TV/AVR/CABLE/DVD setup questions - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 22 Old 11-02-2013, 09:25 PM - Thread Starter
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Im totally new to setting up media areas. Im going to be building a 5.1 surround system. I am starting to order parts, but I need to know what cables I need and how they are to be hooked up.

I have:

Denon X2000 AVR
Samsung UNF75F7100 TV
ViP722K Dish Box
Sony BDP-S5100 DVD/Blu Ray


How do all these items get attached to each other and with what cables to take full advantage of the technology I have and the cable broadcast like digital sound?

I THINK I need 3 HDMI cables. One from the AVR to the TV and then one for the Blu-ray to the AVR, and one for the Cable box to the AVR. But, does this use digital sound if the cable company has it available or do I need something different for that too?
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post #2 of 22 Old 11-02-2013, 09:34 PM
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Three hi-speed HDMI cables, and perhaps one optical cable. One hdmi each from the BluRay and Dish units to your avr then one from your avr to your tv. Depending if ARC capable (I think they are but didn't check) then you might be done although ARC doesn't always supply multi channel sound from the tv back to the avr, where the optical cable might give you more sound capabilities. I suggest looking at monoprice.com for cables. Where is your cable broadcast coming from since you're using satellite? You have another cable unit? Use hdmi for that if available....

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post #3 of 22 Old 11-02-2013, 10:43 PM - Thread Starter
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My cable broadcast is Dish Network. I have a single 722K dish receiver. How do you get digital sound from the dish receiver and also get digital from your blu ray if you are only using one optical?

Also, what is ARC?
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post #4 of 22 Old 11-03-2013, 01:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brazosdog02 View Post

My cable broadcast is Dish Network. I have a single 722K dish receiver. How do you get digital sound from the dish receiver and also get digital from your blu ray if you are only using one optical?

Also, what is ARC?

The digital audio (and video) will go to your avr via HDMI from both the dish receiver as well as the bluray player. ARC is Audio Return Channel, a feature in HDMI 1.4 that I believe both your avr and tv support (I didn't look it up however, check your manuals, usually a Samsung tv uses HDMI port 2 on the tv for this feature). ARC has limitations in that the tv's source apps (if you're using them at all) may not have multichannel sound available this way, some tvs limit this to 2 channel only, or will have multichannel for over the air sources only.

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post #5 of 22 Old 11-03-2013, 06:34 AM - Thread Starter
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OK, so if I get digital audio through the HDMI, why would I want to plug in optical from the Dish or Blu Ray at all?
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post #6 of 22 Old 11-03-2013, 11:23 AM
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The connected display device (HDTV) TELLS the source whether it can handle DD5.1 Surround and if NOT, it will be forced to request STEREO only signal.

Only a FEW AVR's request DD5.1 via HDMI input to drive the speakers and downconvert to STEREO for output to the HDTV.

So when using MOST AVR's, if you want to hear DD5.1 Surround Sound, you'll have to connect Digital Audio output (Optical or Coax) to the AVR via a separate input and connect HDMI directly to HDTV.


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post #7 of 22 Old 11-03-2013, 11:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brazosdog02 View Post

OK, so if I get digital audio through the HDMI, why would I want to plug in optical from the Dish or Blu Ray at all?

Because it's digital doesn't mean it's multi channel, PCM 2.0 is digital but only stereo....and you'd plug the digital optical/coax from your tv to grab any multichannel from there, your other sources (the dish and bluray) will go direct to your avr. Do you not plan to use the avr or have other reasons to bypass the avr for switching?

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post #8 of 22 Old 11-03-2013, 04:54 PM - Thread Starter
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No, in fact I want to use the AVR for everything/switching. Did my question indicate otherwise? If so, its because im unfamiliar with the process. Basically, I want to be able to use the AVR with the best sound and/or surround that I can possibly have. So, the HDMI will carry digital 5.1 sound from the dish box or my blu ray?

I think I want one HDMI from the TV to the AVR, and then HDMI from from the blu ray to the avr, and then HDMI from the dish box to teh AVR. With it setup like that, will I get all of the digital sound I should be having? If so, do I still need an optical from the TV back to the AVR again???

Sorry, im still trying to learn. Maybe im confused about 'digital' surround.
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post #9 of 22 Old 11-03-2013, 05:35 PM
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HDMI can carry up to lossless 7.1. Digital coax or optical can't do that, but can handle lossy 5.1. What are you planning to use the tv for in the way of sources? Any over the air content or internet apps? If no such content, then your hdmi connections are all you'll need.

Some do like to plug their sources directly in to a tv via hdmi and use optical/coax digital connections to the avr for audio, or use the tv as a source and use an optical/coax digital to their avr to avoid 2.0 limitations; not everyone wants to use the avr to switch everything.

No problem, no apologies needed, just provide as much detail as you can as to what you're trying to do, what your gear is, etc. Asking more questions is always a good thing....

Try this link for a rundown of the various audio codecs/cables http://forum.blu-ray.com/showthread.php?t=41820

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post #10 of 22 Old 11-03-2013, 06:45 PM - Thread Starter
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I want to use as many features as I can with the new TV. I currently only own CRT tv's. They were nice, high end TV's 15 years ago. At any rate, this new tv is going in my media area and will be used for movies, sports, TV, etc. I have no idea what I can even watch on it that doesn't come through my cable box. I have pretty poor broadband service so its not very fast, which will limit over the air anything to some degree.
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post #11 of 22 Old 11-03-2013, 07:38 PM
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FWIW, all of our connected devices go thru the avr first (blu-ray player and AppleTV2). Television is OTA only. The devices are connected via high speed hdmi cables (Redmere) to the avr. One hdmi cable goes to the tv and the tv has an optical going from it to the avr. I don't bother with ARC. So, all audio goes thru the avr first and it plays whatever format it detects and the video is passed on to the tv. The tv's built-in ATSC tuner displays the HDTV broadcast and passes the discrete DD5.1 audio to the avr via optical. The avr is not set to perform any audio or video processing because I don't need it to. About as simple of a setup as one can do.
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post #12 of 22 Old 11-03-2013, 08:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brazosdog02 View Post

I want to use as many features as I can with the new TV. I currently only own CRT tv's. They were nice, high end TV's 15 years ago. At any rate, this new tv is going in my media area and will be used for movies, sports, TV, etc. I have no idea what I can even watch on it that doesn't come through my cable box. I have pretty poor broadband service so its not very fast, which will limit over the air anything to some degree.

You need an antenna for over-the-air (not cable, not satellite, just an antenna....tv the old fashioned way....free over the air). Most modern flat panels come with internet apps, though, for which you need generally a hi-speed internet connection for best performance. Personally I don't use my tv's internet apps very often as I have better ones in my PS3 to utilize. Your Samsung tv has the Smart TV apps (whatever Samsung makes available to you). You might prefer another streaming device like a Roku or Apple TV instead, less clunky IMO and with better audio options (at least better than my Samsung D8000, for example I don't have multichannel audio on Netflix via the Samsung tv but I do on the PS3). This world is a bit different than the old crt world wink.gif

BTW, it's confusing when you call your satellite box a cable box....similar but different.

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post #13 of 22 Old 11-04-2013, 01:10 AM
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You can measure your Downlink and Uplink (usually much lower data rate) and compare to others in your zipcode:
http://www.dslreports.com/tools
http://www.thinkbroadband.com/download [Much lower speeds typically found in long term download speed test]

If you don't have good high speed Internet Service (Downlink at least 5 Mbps, preferably 10 Mbps or higher), you might want to check out what is available by entering your STREET ADDRESS into the fol. I-N Search Engines:
http://www.allconnect.com [Incomplete: Not all offerings from a particular provider and only the more popular providers.
http://www.highspeedinternetdeals.com [Comprehensive search, including Satellite, but must refresh page every time]
You should still go to individual provider's website and reenter your address to make sure it's available to YOU.

If you have a 4G/LTE Smart Phone, it may ALREADY have a high speed Wi-Fi "Hot Spot" capability that can be accessed from a computer. Phone Companies also offer 4G/LTE Data Only Plans that can be accessed by a stand-alone Wi-Fi" Hot spot" box There are also ways to "relay" the signal from an Antenna mounted on a pole outdoors to an interior Antenna.

And if you are off the beaten path and can erect a Satellite Dish, there are some new I-N Services Providers with affordable high-speed offerings, where some of them can be bundled with DirecTV:
http://www.engadget.com/2012/04/03/viasat-exede-review [YES, it works with Netflix, et.al. unlike other SAT providers]
http://www.exede.com [From Viasat, a company in my home town]
http://www.exede.com/internet-packages-pricing/service-availability

Note that ALL Phone, Cable andf SAT plans have a monthly CAPACITY limit....that may or may not be explicitly disclosed in their Terms of Service (don't ya just hate that!!!):
http://www.hughesnet.com/index.cfm?page=Plans-Options


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post #14 of 22 Old 11-04-2013, 08:18 AM - Thread Starter
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So if Im only using my blu ray, and cable box as sources (no external antenna for HDTV), then I have no reason to have an optical to pass anythign back to the AVR since its already getting its digital signal directly from the cable box, right?
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post #15 of 22 Old 11-04-2013, 10:16 AM
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A bit of clarification: You asked the question as to why anyone would want to plug Digital Audio (Optical) directly into the AVR. Only EARLY AVR's had issues with the HDTV forcing the entire AVR to STEREO mode....this SHOULD NOT be a problem with modern AVRs, which SHOULD convert DD5.1 inputs to STEREO for output to the HDTV. So if your fairly new AVR works as it SHOULD, all you NEED to connect is HDMI from each source to AVR and HDMI output of AVR to HDTV.

However, many people, including myself, find it advantageous to connect (some or all) sources directly to multiple inputs on the HDTV for Video and Digital Audio directly to the AVR. This means we can watch SAT/CABLE without firing up the AVR, thereby saving POWER and using the less overwhelming HDTV speakers for everyday viewing.


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post #16 of 22 Old 11-04-2013, 12:00 PM
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hollands, I have a modern avr, it is my Samsung tv that limits output to 2.0 other than for over the air content (and other Samsung owners for my model (and others) have the same experience), and it did not force the entire AVR into stereo mode, either.. My understyanding in an ARC situation that it is the tv that is the limiting factor. Some tvs have been designed to output other than 2.0 via ARC but my understanding is many tvs are limited in this respect. If you have links to show otherwise I'd appreciate it.

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post #17 of 22 Old 11-05-2013, 12:31 PM - Thread Starter
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OK, so if I just use the AVR and 3 HDMI cables, I cannot watch the tv without turning on the surround speakers? It wont just 'pass the signal' straight to the tv speakers? I like the idea of only using the tv speakers when im watching regular TV through the cable box.
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post #18 of 22 Old 11-05-2013, 12:43 PM
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Why would you want to use the tv's speakers when you have a HTS?
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post #19 of 22 Old 11-05-2013, 01:19 PM - Thread Starter
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Just because it might be nice to flip it on (since its on the opposite side of the house) and just watch the TV occasionally. I just mean it might not be necessary to watch the news or weather report in Digital 5.1 surround. Its really neither here nor there. Im just curious.
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post #20 of 22 Old 11-05-2013, 04:37 PM
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Some AVRs will allow you to use the HDMI Switching feature when AVR is "OFF".....and some will provide power to the HDMI Switching circuits but may not allow you to change the inputs when "OFF" and many (esp. older) AVR's power down the HDMI circuits completely when "OFF", so on those you have to turn the volume all the way down in the AVR to listen via JUST the HDTV's speakers....wasting whatever the "Idle" power consumption level is for the AVR (and attached Sub-Woofer if power is daisy-chained). And NO, I haven't surveyed every AVR ever made to sort out which is which.....


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post #21 of 22 Old 11-05-2013, 05:45 PM
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I'd bet the Denon has a pass thru feature on the hdmi but checking the manual is best so you know what you can/can't do.

Personally the sound from the tv's speakers is so bad I never use them, that goes back to the first time I hooked up an avr/speakers to a tv, there's no going back for me, plus you can easily get many remotes (especially a universal type like the Harmony remotes I have) to turn it all on/off and set it to what you want to do with the push of a macro button. If you do use the tv's speakers you'll have to go in and tell the tv to change from external speakers to internal when not using the avr unless perhaps your remote has macros to be setup that way.

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post #22 of 22 Old 11-06-2013, 07:01 AM - Thread Starter
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OK, that sucks. Ill just use the AVR.
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