Issue 91
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Amazon Democratises Spatial Audio

Amazon Music Unlimited customers can listen to spatial audio on more devices, including existing headphones, without specific gear


27 October 2021

Amazon Music announces that subscribers to its Unlimited tier can now stream music mixed in spatial audio on a new range of devices, including iOS and Android devices with existing headphones and on select devices that support Alexa Cast.

Originally introduced to Amazon Music customers in 2019, spatial audio puts the listener inside of the music, with an immersive, multidimensional audio experience. Customers can hear new releases from artists including FINNEAS, Lil Nas X, and Remi Wolf with a new space, clarity, and depth to the music.

Amazon Music subscribers can hear brand-new albums in spatial audio, including Remi Wolf’s debut album Juno, FINNEAS’ recently released album Optimist, and Rüfüs Du Sol’s fourth album Surrender, out this Friday. Starting today, fans can also hear Alicia Keys’ full catalog in 360 Reality Audio, including classic albums like Songs in A Minor and Girl on Fire. In November, Amazon Music will exclusively release Mercury – Act 1 (Amazon Music Live), a brand-new EP from Imagine Dragons, mixed in Dolby Atmos. The five-track EP features music from the band’s album release livestream, which was recorded from the rooftop of the Amazon Music office in Brooklyn.

“We recorded our new album Mercury – Act I with Rick Rubin at Shangri-La studios in Malibu, and it’s great to have a new avenue for people to experience the space and depth in those rooms through these new Dolby Atmos mixes,” said Imagine Dragons. “We’re excited to share our first acoustic live EP of some of these tracks, that we recorded with Amazon Music.”

“Over the last year, my engineer Ann Mincieli and I worked passionately to reimagine my catalog in 360 Reality Audio, a process that found us poring through music we love endlessly!” said Alicia Keys. “Making these spatial audio mixes revealed little details that define a song but tend to hide in the mix. I’m so proud of the results.”

In addition to listening with their existing headphones, customers can stream spatial audio with Alexa Cast on select devices, including the Echo Studio, Amazon’s best-sounding Echo ever. Additional devices that support 360 Reality Audio with Alexa Cast include Sony’s SRS-RA5000 or SRS-RA3000 wireless speakers, and home theatre systems such as HT-A9, HT-A7000, or HT-A5000. And later this year, customers will also be able to hear music mixed in Dolby Atmos on the Sonos Arc and Beam (Gen 2) soundbars when streaming Amazon Music from the Sonos app. Music available in Dolby Atmos brings listeners closer to their favourite artists and songs, and allows them to experience music the way that artists intended.

Amazon Music Unlimited subscribers with an Individual or Family Plan will now automatically have access to HD, Ultra HD, and spatial audio at no extra cost to their subscription— at no extra cost to their subscription. All subscribers can stream music in the premium quality streaming audio, including albums from Coldplay, Lil Nas X, Pink Floyd, Alicia Keys, and P!NK. For a limited time, new customers can also now experience the premium quality streaming audio free for three months when they subscribe to Amazon Music Unlimited.

With Amazon Music Unlimited, customers can stream more than 75 million lossless, High Definition (HD) songs, with a bit depth of 16 bits and a sample rate of at least 44.1 kHz (CD quality). Customers can also stream more than 7 million songs in Ultra HD (better than CD quality), with a bit depth of 24 bits and a sample rate up to 192 kHz, which reveals even more nuances that were once lost in files compressed for digital streaming.

The selection of Ultra HD songs on Amazon Music has tripled since the format was introduced in 2019, providing customers with a wide selection of music in Ultra HD. Customers also have access to a rapidly growing catalog of songs mixed in Dolby Atmos and 360 Reality Audio, a catalog that has grown by more than 20 times since spatial audio was originally introduced to Amazon Music customers.

Amazon Music Unlimited Individual Plans are available for $11.99/month. Family Plan customers can stream Amazon Music Unlimited on up to six devices for $17.99/month.


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