Spatial audio vs spatial “stereo”

I’m keeping this thread separate from another bug report thread related to the experimental drivers and their interaction with the TVOS15 spatial audio support.

This is a different issue related to spatial audio vs spatial stereo.

On the channels beta release with the default audio driver, there is no spatial audio support. I’m using latest TestFlight release and latest server prerelease.

When the experimental audio driver is enabled, I see something called “spatial stereo”. However, this is enabled for both multichannel Dolby digital material as well as stereo source material. However, I think TVOS in the channels app is only recognizing the material (even multichannel material) as stereo and that is why the OS within channels is only offering a “spatial stereo” experience and not the “spatial audio” multichannel experience.

I’ve verified on my setup that in other apps with TVOS15, I’m getting full spatial audio.

Spatial Audio is supported in the latest TestFlight beta with the Experimental audio driver. Please see BETA: Audio improvements for Apple TV and iPhone/iPad and report your results there.

@tmm1 @maddox

Hi folks. I just upgraded to Tvos15.4 today. I was hoping that apple finally added IR volume control to the airpods which they didnt.

However, apple put a new user interface for spatial audio that is confusing the heck out of me and probably other channels users as well.

They now have a “spatial stereo” button and it appears this button interacts with multichannel spatial audio buttons. Whenever you toggle multichannel spatial audio off and back on, it defaults to spatial stereo being turned back on. This is obviously an apple bug/feature, but impacts channels folks who suddenly have head tracking turned on when watching stereo material on all the TVE stations.

Channels is still working with multichannel audio, despite the weird way apple chose to do the user interface.

However, i did discover that if you pause the program material playing on channels you have to completely back out of the spatial audio menu in the ATV control panel in order to play again. Not very useful if you are testing your audio out.

This happens in plex as well (where its even worse and seemingly random).

Have you folks played with the new spatial audio UI in 15.4?
When a UI says “multichannel” and “stereo” at the same time that is very confusing.


Apple also changed a default system setting to “enable loudness” protection. The AGC or compression they use is terrible and ive never had it enabled. However, i discovered in 15.4 they enable it by default, and it could cause channels to sound really sucky at times, as well as other material on different apps. . Its a system wide setting that i immediately noticed when listening to music videos in channels. Horrendous use of compression.