Netflix Introduces Entirely New Way to Enjoy ‘Stranger Things’ and Other Big Titles: Here’s How

by Craig Garrett

Netflix is giving its customers another reason to stay home instead of heading to the theaters by providing an immersive sound experience. On all platforms, Netflix has now begun to enable spatial audio this week. On all devices, the new function should give a more immersive surround sound experience. It does not need surround sound speakers or high-end home theater equipment.

For select original content, Netflix has announced that it will begin to provide spatial audio. Customers should be able to hear better, and the sound should seem more immersive. Particularly while listening to a TV program or film with headphones. Netflix has partnered with Sennheiser to create a multi-speaker surround sound conversion. To use this, you don’t need anything new or a real surround system. Netflix claims that spatial audio “is compatible with all devices, all streaming plans, and does not require surround sound speakers or home theater equipment.”

“Netflix spatial audio helps to translate the cinematic experience of immersive audio to any stereo, so the work creators do to bring you into the story happens no matter what device you use to watch Netflix,” the streaming service said in a blog post. There’s a small number of films supporting the new audio experience on day one, but you may search for “spatial audio” in the Netflix search bar to see what’s available.

More details about Netflix’s Spatial Audio

The regular stereo output will be replaced by Sennheiser’s Ambeo 2-Channel Spatial Audio on supported material. On its website, Sennheiser goes through how it’s done. “While Ambeo 2-Channel Spatial Audio is not a separate mix, creators still have granular control over spatialization. Mixers can define the amount of Ambeo processing for each group separately. Re-recording mixers can dial in the desired amount of processing, from standard stereo mixdown up to full Ambeo effect and anywhere in-between. Dialogue can be left untouched, while maximum spatialization can be applied to ambiance and sound effects.”

For people who have a full-fledged Atmos system in their living room, Netflix’s spatial audio will offer them no new or different experience than they had previously. However, it may be a worthwhile upgrade when viewing your entertainment on the move. This is similar to what you get if you’ve ever used AirPods’ spatial audio while watching a movie or TV show on a compatible app.

Beginning July 7, Netflix began incorporating spatial audio into its content. Right now, there are 27 titles available in the format. Some of these titles are Stranger Things, The Witcher, and Locke & Key. Also included is Red Notice, with Dwayne Johnson, Gal Gadot, and Ryan Reynolds. The Fear Street trilogy is another example of content that contains spatial audio.

“This magical combination of sight and sound will bring viewers closer to the story”, the streaming service detailed.” We’re excited to add this capability to other features we support. [Such as] 4K, HDR, Dolby Atmos, and Netflix Calibrated Mode,” the company elaborated.

Customers may discover additional titles by searching for “spatial audio” in the Netflix search bar.