We have an annoying problem that's been bothering us ever since we've set up our HTPC (though I'm not sure if the problem is the HTPC or receiver). When watching certain things and then pausing, it takes a few seconds for the audio to play after resuming. The video begins playing immediately when resumed, so there's several seconds of video with no audio, requiring us to rewind a few seconds before unpausing.
Here's the setup we have:
- Onkyo HT-RC270 receiver
- AMD A8-3870K APU
- Windows 7 x64 with WMC
The HTPC and receiver are connected via HDMI. This problem only happens when playing certain kinds of media; live TV and DVDs are problematic, but other things like Netflix or mkv videos are not. For the sources that are affected, I've noticed that the receiver seems to try to switch modes when the media is being played (the receiver's OSD disappears for a brief moment and then comes back, and the subwoofer indicator on the receiver also lights up to indicate 2.1 playback). When pausing, the OSD disappears for a second or two, and it displays again with the subwoofer indicator off. Same thing when unpausing (except the subwoofer indicator comes back on). For the other sources (Netflix, video files, etc), the receiver doesn't do this "mode switch" and the OSD remains constant (and the subwoofer indicator stays off, so I assume this means it's 2.0 audio).
A bit of research has revealed that this is (or is similar to) the "silent stream bug". However, AMD supposedly fixed this bug over a year ago. I've also tried AVR Audio Guard, and it has no effect. With a bit of experimenting, I've noticed that I can prevent a "mode switch" by disabling the Exclusive mode options in Windows (volume icon > Playback devices > AMD HDMI Output > Properties > Advanced > Exclusive Mode). This makes the audio delay after pausing go away; however, it also means we don't get 2.1 audio.
So, in summary, the problem seems to that the receiver takes a few moments to transition when the audio mode is changed. Pausing/unpausing seem to trigger an audio mode change, thus resulting in a brief audio delay when unpausing. Is there a way to prevent this mode switch when the media is paused?