Sony HT-CT150 and CT350 - Page 16 - AVS Forum
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post #451 of 2101 Old 08-22-2010, 04:30 PM
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The CT 150 shows if DD sound is playing or not. When I hook it up through my TV it doesnt show that and says PL II (something like that), and if its hooked up through my cable box it will show DD with the logo. Doesn't that clear up the question if our TV's output DD and DTS through the optical? I have HDMI from my HDDVR to my TV and then optical from there. It is much louder through my TV but I don't want to do it if it isnt DD.
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post #452 of 2101 Old 08-22-2010, 08:35 PM
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Just pulled the trigger on a CT350 from the nerds...$289.98 total cost. Will let you guys know my thoughts and impressions once I've received and tested.

::crosses fingers::
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post #453 of 2101 Old 08-22-2010, 08:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wings9130 View Post

The CT 150 shows if DD sound is playing or not. When I hook it up through my TV it doesnt show that and says PL II (something like that), and if its hooked up through my cable box it will show DD with the logo. Doesn't that clear up the question if our TV's output DD and DTS through the optical? I have HDMI from my HDDVR to my TV and then optical from there. It is much louder through my TV but I don't want to do it if it isnt DD.

Nope, it shows your tv probably doesn't pass it. What tv do you have? Sounds like the 2-3 year old Sony's (Z4100, W5100,...) do pass them.
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post #454 of 2101 Old 08-23-2010, 01:29 AM
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Originally Posted by brettpearce View Post

Nope, it shows your tv probably doesn't pass it. What tv do you have? Sounds like the 2-3 year old Sony's (Z4100, W5100,...) do pass them.

I have a samsung ln40a630...its about a year and a half old.
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post #455 of 2101 Old 08-23-2010, 02:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by henhowc View Post

Just pulled the trigger on a CT350 from the nerds...$289.98 total cost. Will let you guys know my thoughts and impressions once I've received and tested.

::crosses fingers::

Maybe following your lead on the thenerds.net site.

That is a great price.
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post #456 of 2101 Old 08-23-2010, 04:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jsswish View Post

I've only had it a little over a week so I haven't heard how it performs on much more than cable, blu ray and the xbox. Blu rays sound very solid to me, cable sounds good but so far I haven't heard much surround effect, but the sound is still much more open and overall better than tv speakers. Games sound good, but I have one gripe that I'm not sure I can figure out. When playing an fps for instance, when somebody talkin is behind you, the voice is much louder than when they're visible in front of you. When they're in front of you the voice is about in line, maybe even a little quieter than the rest of the game sounds. I found that issue in COD MW:2. Most of what I play is NHL, and that sounds good after some volume level tweaks in game. I had it adjusted for my 5.1 surround sound at my parents, but those levels don't work out so well, mainly because of the crowd volume.

i heard that issue before by another guy on this forum on FPS games...it SEEMS the CT-150 emulates back channels by GOING louder....which SUCK?

Does this issue also happen when watching movies/TV and people are in the back talking????

To other owner of the bar is there a FIX to this PROBLEM
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post #457 of 2101 Old 08-23-2010, 05:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nenito2k View Post


i heard that issue before by another guy on this forum on FPS games...it SEEMS the CT-150 emulates back channels by GOING louder....which SUCK?

Does this issue also happen when watching movies/TV and people are in the back talking????

To other owner of the bar is there a FIX to this PROBLEM

I'd like to know too. I play a lot of shooters myself. Any gamers out there care to confirm or provide these guys with potential solutions?
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post #458 of 2101 Old 08-23-2010, 08:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nenito2k View Post

i heard that issue before by another guy on this forum on FPS games...it SEEMS the CT-150 emulates back channels by GOING louder....which SUCK?

Does this issue also happen when watching movies/TV and people are in the back talking????

To other owner of the bar is there a FIX to this PROBLEM

So far I've only noticed it in halo 3 and COD MW:2. In those cases it was very noticeable, so I would have to say that movies do not suffer the same problem.
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post #459 of 2101 Old 08-23-2010, 08:37 PM
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In addition, I did not notice it playing Gears of War 2. Only with the 2 previous games. And in all 3 cases my play was limited to basically just the first level as I was just playing to see how they looked and sounded.
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post #460 of 2101 Old 08-24-2010, 02:54 AM
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JSS....my guess is that it's maybe the games that originally don't handle back channels that well....since some games have the issues others don't.

BTW on games does the CT bring that much improvement on TV speakers? and are you using game mode on the bar?
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post #461 of 2101 Old 08-24-2010, 04:48 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nenito2k View Post

JSS....my guess is that it's maybe the games that originally don't handle back channels that well....since some games have the issues others don't.

BTW on games does the CT bring that much improvement on TV speakers? and are you using game mode on the bar?

I've been using movie mode. I tried game mode with NHL but didn't notice much of a difference besides a little change in tone. I'll have to try it with an fps and pay attention. I would think the games I was trying would have handled the rear channel fine. I know they did on my 5.1 system. And COD MW:2 is a fairly recent game, with halo being just a couple years older than it.
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post #462 of 2101 Old 08-24-2010, 03:49 PM
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I just received my ct350 in the mail today. Wish I had those games to test for you guys. Sold COD:MW2 and Halo in anticipation of Halo Reach.

I'll see if I have any other games in my library that might make use of positional surround sound though. Anyone have any movie recommendations to test?
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post #463 of 2101 Old 08-24-2010, 07:42 PM
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I dunno guys. the CT150 is better than my tv speakers but isnt all that loud. I tried playing a blue ray and the volume is good but nothing great. The volume through cable is good for some channels only that broadcast in 5.1. I noticed I have a hard time hearing the announcers during games so I put the center up to +2. Any other settings that can make this thing louder?
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post #464 of 2101 Old 08-24-2010, 11:29 PM
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Total brainfart by me. My XBR4 doesn't even have ports that support HDMI 1.4 ARC so I ended up having to use the optical connection anyways. Does this change anything or does the sound quality and 5.1 surround support still function pretty much the same? I vaguely recall a feel posts indicating that if I don't use HDMI that LPCM is only able to do 2 channels over optical? So I guess I should be using bitstream correct?

A few general first impressions (note I'm not at all what you would classify an audio-phile):

The remote is really cluttered and not very user friendly. I'll probably end up having the to actually read the manual for awhile before I get used to navigating the dang thing! Having to use two hands to operate certain functions on the remote? No thank you. Although the two handed thing is really only if you want to use it as a partially functional TV remote as well.

The non-wireless subwoofer is pretty limiting. I knew this going in but I'm going to have to end up grabbing longer HDMI cables for my setup. Bravia Sync is also only available on the PS3 Slim so I can't do an all in one shutdown/power-up of my devices that everyone was raving about. That's my fault for not being more thorough with my research though.

Sound wise, there's definitely a little bit more oomph and clarity to the sound compared to the built-ins. Have not tested any surround sound as of yet though. So far my overall impressions are mixed...although I've only had a few hours with it. I'm hoping the sound quality impresses me more than the ease of use.

Another thing I wanted to ask...I'm a little confused by how the HDMI ports on the sub work. So on my usual TV I have three HDMI ports and an antenna hooked up for OTA HD TV. If I switch to one of the HDMI ports on the sub...what custom HDMI settings is it using from my TV (i.e. my color tweaks and use of motion enhancer and cinemotion) Is it just taking the settings of the input I currently have selected on the TV itself?

Another "weird" thing I noticed:

I have HDMI 1 on my TV labeled as BD
I have HDMI 3 labeled as Game (but have nothing connected at the moment)
PS3 is plugged into BD port on the sub

If I select BD input on the sub I will of course get the PS3
If I select HDMI 3 it will go blank
If I select HDMI 1 it will go blank for a few seconds but someone know to switch to PS3 on the BD sub port.

Is it just smart enough to figure it that's what I wanted to do or am I totally misunderstanding how the system works?
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post #465 of 2101 Old 08-25-2010, 03:27 AM
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@wings9130 & HENHOW:

your comments are pretty disturbing....the bar is almost as TV speakers and doesn't sound that better...Some other owners claim, that the bar offers a noticeable upgrade and big improvement over tv speakers mainly on movies...

Dunno what to think now, and even if i hear it in store that is not reliable....
Wonder why humans can never settle on the same idea

well guess i will have to make up my own idea
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post #466 of 2101 Old 08-25-2010, 06:23 AM
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Have you guys complaining used it for several days first before giving feedback? The first week or so it really didn't sound all that great, now that I've had mine for 2 months it sounds pretty good. WAY, I mean, WAY better than any TV speakers out there.
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post #467 of 2101 Old 08-25-2010, 06:52 AM
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haha BSoares.....at least your opinion is clear
my guess also would be that it must sound Much better than lcd speakers (for the moment i only heard the CT500...)
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post #468 of 2101 Old 08-25-2010, 09:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by henhowc View Post

Total brainfart by me. My XBR4 doesn't even have ports that support HDMI 1.4 ARC so I ended up having to use the optical connection anyways. Does this change anything or does the sound quality and 5.1 surround support still function pretty much the same? I vaguely recall a feel posts indicating that if I don't use HDMI that LPCM is only able to do 2 channels over optical? So I guess I should be using bitstream correct?

When you're watching OTA TV using the TV's internal ATSC tuner, DD5.1 will be sent out on the optical connection (assuming the program content is DD5.1). However, for components connected to the TV via HDMI, only 2 ch. stereo is sent out over optical. At least that is true with most TVs. There are exceptions.


Quote:


Another thing I wanted to ask...I'm a little confused by how the HDMI ports on the sub work. So on my usual TV I have three HDMI ports and an antenna hooked up for OTA HD TV. If I switch to one of the HDMI ports on the sub...what custom HDMI settings is it using from my TV (i.e. my color tweaks and use of motion enhancer and cinemotion) Is it just taking the settings of the input I currently have selected on the TV itself?

For components connected via HDMI to the CT350 subwoofer, everything is going to use the video settings you have made on your TV for the HDMI port you're using to connect the CT350 to your TV. See my next response also.

Quote:


Another "weird" thing I noticed:

I have HDMI 1 on my TV labeled as BD
I have HDMI 3 labeled as Game (but have nothing connected at the moment)
PS3 is plugged into BD port on the sub

If I select BD input on the sub I will of course get the PS3
If I select HDMI 3 it will go blank
If I select HDMI 1 it will go blank for a few seconds but someone know to switch to PS3 on the BD sub port.

Is it just smart enough to figure it that's what I wanted to do or am I totally misunderstanding how the system works?

I'm kind of confused on what you're asking here. "Labels" for the TV's HDMI ports are just that....labels. If you have your PS3 connected via HDMI to the CT350's BD input, you still need to switch your TV to the input you're using to connect the CT350 to the TV. I'm guessing you're using HDMI 1 on the TV. So when you switch there, the CT350 is going to BD because that is the only thing connected to it. If you connect more components to the CT350 and they don't speak BraviaSync, you have to switch the CT350's input to DVD or SAT depending on where you made the connection.

And yes, you need more than a few hours to play with the CT. Try different settings and soundfields to find what suits you best and give it several days to open up.
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post #469 of 2101 Old 08-25-2010, 09:46 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BSoares View Post

Have you guys complaining used it for several days first before giving feedback? The first week or so it really didn't sound all that great, now that I've had mine for 2 months it sounds pretty good. WAY, I mean, WAY better than any TV speakers out there.

I'm not sure if your comments were directed at me or not but I did mention in my post that my impressions were based on only a few hours of use. There's going to be a whole lot of variance here as some people have only used TV speakers before and many have used actual non-virtual surround sound setups as well as other sound bars so that all is going to come into play in the impressions. To be honest, some of us might not be wowed simply because our ears aren't as good as some of the "audio-philes" on here.

Also, some people aren't posting what TVs they are using. I am using the XBR4 which IIRC is known to have a better set of built-in speakers than some of the more recent thinner LCDs. I do understand your sentiments though and I will definitely post further impressions once I've had more time to just sit down and listen.
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post #470 of 2101 Old 08-25-2010, 09:58 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Possumgirl View Post

When you're watching OTA TV using the TV's internal ATSC tuner, DD5.1 will be sent out on the optical connection (assuming the program content is DD5.1). However, for components connected to the TV via HDMI, only 2 ch. stereo is sent out over optical. At least that is true with most TVs. There are exceptions.

Gotcha. All of my devices are currently connected via the sub so I think I'm good to go.

Quote:


I'm kind of confused on what you're asking here. "Labels" for the TV's HDMI ports are just that....labels. If you have your PS3 connected via HDMI to the CT350's BD input, you still need to switch your TV to the input you're using to connect the CT350 to the TV. I'm guessing you're using HDMI 1 on the TV. So when you switch there, the CT350 is going to BD because that is the only thing connected to it. If you connect more components to the CT350 and they don't speak BraviaSync, you have to switch the CT350's input to DVD or SAT depending on where you made the connection.

And yes, you need more than a few hours to play with the CT. Try different settings and soundfields to find what suits you best and give it several days to open up.

I think this was another total brainfart by me. I have my TV connected to the sub via HDMI 1 so it makes sense that all of my devices connected to the sub would share its settings. I think I just had trouble grasping the concept of a HDMI repeater and was thinking that the ports on the TV would be considered HDMI 1-3 and the ports on the sub HDMI 4-6 versus being more like HDMI 1a-1c. Thanks for clarifying. I think I got it down now?
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post #471 of 2101 Old 08-25-2010, 10:31 AM
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About to purchase the CT-350 and had a simple audio question.

I run a media center PC (Win7) which has an optical out.

The motherboard is a Foxconn Cinema Deluxe II:
http://www.foxconnchannel.com/produc...D=en-us0000472

Question is to get the best chance of surround sound my guess is to use the optical out and attempt to connect to the CT-350 with DTS Connect....Correct?

Since the CT-350 does not have 7.1 analog signals this would give me the ability to simulate 5.1 over the optical channel...Correct?

Not sure how all this decoding works and am wondering what is the best setup.

Also my understanding is that the Foxconn Cinema Deluxe II only has 2-channel stereo over the HDMI, limiting surround to optical out only.
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post #472 of 2101 Old 08-25-2010, 12:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by henhowc View Post

I'm not sure if your comments were directed at me or not but I did mention in my post that my impressions were based on only a few hours of use. There's going to be a whole lot of variance here as some people have only used TV speakers before and many have used actual non-virtual surround sound setups as well as other sound bars so that all is going to come into play in the impressions. To be honest, some of us might not be wowed simply because our ears aren't as good as some of the "audio-philes" on here.

Also, some people aren't posting what TVs they are using. I am using the XBR4 which IIRC is known to have a better set of built-in speakers than some of the more recent thinner LCDs. I do understand your sentiments though and I will definitely post further impressions once I've had more time to just sit down and listen.

Wasn't directed at you, just general comment should anyone not know that this set does require some usage hours to open up.

I agree that some TVs are better, I had a Sharp Aquos that had pretty decent sound (that was enough to me until I got a 63C7000 which has horrible speakers). After getting the new TV I needed something better and the CT150 is definitely better than any TV I've seen but it's also worse than any discrete 5.1 or 7.1 sound system I've listened to. So having the right expectations is key. It's a clean setup that sounds better than TV speakers but don't expect to be blown away by it. It's plenty loud but the real surround experience just isn't there.
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post #473 of 2101 Old 08-25-2010, 01:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nenito2k View Post

@wings9130 & HENHOW:

your comments are pretty disturbing....the bar is almost as TV speakers and doesn't sound that better...Some other owners claim, that the bar offers a noticeable upgrade and big improvement over tv speakers mainly on movies...

Dunno what to think now, and even if i hear it in store that is not reliable....
Wonder why humans can never settle on the same idea

well guess i will have to make up my own idea

Hey Nenito,,,,,, not to worry,,,,, the CT-150 sounds way better than just TV speakers,,,,, it has a very good room filling sound,,,,ANYONE that is not getting good sound out of it either has it set up wrong or has no reflective walls anywhere near it (a big open room).

Cheers
Davyo
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post #474 of 2101 Old 08-26-2010, 02:55 AM
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dave thanx you always motivate me

Anyway i went to my local sony store yesterday and they told me they never heard of the CT150 and don't know if they will come out here or not. I depend on the MEA region (and theses bars are available on that sony site).

Will have to wait and hear more opinions on this baby
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post #475 of 2101 Old 08-26-2010, 10:14 AM
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questions daveyo:

1. Why do you like setting your bluray player on bitstream every time you get a new bar, including sony? i have already asked that a few days ago...you claimed with the vizio i think that even if it only gives you dd/dts its better than PCM.

But with PCM you get lossless audio sent to the sony bar right?? how can that be worse than sending SD audio?
for that matter is there any DIFFERENCE at all between HD tracks and SD ones on movies????

2. Do you really think the ct150 is better than the ct 100 & 500 and vizio....or is it just that you want to settle so much that you are confused

3. Do you definatly confirm that the CT150 is better than the s400 soundwise (dialogue clarity, loundness, surround effects, low level volume details etc....); is the sub on, the sony better than the yamaha one (most people were stunned by the s400 sub...)?

4. to put an end to the debate can you guarantee that this 250$ soundbar is better than ANY LCD/plasma speakers (even philips, panasonic...known for having the best sound around)???

5. some people commented that when playing FPS back channels are way to loud (when people speak behind your back in a game). what's up with that, did you see some bugs?

6. on the BD movie, is it preferable to set the movie in 5.1/6.1 or 7.1 (if available). is there an actual difference in that on a 3.1 channel soundbar???

7. everyone knows that DD is inferior to DTS on real 5.1 installations; on this bar do we at least see that difference too ?

8. how does 2.0 stereo sound on tv channels that don't do 5.1 dolby? again many channels only support stereo...will this still be better than my tv speakers?

9. can you post some pictures of the baby once you deal with everything??

Good luck in answering all this
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post #476 of 2101 Old 08-26-2010, 01:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nenito2k View Post

questions daveyo:

1. Why do you like setting your bluray player on bitstream every time you get a new bar, including sony? i have already asked that a few days ago...you claimed with the vizio i think that even if it only gives you dd/dts its better than PCM.

But with PCM you get lossless audio sent to the sony bar right?? how can that be worse than sending SD audio?
for that matter is there any DIFFERENCE at all between HD tracks and SD ones on movies????

2. Do you really think the ct150 is better than the ct 100 & 500 and vizio....or is it just that you want to settle so much that you are confused

3. Do you definatly confirm that the CT150 is better than the s400 soundwise (dialogue clarity, loundness, surround effects, low level volume details etc....); is the sub on, the sony better than the yamaha one (most people were stunned by the s400 sub...)?

4. to put an end to the debate can you guarantee that this 250$ soundbar is better than ANY LCD/plasma speakers (even philips, panasonic...known for having the best sound around)???

5. some people commented that when playing FPS back channels are way to loud (when people speak behind your back in a game). what's up with that, did you see some bugs?

6. on the BD movie, is it preferable to set the movie in 5.1/6.1 or 7.1 (if available). is there an actual difference in that on a 3.1 channel soundbar???

7. everyone knows that DD is inferior to DTS on real 5.1 installations; on this bar do we at least see that difference too ?

8. how does 2.0 stereo sound on tv channels that don't do 5.1 dolby? again many channels only support stereo...will this still be better than my tv speakers?

9. can you post some pictures of the baby once you deal with everything??

Good luck in answering all this

Geeze,,, you dont ask much.

1: Bitstream, I "think" Im getting a better sound with bitstream vs PCM but Im still going back and forth a bit,,, I know with the JVC BA3, when I set my BD player to bitstream the JVC really sounded much better than PCM, huge difference.

2: The CT-100, 150 and 500, which is better, thats a gray area,,, they all have pros and cons,,, the CT-150 I liked because it was the ground breaker of the Sony bars and "also" looked the coolest (metal grill on the bar and connecting pin cable were my favorite features).

The CT-500 (when it worked correctly) the on-screen menu and a better surround effect than the CT-100.

The CT-150, just as good of surround effect, if not better than the 500, smaller bar than the 500.

Things I still hate about the CT's though, the remote is too clutered with a bunch of crap that will for the most part never get used, the LED readout on the sub is hard to see (too small), menu's are a slight pain in the ass but not a big deal once ya get used to them.

Yes, I now know the dialog is better on the CT-150 than the Vizio VHT210,, I wasnt going to mention this as I didnt want to further confuss anyone, but a few days ago I re-purchased the Vizio VHT and did a side by side with the CT-150 that I just re-purchased,,, doing the side by side and spending more time really listening to both the CT-150 best out the Vizio in the dialog department, but the Vizio still was a bit better in a room filling bigger sound.
I went thru a ton of BluRays testing the bars and in most of the comparisons the CT-150 ended up as the winner for dialog.

3: The S400 vs the CT-150,, overall sound I dont think there is a clear winner on that, the both sound pretty equal,, but for a surround effect thats easy,,, the S400 did not even come close to the CT-150, the JVC or the Vizio in terms of a room filling surround sound,,, that was really a let down for me with the S400, as, like I said before, I think a soundbar should at least give some sense of a surround sound effect and I got very little of that from the S400.

4: Of all the flat panels I have owned and tried out the Vizio 55 inchers with the attached soundbar have the best sound of any of the other brands,,, except for one panel,,, the Mitsubishi flat panels with the built in soundbar,,, Ohhh ma god,, that is soundbar nirvana,,, I had the 52" Mits LCD in my house and feel in love with the built in soundbar,,, the sound was better than any stand alone soundbar EVER made,,,, easy on-screen menus where you could see in real time the directions of the soundbeams and a subwofter output on the TV's back panel,, LOVED the soundbar on the Mitsu,,, the picture on the Mitsu, not that great, and I just could not live with the 52" size that they offered back then,, the new Mistu's are a bigger screen size now and I think an improved picture so that might be worth re-visiting someday.


Well I will have to answer the rest of the questions later,, got to go for now.

Cheers
Davyo
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post #477 of 2101 Old 08-26-2010, 02:07 PM
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Nenito2k

I know your questions were directed to Davyo, but I wanted to add my 2 cents on a couple of them.

1. With regular DD/DTS, it should make no difference whether the player or the CT does the decoding. The resulting LPCM should be the same since decoding is just unzipping the compressed file. Since the CT can't decode the HD codecs, the manual says to send it multi-channel LPCM. Now whether a 3.1 soundbar can make use of the extra tracks is an unknown really.

4. Nothing ever puts an end to a debate , but I have a Panny plasma and the speakers are not all that bad. My CT350 just puts them to shame! There is no way I could get this kind of sound from the TV speakers.

8. The only TV channel I sometimes watch that uses 2 ch. stereo is PBS. The CT adds a fuller, richer tone. Can't comment on others as the rest of the channels I watch are all Dolby 5.1.
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post #478 of 2101 Old 08-26-2010, 02:53 PM
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thanx DAVE & possumgirl (BTW are you a redhead..i imagine that it is the case )

i am quite pleased by the answers provided, mainly CT vs speakers....still possumgirls for SD audio i always heard that in 100% of cases that a dedicated audio system will be better than a player....in HD audio it should be the same as the process is different (audiophiles dont agree though)
ahh possumgirl, you said that 2.0 sounds fuller on Tv channels compared to built in speakers ok fine.
But do 5.1 dd channels sound better than 2.0 ones on the CT?
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post #479 of 2101 Old 08-26-2010, 09:08 PM
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What dvds do you guys suggest I use to test out the surround effects?
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post #480 of 2101 Old 08-27-2010, 01:23 AM
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just have a look at professional sites dvdtalk and read reviews. based on scores you willl know what dvd offers superb soundtracks

on a side not we all know that soundbars will never replace a 5.1 surround experience. But the question is....do we actually NEED to be surrounded by sound to enjoy the track ?

i think not, as long as the bar offers me bass+details+ clear voice+ wider field of listening.....ALL humans could be happy.

it's just that movies impose surround and everyone thinks its the reference
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