When Carl Sagan wrote Contact, he framed it in the context of a feature film, and it shows. Where most sci-fi flicks rely on wiz-bang special effects and evil alien invaders, this one is story-driven and has a firm grasp on real science. The video encode is solid, but it's the Dolby TrueHD 5.1 soundtrack that steals the show with an immersive surround experience, first-rate frequency response, and superlative dynamic range.

A view from above

  • Chapter 1, 00:00:36
  • Surround imaging
  • As the film opens, we are blessed with a view of Earth from space and bombarded by the multitude of radio waves expanding away from our planet. As the "camera" pulls back, we travel back in time to the sounds of yesteryear, which get older and older the farther we travel from Earth. This is a wonderful effect that encompasses the entire surround soundfield.


  • Chapter 28, 01:36:22
  • Dynamic range, frequency response, surround imaging
  • As the alien-inspired structure collapses, listen to the explosion as it travels toward the control room and how the debris scatters throughout the soundstage.

Okay to go

  • Chapter 33, 01:55:44
  • Dynamics, surround imaging
  • As Ellie drops into the wormhole, prepare to be bombarded with a plethora of audio effects from every direction. Space Mountain doesn't come close to this E-ticket ride!

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