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Audio Question for Home Entertainment Center

by DonJns / April 2, 2009 1:21 AM PDT

I have been having trouble with my digital audio signal constantly switching between the HD signal (5.1) and the 2 channel sound. On some channels the receiver switches quite frequently (several time per show)leaving a 2-5 second loss of sound as it reconfigures.

The setup I have now is:

High Def Cable Box from Time Warner hooked into Sony Receiver
Sony TV hooked into Sony receiver
Sound comes through speakers hooked into receiver

All connections are through HDMI

Is this a cable box problem? a compatibility problem? receiver? hdmi?

Thank you for any help you may be able to provide as I am at a loss on this one.


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Ten to one...
by Pepe7 / April 2, 2009 1:55 AM PDT

...this is a problem with your HD set top box. Either ask TW about firmware/software udpates, or swap it out for a new one. While I'm not 100% certain in your case, such audio nonsense requiring multiple box swaps is way too common IME.


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cable prob
by bearvp / April 2, 2009 4:13 AM PDT

My Comcast HD-DVR will have a slight audio pause when it switches between HD and SD on one channel sometimes. Like if a show is displaying in HD and all of a sudden a ticker for some weather storm watch comes up the channel will switch to SD and leave out a second or two of audio. I really don't know if there is anything you or the cable company can do about it. It is mainly a problem for the cable box manufacturers to remedy with firmware upgrades or the broadcasters themselves not being idiots and actually tailoring their alert announcements for HD shows.

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Equipment vs broadcast
by gabereyes / April 2, 2009 11:55 AM PDT

This depends on when you are having the problem.

Is it during and HD program when the show or movie is on and/or DVD playback?
This would be an equipment problem.

Is it during a commercials, severe weather pop ups, or the news or almost anything on CBS this will switch the audio to stereo mode.
CBS has had problems with their sound for awhile now, the news will switch back and forth from 5.1 to stereo over and over again, don?t know why but it happens with cable, sat and OTA signals.
One time a few years back the show numbers and CSI on CBS that had 5.1 sound and there was no voices coming through the center speaker, I had to check all my equipment to make sure it was all ok, but I found out everyone had the same problem and everything was working fine.

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Try digital audio out from cable box instead of HMDI
by coffeejunkie / August 11, 2009 1:29 AM PDT

I understand hooking the Time Warner HD box digital audio out to into your Sony Receiver. That would theoretically let your receiver decode the 5.1 Surround Sound and play them through the connected speakers. My is hooked to an older Pioneer and I haven't got 5.1 Surround Sound yet.

Why are you hooking your Sony TV audio out into your Sony Receiver. That gives your Sony Receiver two source for the same audio: 1) digital audio from the Time Warner box; and 2) the same audio that went through the HDMI cable from the Time Warner box to your TV, then from your TV's HDMI audio out to your receiver. You would need this second path for audio from the TV unless their are other AV input into your TV that bypasses your receiver.

I don't know if HDMI's audio portion has the bandwidth to transmit 5.1 Surround Sound. If its marginal, that could explain the intermittent switching from 5.1 Surround Sound (higher bandwidth requirement) to 2-channel stereo. Have you try getting the sound from the able box using either a coax or optical connection? Both handles 5.1 Surround Sound.

I have a SHARP Aquois LCD TV which has only two speakers; so I get only simulated sound out of the TV which is connected through the single HDMI out port of my Time Warner HD box. I connect the optical digital audio output of the cable box to an optical audio cable in on my Pioneer receiver and I can get up to 4-channel surround sound, just not 5.1 Surround Sound. Can you tell me how I can tell if the TV program I'm watching is sending out 5.1 Surround Sound?

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