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  1. #1

    Man of Steel Soundtrack Features DTS Headphone:X Mix

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    If you are a fan of using headphones, here is some news that might be of interest. DTS, the company behind DTS and DTS-Master Audio codecs, has announced a new sound processing codec, specifically for use with headphones.

    DTS Headphone:X simulates a three-dimensional multichannel audio environment of the soundtrack’s original mixing stage, producing a home theater surround sound experience using a simple pair of headphones. The Headphone:X technology is available, for the first time, on the Man of Steel motion picturesoundtrack’s limited deluxe edition.

    Featuring original music by composer Hans Zimmer, the CD version of the Man of Steel limited deluxe edition soundtrack, comes with Zimmer’s Z+ Music app. Through this app, owners can download all 24 tracks with DTS Headphone:X encoded.

    Here's part of the press release that I just read.
    CALABASAS, Calif. (June 11, 2013) – DTS, Inc. (Nasdaq: DTSI), a leader in high-definition audio solutions and audio enhancement technologies, today announced that the Man of Steel: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack (limited deluxe edition), released by WaterTower Music, featuring original music from Academy Award, Grammy and Golden Globe-winning composer Hans Zimmer, will be the first title to feature a DTS Headphone:X™ audio mix, allowing listeners to hear the score precisely as Zimmer intended it to sound. Man of Steel fans who purchase the CD version of the deluxe edition will have the opportunity to download all 24 tracks in DTS Headphone:X via Zimmer’s Z+ Music app.

    “With the Man of Steel soundtrack, I wanted to try something new and give fans the opportunity to connect with characters and completely immerse themselves in the emotion and action of the movie in a way that's never been done before,” said Zimmer. “I think DTS Headphone:X is an incredible tool for putting the listener directly into my chair, allowing them to hear the way the music was actually written. Every bit of the music is accurately recreated, allowing fans to hear all elements of the soundtrack, exactly as I heard it while producing it.”

    DTS Headphone:X is an advanced new technology that enables content producers to capture the acoustics of a high quality audio production studio for faithful reproduction on consumer-end products. The technology externalizes and expands sound, so instead of listeners perceiving that the sound is inside their head, as with traditional headphone listening, they experience it as coming from high quality loudspeakers located some distance around them. With benefits for both producers and consumers, DTS Headphone:X presents a whole new way to enjoy entertainment content over headphones.

    “Hans Zimmer is known for his ability to produce soundtracks utilizing methods outside the bounds of the ordinary, and we believe his creativity with the Man of Steel score will be preserved and presented with precision to those who listen to it in DTS Headphone:X,” said Geir Skaaden, senior vice president of products and platforms, DTS, Inc. “Unlike any audio technology preceding it, DTS Headphone:X is able to maintain the creator’s intent by precisely reproducing the acoustic environment in which the score was mixed over the listener’s headphones or earbuds, complete with all audio nuances and directional characteristics.”

    About Hans Zimmer:
    Hans Zimmer has scored more than 100 films, which have, combined, grossed over 19.6 billion dollars at the worldwide box office. He has been honored with an Academy Award, two Golden Globes, three Grammys, an American Music Award, and a Tony Award. In 2003, ASCAP presented him with the prestigious Henry Mancini award for Lifetime Achievement for his impressive and influential body of work. He also received his Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in December 2010. Some of his most recent works include the History Channel’s miniseries The Bible; the Christopher Nolan-directed films Inception, The Dark Knight and The Dark Knight Rises; and Guy Ritchie’s Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows. Upcoming titles include Ron Howard’s Rush, Gore Verbinski’s The Lone Rangerand Steve McQueen’s Twelve Years a Slave.

    The Man Of Steel: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack (limited deluxe edition), is on sale now through Amazon and iTunes. The Z+ Music app is now available via a free download to iPhone and iPad users, and will soon be available to Android users.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Lefisc's Avatar
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    Feb 2013
    New York

    Great stuff, thanks Tracy. I'll see the movie on Saturday and write a review.

  3. #3

    Hi guys!

    Hate to be a Debby Downer after such a long absence, but I have to say: I was sorely disappointed by the DTS Headphone:X version of the Man of Steel score. Love the score itself! Also loved the Headphone:X demo at CES. Heck, even the channel identification demo built into the app is spookily awesome.

    But the mix on the score itself is just awful. You can switch back and forth between non-DTS and DTS at the press of a button from within the app. The stereo version is severely brickwalled compared to even a 256 kbps vbr rip of the CD. Engage the surround processing, and the sound becomes bloated, smeared, bass- and midrange-heavy, with even more brickwalling, a nasty, processed sound -- and worst of all, NO SURROUND EFFECT! That's what blows my mind. The demos we heard at CES really created a convincing sense of space. the Man of Steel soundtrack sorta kinda maybe sounds like slightly enhanced stereo -- a little wider, but with no spatial depth at all.

    You can calibrate the app for IEMs, on-ears, and over-ear headphones, so I tried it with a pair of RBH EP2s, Bowers & Wilkins P3s, V-Moda M-100s, and even put an adapter on my Audeze LCD2s and gave it a listen through them. No matter the headphone, the DTS Headphone:X sounded like absolute mud.

    That said, the Deluxe Edition is still worth the coin, if only for the 30-minute "Hans' Sketchbook" bonus track. The steelbook packaging also rocks.

    Full review, if you're interested, but I've already spoiled all the relevant bits: Man of Steel Soundtrack Limited Deluxe Edition Review | HomeTechTell
    Wookiee in Charge of HomeTechTell
    Columnist, reviewer, and blogger for Residential Systems
    Reviewer for Home Theater Review and Home Theater Magazine

  4. #4

    Hey Dennis, you should pop in more often.

    Surprising news about the Man of Steel soundtrack and DTS Headphone:X. I am not a headphone guy, but I thought DTS Headphone:X was pretty cool when I first read about it.

    Man of Steel seems to have more advertising tied to it than any recent movie I can think of. If DTS is seriously trying to promote the new codec, they should have done their homework, with this release. Man of Steel is the first title that I know of that has DTS Headphone:X, and there can be only one "first".

  5. #5

    The Headphone:X technology in itself truly rocks! Don't get me wrong; the music and movie clips we heard at CES were incredibly convincing. There's just something startlingly wrong with the mix for the Man of Steel soundtrack.

    Thankfully, the CD itself is one of the best-sounding I've heard in ages. Oodles of dynamic range! Really nice detail. Put it through a good DAC, and it rocks your face off.

    But yeah, this release could well kill Headphone:X as a viable format. Which is a shame, because it has so much potential!
    Wookiee in Charge of HomeTechTell
    Columnist, reviewer, and blogger for Residential Systems
    Reviewer for Home Theater Review and Home Theater Magazine


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