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Insight: Why Dolby Atmos install is a game changer for Dean St. Studios

Following the announcement earlier this week that Dolby had installed a state-of-the-art Dolby Atmos mix room in Dean Street Studios’ flagship Studio One, Installation got the lowdown with this exclusive case study

Image © James Robinson

Dean St. Studios is one of the last professional large-format recording studios in Central London, and during its history has welcomed a prestigious roll call of music artists through its Soho doors to record some of their biggest hits. 

Icons such as David Bowie, Adele, John Legend, Lady Gaga and Paul Weller are just some of the impressive names to have stepped foot in the studio – but earlier this year, the site closed its doors for refurbishments, undertaken by Veale Associates, during the coronavirus pandemic.

This month, Dean St. Studios has reopened the doors to its legendary music recording and production suites, as well as announcing the installation of a state-of-the-art Dolby Atmos mix room in Studio 1 – its flagship studio – in partnership with Dolby Laboratories, a leader in immersive entertainment experiences.

The new Dolby Atmos mix room provides artists the chance to create dynamic and immersive tracks in Dolby Atmos, taking their music beyond the restrictions of stereo and mono to a platform that provides a whole new way to create and listen to music.

The Dolby Atmos install features PMC’s flagship IB2S XBD-A active monitors covering left and right main channels, an IB2S-A monitor for the centre channel, 10 discrete Wafer2 loudspeakers for surround and height channels and four sub2 subwoofers. The Dean St. Studio’s set up exactly replicates the PMC system initially designed for Universal Music and installed two years ago at Capitol Studio’s in Los Angeles. 

Image © James Robinson

The install at Dean St. Studios exceeds the standard Dolby requirements, allowing artists’ audio spanning across all genres of music to be delivered consistently at a remarkable quality in Dolby Atmos, like never before. An immersive audio experience, Dolby Atmos Music adds more space, clarity and depth to music. The technology empowers creators to place discrete audio elements or objects in a three-dimensional sound field, which is not possible in stereo.

“I have grown up in the music industry and have seen a lot of advances and change over the years, but nothing excites me more than Dolby Atmos Music,” said Jasmin Lee, managing director at Dean St. Studios. “This is a game changer for artists in terms of how they can create their music and engage with fans. I have listened to tracks in our new Dolby Atmos mix studio and my mind is just blown by it. This is music like you’ve never heard it before. We have a proud history of working with some of the world’s most successful artists and we can’t wait to offer them this new more immersive format which I’m sure will unleash a whole new creative journey for them.”

Javier Foncillas, VP commercial partnerships Dolby Europe, added, “Dean St. Studios has an incredible track history of working with scores of award-winning artists to record their ground-breaking music between its four walls. We’re thrilled that the iconic studio has created a dedicated space for mixing in Dolby Atmos and are excited to see the immersive creative output from those that walk through its famed doors in the future.”

Chris Allen, Business Development Manager at PMC, said, “We are delighted to be bringing this statement Dolby Atmos system into the UK for the first time and could not be more pleased to be spear-heading it alongside a facility with so much heritage and positive reputation as Dean Street Studios. PMC’s flagship Dolby Atmos install has become the reference for many Dolby Atmos Music studios, and although Dean Street’s room is relatively small, we were able to work with Dolby to design an effective system that meets and exceeds Dolby Atmos specifications. The result is incredibly pleasing and the system respectfully, and easily, reproduces all genres of music consistently at all levels.”

Dolby Atmos Music adds more space, clarity, and depth to music. Instead of just hearing music, with Dolby, it feels like listeners are inside the song, revealing what may have otherwise been lost in the conventional stereo recordings, and has already breathed life into music in the past by globally-renowned acts including The Weeknd, Halsey, The Beatles, and Coldplay.

Dolby Atmos Music unveils levels of detail and depth in songs and allows the listener to get closer than ever to the songs they care about to discover the artist’s vision without compromise. Whether it’s the unleashing of a legendary guitar solo, a massive bass drop that washes over you, or the subtle breath a singer takes, with Dolby Atmos Music it’s like hearing your favourite songs again for the first time, with every detail and emotion as the artist intended.

To learn more about Dolby Atmos Music, visit music.dolby.com