Newbie Blu Ray player question - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 6 Old 06-05-2012, 05:21 AM - Thread Starter
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Hi i may be getting my very 1st Blu Ray player so bear with me if my questions seem noobish

I am on an early gen LCD TV and a receiver from 2004 that only does DD/DTS:

1. Would there be any issue hooking up the blu ray player via HDMI to the TV for video and using coax/optical from player to receiver for audio?

2. Am i correct to assume that any Dolby True HD/DTS-HD tracks would automatically be "downgraded" to DD/DTS?

3. I have a huge DVD collection : if i use component cable would DVDs get upscaled via component cables? Are we able to select 720/1080p or would it be adjusted as per the display's native resolution?

Thanks in advance to anyone for any help
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post #2 of 6 Old 06-06-2012, 05:06 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whentrumpetsfade View Post

Hi i may be getting my very 1st Blu Ray player so bear with me if my questions seem noobish



I am on an early gen LCD TV and a receiver from 2004 that only does DD/DTS:


1. Would there be any issue hooking up the blu ray player via HDMI to the TV for video and using coax/optical from player to receiver for audio?
That's a standard connection method for use with non-hdmi AVRs. It does have issues, though. See below.
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2. Am i correct to assume that any Dolby True HD/DTS-HD tracks would automatically be "downgraded" to DD/DTS?
Yes and no. The lossless tracks are actually composed of a lossy core plus additional data to provide the missing audio information. That core audio is what is provided over digital optical or coax (depending on what connections the player has). The lossy Dolby core on Blu-ray discs is encoded at a higher bitrate (640Kb/sec) than is used for DVDs (384Kb/s or 448Kb/s). Unfortunately, some AVRs cannot decode that higher bitrate and will be silent.

Edited to add: I don't know the lossy core bitrate for DTS, although I know it's higher than the DVD equivalent.

However, BD players will also let you select stereo PCM output over digital audio connections. They'll decode the audio bitstream internally and downmix it to 2 channels. Normally the LFE channel is omitted, though. Stereo PCM can be decoded by any AVR. You can then select ProLogic decoding in the AVR to recover some of the surround sound.

Depending on the player and your AVR, you also might be able to use multichannel analog connections. Unfortunately, most AVRs don't digitize their multichannel inputs, so they can't apply any processing, including bass management or speaker distances. That has to be done in the player.
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3. I have a huge DVD collection : if i use component cable would DVDs get upscaled via component cables?
Maybe. It will depend on the player. HDMI licensing includes an "analog sunset" clause. After a certain time, newly manufactured players will provide only standard resolution video over component connections. Even now, component connections are rare in low-priced players.

Edited to add: don't forget that all digital displays scale all video inputs to the display's native resolution. The display's scaler already might be better than what is provided either in the player or in (a new) AVR.
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Are we able to select 720/1080p or would it be adjusted as per the display's native resolution?
Yes. smile.gif
All the players I've seen have an option of selecting Auto -- which matches the disc's video to the display device's capabilities, or selecting any of a number of fixed video output resolutions: 1080p, 1080i, 480i, etc.

I hope this helps a little.

Selden
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post #3 of 6 Old 06-06-2012, 10:46 AM - Thread Starter
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Ok thank you Selden - that was very helpful! Hmm so how can i tell if my AVR is able to decode that higher bitrate DD/DTS in Blu Ray discs?
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post #4 of 6 Old 06-06-2012, 12:25 PM
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Originally Posted by whentrumpetsfade View Post

Ok thank you Selden - that was very helpful! Hmm so how can i tell if my AVR is able to decode that higher bitrate DD/DTS in Blu Ray discs?

The only method that I'm aware of is to try it. I don't think any of the AVR manufacturers have ever publicly documented the DD or DTS bandwidth limitations of their digital audio interfaces. Also, the only direct "fix" would be to get a newer AVR, preferably one which has an HDMI interface.

I don't know what your budget or audio preferences are. About $150 would get you a 3D BD player with both optical and rca digital connections (e.g. a Sony BDP-S590). About $500 would get you either a 3D BD player with 7.1 analog outputs or both a 3D BD player (without 7.1 analog) and a current-generation AVR which supports HDMI.

p.s. at any instant I'm expecting a forum moderator to show up and say this conversation should be moved to the."what BD player should I get" thread.

Selden
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post #5 of 6 Old 06-06-2012, 12:27 PM
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Whether in a movie rental store or your local electronics store, we’ve all seen and, we’ll admit it, drooled over the huge TVs showing the latest Blu-ray disc releases. The crisp picture with amazing color and depth has made us envious beyond imagining.

Umm... completely non sequitur.
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post #6 of 6 Old 06-06-2012, 09:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whentrumpetsfade View Post

Hi i may be getting my very 1st Blu Ray player so bear with me if my questions seem noobish

I am on an early gen LCD TV and a receiver from 2004 that only does DD/DTS:

1. Would there be any issue hooking up the blu ray player via HDMI to the TV for video and using coax/optical from player to receiver for audio?

2. Am i correct to assume that any Dolby True HD/DTS-HD tracks would automatically be "downgraded" to DD/DTS?

3. I have a huge DVD collection : if i use component cable would DVDs get upscaled via component cables? Are we able to select 720/1080p or would it be adjusted as per the display's native resolution?

Thanks in advance to anyone for any help

1. I have never had a problem sending video directly to a TV via hdmi, while audio is sent to a receiver via digital coax or optical. You just have to make sure the player is set up correctly & connected correctly to both the TV and receiver.
2. Yes - if your receiver is not capable of handling the newer lossless audio codecs, the player will send the core lossy digital track down the line (DD or DTS). Again, be sure it is set up correctly in your player.
3. I cannot think of any reason to use component cables for DVDs if your TV is capable of HDMI input. When playing a DVD, the video and audio should follow the very same path you have set up to play blu-ray. And yes - your player should upconvert your DVD in this process. Just be aware that non-anamorphic source DVDs will not fill your widescreen unless you permit your TV to "stretch" them (something I generally do not permit, as I want my video to match the source aspect ratio exactly).

When considering a blu-ray player, play close attention to what features and connections are available, as newer blu-ray players seem to "lose" connection capabilities that you might assume exist (ie. make sure it has coax/optical audio digital connections if you intend to connect that way - and full 1080 component video connections if you must connect that way).

Please note my comments are based upon using Sony blu-ray players (BDP-S350 and S550) with a Yamaha RX-V1 (high quality receiver of year 2000 vintage approximately) as my secondary system.

A long-time audio/video addict!
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