I have a full theater system in my media room; AV receiver, towers, sub, surrounds....mid to high end and works like expected.
In our living room we have a 40" flat panel TV to which is connected a Popcorn Hour and cable box. Our living room is part of an open floor plan that includes the kitchen, dinning room, and entry way. I would say our downstairs setup is for serious viewing and our living room setup is sometimes used for serious viewing in the evening but also for watching when there is a lot of other activity going on.
Recently I have noticed that when watching movies via the PCH and also on some HD channels it seems like I am always messing with the volume, one minute you can't seem to hear anything and the next someone is asking you to turn it down. In my opinion a few things are contributing, we use to watch the majority of TV in SD out of habit...channel 8 is NBC and for 10 years we have been use to pushing "8" on the remote. We recently got a Harmony 900 which has icons for channels so now we push "NBC" which takes us to 1008, NBC HD. We also are using the PCH more since we upgraded a movie server and now have more options of movies to watch therefore we are watching much more 5.1 audio, both HDTV and movies, through a 2.0 TV. I am assuming the downmix from 5.1 to 2.0 is not ideal and therefore the reason I am having volume issues recently? Is this a fair assumption?
Does a soundbar solve my issues? As I said I have a nice system in my media room for serious viewing. I am not looking for great, just reasonable or better.
Sounds like you just need to get rid of the people who are telling you to turn it doown.