3d etc with HDMI 1.3 receiver - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 8 Old 02-10-2013, 06:44 PM - Thread Starter
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I am not completely sure this is the right sub-forum, but it feels good to me.

I have been reading bunches of posts. I have an older Denon AVR-2809CI. 3D was not on my list of things to do when I bought it. But life and technology moves on. I just got a Panasonic TC-P55UT50. So far all I have used it with is an HD cable box from Comcast.

Next on my list is, since the TV has 3D, put together a configuration to allow it to do 3D. I also bought a device from Darbee that is a processor for video. It actually seems to do an reasonably impressive job. You can actually see the difference and it does not seem to screw things up.

The Darbee processor fails to work if the receiver is in the loop. I tried two different TVs. One was HDMI 1.3, the other 1.4a. I have asked about the Darbee requiring HDMI 1.4a; no answer.

So. Here is what I think will work with minimal expenditure. I see no need to replace the receiver. It does pretty much everything I need except passing 3D. If I understand things correctly; this is what seems like the solution.

The TV has 2 HDMI connections. It also has an optical audio output.
Take the HDMI from the cable box to an HDMI switch.
Take a blue ray player to the same HDMI switch.
Connect the output of the switch to the Darbee processor.
Connect the output of the Darbee device to the TV HDMI.
Run the TOSLINK cable from the TV to a port on the receiver.

This lets me select the source from the controller of the HDMI switch. Always gives me the correct audio from the TV. Could also use a larger switch to do a game controller.
The only thing I can see that I lose here is I am limited to Dolby 5.1 audio. The TV specs imply if it is not Dolby 5.1, it just appears as a PCM output stream. I have no idea what that is, but I am guessing basic stereo.

To get 7.2 Dolby , DTS, or uncompressed audio, I need a new receiver or maybe one of the dual HDMI Panasonic Blueray players that uses HDMI for getting the audio to the receiver. That may have to go to the alternate HDMI on the TV. With the receiver set up to use a different input if the audio only HDMI was connected. I am not sure that part would actually work.

Do I have the right configuration?
Suggestions?

Recommendations for the source of the HDMI switches please?
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post #2 of 8 Old 02-10-2013, 08:54 PM
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You don't mention what the rest of your audio gear is like, but it's quite possible you can simply connect Optical TOSLINK or Digital SPDIF from the BD player to the AVR and not notice any difference at all. If you're hell-bent on lossless and uncompressed, you'll need a BD player with dual-HDMI outputs as mentioned. You would hook the main HDMI out from the Blu-Ray player to HDMI 1 on the TV, and the secondary HDMI out to the AVR. Your other sources would still go directly to the AVR and the AVR's HDMI output would to go to HDMI 2 on the TV. A macro or activity programmable remote (such as a Harmony) would go a long way towards making this setup user friendly on a daily basis.

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post #3 of 8 Old 02-11-2013, 01:56 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for the reply Stephen. I am not in love with lossless; just asking. I would like to have 7.n but I still have not put up the rear speakers and probably will not for some time. I am still trying to figure out what PCM means as sent by the TV. Is it simple 2 channel bit stream or some form of encoded multichannel?

I would have cable and Bluray immediately. Internet shortly if I want to use it. I would probably like to poke around and see if there is a service worthwhile to me. And possibly a game controller. I have thought about a game controller rather than a Bluray player. But I believe the best candidate for that is the PS3, and I believe I read that it really did not handle something (HDMI 1.4a or some resolution). So I may just wait and see what the PS4 looks like. If the price differential between player and game box is under about $100 I could go game box.

What about 3D from internet sources and 3D sources from cable. Internet materiel would be coming from the TV, so the TVs internal audio limitations would prevail. From cable, if I keep using the receiver as a switch, wouldn't that have the same issues with 3D not being passed? I also don't know if anything on the cable or internet services have more than a 5.1 sound track encoded.

One other alternative to deal with a player would be the Panasonic with a spare HDMI for audio.

Any recommendation for switch brands?
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post #4 of 8 Old 02-11-2013, 03:22 AM
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Although PCM can be multi channel (eg. when the Blu Ray player decodes the audio from DD/DTS 5.1 to PCM 5.1) in the context of the TV, it most likely means PCM 2.0 stereo. The 2809 will use DD PLII to simulate 5.1 from the PCM 2.0. A great place for switch and cable needs is forum sponsor Monoprice.

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post #5 of 8 Old 02-11-2013, 07:15 AM
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If your display has multiple HDMI inputs, you wouldn't need a switch...

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post #6 of 8 Old 03-08-2013, 01:17 PM - Thread Starter
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The TV has 2 HDMI inputs and it does provide 5.1 on the optical interface. I will likely eventually connect at least three devices. I would like to be able to use 7.1 audio, which would require the receiver to decode it.

I do not know for sure if the second HDMI from the Bluray will actually work with the receiver for audio. The Darbee just flat out won't work with the receiver involved. But it works fine with the cable box and DVD player. The receiver will probably not work with 3D because of the older HDMI implementation. But the audio only player HDMI -don't know.

The Darbee needs to be between any source and the TV, so a switch becomes necessary even just for 2 devices if I can't switch anything through the receiver.

Incidentally, I really like the Darbee. It makes a quite visible improvement to the picture.
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post #7 of 8 Old 03-08-2013, 01:31 PM
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Routing Blu-ray audio through the TV means stereo since the vast majority of Blu-rays have DTS tracks, no Dolby option. Since you need to bypass the receiver for 3D, a separate audio connection to the AVR would be a better way to go for the Blu-ray player. The cable box only does DD anyway. So, it may be fine going through the TV, provided the set passes DD 5.1 from HDMI inputs. Many do not.

A dual output player would seem like a good way to go. The 3D video connection would go to the switch or direct to the TV while the audio connection would go to the AVR.
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post #8 of 8 Old 03-08-2013, 03:25 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks, I did not know that Blu-ray was mostly DTS. That significantly changes the equation. The longer range problem is dealing with other devices like an HTPC or a game box. There are a bunch of switches available that will split off 5.1 (maybe just Dolby) audio to a TOSLINK interface. But I have not been able to find anything that will extract the full range of audio recording standards and pass them on as HDMI. Actually I think I may have seen at least one, but it costs as much as a new receiver. I am not familiar with the internal processes necessary to strip audio from an HDMI stream (and finding out won't fix anything) but it would seem to me that there is either certified firmware or a hardware HDMI controller. I used to design stuff like this (micros, firmware, software, embedded controllers, etc.) but I am way out of date and never worked with HDMI. Then it should be possible to process the audio stream with an additional processor or firmware. Maybe it is a copy protect problem. If you know of one, please let me know.
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