Your Universal Remote Control Center
RemoteCentral.com
Blu-ray & DVD Forum - View Post
Previous section Next section Previous page Next page Up level
Up level
The following page was printed from RemoteCentral.com:

Login:
Pass:
 
 

Page 1 of 3
Topic:
DTS-HD Audio
This thread has 36 replies. Displaying posts 1 through 15.
Post 1 made on Wednesday December 31, 2008 at 02:35
Herman Trivilino
Long Time Member
Joined:
Posts:
February 2007
279
I just installed a Samsung BD-P1500 Blu-ray player into my modest home theatre. I have 5.1-channel audio using an old Sony STR-DE635 receiver. It processes 5.1 digital audio from my cable box (via coaxial cable) and it used to do the same for the DVD player (via optical cable), too, until it got replaced by the blu-ray. I was perfectly happy with the quality of the audio.

The blu-ray player is now connected to the receiver via the optical cable.

In the audio set up menu for the blu-ray player there are three options: PCM, Bitstream (Re-encode), and Bitstream (Audiophile). I chose the Bitstream (Audiophile) by trial-and-error, as it was the only one that sent audio through to the receiver in "Dolby Digital [3/2]". In other words, it gives me the same 5.1 audio that I used to get from the old DVD player. And I'm still very happy with the quality of the audio.

The PCM choice gives me only 2.1, and the Bitstream (Re-encode) gives me nothing.

These three options are described in more detal on pages 35-36 of the owner's manual, which can be found here:

[Link: samsung.com]

The Bitstream (Re-encode) is recommended for a receiver with optical input that can decode DTS. The problem, of course, is that my receiver can't decode DTS.

So, what's my problem? Maybe you've guessed it? It occurs only when I play a blu-ray disk with the DTS-HD audio (see, for example, http://www.foxbd.com/).

I get no audio coming through for the two bitstream options, and get just 2.1 audio using the PCM option.

I know that I should upgrade the receiver, but I'm having trouble figuring out what upgrade to make. (An alternative would be to replace the BD-P1500 with the BD-P2500 and use the 7.1 analog outputs).

One question I have is the following: If I replace the receiver with a Sony STR-DG520 I should be able to use the Bitstream (Re-code) option as it has an optical input and can decode DTS. Will this option also allow me to hear the DTS-HD audio in all of the 5.1 channels?

Another option would be to upgrade the receiver to a HDMI receiver that has DTS-HD decoding capability.

The main factor in making the decision will be cost versus value. But the question I need answered is will I be able to hear all 5.1 channels on the DTS-HD blu-ray discs using the optical cable connected to the Sony STR-DG520?
Origin: Big Bang
Post 2 made on Wednesday December 31, 2008 at 15:02
supermanrob
Lurking Member
Joined:
Posts:
December 2008
3
On your ultimate question at the end NO you can't get DTS-HD thru optical cable,it has to be thru HDMI or if you had the BD-P2500 and analog outputs.
Post 3 made on Wednesday December 31, 2008 at 23:58
Daniel Tonks
Wrangler of Remotes
Joined:
Posts:
October 1998
28,538
OK, first with your old receiver. The only thing it will handle is basic Dolby Digital 5.1, or analog 5.1. Your BD player doesn't have 5.1 analog outputs, so the only thing you can work with is Dolby Digital.

The re-encode option on your player encodes to DTS, which is why you won't hear anything. When you play a DTS-HD track, what you would get over coaxial or optical outputs is the "core" 1.5mbit DTS track, which as mentioned your receiver doesn't support. Your only option to hear anything would be to change to PCM output, which should produce stereo sound (but not 5.1).

When you play Dolby TrueHD tracks, you get the core 640kbit Dolby Digital 5.1 track over coaxial/optical, which your receiver does support.

Now looking at the STR-DG520. That receiver has HDMI inputs, but they are switching only - you can't get any sound from them. You WOULD be able to hear DTS and Dolby Digital 5.1 tracks over the coaxial/optical inputs, but you WOULD NOT be hearing the actual uncompressed DTS-HD MA or TrueHD tracks, but rather still DVD quality sound. So I don't think I'd really spend the money to upgrade. It isn't a good match for BD.

The STR-DG720 is slightly better. It can decode 7.1 LPCM over HDMI, but the problem is your BD player will not internally decode DTS-HD MA to LPCM. So it isn't a good match for your player either, but you would hear uncompressed Dolby TrueHD or from discs mastered in LPCM originally.

Really, the first Sony receiver to do what you need is the STR-DG1200. You can also look at the Pioneer VSX-1018AH-K, Denon AVR-789 or Yamaha HTR-6160 or RX-V663, but they're all about the same price (though you should be able to get them all for less than list price).
OP | Post 4 made on Thursday January 1, 2009 at 13:34
Herman Trivilino
Long Time Member
Joined:
Posts:
February 2007
279
Thank you, Daniel, for taking the time to post this valuable information. I'll search for some of the receivers you mentioned and see what I can find for a good price. Fortunately, I live within driving distance of lots of Walmart, Circuit City, Best Buy, and Fry's stores.

The only reason I mentioned the Sony STR-DG520 is that I can get one for as little as $140. But, I agree with you that it's not a good match for BD, which is probably why the price is so low!

The other option I have is to exchange the BD player at Circuit City by Jan 18 for a BD player with 5.1 analog outputs. The "problem" though is that my daughter-in-law got the Samsung BD-P1500 for only $200. She's quite the bargain hunter! How many people have a daughter-in-law that's that nice to them?

Last edited by Herman Trivilino on January 1, 2009 15:21.
Origin: Big Bang
Post 5 made on Thursday January 1, 2009 at 19:08
Daniel Tonks
Wrangler of Remotes
Joined:
Posts:
October 1998
28,538
Not many!

If you exchange the player, get one with 5.1 analog outputs that can internally decode all sound formats. Believe it or not, you'd be able to use that to hear uncompressed sound with your current receiver (although receiver technology has come a long way in the past few years, so a new receiver would still be a worthwhile upgrade for BD).

Samsung BD-P2500, Panasonic DMP-BD55 for example.
OP | Post 6 made on Thursday January 1, 2009 at 19:40
Herman Trivilino
Long Time Member
Joined:
Posts:
February 2007
279
On December 31, 2008 at 23:58, Daniel Tonks said...
When you play Dolby TrueHD tracks, you get the core 640kbit
Dolby Digital 5.1 track over coaxial/optical, which your
receiver does support.

But, if I understand what you said later in the post, my old receiver will play the TrueHD tracks, but I would not be hearing the actual uncompressed TrueHD tracks. They'll be the lossy compression of the older DVD-quality. Correct?
Origin: Big Bang
OP | Post 7 made on Thursday January 1, 2009 at 20:04
Herman Trivilino
Long Time Member
Joined:
Posts:
February 2007
279
On January 1, 2009 at 19:08, Daniel Tonks said...
If you exchange the player, get one with 5.1 analog outputs
that can internally decode all sound formats. Believe
it or not, you'd be able to use that to hear uncompressed
sound with your current receiver

That'd be awesome. But I wonder if I could really hear any difference with my modest system. I guess it'd depend on the quality of my speakers, and how discerning my ears are!

Samsung BD-P2500, Panasonic DMP-BD55 for example.

The BD-P2500 is twice the price -- another $200!

This is important, though. When I'm shopping for a BD player with 5.1 (or 7.1) analog outputs I need to make sure it'll internally decode at least the DTS-HD audio, otherwise, I'm right back where I started -- no surround sound from the fox bd's!

So, I take it that having the 5.1 or 7.1 analog outputs is no guarantee that the BD player will decode the DTS-HD audio, or even the TrueHD audio.

I will be sure to check this when I'm shopping. I've learned two things recently about shopping for this stuff. First, there's no way to tell what the stores actually have in stock, and at what price, without actually visiting the store. (The online information is not accurate, and if you talk to a staff member either by phone or in person they will use the online information to answer your questions.) Secondly, the sales staff usually don't know enough about the confusing array of audio options available to be able to answer the kinds of questions I've asked here.

Thanks again for your help.
Origin: Big Bang
Post 8 made on Thursday January 1, 2009 at 23:15
Daniel Tonks
Wrangler of Remotes
Joined:
Posts:
October 1998
28,538
On January 1, 2009 at 19:40, Herman Trivilino said...
But, if I understand what you said later in the post,
my old receiver will play the TrueHD tracks, but I would
not be hearing the actual uncompressed TrueHD tracks.
They'll be the lossy compression of the older DVD-quality.
Correct?

Not exactly. Both DTS-HD MA and Dolby TrueHD are made up of two audio streams: a backwards-compatible "core" stream, and the actual uncompressed stream. The optical and coaxial outputs cannot handle the uncompressed audio streams, so all you'll get is the "core" stream.

Both cores are no different in technology from normal DVD-level audio, but they are slightly higher quality... for example DVD supports a maximum of 448kbit for Dolby Digital, but BD (and thus the TrueHD core) outputs 640kbit. This actually turned out to be a bit of a problem for poor-quality Dolby Digital decoders, which couldn't handle bitrates higher than DVD spec (even though official Dolby spec always allowed for 640kbit).


That'd be awesome. But I wonder if I could really hear
any difference with my modest system. I guess it'd depend
on the quality of my speakers, and how discerning my ears
are!

It's true that you do need good quality equipment to best enjoy the improvement. However with that said there IS a major improvement.


So, I take it that having the 5.1 or 7.1 analog outputs
is no guarantee that the BD player will decode the DTS-HD
audio, or even the TrueHD audio.

TrueHD, probably. I believe any player you can buy today with 5.1/7.1 analog outputs would be able to internally decode TrueHD. However there are still some players that lack internal DTS-HD MA support.
OP | Post 9 made on Saturday January 3, 2009 at 16:36
Herman Trivilino
Long Time Member
Joined:
Posts:
February 2007
279
I was able to find a Sony BDP-S500 yesterday at Circuit City. Because it was a discontinued display model I was able to get it for $200, an even swap for the Samsung BD-P1500! It has the analog 5.1 channel outputs and so for the first time in its long life, my old Sony receiver is processing audio through its analog 5.1 channel inputs.

I've got a BD with DTS-HD audio, and another with TrueHD audio, so I was able to do some listening. I do believe I'm getting the uncompressed audio for both formats, but I still want to do some more listening before I can be sure. I'd like to find a test BD that I could use to do some testing of the audio levels.

It appears to me as though I should be getting the uncompressed audio based on the information given on page 48 of the owner's manual, which can be found at

[Link: docs.sony.com]

For those who might be researching the issues that've been discussed in this thread, here's a nice article by Alan Lofft, called "Blu-ray Audio Formats Explained". Currently, it can be found at

[Link: forum.ecoustics.com]

One of the drawbacks of the analog connections is the possibility that the relative volumes of the speakers may not be adjustable. In my case, I can adjust the left/right balance for both the front pair of speakers, and the rear pair of speakers. I cannot, however, adjust the volume of the front speakers relative to the rear speakers. (I don't use a center speaker, and the sub-woofer has it's one volume knob). Right now, the volume of the front speakers is too high compared to the rear speakers, and I guess one way for me to fix that would be to add some resistance to two of the cables connecting the BD player to the receiver.

To anyone else who's trying to make this scheme work, check to see if the relative volume levels can be adjusted at either the source (the BD player) or the receiver.

During the coming months I'll be keeping my eye out for a good price on a new receiver. Something that'll handle the audio through the HDMI, and possibly also do upconverting of video.
Origin: Big Bang
Post 10 made on Saturday January 3, 2009 at 17:28
snarfshark
Long Time Member
Joined:
Posts:
November 2006
257
On January 3, 2009 at 16:36, Herman Trivilino said...
One of the drawbacks of the analog connections is the
possibility that the relative volumes of the speakers
may not be adjustable. In my case, I can adjust the left/right
balance for both the front pair of speakers, and the rear
pair of speakers. I cannot, however, adjust the volume
of the front speakers relative to the rear speakers.
(I don't use a center speaker, and the sub-woofer has
it's one volume knob). Right now, the volume of the front
speakers is too high compared to the rear speakers, and
I guess one way for me to fix that would be to add some
resistance to two of the cables connecting the BD player
to the receiver.

To anyone else who's trying to make this scheme work,
check to see if the relative volume levels can be adjusted
at either the source (the BD player) or the receiver.

Doesn't the Sony BD player have an option in the audio setup to allow you to adjust the volume level of each channel? If it doesn't that is quite an oversight on Sony's part.

Every BD/DVD player I have used which has analog outs has some sort of provision for adjusting the volume of each channel. I know the Panny BD55 has this capability.
Post 11 made on Sunday January 4, 2009 at 02:13
Daniel Tonks
Wrangler of Remotes
Joined:
Posts:
October 1998
28,538
There should probably be full built-in speaker setup, including levels and bass management.
OP | Post 12 made on Sunday January 4, 2009 at 12:29
Herman Trivilino
Long Time Member
Joined:
Posts:
February 2007
279
On January 3, 2009 at 17:28, snarfshark said...
Every BD/DVD player I have used which has analog outs
has some sort of provision for adjusting the volume of
each channel. I know the Panny BD55 has this capability.

I checked the operator's manual, and the Panasonic BD55 does indeed have this capability documented. If the Sony BD-S500 has it, it's not documented and I can't figure out how to do it.

Last edited by Herman Trivilino on January 4, 2009 15:59.
Origin: Big Bang
OP | Post 13 made on Sunday January 4, 2009 at 12:49
Herman Trivilino
Long Time Member
Joined:
Posts:
February 2007
279
On January 4, 2009 at 02:13, Daniel Tonks said...
There should probably be full built-in speaker setup,
including levels and bass management.

The only choice is small vs large for the collection of the four left and right speakers, relative to the center speaker. I guess this is what you call bass management. There's no level adjustment!

It looks like the Panasonic BD55 will let you make this choice for both the front and rear pair of speakers. But, it also allows you to adjust the volume of the rear (surround) pair relative to the front pair. I'll be able to reduce the volume of the front pair by up to 6 dB. I hope this is enough. (I need to go get the sound level meter -- it's at work). Of course, none of this will matter if I can't find buy the BD55.

I'm off to Circuit City again ... it's a good thing it's close by!

BTW, I'm not the type who constantly adjusts the rear volume. I set it once, a couple of years ago when I bought a new pair of rear (surround) speakers, and haven't touched it since. If I have to keep the S500 I may end up putting resistors in line on the two cables that send the front speaker signals from the BD player to the receiver. Presuming I select the right size resistors, does anybody see a problem with that?
Origin: Big Bang
OP | Post 14 made on Monday January 5, 2009 at 00:47
Herman Trivilino
Long Time Member
Joined:
Posts:
February 2007
279
On January 3, 2009 at 17:28, snarfshark said...
Doesn't the Sony BD player have an option in the audio
setup to allow you to adjust the volume level of each
channel? If it doesn't that is quite an oversight on Sony's
part.

No, the Sony BD players have no way of adjusting the volume levels of the different channels connected to the analog outputs. Maybe they expect it to be done by the receiver?

The Samsung players do have some adjustment, but it's not as thorough as the Panasonic players'.

The Samsung BD-P2500 and the Panasonic DMP-BD55 are both nice players, but they cost $400 right now, with no discounts available at Circuit City or Best Buy. The shelves there are lean with BD players right now. The sales staffs are all claiming there's a nation-wide shortage as a result of Christmas sales. Just as an example, the Samsung BD-P1500 that my daughter-in-law bought at Circuit City a week before Christmas for $200 was returned by me two days ago. It's now an open-box item on sale at that same store for $260, and it's the only 1500 they've got!

Always the bargain hunter, I found some older models like the Samsung 1400, open-box and on sale for $250 at Best Buy. And then there's the Panny 50. But guess what, even if I could get one of them for the $200 that was paid for my Sony, they don't do internal decoding of the TrueHD and DTS-HD formats.

I came home this afternoon and spent a couple hours experimenting. I've installed 21 kiloohm resistors in line with the front left and front right analog cables connecting the BD player with the receiver. By my ear, I've got 'em balanced pretty good. Tomorrow I'll have the opportunity to do some listening. I've got BD movies with the different audio formats and the whole day to myself. What a life!
Origin: Big Bang
Post 15 made on Monday January 5, 2009 at 02:09
Daniel Tonks
Wrangler of Remotes
Joined:
Posts:
October 1998
28,538
Just for future receiver shopping purposes, now that your BD player will do all decoding internally, any receiver than can accept 5.1/7.1 LPCM over HDMI will do (these are traditionally positioned between receivers with mere HDMI switching, and receivers that can accept HD bitstreams). So you don't need TrueHD or DTS-HD Master Audio built-in.

Regarding your STR-DE635, it's quite an oversight that it won't let you adjust the level of the front versus the back (but will still let you do SOME stuff such as left versus right). I can't imagine any situation where this would be expected to sound right. Of course I'm a little surprised that the BD player doesn't offer it either - it's something I would really expect on any player with 5.1/7.1 analog outputs, but I see it's actually not that common.
Page 1 of 3


Jump to


Protected Feature Before you can reply to a message...
You must first register for a Remote Central user account - it's fast and free! Or, if you already have an account, please login now.

Please read the following: Unsolicited commercial advertisements are absolutely not permitted on this forum. Other private buy & sell messages should be posted to our Marketplace. For information on how to advertise your service or product click here. Remote Central reserves the right to remove or modify any post that is deemed inappropriate.

Hosting Services by ipHouse