Apple Music Dolby Atmos Compatible With All AirPods Models and Other Headphones

Apple today announced that starting in June, Apple Music subscribers will have access to higher quality Lossless audio streaming, as well as Dolby Atmos, which replicates an immersive audio experience.

AirPods Lineup Feature Triad
Despite Spatial Audio for movies and TV shows being only available on the AirPods Pro and AirPods Max, Dolby Atmos for ‌Apple Music‌, which Apple describes as creating an "immersive audio format that enables musicians to mix music so it sounds like the instruments are all around you in space" will be compatible with all AirPods models as well as other headphones.

Apple says that Dolby Atmos will automatically be enabled for songs that support it with all AirPods and BeatsX, Beats Solo3 Wireless, Beats Studio3, Powerbeats3 Wireless, Beats Flex, Powerbeats Pro, and Beats Solo Pro headphones. Users using other branded headphones will need to enable it manually.

Apple Music subscribers using the latest version of Apple Music on iPhone, iPad, Mac, and Apple TV7 can listen to thousands of Dolby Atmos music tracks using any headphones. When you listen with compatible Apple or Beats headphones, Dolby Atmos music plays back automatically when available for a song. For other headphones, go to Settings > Music > Audio and set Dolby Atmos to Always On. You can also hear Dolby Atmos music using the built‑in speakers on a compatible iPhone, iPad, MacBook Pro, or HomePod, or by connecting your Apple TV 4K to a compatible TV or audiovisual receiver.

Apple says that thousands of songs will support both lossless and Dolby Atmos audio at launch, with new songs being added "regularly."

Related Roundups: AirPods 3, AirPods Max, AirPods Pro
Related Forum: AirPods

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Top Rated Comments

Ultimateomega Avatar
42 months ago

This is such a joke-
First of all Dolby atmos is meant for surround sound systems with multiple speakers above and around NOT for soundbars and headphones-yes, they are on it-only because there is licensing and sales money to be made. But otherwise this is a poor mans atmos and is just marketing

secondly-the area spatial audio would matter most is for the Apple TV-NOT Apple music

Bring to the Apple TV and stop with this other filler
Always funny seeing people finding ways to be negative about a feature that is no additional cost to the consumer….

I have a Sonos surround sound system. Sonos Arc Sound bar which has 2 atmos height speakers built in, 2x Sonos One’s for rear surrounds and the Sonos sub. All with eARC for uncompressed hi-res Dolby Atmos. And it actually does well in representing the ‘height’ for me in my flat with a small living room. YMMV depending on your space of course.

Obviously it wont match physical speakers built in to the roof but dismissing it as a joke obviously means you’ve not actually heard some of the newer sound bars that have released.

At least you get the choice to just not use the feature. Everyone else that would like to can try it and enjoy it!
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)
alexjholland Avatar
42 months ago

Do you mean Apple TV 4K via headphones/AirPods? Unfortunately it won’t be via headphones (eg AirPods Max) judging by this, just via speakers, like existing Dolby Atmos support for tv & movies. I really want spatial audio support via ATV4K (old or new) with AirPods Max, I use them a lot in the wee hours when the world (and my neighbours chiefly!) sleep.


“You can also hear Dolby Atmos music using the built‑in speakers on a compatible ‌iPhone‌, ‌iPad‌, MacBook Pro, or HomePod ('https://www.macrumors.com/roundup/homepod/'), or by connecting your Apple TV ('https://www.macrumors.com/roundup/apple-tv/') 4K to a compatible TV or audiovisual receiver.”
I have zero interest in spatial audio for films via headphones until it's available on Apple TV.

Watching films on a phone or tablet is nothing like a big screen.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
DSquiz Avatar
42 months ago
Is this only for headphones or will it work if you have a Dolby Atmos surround sound system?

Edit: Looks like I missed the article answering my question (and now I'm even more excited):
"You can also hear Dolby Atmos music using the built‑in speakers on a compatible iPhone, iPad, MacBook Pro, or HomePod, or by connecting your Apple TV 4K to a compatible TV or audiovisual receiver."
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
photogpab Avatar
42 months ago
would the spatial audio work with my Sony WH-1000XM4 headphones?
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Vangeli Avatar
42 months ago

I'm not sure that would work for music unless they want an arena live act effect. Because if you turn your head to the right everything that was on a side now is projected behind and in front of your head. That would be just weird.
It all depends on how artists/engineers want to mix their music.

That said, concerts with Atmos? I want that to happen. Being able to face the crowd and have such a more immersive atmosphere would be amazing.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
DSquiz Avatar
42 months ago

Could someone explain this to me?

Will I get an "Dolby Atmos-like" experience even when I only have a 2.0 stereo setup (using with my apple tv4k) ?
Atmos is an enhanced form of surround sound where you don't just have back channels but "height" also. This is created with speakers above you or upfiring speakers (speakers that point upwards and bounce sound off the ceiling). For AppleTV you need a specific receiver with a 7 or 9 speaker setup.

Atmos can also be created using headphones designed for it (AirPods Pro and Max etc).
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)