Problem with cablevision (optimum) scientific atlana cable boxes since menu guide update outputting dolby digital over digital coax or optical output when an HDMI cable is used for display only - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 62 Old 10-22-2012, 08:23 AM - Thread Starter
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Has anyone had any problems since cablevision updated the menu (software) on the box where if you have an HDMI cable connected to it it no longer outputs dolby digital over the digital coax cable? There used to be a setting on the cable box where you could choose if you wanted dolby digital to output over HDMI or digital coax/optical. It seems that that setting is gone and if the HDMI connection is established between the cable box and my TV it just defaults to outputting dolby digital over the HDMI cable. If I simply unplug the HDMI cable from the back of the cable box I get dolby digital out of the digital coax but as soon as I plus it back in it stops. I tried emailing cablevision's customer support but they have no idea what I am talking about.
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post #2 of 62 Old 10-23-2012, 06:54 AM
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Yes I'm having the same problem....
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post #3 of 62 Old 10-23-2012, 07:20 AM - Thread Starter
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Cablevision gave me two solutions one was to reboot the box (which I tried it's not that). The second to use the 'red and white' connections so I had to school him on the difference between analog and digital audio. They offered to send a technician out today to look at it so I'll post what he says about it. I feel like this is going to have to be solved by whoever develops the software for the cable box and I'm not sure if that is going to happen unless enough people complain about it. Obviously it used to work before for the last 5 years so the cablebox is certainly capable of it.
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post #4 of 62 Old 10-23-2012, 11:21 AM
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I have the same issue. HDMI directly to TV, and coax to receiver. If you unplug the HDMI cable, it will send digital audio over the coax and the receiver switches to dolby digital. As soon as I reconnect the HDMI cable to the tv, the receiver switches back to non digital audio. The old dvr software did have a way of selecting where to send the digital audio. Definitely the dvr software needs an updating from support. I bet there recommended solution will be to use a component cable to your tv until the dvr software is updated. Please let me know what the tech informs you. I plan on calling cablevision tonight to complain about this too.
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post #5 of 62 Old 10-23-2012, 12:50 PM
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I posted this problem with Dolby not working with the new menu system 13 days ago to the Cablevision New York forum. I have made many attempts to get Cablevision to resolve the problem with no results. I an told that more complaints of the problem would help.


Have been using an Optimum Cablevision SA8300HD box with HDMI to a TV for video and TV speakers and using Digial out to an A/V receiver for Dolby 5.1 home theater. This worked fine until the settings menu was changed last week. I used to be able to change the Audio between HDMI and Dolby depending on whether I wanted the TV speakers or my surround sound home theater speakers. SInce the menu was change I no longer get Dolby 5.1 to mv A/V only get Pro Logic.
Unpluging the HDMI from TV restores the Dolby 5.1. The new menu does not turn off HDMi when Dolby is selected.

Since this post I have tried the optical output on the 8300 and on my TV with no success. Only get 2 channel output. On the Optimum website there is a troubleshooting item (ID 2137) regarding "Audio Defaults to Stereo (2-channels), This is also covered in the operating manuals for the 8300. These items describe how changing the audio outputs could be correctly handled with the previous settings menu.
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post #6 of 62 Old 10-23-2012, 01:49 PM - Thread Starter
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You hit the nail on the head ThatGuysTall - the cablevision guy told me to use the component output for video and was trying to offer me some ratty 12 foot long component cable from his truck that i declined. I originally said to him that it would probably work the way I wanted it to using component cable so I might've put the idea in his head. He told me that their software for the boxes is done in house and that they are aware of the problem but it seems to be at the bottom of their list because they are getting a lot of complaints about the menus and things not loading right and that they've ran updates on the boxes the last 4 out of 5 nights for other problems. He told me that maybe 1 in 1000 customers use the equipment that way and that we would be a very small voice so don't look for an update anytime soon but they are aware of the problem and have no time table for a solution. I tend to think that it should not be that hard to put this setting back in and it was probably an oversight in the new release and once they work out the major glitches with it that it will be addressed. But then again since we are such a small number of users using it this way they might just leave it and say use component output.
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post #7 of 62 Old 10-23-2012, 02:00 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gjrr2avs View Post

I posted this problem with Dolby not working with the new menu system 13 days ago to the Cablevision New York forum. I have made many attempts to get Cablevision to resolve the problem with no results. I an told that more complaints of the problem would help.
Have been using an Optimum Cablevision SA8300HD box with HDMI to a TV for video and TV speakers and using Digial out to an A/V receiver for Dolby 5.1 home theater. This worked fine until the settings menu was changed last week. I used to be able to change the Audio between HDMI and Dolby depending on whether I wanted the TV speakers or my surround sound home theater speakers. SInce the menu was change I no longer get Dolby 5.1 to mv A/V only get Pro Logic.
Unpluging the HDMI from TV restores the Dolby 5.1. The new menu does not turn off HDMi when Dolby is selected.
Since this post I have tried the optical output on the 8300 and on my TV with no success. Only get 2 channel output. On the Optimum website there is a troubleshooting item (ID 2137) regarding "Audio Defaults to Stereo (2-channels), This is also covered in the operating manuals for the 8300. These items describe how changing the audio outputs could be correctly handled with the previous settings menu.

I had the SA8300HD box (hard drive) and had this same audio problem but since I changed my service to the DVR plus they made me swap out my box for the SA4250HD (no hard drive). I was hoping that would fix it but it did not - same audio problem different box. Now when I was at the optimum store I had a choice of the Scientific Atlanta 4250HD or I could've went with the Samsung box (I believe there is only one model of Samsung box that they use). The Samsung box does not have a digital coax output only an optical digital out so I stuck with the SA4250HD but I'm wondering if the Samsung box would've fixed this.
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post #8 of 62 Old 10-23-2012, 03:31 PM
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It's AMAZING!!!! Fios looks better & better everyday

Thanks for info update
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post #9 of 62 Old 10-23-2012, 04:03 PM
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Cablevision sent a service "professional" to my home today. Upon attempting to fix the audio issue, he broke the cable box and replaced it with a new one. However, I lost all my recorded programs (which had sentimental significance). I then called Cablevision and was informed they are aware of the surround sound/Dolby issue and have brought it to management's attention. I asked when a fix would be loaded to the boxes and she said there is no current timetable. I then asked if they could beam me back the old version of the software and she said they could not do that. They did let me know that they have stopped all future upgrades to service areas outside of mine until the firmware is fixed - gee thanks.
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post #10 of 62 Old 10-25-2012, 03:26 PM
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Wow, I am sure glad I found this forum. I have been trying to hold off getting my blood pressure up by calling cablevision about the same issue. I probably have to switch to component video in for the time being (yuck) I hope it gets fixed soon. Dolan delivers another top quality product!

If i find out anything on this I'll be sure to post
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post #11 of 62 Old 10-30-2012, 03:26 PM
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A week later and still no firmware updates - Ughhhhhhhh!
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post #12 of 62 Old 10-31-2012, 04:24 AM
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I feel sorry for those that have Cablevision as their only option for pay-tv. They are the WORST cable company I've ever dealt with. Fortunately for me that was some time ago, but from what I've read here and elsewhere over time, nothing has changed.

larry

Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work. -- Thomas Alva Edison
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post #13 of 62 Old 11-03-2012, 03:55 PM
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Switching ti FiOS
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post #14 of 62 Old 11-12-2012, 03:53 PM
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I discovered the same problem with my box as well a few weeks back. The 'tech' I spoke to was unaware of this problem and suggested I replace the box. I finally got around that today, sacrificing all my recorded DVR content, only to discover I've been given a non-functioning box. Trip #2 back to Cablevision, swap the box, only to find I STILL HAVE THE AUDIO PROBLEM! I call their support line again, only to get someone more condescending than the last support tech I spoke to who is claiming no knowledge of any issues with this firmware (FYI: I do tech work for a living, so I have at least half a clue). I get a supervisor on the line who is even less interested in speaking with me, but while on hold I switched to component video and fixed the problem myself. I advised the supe, who happens to claim ignorance to the problem, to put out a bulletin to their support reps, perhaps they would have less frustrated customers. Just as an FYI to everyone with this problem: since Cablevision only supports 1080i resolution, you should not see any difference whatsoever viewing your television programming over component video vs. HDMI, so you can save yourselves the frustration of fighting with cablevision on this matter. HDMI would only be required for 1080p (primarily for blu-ray players). I'm trying to find flaws in my image quality, but everything looks good. Good luck, Cablevision really works to lose more and more customers, I'm struggling to stick with the devil I know.
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post #15 of 62 Old 11-24-2012, 08:59 AM
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Having the same problem. Cablevision service rep was useless. When asked if HDMI throughput would work to get my dolby signal back. I was told that Cablevision recommends going straight to the set with HDMI cable top maintain signal strength. Wouldn't guarantee that it would even work. Plus I'd HAVE to turn on my amp/receiver now for audio just to watch the news? GREAT UPDATE CABLEVISION!!!
I guess your software programmers are either inept, or decided that dolby digital surround sound is way overrated??? So much for the $1200 bucks I spent in audio home theater equipment, huh?
Shopping for another service provider!
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post #16 of 62 Old 02-06-2013, 02:45 AM
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At least you got through to a rep, This problem has been going on TOO LONG!! I wish Cablevision would get there heads out of there buts and come up with a solution. The in-house programers must really suck.
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post #17 of 62 Old 02-07-2013, 05:04 AM
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Also the new samsung box being used by Cablvision (SMT-C5320) do not have a pass-through video of the signal like the Scientific Atlanta ( hd4250)
box.
You're stuck with the resolution that you save in the box. Even though Fox broadcasts in 720p, you won't get it if the box is not set to that resolution. If the box is set to 1080i and you're watching fox which again is in 720p, you going to be watching it in 1080i. Unacceptable.
I did not accept this new samsung box. I forced them to find me a SA with HDMI outputs when I needed to get more boxes since now you need a box for every set. It took them 2 weeks to find me 4 more SA HD boxes with HDMI outputs. They originally brought 4 of them with only component outputs and I said no.
The installer had no idea until I told him about the new Samsung box. I told him to tell engineering that this configuration of the Samsung box was unacceptable.
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post #18 of 62 Old 02-07-2013, 05:21 AM
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Have the same problem. Actually got through to a technician 2 months ago who told me it was a "known problem." Called back recently and was also told to disconnect the optical digital audio and use hdmi direct to the receiver. Of course, that didn't work! Ridiculously poor customer service. Maybe FIOS should start advertising their ability to deliver Dolby Digital sound!
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post #19 of 62 Old 04-03-2013, 06:30 AM
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I had the exact same problem with the new guide a/k/a software......

Some things to know:

When the box flashes 'hold', it really means 'wait' - it is trying to download software from Cablevision. If you disconnect the coax cable, you will sit on 'hold' indefinitely.

As it turns out, Cablevision's new software cannot support HDMI and separate digital 5.1 audio simultaneously. If there's an HDMI cable plugged in, that's where the 5.1 audio gets sent. Period.

The DVR will send digital audio out the fiber connection, but it's not 5.1.
If I were to unplug my HDMI cable or turn off the TV, I could get 5.1 sound via fiber to my receiver.
But then my TV is dark!
Are you kidding?
Am I supposed to go out and buy a new receiver that accepts HDMI?!
One rep at Cablevision even told me the problem must be my Sony receiver, which they don't support..

The tech came on Saturday and insisted on swapping out my DVR. I told him I didn't want to lose all the content on my DVR. I also told him the problem was the software and of course, he didn't like my attitude. I insisted he troubleshoot the problem with my DVR, but he wouldn't listen. He swapped out the DVR and sure enough, surround 5.1 digital audio still didn't work.

When he plugged in my external disc (DVR expander), it came up with a message about reformatting. Before I could even ask if we could see any content still left out on the old drive, he pressed the button to re-format my drive. Thank you very, very much.
Strike 1.

He insisted there was an option to select where to send the 5.1 signal - HDMI or not. I told him that option was gone in the new software. Sure enough, he couldn't find it because it doesn't exist anymore.
Strike 2.

He then insisted that we try the RCA plug type audio (left right - white red) cable. I told him that is strictly an analog audio signal. There is no way on God's green earth digital audio will be passed via analog. We tried it anyway and of course, it didn't work.
Strike 3.

So, he suggested we use component video cables to connect the cable box to the TV. Sure enough, surround sound started working because the HDMI cable is unplugged.

He left extremely pissed off with some kind of attitude. I must have ruined his day by proving him wrong so many times. So, I had to downgrade from HDMI to component video. It turns out Cablevision doesn't support 1080p which requires HDMI cables. The best they can do is 1080i, so having HDMI is meaningless.

If Cablevision had been honest and admitted they had a problem in this area, I would have accepted that. I could have easily re-cabled my box with component video myself and lived with 1080i. But I needlessly lost everything in my DVR. They gave me another Scientific Atlanta 8300 box, just like the one I had. It works the exact same way.


It's the software, guys.

Another problem with their new guide:
Suppose you are watching Jeopardy which starts at 7pm.
The show is in cache because you haven't changed channels.
At 7:15 you decide you really like the show and decide to record it.
You will only record from 7:15 on.
The old software would record the entire show, as long as it was still in cache, and you didn't change channels.
You no longer have the ability to change the start time, so that means you had better know beforehand exactly what you want to record to your DVR.
No more recording on the fly.
Way to go Cablevision, another great feature.

FiOS was installed last Thursday.

After almost 40 years, I have evicted Cablevision from my house.
I have returned their empty DVR without a second thought.

Bob S.
Bergenfield, NJ
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post #20 of 62 Old 04-11-2013, 04:53 PM
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I'm not very tech savvy so I'm going to describe this in my terms, even though I think it's been said previously in the thread. I bought an Onkyo 5.1 system and I'm not getting surround sound. Hard to believe the problem is Cablevision's Scientific Atlanta 8300HD box but nothing about Cablevision would surprise me. I have an HDMI cable running from 8300HD box to the Onkyo AV system and then another HDMI cable from the Onkyo to my TV (Samsung). Am I not getting surround sound? And if not, is there any configuration that will give me surround sound (such as component video and optical audio cable)? Any help (in simple terms) would be appreciated. And don't suggest I change providers -- FIOS doesn't serve my area, dammit.
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post #21 of 62 Old 04-11-2013, 05:33 PM
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No offense to anyone posting in this thread. But you might have better luck getting answers to your questions in the HDTV Recorders or the Digital Recorders (PVRs) General sub forums. This forum is more for the discussion of Surround Music Formats and not hardware such as cable boxes. It might be best if this thread was moved to one of the mentioned sub forums smile.gif.

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post #22 of 62 Old 04-20-2013, 04:14 AM
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My wife has been calling a supervisor @ Cablevision Mark Combs(973-659-2454) Given to us by one one of the techs that first came out to fix the problem.. She has been calling him about every couple of weeks since the beginning of the year. She never actually gets him only his voicemail. Within a few days he does call back..At first he said it was a known problem and they were working on it. My wife called again and he said Hopefully by the end of April., Still not working. My wife called a few days ago and now there saying maybe by the end of the year...WTF?. If they supposedly have there own in house programers why can't they correct the problem.? To me it seems they are not even trying. . We need more people to flood this guys office with calls and tell him what we think.. How can we keep paying more and more for something that doesn't work right ?. I think this is unexceptable. . I'll probably be looking into Direct TV very Soon.
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post #23 of 62 Old 04-29-2013, 06:17 AM
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I called about the samsuck box they told me I have to keep rebooting. wtf they said it is an ongoing problem there is nothing they can do.Iam going back to fios it is the best
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post #24 of 62 Old 05-19-2013, 07:34 PM
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Hi! since the update we have lost our surround sound capabilities. They claim no one else has this issue but us, but I see here that others are having the same issue. Does anyone know how to fix it?
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post #25 of 62 Old 05-20-2013, 01:43 PM
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It has been an ongoing problem for many months, ever since they did the upgrade. I've complained several times to a supervisor that one tech gave me his phone number. He keeps telling me it's a known problem and the in house programers are working on it. He first told me by the end of April . here it is the mid May and still nothing. My wife called a few weeks ago and they more or less said don't hold your breath,maybe by the end of the year. I really don't even think they are trying to fix it. Try calling this guy and see if you get any better news Mark Combs (073-659-2454)
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post #26 of 62 Old 05-21-2013, 09:52 AM
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Yes, there is a quck fix.
It's ugly, but it worked for me.
Then I evicted Cablevision and switched to FIOS.

You will have to reconnect your cable box to your TV via component video, rather than HDMI.
Once the cable box sees that there is no HDMI, it should output digital 5.1 audio via fiber / digital coax to your surround sound receiver.

The other alternative would be to go out and buy a new surround sound receiver that handles HDMI (unacceptable).

There is a major bug in Cablevision's new software/guide.
They unconditionally send the digital 5.1 audio out the HDMI cable as long as the cable box sees an HDMI cable plugged in with a TV on the other end..
But they don't send it anywhere else.
So you will get some digital audio, but it's not 5.1 surround.

The old guide gave you the option of specifitying where to send the digital 5.1 audio.

This bug has been around since before last November, as far as I know.
Many have complained about it.
They are lying through their teeth when they claim no one has had this problem.

When they asked me why I dumped them, I told them the loss of surround sound was the main reason.
That was two months ago.

Good luck, I hope this works for you.

BTW, the FIOS box sends out 5.1 digital to every output, without any issues.
Have not had one single problem in two months, nor have I had to reboot the box.

Bob S.
Bergenfield, NJ
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post #27 of 62 Old 05-21-2013, 03:29 PM
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I don't know how it happened, but I am finally getting 5.1 surround sound with my basic hook-up using HDMI cables. As I said in my earlier post, I have an HDMI cable running from 8300HD box to an Onkyo AV system and then another HDMI cable from the Onkyo to my TV (Samsung). Nothing could be simpler. I will tell you this -- no matter what Cablevision tells you, they definitely know there is a problem with surround sound and these boxes. More than one Cablevision tech support person acknowledged this. I wish I knew why I'm getting surround sound now; perhaps it's because I'm on my 3rd 8300HD box. Incidentally, the new Samsung cable boxes that they're using with their new DVR+ system (which should be DVR- given the loss of features) will get you surround sound. Of course, since this DVR+ system of theirs hasn't been rolled out well, you won't be able to use it as a DVR until they get all the bugs worked out, which, given that it's Cablevision, will probably be in 2015. So your trade-off is surround sound or DVR. A satellite dish seems a much wiser choice.
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post #28 of 62 Old 05-23-2013, 07:11 AM
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The HDMI connections here all make perfect sense.
An newer receiver will route HDMI through it.
It will also grab the digital 5.1 signal from the HDMI input cable, and then life is good.

My problem was I had an older Sony receiver with no HDMI.
It can only get its audio signal from either fiber or digital coax (I think that is what it's called).

Having to buy a new receiver because of a Cablevsion software bug is totally unacceptable.

One other thing I discovered is that when I turned my TV set off, surround sound starting working.
Likewise, if I unplugged the HDMI cable from the back the cable box, surround sound would work.
Like I said, as long as a HDMI cable is plugged in with a TV on the other end, that's where the cable box sends the digital 5.1 signal.
But If it goes first to the TV, how do you pass it to the surround sound receiver?

I also forgot to mention how many times I would have to reboot the SA 8300 cable box.
Often 3 times a day.
The HDMI picture would blink on and off.
Sometimes there would be no surround sound.
And this was with the old software/guide.
I can't believe I put up with this for years.
Horrible software and hardware.

I cannot believe that here we are at the end of May, and Cablevision still hasn't fixed the surround sound problem.


Bob S
Bergenfield, NJ
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post #29 of 62 Old 06-18-2013, 05:17 AM
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Had the same problem when updating my new TV to HDMI connection. Could not get Dolby Digital out of my home theater receiver. Called Cablevision who said it was probably a TV problem. Called Samsung and they said it couldn't be the TV because TV was bypassed when I connected cable box directly to receiver. Saw online forum with others having similar problems, so I connected TV to cable box with component video and lo and behold, my Dolby Digital was back! Confronted Cablevision with this and they finally admitted that the Scientific Atlanta 8300HD box (the only DVR box they offer) was not compatible with HDMI connections - picture yes, audio no. I may go to FIOS.
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post #30 of 62 Old 06-25-2013, 10:26 PM
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I am also having that very same problem. I have an older SONY receiver which has a blue light on it that comes on when I am receiving DTS or Dolby sound over the optical cable. It would work when I selected Dolby Digital on the old Motorola 8300HD menus and it would turn off when I selected the HDMI setting (which produced no Blue light or great sound but sent the sound over the tv speakers only). When the new menus on the STB showed up I still had the great sound but I went into the menu - AUDIO settings and the sound went flat (equivalent to the old HDMI setting). Now I can't get back to the good sound despite the Dolby Digital setting on the new menu. I would like to swap boxes but I have tons of DVR stuff I haven't seen yet (summer viewing). Does anyone have any work arounds besides pulling the HDMI cable (I would like to continue to use my 11 month old hi-def screen)?
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