Better sound directly from Satellite Box? - Canadian TV, Computing and Home Theatre Forums
 
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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old 2017-09-26, 09:43 AM Thread Starter
 
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Better sound directly from Satellite Box?

Hi,

I currently have my Bell 9241 Sat box connected to my LG TV via HDMI. In an effort to improve the sound quality coming from the TV I have connected a Sony dav-hdx900w home theatre receiver (with surround speakers) via Toslink cable to the TV.

The sound is pretty good but it seems a bit lacking the "highs" and sometimes clarity, specifically voice clarity. There is no adjustment on the Sony receiver for sound (other than the factory choices of Rock, Jazz, Theatre 1, Theatre 2, etc...)

I am wondering if eliminating the Toslink from the TV and going Toslink directly from the Bell Sat box to the Sony receiver would improve sound quality?

I will also add that thinking of doing this is quite easy but.... the way that all of my equipment is set up right now I didn't want to try this until I knew for sure that it would make a difference, considering it will take a good hour or so of finagling to get behind there!
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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old 2017-09-26, 10:21 AM
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Many TVs do not pass the HDMI digital audio signal unaltered to its digital audio output. A loss of sound quality may result. Check the audio input info on the AVR to see if this is happening. If the AVR has HDMI inputs and outputs, it may be better to plug the HDMI into the AVR and then out to the TV.

Also see FAQ - What's Available in DD5.1
Quote:
On many (older) HDTVs we've discussed, you cannot go "through" a TV and still get DD5.1 audio (many newer TVs may now have this functionality, while others may not pass a signal at all). You typically need to connect directly from the STB (or other device like a DVD/BD player) to the AVR and you need the correct settings in the STB (or other device - usually DD or bitstream). Sometimes there may be a firmware limitation when using HDMI for DD5.1.
In addition, not all programming has surround audio. Almost all TV shows made before the year 2000 were in stereo and most movies made before 1990 were stereo (some movies used multi-track analog sound systems.) Dolby Pro Logic did not exist until 1987. An earlier analog matrix encoding scheme was created in the 1970s but was rarely used. The first film to use Dolby Digital audio technology premiered in 1992.
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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old 2017-09-26, 11:13 AM
 
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Almost all the TV's I have seen only output Stereo via the Toslink on them, whereas the 9241 will output 5.1 Dolby Surround Sound, that would make a huge difference to the Audio Quality.
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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old 2017-09-26, 05:38 PM
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It depends on the make and model of TV. Newer TVs tend to have better support for DD5.1 over Toslink. Some only support DD5.1 from the built in OTA tuner but not with other inputs such as HDMI. I have a Vizio TV that supports 5.1 on its Toslink output, even from HDMI.
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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old 2017-09-27, 08:19 AM Thread Starter
 
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Sounds like I should give it a try.

I would need to connect the Toslink "out" of the Bell PVR and an Android box to the Sony Surround Sound Receiver. Will a Toslink "splitter" work as a "combiner" for this set up? I don't want to use a switcher and be switching back and forth if I don't have to.
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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old 2017-09-27, 09:50 AM
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A combiner should work if the devices in question switch off the Optical Output. Some devices leave the output "on" even when the device is "off" (in standby). A switch would be better, you can get some that have a remote control and can be incorporated into the switching of a programmable remote like a Harmony.

There may be an option in the TV audio output setup to switch from PCM (stereo) to DD5.1 (bitstream/raw/similar), in which case you could leave it the way you have it.

57's Home Theatre (Latest equipment & photos)
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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old 2017-09-27, 11:44 AM
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57's suggestion to check the TV's audio out format is probably a good first step.

The A/V receiver has an option to increase centre channel level. That would make dialog clearer.

As to the lack of highs, it may be the A/V receiver. This is a very basic model and I would not expect a lot in the way of fidelity.

I believe the 9241 is always active so a Toslink combiner probably won't work. Toslink switches with remotes are available but are poor value for the money. If possible, I would return the system and spend the extra money on an A/V system or soundbar that can switch HDMI. A separate HDMI switch with remote would be a better deal than a Toslink switch but that would require a receiver or soundbar with HDMI input. HDMI is the required interface for most advanced audio and video formats so an A/V receiver without at least one HDMI input is a poor long term investment.
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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old 2017-09-27, 12:00 PM Thread Starter
 
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Thanks guys....

This in no way is my idea of a "home theatre system". My family uses this TV on a daily basis. I started this project simply because the sound coming from the LG TV sounded quite "vacant" for a large room. I picked up the Sony home theatre receiver for dirt cheap and it did help.

On another note.... It sounds like I wont be able to do what I was thinkin if the 9241 receiver's Toslink is always "on".

I will check later tonight if the TV has different internal sound settings.
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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old 2017-09-27, 12:18 PM
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Toslink has a visible red light so it is possible to see if it is on or off. Just don't shine it directly in the eye.
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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old 2017-09-27, 12:23 PM
 
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Is it possible to use HDMI from both the 9241 and Android box to the Receiver then HDMI from that to the TV.?
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post #11 of 15 (permalink) Old 2017-09-27, 02:20 PM
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The receiver does not have any HDMI inputs. It has an HDMI output, probably for the built in disc player. This is a very basic AV all-in-one system.
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post #12 of 15 (permalink) Old 2017-09-27, 02:57 PM
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It might be possible to implement some simple audio switching using the AV receiver. The audio inputs have priority and automatically switch. From highest priority to lowest it is digital coax, optical and then RCA analog. Connecting the 9242 with optical and another device with coax might result in the following behavior. When the other device is active, it will override the 9242 and its audio will be heard. When it's off, the 9242 will be heard. If the other device has coax out, use an inexpensive composite video cable for the connection. A special audio cable is not required (though some stores gladly sell them at an inflated price.)
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post #13 of 15 (permalink) Old 2017-09-27, 06:54 PM Thread Starter
 
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So I found that the optical out from the bell 9241 is always red, even when the box is off.

I guess this means that a toslink splitter won't work?

And the tv doesn't seem to have 5.1 option for sound anywhere
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post #14 of 15 (permalink) Old 2017-09-27, 09:38 PM
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Does the other device have a coax digital audio (SPDIF) output?
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post #15 of 15 (permalink) Old 2017-09-28, 08:16 AM Thread Starter
 
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No I don't think it does. It is the 1st Gen. Amazon Fire TV Box.
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