TVs & Home Theaters

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5.1 audio on Streaming service

by gaijr / February 11, 2012 11:02 PM PST

A lot of discussion about streaming service has to do with the picture quality and little or none on the audio! The audio being the other half of a home theater system is somewhat ignored about how to get Dolby 5.1 from a streaming service such as Netflix, does CNET or someone have any answers to this question?

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Here is how I look at this;
by ahtoi / February 12, 2012 2:15 AM PST

If netflix does stream dolby 5.1 and the receiver is capable of decoding dolby 5.1 then I can't see why it doesn't work (using hdmi connections). You are not having much luck?

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A little more "if?"
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / February 12, 2012 2:50 AM PST

It's rare for 5.1 to be on said service. And it varies with country and the item that was streamed. But first, what I learned.

-> Carry an optical cable at all times when you are tasked with fixing something like this. Do not trust HDMI and ARC.

Also, many HDTVs with those streaming apps in the HDTV NEVER send out 5.1. Since that can change with the HDTV, there is no simple answer. My simple answer is, "If the HDTV has the app, expect nothing but stereo out of the digital audio."
Bob

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Can you be more specific?
by Pepe7 / February 12, 2012 2:54 PM PST

Streaming from a PC, or streaming from the built in HDTV netflix app?

No, some movies aren't offered in DD5.1. (Which one were you looking at, btw?) And has been mentioned already, the ones that are may not work if your intention is to send out the 5.1 signal from your HDTV back to a receiver, etc. Some HDTVs just won't do it, and there's quite a lot of trial and error ;(.

In this regard, a HTPC may be the superior choice, or something like a WD Live TV (works great, btw).

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5.1/ 7.1 Dolby from streaming services
by gaijr / February 13, 2012 5:44 AM PST

Netflix does offer 5.1 sound, though just through different blu-ray DVD models. with so many people having home theaters with Dolby 5.1 I tend to think the audio/video would go hand in hand as a service, the truth is not much is mentioned about 5.1 or 7.1 DD from the streaming services. I have a fairly new sound system able to handle 5.1/7.1; both the DVD and the receiver can decode Dolby True and dts Master Audio, but not from Netflix, the audio just defaults to stereo (so 1960's). Maybe Redbox/Verizion will have the audio I'm looking for in the streaming service.

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I wouldn't count on it
by Pepe7 / February 14, 2012 12:33 AM PST

True surround sound (or even matrixed surround) is still very secondary in the equation where streaming is concerned. It's not in demand as much as you and I would like. Much of this in my opinion comes from many folks having issues dealing with their room aesthetic preferences. They don't care about surround sound as much since often they feel extra speakers/hardware takes away from their uncluttered home space.

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Netflix does not stream 5.1 audio to a PC
by Nick_Ross2 / April 1, 2013 4:50 PM PDT

I have confirmed this through a conversation with one of netflixs tech support guys.
He said and I quote " due to complaints from our customers with 2 channel audio setups on their computers stating that 5.1 audio sounds weird, or the vocals are too low we have stopped streaming 5.1 to PC's" This would include Chrome IE Firefox and safari, and any one using Microsoft silverlight and the netflix pluggin for windows media center. Sorry HTPC enthusiasts (such as myself) but it's dolby prologic II for us or Fake.1. You can still get true 5.1 from the playstation 3, Xbox360, roku etc. As for TV's with built in apps, as others have mentioned on this article... only if the TV itself supports putting out Dolby Digital through one of it's outputs, be it SPDIF RCA, or toslink.

Just buy 25$ 817p Blurays for every single thing you want to watch ^^

(P.S. aspect ratio 2.35 movies should not be listed as 1080p they should be listed as 817p on a side note)

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