Jump to content

Atmos Upmixer Solutions


VSOP Studios
 Share

Recommended Posts

 

Hey all - Matt Hennessy here, owner and chief Engineer at VSOP Studios Chicago.   We are the first large format Atmos room to come online here in Chicago and do a good amount of work in the format now.

As a facility were based around an Analog Console in the A/Atmos Room but we run both Logic Pro and Pro Tools as DAW hosts. 

Clearly ATMOS work gets done in the DAW and from mix stems and often there is need to upmix stereo content to 7.1/7.1.2/7.1.4 to use the space to its highest potential.

We tried every upmixer on the market and due to the fact that apple decided on a different channel layout in Logic for 7.1.4 than any other DAW there is only one option that will even work correctly in Logic.  We selected the Penteo 16 Pro Upmix plugin because it is the ONLY option that works, but also because we felt it sounded great.  It’s one of the few upmixers that gives you a lot of control over where the energy goes.

Anyway - I’m putting this information here because I spent days trying to figure out why nothing worked in logic and couldn’t find ANYTHING so hopefully the new person can find this and just go straight to Penteo.  This forum has always been so helpful to me on my Logic journey I wanted to make sure I could pay this info forward.

Good luck and Happy Mixing.

 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hey David!  

Zero issues with the Dolby Atmos Panner.  The function of that plugin tho is placing that track into the atmos 3d space.

The Penteo upmixer will generate a surround field from a stereo file.  One of things I use it for a lot is taking a stereo reverb and generating a surround field from it.  

It can also take a stereo Pad or music bed and make it surround.  Penteo does it great job of this, and is also the only upmixer than matches Logics channel layout.  All the other upmixers use a different channels order so they are useless in logic.

does that make sense?

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

19 hours ago, VSOP Studios said:

Hey all - Matt Hennessy here, owner and chief Engineer at VSOP Studios Chicago.   We are the first large format Atmos room to come online here in Chicago and do a good amount of work in the format now.

As a facility were based around an Analog Console in the A/Atmos Room but we run both Logic Pro and Pro Tools as DAW hosts. 

Clearly ATMOS work gets done in the DAW and from mix stems and often there is need to upmix stereo content to 7.1/7.1.2/7.1.4 to use the space to its highest potential.

We tried every upmixer on the market and due to the fact that apple decided on a different channel layout in Logic for 7.1.4 than any other DAW there is only one option that will even work correctly in Logic.  We selected the Penteo 16 Pro Upmix plugin because it is the ONLY option that works, but also because we felt it sounded great.  It’s one of the few upmixers that gives you a lot of control over where the energy goes.

Anyway - I’m putting this information here because I spent days trying to figure out why nothing worked in logic and couldn’t find ANYTHING so hopefully the new person can find this and just go straight to Penteo.  This forum has always been so helpful to me on my Logic journey I wanted to make sure I could pay this info forward.

Good luck and Happy Mixing.

Hey Matt,

that's very interesting to know. Thanks. The problem is the channel-order? Correct? 

As you seem to be using Logic professionally for Atmos, I would like to ask you about one atmos-topic and Logics way of doing stuff. It's about panning the sends. I did some tests in the last few days. The default for panning sends changes, when you turn on spatial audio, to "Post Fader". So if you send from a track that is panned the send itself isn't. If you send this way to a stereo-bus, both channels get the full volume. If you send to a surround-bus, the full volume is send to all channels. Not very helpful, I think. As long as one is dealing with bed-tracks you can turn back to "post pan", so the panning is reflected in the send. So far, so good.

When you are dealing with 3D-objects and want to send to a bus, the option to turn "post pan" on, is grayed out. So there is no panning information in the send. This is particularly strange, when you send to a surround-bus with let's say a surround-reverb. When you send from a 3D-object-track, you get signal on all channels at the same time. That's not ideal.

I made two short videos, to show that problem:

1. Sending from a mono-track to a surround-bus. With the default post-fader send you get signal on all channels. Etc. https://www.dropbox.com/s/fwv9ql2l8f8cpoz/Mono-Instrument Send.mov?dl=0

2. Sending from a mono-3D-Object-Track. https://www.dropbox.com/s/m55fjz0b8lq7g3h/Mono Instrument 3D-Object Send.mov?dl=0

In Pro Tools this is different. I can send from Object-Tracks and the send will follow the panning or I can do my own panning for the send.

So, this seems to be a flaw in Logic. Right? I did send feedback to the Logic guys, but haven't heard from them until now.

(And another question - for another time: Do you get the surround panner in Logic? For instance: How would you send a signal ONLY to the Lm and Rm channels? Is there a way?)

Greetings,

Jan

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hey Jan,

Love to discuss this!  Your observations about logic and the sends when spatial audio is engaged are 100% correct and that is unusable in my opinion.

Because of that, and a few other reasons I’m happy to discuss I do not mix dolby atmos with the Logic Spatial Audio turned on.

I mix using the Dolby Renderer, but I use it uniquely to logic which IMO makes it a superior mix DAW to protools.

So I configure logic to run at 7.1.4 and then i put a multi mono dolby atmos panner on the surround output off the mix session.  In the I/O settings for logic I configure the channel outputs for LT/RT/LTS/RTS to be 11/12/13/14 respectively.

Then I setup the multimono panner to allow a separate setting for every channel in the “Editor” panel and I place the objects for the top speakers where they should go and assign the outputs in the panner plugin.  I leave all other locations unassigned.

Then I run logic over the Dolby Atmos Bridge.  This allows me to create a 7.1.4 bed in logic using only 4 objects.  I can then I use 7.1.4 reverbs and upscalers like Penteo in the bed and it goes to the full 7.1.4 array.  

The Logic surround panner is quirky but once you learn to understand how it’s laid out you can pan to any place in the 7.1.4 space that you would want.  There are a zillion reasons why having a true 7.1.4 bed is the best way to work.  I do still use a few objects for various reasons tho and its important to note that when using an object outside of the bed the panning issues you have with 3d objects.  Protools is the only place in which the Panner properly tracks to the ends on an object.

I hope for a time that I can mix atmos in logic but theres still a lot of progress to be made there.  They are fixing things with every revison but were not there yet.

Let me know if you have any questions about my setup, its confusing to explain I know.

Matt Hennessy

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

9 hours ago, jnchristp said:

1. Sending from a mono-track to a surround-bus. With the default post-fader send you get signal on all channels. Etc. https://www.dropbox.com/s/fwv9ql2l8f8cpoz/Mono-Instrument Send.mov?dl=0

This looks like a bug? In fact if you remove the plug-ins from your surround Aux channel strip then you get signal only in the Left and Right channels at the output of the Aux. What I don't understand is that it still produces some signal in all the other surround channels on the Master?

image.gif

My new Logic Pro Book is out!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Posted (edited)
6 hours ago, David Nahmani said:

This looks like a bug? In fact if you remove the plug-ins from your surround Aux channel strip then you get signal only in the Left and Right channels at the output of the Aux. What I don't understand is that it still produces some signal in all the other surround channels on the Master?

image.gif

Hej David,

it looks different on my end. When sending to a surround-bus without post-pan I get signal on all channels on that bus. Even without any plugins on any channel. Engage Post-pan and it's okay. 

Thanks for the Panner-Info. Sometimes it seems a little fiddly to me. Not that straight forward, but it's working.

Greetings,

Jan

 

 

Edited by jnchristp
  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Posted (edited)
8 hours ago, VSOP Studios said:

Hey Jan,

Love to discuss this!  Your observations about logic and the sends when spatial audio is engaged are 100% correct and that is unusable in my opinion.

Because of that, and a few other reasons I’m happy to discuss I do not mix dolby atmos with the Logic Spatial Audio turned on.

I mix using the Dolby Renderer, but I use it uniquely to logic which IMO makes it a superior mix DAW to protools.

So I configure logic to run at 7.1.4 and then i put a multi mono dolby atmos panner on the surround output off the mix session.  In the I/O settings for logic I configure the channel outputs for LT/RT/LTS/RTS to be 11/12/13/14 respectively.

Then I setup the multimono panner to allow a separate setting for every channel in the “Editor” panel and I place the objects for the top speakers where they should go and assign the outputs in the panner plugin.  I leave all other locations unassigned.

Then I run logic over the Dolby Atmos Bridge.  This allows me to create a 7.1.4 bed in logic using only 4 objects.  I can then I use 7.1.4 reverbs and upscalers like Penteo in the bed and it goes to the full 7.1.4 array.  

The Logic surround panner is quirky but once you learn to understand how it’s laid out you can pan to any place in the 7.1.4 space that you would want.  There are a zillion reasons why having a true 7.1.4 bed is the best way to work.  I do still use a few objects for various reasons tho and its important to note that when using an object outside of the bed the panning issues you have with 3d objects.  Protools is the only place in which the Panner properly tracks to the ends on an object.

I hope for a time that I can mix atmos in logic but theres still a lot of progress to be made there.  They are fixing things with every revison but were not there yet.

Let me know if you have any questions about my setup, its confusing to explain I know.

Matt Hennessy

Hej Matt,

thanks for your detailed answer. That sounds interesting. So in fact you are using a 7.1.4 bed, correct? I think dolby recommends 7.1.2, but you can do what you want, right? As far as I understand it, every mixer uses the atmos-format differently. Many don't use the bed at all, just for the LFE. Like Andrew Scheps. Could you explain why you use the wider bed?

One thing I don't get is dolbys 7.1.2 bed and the objects being 7.1.4. The .2 in the bed is always upmixed when listening to the mix. So essentially there's duplicate signals in the upper channels. But I read that it's not good practise in surround-mixing to put the same signal in two channels, like in the front and back. Maybe I'm complicating things, but that's my thinking. 

I got the atmos renderer startet and working in Pro Tools yesterday for the first time. I think it's way more versatile than Logics version. Setting up different room-setups, delay, levels, a binaural headphone mix etc. But Logic has the benefit of being easy and straight forward. Not much setting up. Typically I like the workflow in Logic better than in PT, but the send-"problem" gives me headaches. I mean: Panning IS Atmos. It should work.

Greetings,

Jan

Edited by jnchristp
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Posted (edited)

Hej,

been looking into the panner-behavior. I still find it rather strange sometimes.

So, the default state: A stereo-sound is correctly routed to L-R. Normal.

image.thumb.png.314a3faddb1ae64123b40c37d955c115.png

Turning off the speakers to just hear this sound coming out of LM-RM: no sound. Okay. 

image.thumb.png.022a169f18c6c142c07d94c54bd539cd.pngTurning on the C-channel get's you sound on LM-C-RM

image.thumb.png.f42d06452944c40c17f4fd9c447a3073.pngTurning down center level gets you LM-RM.

image.thumb.png.ea3140314aaae55ee6b9f46c050a99ae.pngI think, that's kind of strange. But it is, what it is. Turning up Diversity to 100 % lets you do, what David showed, but I find this step counterintuitive. It should be: Here's the source, route it to this channels... Right?

Still learning...

Greetings,

Jan

Edited by jnchristp
  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I agree that the behavior is counter intuitive. If setting the panner to the center speaker as on your screenshot meant that the signal is routed only to the center speaker then it would make sense that you get no signal at all when C is turned off. But then why does signal appear in the Lm and Rm channels when you turn C back on? 😳

My new Logic Pro Book is out!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

4 minutes ago, David Nahmani said:

I agree that the behavior is counter intuitive. If setting the panner to the center speaker as on your screenshot meant that the signal is routed only to the center speaker then it would make sense that you get no signal at all when C is turned off. But then why does signal appear in the Lm and Rm channels when you turn C back on? 😳

Right.

And I just checked the panning-behavior in PT. In PT it behaves as I would expect the panning to behave. You have a signal and route it to whatever channel you want. Just click on a speaker, and there you go. Also, you can decouple a stereo-signal. If you want a signal to come out of L and RTM, lets say. Very easy. Not so in Logic.

I think, the developers in Logic should look into this, as they are pushing for atmos-mixing. It's not that logical at the moment. 

And am I'm sure I'm not the only one that would hope for a way to surround-pan with Logic Remote. But that App is not ready for surround mixing. But it would be great to use a touch-interface for panning. Let's hope, they are working on it... 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

And let's not start with all the other panning-stuff in PT. Movements, auto-glide etc. It's great stuff. I'm usually not a fan of PT and its workflow, but in this area their system is way ahead. Also: With the EuControl-App you get touch-control, which is very cool. Look this way, Logic developers, please...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...