Xbox Dolby Atmos for Headphone Was Not Configured (Easy Fix)

One of the best ways to get the most out of your gaming experience is by using Xbox Dolby Atmos for Headphones. This provides a realistic 3D audio experience, allowing you to pinpoint specific sounds in games and create an immersive atmosphere.

However, if this setting was not configured properly when you first set up your headset with the console, it can seem tricky to locate and enable.

Luckily, there are several options available that will allow you to get started with Dolby Atmos for Headphones quickly and easily. 

You can use spatial sound with any headset by using one of the following settings:

Windows Sonic for headphones, Dolby Atmos for headphones, or DTS Headphone X profiles.

  1. Windows Sonic is a spatial sound setting offered by Microsoft that can be used with any stereo headset for an immersive audio experience.
  2. DTS Headphone:X is an immersive audio format that provides object-based surround sound for a 3D listening experience.
  3. Dolby Atmos for Headphones is a premium headset audio format that works with all headsets.

Here are the step-by-step instructions for changing headset audio settings:

  1. Press the Xbox button to open the guide.
  2. Select “Profile & System” from the available options.
  3. Select “Settings“.
  4. Select “General” and then choose “Volume & Audio Output“.
  5. Under “Headset Audio“, select the desired audio format from the dropdown menu.
  6. Save your changes and exit the Guide window.

You can select either Windows Sonic or Dolby Atmos from the drop-down list under “Spatial Sound”.

If neither option is available then selecting “Dolby Access” will enable both Windows Sonic and Dolby Atmos at once.

Once selected, launch a game that supports spatial sounds such as Forza Horizon 4 or Gears 5, whatever game you choose should now be running with enhanced 3D sound through your headset.

Now, let’s move to the issue which arises when using Dolby Atmos on your Headphones like “Headphone was not configured“, can’t enable Dolby Atmos for Headphones, or Dolby not detecting Headphones.

Xbox Dolby Atmos for Headphones Was Not Configured (Solution)

I was met with a message stating that Dolby Atmos for Headphones had not been configured. The notification then told me I needed to have my headphones connected directly to an Xbox Controller or use optical audio, as well as change the relevant settings in order for it to work properly.

Dolby Atmos for Headphones was not configured error message

In order to get it configured or fix the issue for your Headphones, there are 3 main working solutions and I have outlined them below.

Dolby Not Detecting Headphones

After following the below solution I was able to successfully configure Dolby Atmos for Headphones and enjoy its impressive sound effects on my gaming console.

Method #1

In most cases, you might not need to proceed two further troubleshooting as the below method removes any glitch causing conflict between Dolby and your Headphones and establishes a new connection.

Note: This method also helps when you get the “You need to download Dolby Atmos for headphones” message.

You need to download Dolby Atmos for headphones Message
You need to download Dolby Atmos for headphones Message

Here’s what you need to do:

  1. Uninstall the Atmos App.
  2. Hold down the Power Button on your Xbox until it turns off, then Unplug your headset receiver.
  3. Wait 30 seconds, then turn the Xbox back on and download the Atmos App.
  4. Plug in your headset receiver.

If these steps didn’t work for you, proceed to further methods through which you will be able to get it sorted.

Method #2

A cache reset is a troubleshooting step that can help resolve issues with your Xbox console. It involves shutting off the power to the console, pressing the power button to discharge any remaining electricity, and then waiting for a couple of minutes before restoring the power and turning the console back on.

This method helps clear out the system cache, which can resolve any configuration issue with your headphones.

Here are the steps for a cache reset:

  1. Turn off your Xbox console.
  2. Disconnect the power cord from the back of the console.
  3. Press the power button on the front of the console to discharge any remaining electricity.
  4. Wait 2 minutes.
  5. Reconnect the power cord to the back of the console.
  6. Turn on the console.

It may take longer than usual for the console to boot up after a cache reset, but this process can often fix a variety of issues.

Method #3

Another fix for issues with Dolby Atmos not working on your Headphones is to change the power-on mode from “instant-on” to “energy-saving“. This also helps resolve problems such as Dolby Atmos getting stuck in a loop. 

Here are the steps to change the power-on mode:

  1. Go to your Xbox Settings.
  2. Navigate to the “Power & Startup” section.
  3. Under “Power Mode & Startup“, select “Power mode“.
  4. Choose “Energy-Saving” as the power mode.

Please note that changing the power-on mode to “energy-saving” may cause the console to take slightly longer to power on each time. However, it will help resolve issues with Dolby Atmos not functioning properly.

Bonus Troubleshooting

If you are experiencing no sound in your headset or external speakers while Dolby Atmos is active, you may need to switch back to stereo uncompressed in your audio settings.

Here are the steps to do this:

  1. Go to your Xbox settings.
  2. Navigate to the “Audio” section.
  3. Under “Audio output“, select “Audio output mode“.
  4. Choose “Stereo Uncompressed” as the audio output mode.

Switching to stereo uncompressed will restore sound to your headset or external speakers.

If you continue to experience issues, you may need to troubleshoot further by Contacting Xbox Support. They have chats, phone calls, emails, and everything as a contact medium.


If you are experiencing issues with Dolby Atmos for headphones, some potential causes could include compatibility issues with the device or audio source, problems with the setup or configuration, or issues with the audio source itself.

I hope with the above guide, you will be able to solve the most common issue “Dolby Atmos For Headphones Was Not Configured” reported by many users who use Headphones with Xbox as well as other common issues arising with Headphones Dolby Atmos setup.


How does Dolby Atmos work on Headphones?

Dolby Atmos uses algorithms to recreate the surround sound experience through the headphones by assigning specific audio channels to specific positions within a virtual 3D space, allowing the sound to be placed and moved in a way that creates a more immersive listening experience.

Do All Headphones Support Dolby Atmos?

Yes, Dolby Atmos for headphones does not require special hardware or headphones in order to work. It can be used with any standard pair of headphones and is designed to work with a wide range of devices, including smartphones, home theatre systems, and gaming consoles such as the Xbox One.

So, to enjoy Dolby Atmos, you will simply need a device that supports the technology and a pair of headphones. Any headphones will do, so you can use your favorite pair or try out a new set to see how they enhance your listening experience.