Question

Please help: Lip-sync (audio lag) b/w TV and sound bar

Hi everyone,

I've been having audio-lag issues for several months now and as an AV/home-theater noob, would love some help.

Here are the TV and sound bar I've got:

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B006ZH0KJS?psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=oh_aui_search_detailpage

http://www.amazon.com/VIZIO-S3820W-C0-38-inch-Theater-Integrated/dp/B00DG6FOV0

I'm plugging the sound bar in via an optical cable. In all cases, my devices -- PS4, Xbox One, PC, etc. -- are plugged into the TV via HDMI with the sound bar connected to the TV via optical. (I've tried a separate device-to-soundbar connection for audio as well, to no avail.)

Under standard settings for my TV, audio comes through noticeably behind the picture. There is a menu-setting on the TV scaling from negative 5 to positive 15 (I don't 100% recall the name of the setting, might be SPDIF(?)) that clearly influences the timing of the audio compared to the image -- when I set this all the way to the left AND use the TV's "cinema" mode that involves extra processing which delays video, the issue is usually unnoticeable.

This is irritating, as certain content seems to behave differently (and requires extra fiddling), but it's possible to overcome.

The much more insidious and difficult issue is this -- I can't get audio to sync when playing video games, no matter what I do. When using "Game" mode on the TV (which is the only way to cut down on input lag), the audio is always very noticeably behind the picture.

I've tried playing with various settings on my PS4 and Xbox One, like switching the audio format being sent to the TV -- but I really have no clue what I'm doing with that. The TV's settings (i.e., sliding the setting I mentioned earlier to -5) do not fully compensate for the problem.

I'm going a little crazy and find myself unable to get immersed in gaming content.

I have no receiver. For what it's worth, I've also tried alternative methods of connecting the sound bar like using a 3.5mm cable from a PS4 controller -- but that hasn't worked, maybe for other reasons. The video is still ahead.

Can anyone offer me any advice on this problem?

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Answer
Usually for gaming I have to bypass the TV.

This setup can be infuriating since soundbars are not like receivers with many inputs. It's just a bad choice when it comes to game systems and more.

My fix is to forget the TV as an audio pass through. However before that, on the XBOX One try the no less than FIVE HDMI SOUND OPTIONS noted at http://support.xbox.com/en-US/xbox-one/system/configure-audio-settings

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Should I get a receiver?

Would that resolve the issue?

I've tried bypassing the TV entirely on the PS4, and it still had a noticeable lag. Sad

Would the audio output settings in that case make a big difference? I really have no clue what the right settings would be, aside from blindly testing them all.

Thanks

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It should but you still have 5 settings to try.

I didn't look up the PS4 audio options. My example should be your clue to see what the PS4 has for that area.

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Yes- use a receiver

I am reasonably confident that it will give you the ability to avoid at least some of the lag introduced by the audio pass through from the HDTV. Some receivers do allow some adjustment for audio delay, etc.

good luck(!)

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