Originally Posted by atomicpunk78
I think I follow that so far but if you use the adapter to convert your Apple TV to analog you are suck with analog quality in the main room as well correct? Major drawback for me. I don't mind the lower quality on the deck but inside music listening would bug me! Thanks!
Well, you can't listen directly to the digital stream, so it has to get converted to analog somewhere. Whether that's in an outboard device besxt to your receiver or inside your receiver may not make much difference, although I probably just invited 50 pages of argument about the relative merits of different digital to analog converter chips and whether any differences are audible etc. etc. To me, the bigger drawback in the main space would be that I can't use Audyssey on something coming into the receiver via analog. I can't recall right now whether I could even bass manage. Maybe not since it's done in the digital arena AFAIK
. SO no sub for 2 channel, no ability to use the Audyssey corrections, no ability to turn the 2 channel into 5 channel in main space if you're into that kind of thing.
As to the question of why it's complicated, I suspect it's economics. To reliably take SpDIF or HDMI output and send it to zone 2 requires a whole separate dolby digital/DTS conversion decoder to turn the incoming stream to a separate PCM stream if it's not already, with separate downmix, so that you get a 2 channel, not just the front left and right of a 5 channel mix (which would miss all the dialog, etc.) Then you need a totally separate digital converter to run the other zones. In a business as price driven as mainstream AVRs, adding those functions likely has too much effect on price. Plus, they need to, for marketing reasons, reserve SOME tricks to the higher end devices . . .