I wasn't sure where to post this, but since it's mainly concerning 2-channel audio, I'll try here. I searched for any posts on this kind of thing, but didn't find anything about this in particular.
I have a peculiar setup of cheap AV stuff that actually can sound quite good -- IF I don't also need it to show nice video!
1) I have a cheap Sony Bluray player model BDP-S380 that plays SACD audio through its HDMI Out. Now, it does convert the DSD audio to 32-bit/176.4kHz PCM, but I'm just fine with that. It was cheap enough, so I got it as a second SACD player to go with the following....
2) I also have an older Panasonic SA-XR57 home theater receiver. It has surprisingly good sound quality. I was really surprised. It has one HDMI input and one HDMI output. Lousy sounding analog inputs, but really decent sounding DAC's (24-bit/192kHz capable) and amps.
Unfortunately, the receiver won't pass 1080p video from its HDMI In to its HDMI Out. It will pass lower-res video (720p, I guess). BUT, it will pass high-bit-sample rate PCM audio from its HDMI In to its HDMI Out.
If I want to use my Sony BD player to play an SACD through the receiver, I connect the BD player's HDMI Out to the HDMI In on the receiver. The receiver's display shows the bit-depth and sample rate as 24-bit/176.4kHz. SACD's sound great this way. CD's display on the receiver as playing at 16-bit/44.1kHz, as expected.
The problems start when I try to play a DVD or Bluray movie from the BD player to the receiver, sending the video from the receiver's HDMI Out to the HDMI In on my TV (1080p capable), using the same BD player setup/connections. The video gets completely messed up, with a pink hue and garbled image.
I was thinking of getting an HDMI Splitter, 1-In/2-Out. BD player HDMI Out would go to splitter HDMI In, then one HDMI Out from the splitter would go to the receiver's HDMI In, and the other HDMI Out from the splitter would go to the TV's HDMI In.
My question is, what HDMI revision level does this splitter need to be to be able to pass 24-bit/176.4kHz PCM audio data *and* 1080p video successfully? Is an HDMI 1.3-compliant splitter enough? HDMI 1.3a necessary? Or does it need to be HDMI 2.0-compliant? Or is all this completely beside the point?
I tried a few HDMI Audio Converters that took HDMI In and had toslink S/PDIF Out along with HDMI Out for the TV, and they completely messed up the video with little blue and red flecks, and a general graininess. Strangely enough, these converters all worked fine with an Xbox 360 or PS3 HDMI Out as the source, just not with my Sony BD player as the HDMI source.
This digital format stuff drives me completely insane.
If anybody has any ideas on what I might be doing wrong, I'd be most appreciative.
Hopelessly addicted to this stuff, but on a strict budget.
Snell Type C speakers
Homebrew DC-coupled, push-pull, 2A3 amp, Intact Audio volume control
RIAA preamp (similar to Arthur Loesch design) - Thorens TD124 w/ Audiocraft AC-3000 - Denon DL160
Pioneer Elite PD-D6-J (CD, SACD)