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Thread Starter 
For reasons related to lack of connectivity options in my broader setup, I connect my HTPC to the TV via HDMI, and then the TV to a 5.1 amp via optical.

The PC has a Nvidia GT220 card.
The TV is a Sony Bravia KDL-40V5500.
The amp is a Sony STR-SL50.

The TV shows in Windows, thanks to its EDID info, as 2 channel audio. This may or may not be correct - I'm told it can passthrough 5.1 from HDMI, but the whole affair confuses me. This thread indicates that the two channel limitation is legit, but I don't know.

I've run Moninfo which also shows that it can support 6 channel AC-3.

Because of the EDID, the only way I can get 5.1 out of the PC and into the TV is by using AC3Filter and its S/PDIF option. In audio terms, this works OK.

The problem

However what it also does is this: any time I start/stop playback, the whole TV dims for a few seconds and there's no audio for that time. This sounds trivial but is very annoying; if you want to pause & resume a film, you have to go back those seconds to avoid missing dialogue.

I've tried S/PDIF direct from PC to amp - no such problems in this configuration. However as I hinted, I can't accept this because that amp input is required for the DVD player.

Due to the vague nature of the problem, I'm struggling to find others with the same issue. Does anyone have any ideas?