For the last few years, I haven't felt my age watching shows and films at home on streaming services. Like most people, I have opted to watch almost everything with subtitles. For one reason or another, films are sound mixed to optimize the viewing experience for those with better sound systems than a single soundbar. If you don't have the ideal system, then certain aspects of film like dialogue are incoherent while explosions and fight sequences make you quickly reach for the remote to turn down the sound.
Whether you do or do not use subtitles like me, you have to agree that there are a lot of lines of dialogue that we just can't hear.
Amazon Prime Video is attempted to solve this problem by introducing a new feature: Dialogue Boost.
Nicole Kidman as Lucille Ball in 'Being the Ricardos'Credit: Amazon Studios
What is Dialogue Boost on Amazon Prime Video?
According to Variety, Dialogue Boost will allow "viewers to increase the volume of dialogue relative to background music and effects." This feature is the first of its kind and has an AI-based approach that delivers a targeted enhancement to portions of dialogue rather than a general amplification. So feel a sense of peace when turning on the Dialogue Boost because those screaming matches between characters won't rupture your eardrums but those quiet, tender moments will be more clear.
“At Prime Video, we are committed to building an inclusive, equitable, and enjoyable streaming experience for all our customers,” said Raf Soltanovich, VP of technology at Prime Video and Amazon Studios. “Our library of captioned and audio-described content continues to grow, and by leveraging our technological capabilities to create industry-first innovations like Dialogue Boost, we are taking another step to create a more accessible streaming experience.”
'Harlem'Credit: Amazon Studios
Where to Find Dialogue Boost on Prime Video
Dialogue Boost is still in its early days and will be available on limited Prime Video films and TV shows. You can find this feature on select English-languages Amazon originals like The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, Tom Clancy's Jack Ryan, Harlem, The Big Sick, Being the Ricardos, and Beautiful Boy. Amazon hopes to add Dialogue Boost support for more titles later in the year.
To find Dialogue Boost on your Prime Video, the detail page for a show or film will tell you whether or not Dialogue Boost is available for that title. If it is, you can go into the title's settings, click on the audio and subtitles drop-down menu, and choose which level of Dialogue Boost you would like.
The future of streaming has just made a major improvement. While filmmakers still need to support sound teams during production to ensure that sound is being captured and preserved, it is nice to finally have the choice to turn off subtitles while watching already-released titles.
Let us know what you think of Dialogue Boost on Prime Video in the comments!