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post #1 of 20 Old 04-18-2019, 01:56 PM - Thread Starter
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HDMI Audio Extractor: All HDR formats and Lossless Audio?

Hello gang:

My search is as hard as finding rainbowed tri-horned, double tailed unicorns at your local Home Depot.

I am looking for the highest quality HDMI Audio Extractor out there, price not a factor. I just need it to be functional, work out of the box, solid build quality, no muss, no fuss.

Yes, I've seen that HDFury products are somewhat common here, and that on paper would seem to satisfy what I need. But as a matter of fact, I've extensively tried it (HDFury Vertex) for my setup but unfortunately it didn't work for me one bit...and I've tried many excruciating and painful days on end to get it to fully work (it never sent any audio to my audio processor, TV image was great though)!

My setup:
- TV is capable of displaying all the major current types of 4k, HDR flavours: HDR10, HDR10+, HLG, Dolby Vision
- however, my processor can handle a maximum 1080p only, and I'm using it for audio only, not as an HDMI switch

My requirements for this HDMI Audio Extractor:
- 1x HDMI IN that can input and decode all of the above HDR formats
- 1x HDMI OUT (video ONLY) that can output to my TV all of the above HDR formats
- 1x HDMI OUT (audio ONLY) that will be able to send my processor lossless audio, bitstream such as DTS Master Audio or Dolby True HD

My sources are twofold: a Cambridge Audio CXUHD and an Apple TV 4k. The CXUHD has an essential HDMI slitter/extractor, so playing a physical disc, I'm good. Essentially I'm looking for a similar external device that I can connect my ATV4K to and extract lossless audio from it (don't care and won't be able to properly play any Atmos sound).

So what advice do you guys have for me? Dr. Google searches keeps sending me to 'el cheapo' HDMI switches/audio extractors that are readily available on Amazon which won't seem to do all HDR formats and not of high end quality. Most fellow AVS members here like the HDFury, but since that didn't work for me (even with their support help I couldn't get it to work) I need something else.

Also, before anyone else suggests it, I am not interested in upgrading my processor: for any lossless audio (not including Dolby Atmos) it is a monster that is extremely hard to beat quality wise at essentially any price level...so it stays!

I appreciate your help - cheers!

Last edited by no_cure; 04-22-2019 at 07:08 AM.
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post #2 of 20 Old 04-18-2019, 02:03 PM
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Since you only need it for the apple tv, have you tried ARC? Or optical? They wont do trueHD etc but i dont think you get that from the apple tv anyway(?)


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post #3 of 20 Old 04-18-2019, 02:54 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Leeliemix View Post
Since you only need it for the apple tv, have you tried ARC? Or optical? They wont do trueHD etc but i dont think you get that from the apple tv anyway(?)


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Thanks for the input. Yeah, my pre/pro doesn't do HDMI ARC...it's that old. Currently, I have the ATV4k going straight into the TV, and using an S/PDIF optical cable between the TV and the processor. I do get Dolby Digital, but is a compressed 5.1 signal. My processor does an amazing job with that signal, but there is no comparison to the quality of playing an actual BluRay that has bitstream uncompressed sound signal (4k or even 1080p - both are fantastic in my setup).

I equate my pre/pro to the Porsche 911 of old (991.1 era for those in the know), with the naturally aspirated engines. Sure, it isn't as fast as the current models which are all turbo charged, doesn't have all the toys and bling factor, but the experience of the high revving engine is unmatched!

Ok...stay focused here. Back on topic: so no real contender for a true HDMI audio extractor for my ATV4K that has my video and audio requirements? Am I SOL then? Surely, I can't be the only one looking to extract lossless sound from an ATV4k and still likes their audio processor? I mean,Apple has implemented Dolby Atmos...surely 'old' DTS Master or Dolby TrueHD should work fine no?
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post #4 of 20 Old 04-18-2019, 03:12 PM
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ISO High End HDMI Audio Extractor: All HDR formats and Lossless Audio

Quote:
Originally Posted by no_cure View Post
Thanks for the input. Yeah, my pre/pro doesn't do HDMI ARC...it's that old. Currently, I have the ATV4k going straight into the TV, and using an S/PDIF optical cable between the TV and the processor. I do get Dolby Digital, but is a compressed 5.1 signal. My processor does an amazing job with that signal, but there is no comparison to the quality of playing an actual BluRay that has bitstream uncompressed sound signal (4k or even 1080p - both are fantastic in my setup).



I equate my pre/pro to the Porsche 911 of old (991.1 era for those in the know), with the naturally aspirated engines. Sure, it isn't as fast as the current models which are all turbo charged, doesn't have all the toys and bling factor, but the experience of the high revving engine is unmatched!



Ok...stay focused here. Back on topic: so no real contender for a true HDMI audio extractor for my ATV4K that has my video and audio requirements? Am I SOL then? Surely, I can't be the only one looking to extract lossless sound from an ATV4k and still likes their audio processor? I mean,Apple has implemented Dolby Atmos...surely 'old' DTS Master or Dolby TrueHD should work fine no?


Im not so sure apple tv 4k does uncompressed apart from cd quality. Bluray Atmos is just dolby trueHD but with additional placement info so non atmos decoders just see it as a normal truehd track. ATV4k Atmos from netflix for example is lossy dolby digital pluss where the pluss is basically placement info so non atmos only see a normal dolby digital track.
Does your processor do dolby trueHD?

Edit:made it clearer what source i was writing about.

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post #5 of 20 Old 04-18-2019, 05:01 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for that.

Yes my pre/pro does both Dolby TrueHD and DTS Master Audio, which I thought were lossless uncompressed audio signal. That’s what I’m looking to get out of ATV4K - would that be possible?
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post #6 of 20 Old 04-18-2019, 05:04 PM - Thread Starter
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So here is something...

http://www.transformativeengineering...ect/hds-12avr/

Per their description, it seems to do what I’m looking for...does it do DV @60Hz though?

Anyone using Transformative Engineering HDS 12AVR? Never heard of them...
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post #7 of 20 Old 04-18-2019, 10:12 PM
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an AVR or pre/pro

"All men are frauds. The only difference between them is that some admit it. I myself deny it."
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post #8 of 20 Old 04-18-2019, 11:01 PM
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How odd, because there was an HDFury product you could use - the AVR key. Unfortunately it appears to be discontinued now, but it was really a hard coded Vertex. It has your input port and two output ports, one of which gets full audio signal for older receivers.

Not sure why you couldn't get the Vertex to do the exact same thing.
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post #9 of 20 Old 04-19-2019, 02:27 AM
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It does look like the ATV4k can do lossless under certain circumstances
https://www.reddit.com/r/appletv/com...tshd_ma_audio/
So it depends on what you use it for, netflix doesnt do lossless thrueHD for example.


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post #10 of 20 Old 04-19-2019, 04:59 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sivadselim View Post
an AVR or pre/pro [IMG class=inlineimg]/forum/images/smilies/wink.gif[/IMG]
Yeah - not in the cards for that.
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post #11 of 20 Old 04-19-2019, 05:08 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Worf View Post
How odd, because there was an HDFury product you could use - the AVR key. Unfortunately it appears to be discontinued now, but it was really a hard coded Vertex. It has your input port and two output ports, one of which gets full audio signal for older receivers.

Not sure why you couldn't get the Vertex to do the exact same thing.
Well, per HDFury recommendation, they told me that the Vertex is what I want/need. I trouble shot the connections with them for days...still no dice, no audio, so I gave up and returned the product. Their claim was that my source (ATV4K) wouldn’t send any audio to my pre/pro...video came through great no matter.

Still, I found their user experience dismal and convoluted. Vertex wasn’t friendly to use or setup...
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post #12 of 20 Old 04-19-2019, 08:40 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Leeliemix View Post
It does look like the ATV4k can do lossless under certain circumstances
https://www.reddit.com/r/appletv/com...tshd_ma_audio/
So it depends on what you use it for, netflix doesnt do lossless thrueHD for example.


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Interesting...so it looks like I have 2 issues to overcome to improve upon my compressed Dolby Digital audio I get when using ATV4k for streaming (netflix and amazon prime) : an HDMI audio extractor and perhaps implement Infuse as a media player on the ATV4k?


So, since I 'only' have a 5.2 setup, Dolby Digital Plus should be better than the mere AC-3 compressed audio codec that I get via an optical cable?
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post #13 of 20 Old 04-19-2019, 09:10 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by no_cure View Post


So, since I 'only' have a 5.2 setup, Dolby Digital Plus should be better than the mere AC-3 compressed audio codec that I get via an optical cable?

Its the same thing for a non atmos processor and for an atmos capable one its still the same lossy sound quality just with extra information aboit what goes up from the normal base layer. Dolby digital pluss is a lossy format. I dont know of any movie/video streaming service that do lossless. Lossless multichannel is basically only blueray. That being said, i still think netflix sound good, not quite as good as blueray but its good enough that i dont really think about it.




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post #14 of 20 Old 04-19-2019, 09:12 AM
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What do you use the ATV4k for?, is there any thruehd content (or dts equivalent) you can play with it?


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post #15 of 20 Old 04-20-2019, 12:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by no_cure View Post
Well, per HDFury recommendation, they told me that the Vertex is what I want/need. I trouble shot the connections with them for days...still no dice, no audio, so I gave up and returned the product. Their claim was that my source (ATV4K) wouldn’t send any audio to my pre/pro...video came through great no matter.

Still, I found their user experience dismal and convoluted. Vertex wasn’t friendly to use or setup...
I suppose if it was recent,then maybe the reason they couldn't recommend the AVR key is the AVR key is discontinued. You might want to try to find a used one since it will do what you want without much fuss.
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post #16 of 20 Old 04-22-2019, 06:37 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Leeliemix View Post
What do you use the ATV4k for?, is there any thruehd content (or dts equivalent) you can play with it?


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I'm using it primarily for streaming Netflix and Amazon Prime.
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post #17 of 20 Old 04-22-2019, 06:38 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Worf View Post
I suppose if it was recent,then maybe the reason they couldn't recommend the AVR key is the AVR key is discontinued. You might want to try to find a used one since it will do what you want without much fuss.
I've tried the HDFury Vertex back in February, so recent enough.
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post #18 of 20 Old 04-22-2019, 07:07 AM - Thread Starter
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So, I find it hard to believe that HDFury is the only option for a dedicated HDMI audio extractor.

Surely, I can't be the only one with a legacy pre/pro/AVR, that can handle lossless audio flawlessly and doesn't want to replace it?
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post #19 of 20 Old 04-22-2019, 07:30 AM
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ISO High End HDMI Audio Extractor: All HDR formats and Lossless Audio

I dont think you would loose anything by using optical from the tv or an ARC solution. Netflix doesnt do lossless and i would be very surprised if amazon prime do. So as long as you arent trying to do more then 5.1 you dont really need to split the hdmi signal from those two sources and you already have an internal split on the blueray player so thats great.


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post #20 of 20 Old 04-23-2019, 08:25 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks @Leeliemix , I appreciate your feedback!

On some other sub-forums, I've just learnt that one could use the Infuse media player on the AT4k and thus send lossless audio to any AVR. While I am still researching that route, it still doesn't answer my original question: I am still searching for an HDMI audio extractor that can pass through lossless audio (that isn't HDFury since that didn't work for me).

I was really hoping that this topic would have spurred input from a greater audience; I cannot imagine that everyone with a recently acquired 4k/HDR/HDR10+/DV capable TV ($$$$) also rushed to upgrade their AVR with same audio/video specs...

...so can anyone else please chime in? Is HDFury the only HDMI audio extractor game in town, and/or for those with legacy AVRs, are you simply relying on S/PDIF optical cables?

Not all 5.1 signals are the same: streaming a 5.1 movie from Netflix (i.e. AA3 Dolby Digital) is clearly inferior to the lossless HD audio you'd get from a BluRay, despite going into same physical 5.1 setup. So this isn't a question of # of speakers one has, it's a question of quality of signal being fed to a legacy AVR, and with media players like Infuse (or Plex apparently) the gap between a streamed movie vs. one from BluRay has shrunk.

Hope to hear from other seasoned audiophiles!

Cheers!
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