Xbox One getting Dolby Atmos support in ear-splitting update

Worried your surround sound system might wake the downstairs neighbours? If you've the right audio kit and an Xbox One or Xbox One S, you might have to start considering those living above you too - Microsoft has just announced that overhead Dolby Atmos surround sound is soon to be supported by its slimline console.

Originally announced back in October, Xbox mouthpiece Larry "Major Nelson" Hryb revealed that those on the Xbox One Preview Program will be gaining access to Dolby Atmos options this week.

It's achieved via Bitstream pass-through. To activate Dolby Atmos support on your Xbox, head to the Blu-ray disc options screen and check where it says "let my receiver decode audio (beta)."

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Dolby Atmos support has been limited for gamers so far. Though Star Wars Battlefront was the first game to include the sound option, it was available only to players of the PC version of the first person shooter. Overwatch followed earlier this year, but it was restricted to use with compatible headphones only.

In terms of console support, Atmos has until now yet to feature, at least in gaming terms, due to its sizeable CPU requirements. It takes a lot of processing grunt to deliver as many as 128 discrete audio channels at once. Hopefully this announcement will open the floodgates for wider gaming support.

But if you've got a 4K-ready Xbox One S sitting under your telly and Dolby Atmos speakers pointed towards the heavens, you're now already set for a cinephile's dream Christmas. 

Gerald Lynch

Gerald is Editor-in-Chief of Previously he was the Executive Editor for TechRadar, taking care of the site's home cinema, gaming, smart home, entertainment and audio output. He loves gaming, but don't expect him to play with you unless your console is hooked up to a 4K HDR screen and a 7.1 surround system. Before TechRadar, Gerald was Editor of Gizmodo UK. He is also the author of 'Get Technology: Upgrade Your Future', published by Aurum Press.