FIX: Dolby Atmos not working in Windows 10/11
Dolby Atmos is a new surround sound technology that is designed to make your audio listening experience better on a wide range of devices, including Windows 10/11 devices. In this post, we’ll tell you how to fix Dolby Atmos not working in Windows 10/11?
If you have this problem, you can try the solutions below in no particular order to see if they help.
- Update sound drivers
- Rollback sound drivers
- Run the built-in sound troubleshooter
- Enable Exclusive mode options
- Run downloadable troubleshooter
- Reconfigure Dolby Atmos for your device or try Sonic
- Update Windows
Let’s take a look at the description of the process involved concerning each of the listed solutions.
How To Fix Dolby Atmos not working on Windows 10/11
Before you try any of the solutions below, check for updates and install any available bits on your Windows 11/10 device. Then check to see if Dolby Atmos works as it should.
Method 1. Update sound drivers
Right-click on the Start menu and select Device Manager from the Power User menu.
Expand the Sound, video, and game controllers section.
Right-click both onboard sound device and third-party device and select Update drivers.
In the Notification area, right-click on the Sound icon and select Spatial Sound (Dolby Atmos for Headphones). If you haven’t done so before, simply follow the on-screen directions.
Play supported content and look for (listen to) changes in the way it looks or sounds.
They are the main reason things go bad. It’s likely that you already know that there are usually two sound devices with their own jobs and drivers to help them work.
There is a built-in sound system and a third-party one. People who use Windows 10 are used to having automatic driver updates, but they often make things even worse.
As a result, it looks like some versions of both the onboard sound device and the third-party device (Realtek, VIA, ATI) won’t work with Dolby Atmos and Spatial Sound as well as they should.
Try updating your sound driver first. Then, try enabling Dolby Atmos (Spatial sound) and see if that helps.
If you don’t know how to do this on your Windows 10, make sure you get an automated solution that can do this for you.
We like Driver Easy because it is very easy to use and it doesn’t use a lot of system resources. If you want to make sure your drivers are always updated and fixed, you can use this.
Method 2. Rollback sound drivers/stick with native drivers
Go to Device Manager.
Expand the Sound, video, and game controllers section, then right-click both devices, respectively, and click Properties.
Go to the Driver tab, click Roll Back driver.
If that doesn’t work, go back and right-click on the third-party sound device and remove it.
Reboot your system and re-enable Spatial sound.
If the first step didn’t help at all, we suggest taking a completely different one. In fact, the most recent version of the driver might not be the best for the job.
Try to roll back the driver on all of your sound devices and see if there are any changes.
The problem will be solved if you roll back your driver. If that doesn’t work, you will have to stop Windows from automatically updating the driver in the future.
If that doesn’t work, you should turn off the third-party sound device and only use the onboard sound.
Method 3. Run the built-in sound troubleshooter
Open Settings by pressing Windows I.
Select Update Security.
In the left pane, click Troubleshoot.
A troubleshooter called “Playing Audio” is highlighted. You can then click to run it.
After the troubleshooter is done with its job, restart your PC.
When you open the Sound icon, go to Spatial sound, and try to turn on Dolby Atmos for the first time again.
The Windows Troubleshooter for Playing Audio should help with some minor problems, especially those caused by updates.
Method 4. Enable Exclusive mode options
Right-click on the Sound icon in the Notification area and choose Playback devices from the drop-down menu that pops up.
Right-click on your default Playback device and go to Properties, then click OK.
Before you do anything else, go to the Spatial sound tab and make sure Dolby Atmos for headphones is turned on.
When you’re in Exclusive mode, make sure that both Allow applications to take exclusive control of this device and Give exclusive application priority are checked.
Check to see if Spatial sound features are working now or if they have changed.
Some third-party apps for playing and re-playing audio tend to take control of things on their own, rather than relying on system resources.
As of now, Windows Sonic is built into the Windows platform. Dolby Atmos, on the other hand, is a tool that was bought from a third-party source.
So, make sure that the Exclusive mode, which lets you use third-party tools, is on. Check to see if these options are turned on before moving on to the next steps.
Method 5. Run downloadable troubleshooter
Go to this link download the Easy Fix Sound troubleshooter.
Run the troubleshooter and wait for it to fix (hopefully) any sound problems that it might have.
Take a look at Dolby Atmos/Spatial Sound again after you restart your PC.
If the built-in troubleshooter wasn’t able to solve the problem at hand, we suggest downloading a troubleshooter that might be better for the job.
There are a lot of easy-to-use troubleshooting tools made by Microsoft. They are, in general, like the built-in troubleshooting tools.
Method 6. Reconfigure Dolby Atmos for your device or try Sonic
Plug in your headphones, bud headphones, or earphones. If you’re setting up a home theater, you should also plug it in.
Playback device opens when you right-click Sound icon in the Notification Area and go to “Playback device.”
Right-click on your default playback device and click Properties.
Go to the Spatial sound tab.
Choose Dolby Atmos from the drop-down menu and you should be taken to Microsoft Store right away.
Install Dolby Access application and run it.
Choose whether to set up headphones or a home theater.
Click on Begin setup.
Select Configure PC settings and choose Atmos for Headphones from the drop-down menu.
Take a look at some demos and listen for differences in the sound.
Как правильно настроить Dolby Atmos for Headphones (для наушников)
Windows Sonic is a built-in feature that you can’t change or remove. Thus, the problem is likely to be somewhere in the system.
However, Dolby Atmos is a third-party service that can only be bought through the Microsoft Store. So, you can try to change it and try again.
Also, make sure that you’re playing content that works well with this technology. The Dolby Atmos-enabled hardware is by far the best at running the software.
If you can’t use Dolby Atmos, maybe the Windows alternative for spatial sound, Windows Sonic, will be enough for you to get the job done.
Right-click on the Sound icon in the Notification area and select Playback device.
Right-click on your default playback device and click Properties.
Go the Spatial sound tab.
Select Windows Sonic from the drop-down menu and confirm changes.
Method 7. Update Windows
Open Settings by pressing Windows key I.
Select Update Security.
Under the Windows Update, click on the Check for updates button to see if there are any new updates.
Check for updates and be patient, if none of the previous steps worked to fix your Dolby Atmos/Spatial sound.
As the case has shown on other occasions, everything worked out after a new update.
As you already know, Windows 10 users get new software updates without having to ask. But, just in case, you can try to look for updates on your own.
That should work. Send a report ticket to Microsoft and Dolby if you can’t figure out how to solve the problem at hand.
In this video, I will show you how to fix Dolby Atmos not working in Windows 10:
Dolby Atmos/Spatial sound problems: If you have any questions or other ideas for how to fix them, post them in the Комментарии и мнения владельцев below.
With Dolby Access, you’ll be able to control the sound quality as you listen to your multimedia, as it will provide you with software for managing your hardware, such as speakers and other devices.
Today, the world of audio devices is getting broader and broader. They’re also getting increasingly advanced because they offer you some Smart features that are still only making the market. And controlling these features might be challenging if you don’t have the right software to back it up, allowing you to use the full capabilities.
With Dolby Access, you can control the sound from your audio devices. You’ll also be able to use the Dolby Atmos trial, a powerful piece of software that will help you get the most out of your surround sound devices.
You’ll be able to enhance and completely tailor your experience to your preferences with this tool.
Change the Sounds You Hear
First, you’ll need to download and install it, although you’ll also need to download and install Dolby Atmos. Then, you’ll be able to change your headphones and speakers. You can do that in the panel called “Speaker properties”.
This application will give you access to some new and unique ways to hear sounds. You’ll be able to experience that first-hand, as the app will allow you to listen to what you’ve done with the changes by listening to the test files.
These files are either videos or simply music, which are made to showcase the full power of Dolby Atmos and its features.
Get a New Level of Immersion
The sound can change your experience with the media you watch completely. And with this application, you’ll get a completely new and unique experience.
You’ll change all aspects of the sound you listen to in the app and fine-tune the preferences.
Dolby Access is an application that will enable you to change the sounds from your sound devices and use Dolby Atmos.
Everything you need to know about Dolby Atmos for PC, Xbox, and more
Dolby Atmos is a type of surround sound that brings many improvements over standard audio.
When investing in premium entertainment systems, there are several high-end features being offered by manufacturers. While 4K, HDR, and Dolby Vision are among those delivering significant visual enhancements, sound is still a crucial component of any movie or video game. Dolby Atmos is an increasingly popular addition, which promises to offer one of the best overall audio experiences available today. Here’s how Dolby Atmos works and how you can get it.
What is Dolby Atmos?
Dolby Atmos is a type of surround sound technology developed by Dolby Laboratories, which aims to produce one of the most immersive audio experiences available on the market today. When combined with Dolby Vision — the visual technology counterpart — you get Dolby Cinema.
Atmos technology has gained a ton of traction over the last few years as a high-end solution. Though it was first unveiled at a cinema in 2012, it’s now available in the home, on premium mobile devices, and (still) in commercial cinemas. Ultimately, Dolby Atmos aims to deliver true 3D audio, providing accurate positioning, depth, and detail through supported content.
How does Dolby Atmos work?
While its implementation can vary, Dolby Atmos has some key traits to distinguish it from other experiences. The most notable of these is the object-based technology driving Atmos, which allows files to output sound within a virtual three-dimensional space. By mapping sound to a 3D area, objects can be positioned and moved precisely within soundscapes. Supporting up to 128 individual channels, creators have the freedom to track a vast number of sources.
Unlike traditional 5.1 and 7.1 systems, where sounds are restricted to fixed channels and positioning, Dolby Atmos dynamically configures individual speaker outputs as the content plays. With this approach, audio is rendered in real time and interpreted for the speaker setup.
This object-based technology also introduces vertical height to audio, by allowing overhead speakers to be utilized. Whether a helicopter flying overhead, a car racing by or simply creating an enveloping environment, Dolby Atmos 3D mapping can offer distinct positioning and clarity. With Atmos enabled, you’re going to get a much closer representation of what the content’s sound engineers want you to hear.
How can I experience Dolby Atmos?
One of the other beneficial traits of Dolby Atmos is its adaptability, with different form factors which provide varying levels of audio quality. Factoring in sounds and their positional data, setups can scale the Dolby Atmos output, regardless of the limitations of any particular configuration.
Whether experienced through a weak mobile speaker or a top-of-the-line theater, the Atmos technology attempts to harvest the best results from the hardware in use. This allows content to easily translate between professional systems, home setups, and other supported speaker systems.
These are the most common ways consumers can experience Dolby Atmos today.
Dolby Atmos commercial usage
To witness Dolby Atmos firsthand today, one of the best (and cheapest) experiences you’ll find is at a cinema. Select movie theaters across the world have been equipped with additional surround and overhead speakers and offer full support for the technology.
However, between a high initial setup cost and lack of supported content, the current return on investment leaves many companies cautious in rolling out the required hardware. Other examples of commercial usage include Ministry of Sound’s London-based club, which uses Dolby Atmos to power a 64-speaker, 22-channel setup.
Dolby currently offers a tool on their website to search for cinemas utilizing the company’s technologies. If living in a relatively large city, this can be used to track down cinemas that support Dolby Atmos near you.
Dolby Atmos in the home
While you won’t be getting the same quality as a full cinema Dolby Atmos setup without spending an astronomical amount of cash, it’s still possible to achieve similar results in the home. A range of consumer hardware is already widely available in various forms, even if you’ll likely be paying a premium price tag. Here’s a brief overview of the hardware required to get a home theater setup equipped with Dolby Atmos technology.
- The one essential investment for a Dolby Atmos experience in the home is an audio/video (AV) receiver which supports the technology. Atmos-enabled AV receivers aren’t hard to come by nowadays and don’t come at a notably higher price point either.
- Surround speakers are also a major component of a Dolby Atmos setup; however, depending on your current entertainment center, the cost can vary. Atmos builds on the existing technology of 5.1, 7.1, and 9.1 systems, meaning your existing speakers can be utilized as a part of your setup with a compatible AV receiver. Up to 34 speakers can be supported with Atmos home systems (even if that sounds a little overkill.)
- To get the most out of Atmos, you’ll also want overhead speakers integrated into your home setup. Provided you’re happy climbing up to the ceiling and securing speakers on your ceiling, this can be an effective solution. If mounting multiple speakers on your ceiling seems a little complex, specially designed Dolby Atmos hardware is also available. Taking advantage of upward-facing speakers, these rebound sounds from the ceiling to emulate the effect of dedicated overhead loudspeakers.
- If using a Blu-ray player to power your entertainment center, there’s no need to upgrade. Most existing Blu-ray players can support a Dolby Atmos output and don’t require an “Atmos-enabled” tag. Microsoft’s Xbox One X|S and Xbox Series X|S consoles also support Dolby Atmos, through both supported games and videos.
- TVs have jumped onto the Atmos trend, including those from LG, Sony, TCL, and Hisense. The built-in speakers do a decent job of providing a boosted audio experience, at least compared to what you usually expect from stereo TV speakers.
For those looking for a much simpler setup process, dedicated Dolby Atmos soundbars are a much more minimal, but equally effective hardware route. Integrating upward-firing speakers into a traditional sound bar, a single self-contained unit can emulate the vertical height and depth of Dolby Atmos technology. There are also Dolby Atmos headphones that make a great impression while gaming. The Xbox Wireless Headset is a prime example.
How To Install Fix Dolby Atmos In Windows 11
Dolby Atmos is a surround sound-enhancing format that can take your audio experience to another level. It can be installed on your Windows PC using the Dolby Access app. Learn how to install and troubleshoot it if need be.
If you are an audiophile, then you would know the importance of Dolby Atmos. It enhances your spatial sound experience and takes it to another level, provided that you have the right hardware or it.
If you’ve bought a surround sound system for your home theater or are planning on getting one, then you best ought to prepare your Windows 11 PC to have the best sound experience from the very beginning.
In this article, we have discussed how to install Dolby Atmos on your Windows PC, or how to fix issues with it if you already have it installed.
- What is Dolby Atmos
- How to Install Dolby Atmos on Windows
- Install Dolby Access
- Activate Dolby Atmos
- From Settings App
- From Sound Settings
- Run Audio Troubleshooter
- Update Sound Driver
- Enable Exclusive Mode
- Reset Dolby Access
- Check License for Dolby Atmos
- Is Dolby Atmos free to use?
- What does Dolby Atmos do?
- How to test Dolby Atmos?
- How many speakers are needed for Dolby Atmos?
What is Dolby Atmos
Dolby Atmos is a virtual technology developed by Dolby Laboratories that adds height and depth to the existing 7.1 audio setups. In simple words, using Dolby Atmos makes the user seem like the audio sounds are coming from all directions, making it a 3D experience.
The Dolby Atmos technology was initially introduced to the theater and cinema industry. However, due to such high demands, it was later published for the public to be used as a domestic product.
Although Dolby Atmos is free to use, a one-time license needs to be purchased. However, you can have a 7-day free trial before making the purchase.
If you want to install and set up Dolby Atmos on your system then you do not need to purchase any supporting or specialized hardware. It can work on top of your current setup. However, it is advisable to use hardware that supports surround sound, like a 7.1 speaker system, or headphones that support surround sound.
Let us now continue to see how to install it on your PC.
How to Install Dolby Atmos on Windows
Dolby Atmos can be installed on your Windows computer through the “Dolby Access” app available on Microsoft Store. However, once it is installed, you need to set it up through the app as well as your Windows setting.
Install Dolby Access
Follow these steps to install Dolby Access on your PC:
- Open the Dolby Access Microsoft Store page in any web browser and click Get in Store app.
- If asked for permission, click Open Microsoft Store.
- The Microsoft Store app will now open. Click Get app.
- The app will now begin downloading and installing. When completed, run the Dolby Access app.
- Inside the Dolby Access app, click Next.
- On the next page, click Get started.
- Now you must choose whether to purchase a license for Dolby Atmos or try it for free. Take your pick and then follow the on-screen instructions.
- You will now be asked to install “Dolby Atmos for Headphones” if any headphones are connected. Click Get.
- On the next screen, confirm your connected device and click Continue.
- You are now ready to experience Dolby Atmos, but not quite. Click Experience now.
Your connected headphones are now ready to experience Dolby Atmos. However, a little tweaking still needs to be done inside the Windows Settings app, which is discussed in the section below.
However, if you want to set up your home theater system, click on the “Dolby Atmos for home theater” button and follow the on-screen instructions.
Now that Dolby Atmos is installed, you must activate it on your preferred sound output device (headphones or home theater).
Activate Dolby Atmos
Now, you must activate Dolby Atmos for your output device’s spatial sound qualities for an immersive audio experience. That can be done in 2 ways.
Dolby Access App Not Working Fix Windows 11/10 [Tutorial]
From Settings App
Settings app System Sound
From Sound Settings
- Open the Sound applet by typing in mmsys.cpl in the Run Command box.
- Here, under the Playback tab, select the output audio device and then click Properties.
- Inside the Properties window, switch to the Spatial sound tab, and then select Dolby Atmos for Headphones from the drop-down menu under Spatial sound format. Click Apply and Ok when done.
You have now successfully enabled Dolby Atmos on your headphones/theater system. You may now continue to experience the best audio quality available to the domestic user.
However, if you have performed the steps above and had no impact on the audio quality, there might be some issues with your audio drivers or setup. Let us see how to fix that.
How to Fix Dolby Atmos on Windows
There can be a number of issues why Dolby Atmos is not working on your Windows PC which include the following:
- An outdated or corrupted sound driver.
- The exclusive-control mode is disabled.
- The Dolby Access app is missing or corrupted.
- The license for Dolby Access has expired.
Below you’ll find several solutions to fix the problem. After performing them, you can check if the “Dolby Atmos” option is visible again in your Sound settings and is working again.
Run Audio Troubleshooter
The Windows OS comes with built-in troubleshooters that automatically scan and detect any issues with the associated hardware or software. Here is how to run the audio troubleshooter in Windows 11:
Navigate to the following:
Settings app System Troubleshoot Other troubleshooters
Now check if Dolby Atmos is working on your PC. If not, then there are still a few things you can do.
Update Sound Driver
Attempt to update your sound driver to the latest available version, as this might fix the issues with Dolby Atmos. Here is how:
- Open the Device Manager by typing in devmgmt.msc in the Run Command box.
- Now expand “Sound, video and game controllers” by clicking on it.
- Now right-click on the device you want to have the Dolby Atmos format on and then click Update Driver from the context menu.
- In the popup window, click Search automatically for drivers.
- The wizard will attempt to search for new drivers online and install the latest one available. Once installed, close the wizard. However, if you find that the latest driver is already installed, then we suggest that you check for the latest driver on the OEMs website and install it manually, or reinstall the current driver.
Once the driver has been updated/reinstalled, check to see if Dolby Atmos is now working. If it isn’t then continue to perform the remaining possible solutions.
Enable Exclusive Mode
It may be possible that the audio output device is being shared by multiple apps and programs, causing an issue with Dolby Atmos. In this case, you must ensure that you allow exclusive control of this device to apps, and give those apps precedence over the others. Follow these steps to enable Exclusive Mode:
- Open the Sound applet by typing in mmsys.cpl in the Run Command box.
- In the Playback tab, click on the output audio device and then click Properties.
- From the Properties window, switch to the Advanced tab. Under the Exclusive Mode section, check both the boxes beside “Allow applications to take exclusive control of this device” and “Give exclusive mode applications priority.” Then click Apply and Ok.
Now that Exclusive Mode is enabled, check to see if Dolby Atmos is now functional.
Reset Dolby Access
As we mentioned earlier, there is a possibility that there is something wrong with the Dolby Access app which is preventing Dolby Atmos from functioning correctly. In this case, try resetting the Dolby Access app using these steps:
Navigate to the following:
Settings app Apps Installed apps
Now check to see if this resolved the issue for you.
Check License for Dolby Atmos
It may be possible that your Dolby Access trial has ended and now you must purchase a license for it for Dolby Atmos to work. Here is how to check whether the license for Dolby Atmos has expired or not:
Navigate to the following:
Settings app System Sound
If the expiry date has surpassed, then you must now purchase a license for it. You can purchase a license for Dolby Atmos through the Dolby Access app.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Is Dolby Atmos free to use?
For domestic users and home theaters, you must make a one-time licensing payment of only USD 15. Once the license is purchased, you can use it on any device by associating your account.
What does Dolby Atmos do?
Dolby Atmos is a surround sound format that builds on top of your existing surround speakers to give an immersive 3D sound experience. It is ideal for home theaters and headphones that support surround sound.
How to test Dolby Atmos?
You can find high-quality audio files and streams online (including YouTube) and play spatial sounds to check and test your Dolby Atmos setup.
How many speakers are needed for Dolby Atmos?
Dolby Atmos can even work with one or two speakers, provided that they support it. However, it is suggested that you use a minimum of 4 speakers with Dolby Atmos. That said, the more speakers you use, the better the experience. People usually tend to use it with a 7.1 surround sound setup for the best experience.