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TVs with 5.1 Passthrough from HDMI to SPDIF

post #1 of 164
Thread Starter 
I need help with something very basic. I'm looking for a new TV that does 5.1 passthrough from HDMI to the SPDIF out. Based on the manufacturers' websites I can't figure out which ones do that, as opposed to converting to 2.0 PCM.

Is it a brand-specific thing? Model specific? Is there a list?

Thank you very much in advance for any help.
post #2 of 164
If there is a brand, I don't know about it. Most people buy a receiver which can pass audio and video thru HDMI, and most do that now. They plug all their HDMIs into the receiver and run one HDMI out to the tv, controlling inputs thru the receiver.
post #3 of 164
Virtually every TV manufactured for sale in the USA in the last 2 years with onboard ATSC/QAM tuners, Dolby Digital decoding, and a SPDIF output will pass Dolby Digital 5.1 audio from any device connected via HDMI. I've confirmed this on models from Samsung, LG, Sony, Toshiba, and Vizio; Mitsubishi TVs use a coaxial digital output but also have this capability. In fact, I think it would be rather difficult for you to find a display larger than 32" from any major manufacturer that didn't have this capability.
post #4 of 164
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rudy1 View Post

Virtually every TV manufactured for sale in the USA in the last 2 years with onboard ATSC/QAM tuners, Dolby Digital decoding, and a SPDIF output will pass Dolby Digital 5.1 audio from any device connected via HDMI. I've confirmed this on models from Samsung, LG, Sony, Toshiba, and Vizio; Mitsubishi TVs use a coaxial digital output but also have this capability. In fact, I think it would be rather difficult for you to find a display larger than 32" from any major manufacturer that didn't have this capability.

To my knowlege there are no brands of panels that will pass 5.1 thru the optical output on the panel with a device hooked to the panel via HDMI and that goes for all TV's, even the ones made in the last 2 years.

My new 70" and 80" Sharps wouldnt pass 5.1

May I ask how you "confirmed" that the brands you mentioned will pass 5.1 thru the optical ?

Cheers
Davyo
post #5 of 164
Passing DD 5.1 from OTA, hit and miss...passing DD 5.1 through a device connected via HDMI..uhh, no.


Edit: I have read that some displays will pass it but every time the discussion comes up it usually turns into a " mine does, mine doesn't" and since the vast majority don't I never put much stock into it.
post #6 of 164
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rudy1 View Post

Virtually every TV manufactured for sale in the USA in the last 2 years with onboard ATSC/QAM tuners, Dolby Digital decoding, and a SPDIF output will pass Dolby Digital 5.1 audio from any device connected via HDMI. I've confirmed this on models from Samsung, LG, Sony, Toshiba, and Vizio; Mitsubishi TVs use a coaxial digital output but also have this capability. In fact, I think it would be rather difficult for you to find a display larger than 32" from any major manufacturer that didn't have this capability.

I don't think that's quite correct. TV's with built-in ATSC tuners (which is all of them) will pass discrete 5.1 audio thru the optical out because that is part of the ATSC spec (AC-3) if the source is the ATSC tuner (OTA in my case), not externally via HDMI.
post #7 of 164
Quote:
Originally Posted by enc0re View Post

I need help with something very basic. I'm looking for a new TV that does 5.1 passthrough from HDMI to the SPDIF out. Based on the manufacturers' websites I can't figure out which ones do that, as opposed to converting to 2.0 PCM.

Is it a brand-specific thing? Model specific? Is there a list?

Thank you very much in advance for any help.

Sure it works! My LG 55LX9500 passes DD5.1. I feed the tv via hdmi from a cable box and output via optical to the home theater sound system, and it's DD5.1 ( providing the program material is DD5.1) . Do you mean other tv's don't have this ability?
post #8 of 164
My Vizio passes Dolby Digital this way, but not DTS, and multi-channel PCM on Blu-Ray discs is mixed down to 2-channel. (It's wrong of course to hook a Blu-Ray up this way anyways as you lose the lossless sound no matter what, but if you do, this is what it does.)
post #9 of 164
Quote:
Originally Posted by davyo View Post

To my knowlege there are no brands of panels that will pass 5.1 thru the optical output on the panel with a device hooked to the panel via HDMI and that goes for all TV's, even the ones made in the last 2 years.

My new 70" and 80" Sharps wouldnt pass 5.1

May I ask how you "confirmed" that the brands you mentioned will pass 5.1 thru the optical ?

Cheers
Davyo

I've owned various displays (Mitsubishi WD-57732, Mitsubishi WD-60738, Vizio E550VL, Toshiba 40RF350U, Mitsubishi LT-46148, Sony KDL-42V4100, Samsung PN51D550, and Vizio E3D420VX) which had this capability. I've always connected my Motorola DVR to the TVs using an HDMI cable, with either an optical or a coaxial digital cable going from the TV to the AVR. With the DVR's audio output option set to "Pass through", I've always been able to get Dolby Digital 5.1 audio. I've had similar results with other set top boxes and disc players as well. I'm surprised to learn that so many here believe that DD 5.1 is restricted to the set's onboard ATSC tuner.
post #10 of 164
Thread Starter 
Thanks for all the replies so far. So it seems that there isn't a list yet on which TVs pass 5.1 from HDMI to SPDIF out. As to the question why I don't route through the receiver: I have a limited budget and already possess a Denon AVR-1804 that sounds just the way I like it with my speakers. I don't want to replace that.

So maybe someone can help me with a specific model: I'm eyeing the Westinghouse VR-6025Z. Can anyone confirm whether or not it passes 5.1 from at least one HDMI through to the SPDIF coax out?

Again, thank you so much for any information.
post #11 of 164
Try calling Westinghouse support to see if they can help you, or at least direct you to the user manual. If you can't get a hold of them, or they are less than helpful, that's a good indicator of the customer support should you choose the Westinghouse and need help down the road.
post #12 of 164
Thread Starter 
The manual doesn't specify it. I just got off the phone with support. They told me it had that functionality but were worried whether I realized that I would need a receiver to connect speakers. So I'm a little concerned whether they really realized what I was asking.
post #13 of 164
Any recent Sony will do it.

My 46EX400 in my bedroom passes DD 5.1 from any HDMI device over SPDIF. Used to use the TV with my Logitech Z-5500.

55EX720 does as well.
post #14 of 164
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rudy1 View Post

I've owned various displays (Mitsubishi WD-57732, Mitsubishi WD-60738, Vizio E550VL, Toshiba 40RF350U, Mitsubishi LT-46148, Sony KDL-42V4100, Samsung PN51D550, and Vizio E3D420VX) which had this capability. I've always connected my Motorola DVR to the TVs using an HDMI cable, with either an optical or a coaxial digital cable going from the TV to the AVR. With the DVR's audio output option set to "Pass through", I've always been able to get Dolby Digital 5.1 audio. I've had similar results with other set top boxes and disc players as well. I'm surprised to learn that so many here believe that DD 5.1 is restricted to the set's onboard ATSC tuner.

Below is what I copied from the owners manual for my brand new 80" Sharp flat panel.

This is the way it is with all TV's, none of them will pass 5.1 with and external HDMI source connected.

Cheers
Davyo

Depending on the connected equipment, audio will not output from the DIGITAL AUDIO OUTPUT terminal in HDMI
connection. In this case, set the audio formats of the connected equipment to PCM, 32/44.1/48 kHz.
Optical digital audio will be output in 2-ch stereo when it is from the external equipment connected to the TV using an HDMI cable.
post #15 of 164
+1
post #16 of 164
Is it possible those claiming to get DD5.1 pass-thru are actually getting Dolby Pro Logic II? That's what the Logitech system mentioned above does to turn 2 ch into 5.1 via Dolby Pro Logic II. It would also explain why I have the same model TV, and it won't pass thru DD5.1 from HDMI to optical.

Everything I've ever read about the subject indicates there is an HDMI copy protection spec which prohibits 5.1 pass thru to optical. This includes official statements from samsung, toshiba and others. I seriously doubt these big name makers are suddenly breaking this long-standing rule.

I have to go with the conventional wisdom on this one and say no TV is really doing this.
post #17 of 164
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rudy1 View Post

I'm surprised to learn that so many here believe that DD 5.1 is restricted to the set's onboard ATSC tuner.

Not to be rude in any way shape or form,,, but Im a bit suppised that someone that has been an AVS member for so long thinks that 5.1 can be passed thru an optical connection via an HDMI source,,, I thought it was common knowlege that 5.1 wont pass thru as 5.1 thru an optical connection via HDMI,,,,, an optical out on EVERY panel made always downmix's down to a 2.1 stereo send out from the optical output.

I wish it were not so, its a dumb regulation and really hurts the consumer.

Cheers
Davyo
post #18 of 164
again, +1
post #19 of 164
sorry if this is hijacking, but the topic dovetails with my situation and question:

I was recently told by my local TWC office that no matter what dvr box I used from them I cannot hook hdmi from the box directly to an avr - there WILL be handshake problems. I need to go from box to tv, and use optical for audio to avr. Given the conversation here, that means optical from the box, and not the tv.

Is this y'all's understanding also?
Is there any way at all to go dvr/set top box to avr to tv?
All I want is for my avr to be the hdmi switch for everything but it seems I'm not allowed. Maybe I want too much?

Dennon 1612
and yet to be purchased tv
post #20 of 164
Quote:
Originally Posted by RedIvan View Post

sorry if this is hijacking, but the topic dovetails with my situation and question:

I was recently told by my local TWC office that no matter what dvr box I used from them I cannot hook hdmi from the box directly to an avr - there WILL be handshake problems. I need to go from box to tv, and use optical for audio to avr. Given the conversation here, that means optical from the box, and not the tv.

Is this y'all's understanding also?
Is there any way at all to go dvr/set top box to avr to tv?
All I want is for my avr to be the hdmi switch for everything but it seems I'm not allowed. Maybe I want too much?

Dennon 1612
and yet to be purchased tv

Unless your STB is some strange version?...STB to the avr and then out of the avr to the display is the most common way to do it.
post #21 of 164
Currently I have the SA 8300HDC and I see lots of posts about handshake issues going directly to AVR via hdmi. That's why I called TWC office to see if I had other choices for stb...and you see the answer they gave me.

I have not yet purchased the TV. The 8300 is currently hooked straight to the temp tv we are using. So, actually trying this is not an option yet.

Maybe I'll just do it and hope
post #22 of 164
Quote:
Originally Posted by RedIvan View Post

Currently I have the SA 8300HDC and I see lots of posts about handshake issues going directly to AVR via hdmi. That's why I called TWC office to see if I had other choices for stb...and you see the answer they gave me.

I have not yet purchased the TV. The 8300 is currently hooked straight to the temp tv we are using. So, actually trying this is not an option yet.

Maybe I'll just do it and hope

If the STB and the AVR have compatible HDMI version number hardware (1.3, 1.4a, whatever) and are HDCP compliant (I think everything has to be but someone correct me if I'm wrong), there shouldn't be any issues. Keep in mind that the HDMI version numbers apply only to the hardware, not the cable. Any certified High Speed HDMI cable will do (and you don't have to spend a fortune on the cable). Connecting the STB to the AVR with HDMI, and then out to the tv should not have any effect on the video. Audio will be played via HDMI thru the AVR but will be limited to the source which for cable/sat/OTA is AC-3 (5.1) when presented. If you run optical from the STB to the AVR, you'll still only get 5.1 when available. You could run HDMI from the STB directly to the tv (making sure the tv speakers are off) and then optical out from the STB to the AVR but you'd probably get audio sync issues. Optical out from the tv to the AVR really only works if you are using the tv's ATSC tuner or have connected the STB to the Cable/OTA input coax. Of course TWC could be using some crap proprietary STB but that's not likely. You probably got somebody who hasn't a clue how their STBs work.
post #23 of 164
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by davyo View Post

Not to be rude in any way shape or form,,, but Im a bit suppised that someone that has been an AVS member for so long thinks that 5.1 can be passed thru an optical connection via an HDMI source,,, I thought it was common knowlege that 5.1 wont pass thru as 5.1 thru an optical connection via HDMI,,,,, an optical out on EVERY panel made always downmix's down to a 2.1 stereo send out from the optical output.

I wish it were not so, its a dumb regulation and really hurts the consumer.

Cheers
Davyo

Wait, so Westinghouse tech support was wrong when they told me it did? And I should abandon all hope of finding a HDMI -> 5.1 SPDIF?
post #24 of 164
Quote:
Originally Posted by Otto Pylot View Post

If the STB and the AVR have compatible HDMI version number hardware (1.3, 1.4a, whatever) and are HDCP compliant (I think everything has to be but someone correct me if I'm wrong), there shouldn't be any issues. Keep in mind that the HDMI version numbers apply only to the hardware, not the cable. Any certified High Speed HDMI cable will do (and you don't have to spend a fortune on the cable). Connecting the STB to the AVR with HDMI, and then out to the tv should not have any effect on the video. Audio will be played via HDMI thru the AVR but will be limited to the source which for cable/sat/OTA is AC-3 (5.1) when presented. If you run optical from the STB to the AVR, you'll still only get 5.1 when available. You could run HDMI from the STB directly to the tv (making sure the tv speakers are off) and then optical out from the STB to the AVR but you'd probably get audio sync issues. Optical out from the tv to the AVR really only works if you are using the tv's ATSC tuner or have connected the STB to the Cable/OTA input coax. Of course TWC could be using some crap proprietary STB but that's not likely. You probably got somebody who hasn't a clue how their STBs work.

thank you Mr Pylot sir!
This is what I have believed also. I'll see soon enough. I think I'll give the office a call and talk to someone else too, just to see if the story is different. If twc has some funky mod on their boxes then I'll go elsewhere.
post #25 of 164
Quote:
Originally Posted by RedIvan View Post

sorry if this is hijacking, but the topic dovetails with my situation and question:

I was recently told by my local TWC office that no matter what dvr box I used from them I cannot hook hdmi from the box directly to an avr - there WILL be handshake problems. I need to go from box to tv, and use optical for audio to avr. Given the conversation here, that means optical from the box, and not the tv.

Is this y'all's understanding also?
Is there any way at all to go dvr/set top box to avr to tv?
All I want is for my avr to be the hdmi switch for everything but it seems I'm not allowed. Maybe I want too much?

Dennon 1612
and yet to be purchased tv

Yep,,, it was hi-jacking the thread.

Any chance we can get the thread back on subject AVS'ers ???


Quote:
Originally Posted by enc0re View Post

Wait, so Westinghouse tech support was wrong when they told me it did? And I should abandon all hope of finding a HDMI -> 5.1 SPDIF?

Im thinkin Westinghouse either lied or dont know what they are talking about,,,, with many companies most tech support reps dont know what they are talking about

Cheers
Davyo
post #26 of 164
Quote:
Originally Posted by davyo View Post

Not to be rude in any way shape or form,,, but Im a bit suppised that someone that has been an AVS member for so long thinks that 5.1 can be passed thru an optical connection via an HDMI source,,, I thought it was common knowlege that 5.1 wont pass thru as 5.1 thru an optical connection via HDMI,,,,, an optical out on EVERY panel made always downmix's down to a 2.1 stereo send out from the optical output.

I wish it were not so, its a dumb regulation and really hurts the consumer.

Cheers
Davyo

I don't "think" that Dolby Digital 5.1 can be passed through the optical output on the TVs I mentioned from a device connected via HDMI. I "know" it to be so because I'm doing it right now. All of the receivers I've owned (Yamaha, Sony, Denon, Pioneer) confirmed a Dolby Digital signal on their front panel readouts. I am perfectly aware of the fact that not all displays have this capability, and that is why I gave the model numbers of the TVs I've owned which did.

In any event, I learned a long time ago not to try to convince anyone on the AVS Forum of anything...there are far too many "experts" who believe they have the only valid answers to all questions. I merely sought to answer the original poster's question, based on my own past personal experiences. It was not my intention to spark a debate on the subject matter.
post #27 of 164
Any chance the DD you are getting from the dispaly's audio out is DD 2.1?
post #28 of 164
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rudy1 View Post

I don't "think" that Dolby Digital 5.1 can be passed through the optical output on the TVs I mentioned from a device connected via HDMI. I "know" it to be so because I'm doing it right now. All of the receivers I've owned (Yamaha, Sony, Denon, Pioneer) confirmed a Dolby Digital signal on their front panel readouts. I am perfectly aware of the fact that not all displays have this capability, and that is why I gave the model numbers of the TVs I've owned which did.

That was always my understanding, from experience and observation, that the only way to get 5.1 out from the tv, any tv, via optical, was from the built-in ATSC tuner or STB connected via the OTA/Cable input, not HDMI. I'm not sure if that applies to ARC but does anyone use ARC successfully?
post #29 of 164
Quote:
Originally Posted by topr View Post

Any chance the DD you are getting from the dispaly's audio out is DD 2.1?

That was my thought as well,,,, if "Rudy1" is getting DD 5.1 instead of DD 2.1 out of his optical out from his TV via an HDMI connection I would be shocked to learn that.

Cheers
Davyo
post #30 of 164
I am with "Rudy 1" on this one. I most definitely get 5.1 sound from my Sony tv that is connected to my cable box through HDMI, and to my AVR via optical cable. On a channel indicating a DD 5.1 signal (per the info from the cable box display), the audio information coming from the front L & R speakers is completely different than from the center channel, as is the audio from the surround speakers. When that is happening my AVR (an Onkyo) only indicates DD, and the sound from each channel is, without question, discrete--it is absolutely not a 2.1 signal. On a channel that does not indicate it is transmitting 5.1, my AVR will usually process a "ProLogic" signal, which is NOT an entirely discrete signal for each channel. But when it is doing that, the display on my AVR always indicates it is a ProLogic signal.
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