Where would we be without Dolby Stereo? Sound has certainly come a long way since then, but when Dolby came along, it was a huge step forward for movies. Try to imagine any amazing blockbuster you loved growing up without it.
As Variety reports, Ray Dolby, the engineer who created Dolby sound, just passed away at the age of 80. The industry trade tells us that Dolby “pioneered the noise-reducing and surround sound technology used throughout the entertainment industry.” Again, try to imagine blockbusters without this.
As one source told the trade, Star Wars was the big movie that changed movie sound forever. (George Lucas insisted theaters redo their theaters to Dolby, or they couldn’t get the movie.) “[Ray] was so driven in creating a cleaner, quieter track,” this source says. “If Ray Dolby’s inventions had never happened, (the mix for Star Wars) could not have happened.” Another source said, “Dolby didn’t just create the playing field, it flattened it.”
So we at TGD praise Ray Dolby for taking movie sound to a whole new, incredible level, and for being the catalyst for THX and Atmos. We’re also certain there will continue to be more incredible sound innovations to come, with Dolby as the original benchmark.