Originally Posted by Canuck31
This is the part in the first article I posted that confuses me.
"First off, S/PDIF transmission -- over either optical TOSLINK or coax -- does not have the bandwidth to carry Dolby TrueHD or DTS-HD MA signals. If you connect your Blu-ray player to your receiver with optical or coax, the audio will "fall back" to Dolby Digital, DTS or two-channel PCM (lossless, but only two channels). What you'll need is an HDMI connection. Note that with the PS3, you don't specifically need a HDMI 1.3 receiver or cable -- even HDMI 1.0 will suffice."
The fact that your coax connection doesn't have enough bandwidth is a myth. Take a look at your cable TV. You get hundreds of channels over that single cable and folks think you can't send a lossless (HD) audio stream that takes less bandwidth than a single HD video channel?
This was a decision made on purpose to force a shift toward HDMI. It was perfectly possible to retrofit the coax connection but decision was made (by the industry at large) to not do that.
Many modern receivers can decode Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD MA right in the receiver. This feature is making its way down to even modestly-priced models for many manufacturers, and we're happy to see it. When using a PS3, however, Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD MA codec support in the receiver will go unused. If you paid extra just for the extra two logos, sorry. Whatever you do, don't panic -- you can still enjoy all the quality of these lossless codecs with your PS3.
It is ironic but you actually have more functionality if you let the source do the decoding. That is how the architecture was envisioned. That is, by allowing the player to decode and then mix multiple streams over each other. When you send the movie compressed bit stream to the receiver unchanged, then the other streams will not play, breaking part of the functionality in Blu-ray spec. So if your AVR does support PCM over HDMI (as mentioned post version 1.1 they all can do that) by all means use it that way. Using the bit stream may make one feel better, but it is not a better solution
By the way, the often mentioned advantage of lower jitter by allowing AVR decoding is also wrong.
It is true that when you send the bit stream to the AVR it is a data stream so it is not impacted by jitter over that link (assuming it is above failure point). But once you decode that stream,, you must lock it to the HDMI clock and whatever jitter there is there (post filtering) gets induced into the DAC just like it would with PCM data.
Net, net, there is no advantage to AVR decoding of lossless audio streams. Use source decoding and be happy