatial Audio is meant to simulate your position in that environment. You can use both without the other, but more often than not you’re going to use them together. 

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