Originally Posted by chefklc
the option to assign the mini's output to the Denon HDMI in Preferences -->Sound --> Output simply disappeared...Any ideas?
does HDMI show up as an audio output option in Audio MIDI setup?
I don't think it's due to the Mavericks update since it worked for a while after the update before disappearing.
I wouldn't rule out Mavericks as part of the issue, something may have changed in terms of HDMI detection, passthrough and retention of EDID. What I'd do is boot back up from your last known-good SuperDuper backup, presumably 10.8.5, run that previous flawless setup for a while, then see if the problem re-occurs.
Are you running this headless, i.e. just using the Mini for audio over HDMI and not also for other home theater tasks like video? If so, why not use optical in to your Denon? It is much less fraught with peril than HDMI...
Thanks for the reply chefklc.
To answer your first question, at this time I can't tell if HDMI shows up as an output in the MIDI setup. Unfortunately I cannot get the AVR to process any HDMI signals. I can hook up the Mac Mini HDMI output going directly to my 24" LCD monitor and display the Mac Mini desktop, no problem. Since the display is not intended to reproduce audio, the Mac Mini does not display HDMI when I go to either of the two audio setup screens. All that is there are the Mini's internal speakers.
When I then disconnect the HDMI cable from the display, insert it in one of the 4311's HDMI inputs, and connect another HDMI cable from one of the 4311's two HDMI outputs to the display's HDMI input, I get a dimly lit screen -- no MAC Mini desktop. This is after I reset the processor on the 4311, restoring factory settings, something I have not had to do in almost 3 years of ownership of it. BTW, when I tried this, I disconnected all other DHMI cables from the 4311 - BD, SAT/CABLE and the outer output to by JVC projector (which BTW locked up when all of this started the other night - it has known issues with HDMI interface stability).
As to your question about why not using TosLink - I have used the HDMI interface on the Mini from the start since I need to display video to control iTunes/Audirvana when playing music on the Mini. I usually display that video on the LCD monitor and/or the projector screen.
Additionally, HDMI interfaces have lower jitter than TosLink (questionable whether its audible but the geek in me wants to use the most advanced I/F). Additionally, if I'm not mistaken, TosLink cannot pass uncompressed 5.1 audio whereas HDMI can. I've only used the Mini as a 2 ch music player to date, but at some point want to tackle M/C high res audio with it. Thus I never really considered using anything but the HDMI interface. But you are correct, the control protocols on it are much more complex and glitchy.
Unless you have any other advice, I'm going to let the 4311 and Mac Mini run overnight hooked up via HDMI to see if the interface issue is something that needs some runtime to refresh. I'm in the camp that most if not all of the issue is with the AVR at this point. BTW, forgot to mention - as another diagnostic step, I cycled through the sources on the 4311 with the LCD display hooked up to it via HDMI and it would not display the AVR's menu, which normally it should. This is why I'm leaning towards the AVR being the culprit.