Do all DTT900s have the audio problem? - AVS Forum
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Old 05-16-2008, 02:10 PM - Thread Starter
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I really like everything I have read about the DTT900, including its RF performance, except of course the widely reported audio problem. Are all the DTT900s of the same build, and as such do they all have the audio problem? That is the only thing keeping me from this box.
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Old 05-16-2008, 02:11 PM
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Mine doesn't seem to. And a few others here with the same March build date report that theirs don't, either. But then, there are some with March units that say they do hear it.

I would say that if your coupons will still be good for awhile, then just wait as long as you can for the DTT990. It's supposed to be out soon. Or you could just buy the DTT900 without using a coupon from a place you can return it to, or that will let you put the coupon towards it after you've tried it out (just tell them you haven't gotten the coupon yet when you go to buy it the first time).
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Old 05-16-2008, 02:16 PM - Thread Starter
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DTT990????????? you mean DTT901?
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Old 05-16-2008, 02:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tkrhdtv View Post

DTT990????????? you mean DTT901?

You beat me to it - I was just going to correct it.
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Old 05-16-2008, 02:18 PM - Thread Starter
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when is it expected out? I have until 6/24
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Old 05-16-2008, 02:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tkrhdtv View Post

I really like everything I have read about the DTT900, including its RF performance, except of course the widely reported audio problem. Are all the DTT900s of the same build, and as such do they all have the audio problem? That is the only thing keeping me from this box.

It's hard to tell, as very few have opened their DTT900 units to take photos of the main board and post them here.

I've had three DT900s, with builds of January 2008, February 2008, and March 2008. All three have suffered from the same left channel audio problem.

I disassembled all three shortly after getting them home, and what appears to be a revision number on the main circuit board was identical on all three. Another poster, many weeks back, took photos of the inside of his DT900, which had either a November 2007 or December 2007 date. The (assumed) revision number on that circuit board was different--at least the last few characters.

It won't do a lot of good without photos of other units to compare it with, but attached to this message is a photo taken of the main board of my March 2008 Zenith. What appears to be the revision number is the second line of white text in the upper left hand corner.
LL
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Old 05-16-2008, 02:46 PM
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OK, I just checked and my revision number is the same as the one in the photo.
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Old 05-16-2008, 03:25 PM
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The latest build date I have seen for the DTT900 is March, with a 601,xxx serial number. I purchased this Zenith a few days ago on behalf of a relative. It's still in its box. (I used my 5/23 coupon for this and got a 5/27 coupon in exchange from my relative.) My original DTT900 is from February with a 337,xxx serial number. I'm very pleased with my original Zenith.

One sales associate at a local Bi-Mart store told me that they had received some Zeniths with an April manufacturing date but there was a problem so they went back. He said that there was a memo concerning this but he couldn't find it when he looked for it.

Since no one else has yet reported seeing a DTT900 of April manufacture, I am speculating that the Bi-Mart "April Zeniths" might be an early shipment of the DTT901 model delivered before the NTIA certification has been posted. I should think that there wouldn't be anything that would prevent a non-coupon sale of the DTT901 models. But this would certainly confound customers expecting to use their coupons and sales associates attempting to authorize a coupon transaction.

Bi-Mart has been selling the Zenith DTT900 models with a price of $49.99! Since the Zeniths sell out as quickly as they come in some stores in this chain have implemented waiting lists for the DTT900. (Bi-Mart has 56 locations in Oregon, 10 locations in Washington and one location in Idaho.)

While I would like to have a DTT901 my coupon expires 5/27. Perhaps I shall put my name on the Bi-Mart waiting list to purchase another DTT900 or the DTT901 if it gains its NTIA certification and appears (reappears?) in the local stores in time.

"A ROSE BY ANY OTHER NAME WILL SMELL AS SWEET. BUT IT DOES NOT FOLLOW THAT WHATEVER WE CHOOSE TO CALL A ROSE WILL POSSESS THE ROSE'S FRAGRANCE."

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Old 05-16-2008, 04:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rammitinski View Post

OK, I just checked and my revision number is the same as the one in the photo.

Thank you for checking.

A moment ago, I searched through the main Zenith thread and found the photos that Bob Diaz posted of his own Zenith converter many weeks back. The photo of the main circuit board shows a different number in the upper left hand corner, at least the last few digits. In a later post, he indicated that the manufacture date was November 2007:

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...7#post13252117
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Old 05-16-2008, 04:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wh5916 View Post

Thank you for checking.

Yeah, sorry I didn't get around to it sooner when you guys were first asking me to, but I recently got the new Sony HD Radio component tuner, and I've been busy playing around with that lately. The children must have their toys, you know.
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Old 05-16-2008, 05:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rammitinski View Post

Yeah, sorry I didn't get around to it sooner when you guys were first asking me to, but I recently got the new Sony HD Radio component tuner, and I've been busy playing around with that lately. The children must have their toys, you know.

Trust me--I understand perfectly. The converter was my new toy for days. Now, I'm just waiting for some better reception conditions, to see if it might be possible to pull in a digital version of a station like KYW on some evenings in this part of Virginia. In the past, its analog signal has interfered with our local channel 3 on many a summer night.
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Old 05-16-2008, 11:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tkrhdtv View Post

I really like everything I have read about the DTT900, including its RF performance, except of course the widely reported audio problem. Are all the DTT900s of the same build, and as such do they all have the audio problem?

The build is not exactly the contributing factor, If your affiliate is not doing 5.1 then you will not experience the problem. More likely the larger the market you live in the more likely you will have the problem when/if they are doing 5.1. In my case NBC nightly news is a good time to hear the problem on NBC, ABC locally seem to have the problem 24/7 since they do everything in 5.1, have not tested it on Fox, CBS, CW or PBS locally since I threw all my LG chip CECBs in a junk pile or returned the ones I paid full price for.
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Old 05-17-2008, 11:13 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by satpro View Post

... I threw all my LG chip CECBs in a junk pile ...

You could consider giving them to the elderly, poor or technically challenged, those who have old RF input only TVs. I'll bet there are few folks like that in Central Florida.

Avio
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Old 05-17-2008, 01:32 PM
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If this thread is supposed to be about the DTT900 after all, mine is dated January, 2008, its serial number is 801SHNG058231, and I can't detect any audio faults with it.

If this thread is supposed to be about the DTT901, then nevermind.

EDIT: Sorry, I misread tkrhdtv's "don't you mean the DTT901?" in the third post as a correction of the original basenote (which was doubly careless of me in retrospect, as tkrhdtv started this thread and was the poster of the basenote, plus it questioned "DTT990" [as in Rammitinski's post] rather than "DTT900" [as in the basenote]).  It was a correction of Rammitinski's typo of "DTT990" for "DTT901."  As Avio has since posted, this thread was started about the DTT900, and the DTT901 came up in subsequent conversation.

Since Avio has already quoted my original text, I'm leaving it as it is and adding this edit below it instead.

OK, then, forget the "if/supposed" parts; my DTT900 is dated January, 2008, has the serial number given above, and has exhibited neither the chirp nor any greater sibilance than I get without it.
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Old 05-17-2008, 01:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dattier View Post

If this thread is supposed to be about the DTT900 after all, mine is dated January, 2008, its serial number is 801SHNG058231, and I can't detect any audio faults with it.

If this thread is supposed to be about the DTT901, then nevermind.

This thread concerns the DTT900 and also is discussing the future DTT901. The 901 has been announced, but not released for sale yet.

I have 2 to the DTT900 CECBs.

Jan. 2008: SN: 801SHGQ52****
Mar. 2008: SN: 803SHUB32****

Avio
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Old 05-17-2008, 01:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Avio View Post

I have 2 to the DTT900 CECBs.

Jan. 2008: SN: 801SHGQ52****
Mar. 2008: SN: 803SHUB32****

Thanks for getting me to see that I'd misread the earlier post.

But you didn't say whether your DTT900's have the audio problems.
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Old 05-17-2008, 02:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dattier View Post

... you didn't say whether your DTT900's have the audio problems.

One of my DTT900's is connected to a fairly new Toshiba 27" CRT with composite yellow video and red, white audio. I have an old 2.0 stereo AVR connected to TV red/white audio outs. I can hear the left channel sibilant sounds on "S" or "SH" words particularly on DD 5.1 voice programs like the NBC Nightly News.

My other Zenith is connected to a small old CRT with only RF input and the DTT900 is configured for mono. The TV's tiny speaker sounds acceptable on most programs.

I'm building Audio Filter Adapter Cables based on tvroPRO's Rev. E design and plan on testing one on my stereo Toshiba TV soon.

Avio
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Old 05-17-2008, 02:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Avio View Post

You could consider giving them to the elderly, poor or technically challenged, those who have old RF input only TVs. I'll bet there are few folks like that in Central Florida.

Avio

Not too many of them left, most are gone from old age. Other parts of the state still seem to attract them. The problem here is touristos visiting the rat. rat = MMC

I returned my zenith to cc, my insignia to bb, and my digital stream to rs, I purchased all of them when they first came out without coupons, my artec is on the junk pile as I used a coupon and I may try to use it for mobile or hurricane reception some day, my coship is deployed on a relatives tv so they can monitor radar channel. I may try another zenith at the new hhgregg when/if they get the new 901 model, of course after I test it, it will probably be going back too, since I predict it will have the same defect with the local 5.1 stations.

Oh yeah in case anyone is keeping track, I also returned one of the two magnavox boxes I had got at walmart after I was done running my ventilation comparison test, I kept the one I drilled the vents in for obviously reasons. I also had 2 rca boxes that a freind bought for me out west, After testing one of those and seeing the poor video quality levels I disposed of the other unopened unit on fleabay for practically the full retail price to some other east coaster that wanted to try one.
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Old 05-17-2008, 05:26 PM
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  • CECB's satpro tried...........................CECB's he hasn't
  • Magnavox ...................................... DTVPal
  • Tivax ............................................ ChannelMaster, AVION, MAG
  • Artec ............................................ Goodmind, GE, Zentech
  • CoShip .......................................... Daewoo
  • Zenith, Insignia ............................... CASTi, DAYTEK
  • Digital Stream ................................. Winegard, Venturer
  • RCA
  • Sansonic
  • MicroGEM (freinds)
  • CECB's you kept (by choice or you couldn't return)
  • Modified Magnavox
  • Tivax
  • Artec - In junk pile
  • CoShip - Kept but gave away to relative
  • RCA
  • Sansonic - In junk pile
I may be wrong on these lists so please correct me satpro

Also who has tested more different CECB's you or bdfox18doe?

I never knew you had also tested a Zenith, Insignia, and Digital Stream.

Looks like you have seen most of the menus and EPG's
You have also encountered most of the Tuners and SoC's.
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Old 05-17-2008, 05:54 PM
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I wasn't prepared for this today, as I didn't have my March 2008 Zenith converter or my second coupon with me. While out shopping, I checked a nearby Circuit City for any new shipments. They had a stack of DTT900 converters with an April 2008 manufacture date.

I took a chance and purchased one at the normal $59.99 price, with the understanding that it could be returned for full credit, or processed as an "exchange" with my second $40 coupon, if it worked properly.

The cover was removed upon returning home, and the main board had what appeared to be the same revision number as the previous three Zeniths that I've had. Not expecting anything different, I plugged it in and went through the setup routine.

The left channel audio issue is, happily, ***not present*** in this Zenith...the first of four to work as expected when the output is set for stereo. Multiple stations have been tried, including consistent offenders, with no problem whatsoever.

There's one other difference, which was my first tipoff that something inside of this model was different. The signal strength indicator beeps at intervals that are noticeably farther apart from each other, even with strong signals, compared to the previous three Zeniths, which were manufactured in January, February, and March 2008.

LG has apparently listened and responded...now, if only someone at their organization would make Zenith customer service aware of this.
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Old 05-17-2008, 06:09 PM
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wh5916 so was there anyting people should look for besides a April 2008 manufacture date?
Quote:
Originally Posted by KenJM View Post

I saw two variants of the DTT900 at Circuit City today. Some were 84E01085 and some were 84E01083. All were stamped April 2008. The ones I looked at had serial numbers starting with 804SHYD for the 1083's and 804SHUB for the 1085's. Does anyone know if there is anything significient about this? Could it be different tunners?

Was yours one of these 84E01085 or 84E01083?
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Old 05-17-2008, 06:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Malouff View Post

wh5916 so was there anyting people should look for besides a April 2008 manufacture date?

Was yours one of these 84E01085 or 84E01083?

The outside box has 84E01087 stamped on the date of manufacture label, and the serial number begins with 804SHYD.
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Old 05-17-2008, 07:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wh5916 View Post

I checked a nearby Circuit City for any new shipments. They had a stack of DTT900 converters with an April 2008 manufacture date. . . . The left channel audio issue is, happily, ***not present*** in this Zenith...the first of four to work as expected when the output is set for stereo. Multiple stations have been tried, including consistent offenders, with no problem whatsoever.

Thank you for this discovery. My voucher expires 6/18 and I had been planning to wait as long as possible before buying a Zenith. My CC just put up a full shelf of 3/08 boxes. Now I know to look for the 4/08 box for my last coupon.

- kelson h

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Old 05-17-2008, 08:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wh5916 View Post



The left channel audio issue is, happily, ***not present*** in this Zenith...the first of four to work as expected when the output is set for stereo. Multiple stations have been tried, including consistent offenders, with no problem whatsoever.

LG has apparently listened and responded...now, if only someone at their organization would make Zenith customer service aware of this.

perhaps you could continue checking for the next week, maybe no one was transmitting 5.1 this afternoon, unless you have 2 boxes side by side, one bad and one good, i am still skeptical!
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Old 05-17-2008, 08:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Malouff View Post

  • CECB's satpro tried...........................CECB's he hasn't
  • Magnavox ...................................... DTVPal
  • Tivax ............................................ ChannelMaster, AVION, MAG
  • Artec ............................................ Goodmind, GE, Zentech
  • CoShip .......................................... Daewoo
  • Zenith, Insignia ............................... CASTi, DAYTEK
  • Digital Stream ................................. Winegard, Venturer
  • RCA
  • Sansonic
  • CECB's you kept (by choice or you couldn't return)
  • Modified Magnavox
  • Tivax
  • Artec - In junk pile
  • CoShip - Kept but gave away to relative
  • RCA
  • Sansonic
I may be wrong on these lists so please correct me satpro

Also who has tested more different CECB's you or bdfox18doe?

I never knew you had also tested a Zenith, Insignia, and Digital Stream.

Looks like you have seen most of the menus and EPG's

You have also encountered most of the Tuners and SoC's.

Yes that is a pretty good round up of all my cecb boxes, you must be following along. In that case, add my sansonic to my junk pile since it has a video problem and admits interference related to its cheap 5vdc power supply provided by falcon. Probably going to contact sansonic at some point when I get motivated enough to see about an exchange, etronics has been of no help.

My tivax and magnavox have gone live, and the rca is on standby/backup.

I Have also played with a freinds microgem a while back, wasn't too impressed.

I am also waiting to see if target or rex tv are going to carry any other boxes locally like the apex or GE so I can evaluate them too!

But I am planning to purchase for keeps the dish network 50 model when/if it ever comes to market and does not conflict with the remotes of my other dish net satellite equipment.

I also have used or currently have various other HD tuners from RCA, samsung, LG, Panasonic, and my personal favorites the $25 former voom HD OTA enabled boxes I picked up off fleabay a few years ago.
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Old 05-17-2008, 09:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by satpro View Post

perhaps you could continue checking for the next week, maybe no one was transmitting 5.1 this afternoon, unless you have 2 boxes side by side, one bad and one good, i am still skeptical!

It's not very likely that this is a coincidence, though I do intend to keep checking. Programs with known issues here, such as Entertainment Tonight on WAVY, sounded perfect this evening with the new converter. Every channel in this area was scanned, audio was previewed on each channel...there was nothing wrong with the left channel on any broadcast.

That's the first time this has happened, and I've had four Zenith converters in two short months.

The circuit boards inside the March and April builds appear identical. The markings on the large LG chip are different, though I have no idea if this means anything. As noted in a previous posting, the audible portion of the signal strength meter is also different, with intervals between beeps noticeably farther apart than the earlier models, even with very strong signals.

Here are the markings found on the LG chip in the March 2008 converter:
LGDT1111D
0802
P40819.00

Here are the markings found on the LG chip in the April 2008 converter:
LGDT1111D
0809
P47090.00
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Old 05-17-2008, 10:06 PM
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Doesn't the Tivax and MicroGEM have the same EPG and Menu style.
MicroGEM having external power and small poorly ventilated box.
Tivax having internal power, a heat sink, and upgrade port.

By the way satpro have you seen whitepelican's posts about accessing Tivax's ZMon prompt?

The Apex I would say also fits into the Tivax/MicroGEM/AcessHD category of boxes - at least the Menu Style and EPG

I hope that the DTVPal does not have problems like the Sansonic since they probably share the same Tuner and SoC.

The GE/Goodmind is different and also keeps getting bad reviews from CNET and HDTVexpert for example.
PeterTheGeek told me that it has both a Signal Quality and Signal Strength meter I wonder if it is also using the same as the Sansonic.

Is this the voom HD OTA enabled box?
Have you tried any of them that use the TVGuide EPG?
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Old 05-17-2008, 10:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelson View Post

Thank you for this discovery. My voucher expires 6/18 and I had been planning to wait as long as possible before buying a Zenith. My CC just put up a full shelf of 3/08 boxes. Now I know to look for the 4/08 box for my last coupon.

The only thing I haven't been able to do is try it out on the infamous "NBC Nightly News," as I didn't hook the converter up until around 7:15pm eastern this evening. There has been no audible left channel "chirping" in any program viewed this evening, the first time that has happened over here with a Zenith converter...and I've tuned into every channel several times, at different hours as well. Every network show even sounded clean, an absolute first.

I'm so convinced that everything is all right that I gave the March 2008 converter to my friend Nancy this evening, who purchased a Magnavox unit several weeks back. She'll be hooking it up to a 13" Sony Trinitron, so I don't expect she'll hear a thing...and I'm hoping that the tuner inside of the Zenith will enable her to receive one of our more distant locals that the Magnavox is refusing to pick up.
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Old 05-18-2008, 07:15 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by satpro View Post

perhaps you could continue checking for the next week, maybe no one was transmitting 5.1 this afternoon, unless you have 2 boxes side by side, one bad and one good, i am still skeptical!

Below is a link to a folder containing a brief excerpt recorded from the Today Show a little under an hour ago, with the April 2008 Zenith. The folder also contains a spectrum display comparing the left and right channels. With previous converters, there was clearly a difference in the upper frequencies in the spectrum shot, visible beginning around 11 khz. There's no significant difference between the left and right channels this time, either visibly or audibly.

http://www.mediafire.com/?yx1rwwibm3y

The above was not in wave format from start to finish, as I didn't feel up to dragging the converter in here this morning. The next best method was used, and it's the same way I captured NBC Nightly News audio to post a clip here a few weeks back. Converter output was recorded using a Panasonic DMR-ES15 recorder, with speed set to SP mode. Audio in that mode is 2 channel Dolby Digital with a bitrate of 380 kbps.

The completed video/audio file was extracted to my hard drive using Nero 8, and Nero was then used to extract/save the audio from that file into a wave on my computer. The wave was then edited down to a clip under 30 seconds.

This is the first time I've heard Today Show audio, on a Zenith converter, without the left channel sounding like a badly compressed .mp3 file. Every other channel has been checked several times since last night...the left channel issue is not in this new Zenith.
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Old 05-18-2008, 07:54 AM
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If you read comments & reviews by owners including those at Circuit City & Radio Shack you can see that many do not have the issue while some do.


http://www.hdtvexpert.com/pages_c/InBox26.html
"I spoke to Zenith/LG representatives at NAB 2008 and the culprit is an EQ setting in the audio processor. This has been upgraded recently (as has the processing chip). Apparently the problem occurs with a down mix of a Dolby Digital 5.1 surround audio track to stereo, and is not as common when watching programs with native stereo soundtracks. You may want to contact LG’s customer support line at 1-800-793-8896 and see if there is a warranty fix for this problem, or an exchange for upgraded boxes"

It may be more complicated than that as the volume of production must be high so there may be more than one line of production ... & then there is distribution so one area may get more than others ...

Just a hint of the volume
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...=997980&page=5
No. locations DBA_Name....Business Name
5112.............RADIOSHACK
685...............CIRCUIT CITY STORES, INC.

One Radio Shack store said they were selling "a lot" "about 10/day" & a nearby Circuit City said they were selling "a lot" "about 15/day".
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