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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have an ATI Radeon 5450 card in my HTPC and I've set it up for bitstreaming via MPC-HC and FFDShow.


- When I play an MKV with either TrueHD or DTS-HD and it's connected to my Emotiva processor, it bitstreams just fine.

- When I play an MKV with either TrueHD or DTS-HD and it's connected to my Onkyo receiver, it does not work. Although it is connected to the Onkyo via HDMI, the Onkyo thinks it passing either PCM (for TrueHD) or S/PDIF (for DTS-HD).


Now here's where it gets strange with the Onkyo - when I hook up a WD TV Live+ to the receiver (via HDMI) and play an MKV with TrueHD, the Onkyo recognizes the TrueHD stream. The WD won't pass DTS-HD so I can't test that but at least it confirms the Onkyo can handle TrueHD via HDMI.


Any ideas why the processor recognizes the bitstream from the HTPC but the receiver does not?


Forgot to mention, I'm running Windows 7 64bit as the OS.
 

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I suspect the problem might be the other way around: the receiver's HDMI EDID is reporting to the computer a more limited set of audio capabilities, so the computer is sending what the receiver understands. You might try running MonInfo on the computer to see what audio and video capabilities are being advertised by the receiver. MonInfo is available for free at http://www.entechtaiwan.com/util/moninfo.shtm


Note that S/PDIF is a separate form of digital connection, either optical or coax, using a TosLink or RCA connector. They are not the rectangular HDMI connections. S/PDIF connections can only transport 2 channels of PCM or up to 5.1 channels of lossy Dolby Digital or up to 6.1 channels of lossy DTS-ES audio. HDMI can transport up to 7.1 channels of PCM, Dolby TrueHD or DTS-HD MA, but only if the receiver includes the appropriate decoders.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I'll give MonInfo a shot, but what do I do with what it tells me?


Also, I know how S/PDIF is a different connection (TOSlink in my case), I was just stating what the receiver itself was reporting when I went into Audio->Info on it's menu. I have no S/PDIF connections to it, only HDMI, yet it was reporting that - which only added further to the weirdness. It reported PCM for the TrueHD files and S/PDIF for the DTS-HD files.
 

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When you run Moninfo, you select the "realtime" device near or at the top of its menu (in the left pane) which corresponds to the HDMI device that you are using in Windows. About 2/3 of the way down its information display (in the right pane), it lists all of the audio capabilities of the HDMI device: the audio formats that it can decode and the bitrates that it can handle. There you'll find if the receiver can actually handle TrueHD or DTS-HD MA. If they're not listed, then the media player has no choice but to decode the audio to PCM. If they are listed, then the problem is elsewhere.


What model of Onkyo receiver do you have?


Somewhere in its manual it should explain why it says S/PDIF on its display. Otherwise, I have a suspicion that it might be broken or glitched.


Have you tried unplugging the receiver from the wall for 10 minutes or so?

Sometimes that kind of "soft reset" can clear up flaky problems. The "power-off" button doesn't really turn off the power to the receiver, it just puts it into "standby" with many circuits still active.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Haven't tried the un-plug suggestion; that's a good idea. I do know the receiver can handle TrueHD as it recognizes it when it comes via HDMI from my WD TV Live+, just not from my HTPC. I suspect the receiver is agreeing to a different protocol before agreeing to bitstream.


The receiver is an Onkyo HT-RC330 - pretty low end, but then so is the ATI 5450.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I did more testing and here's what I found out:


- the power unplug of the receiver to reset it did not change any of the behavior


- I mis-spoke earlier: it's not the receiver that says S/PDIF for DTS HD files but FFDShow. Sorry about mis-stating that. Here's what FFDShow and the receiver show for each:

- TrueHD files - Receiver shows: PCM and 2 Channel

- FFDShow displays: Input TrueHD (libavcodec); Output PCM 5.1


- DTS HD files - Receiver shows: DTS and 5.1 Channel

- FFDShow displays: Input DTS (bitstream) ; Output S/PDIF 5.1


- In FFDShow, if I unchecked "connect as PCM" option, it would pass DTSHD that the receiver recognized and flipped the DTSHD light on it. However the movie went into super super slow motion and was unviewable. I checked the CPU and nothing was bogging it down so not sure why it went so slow. For TrueHD, whatever it passed to the receiver, the receiver didn't recognize and there was no sound


- I ran Moninfo and it shows the Receiver as DTS HD but for Dolby it listed AC3 and DD+ (not TrueHD even though it does TrueHD)

- When I hooked up the HTPC to my processor, TrueHD/DTSHD both would work fine but Moninfo did not work. It kept giving me a memory exception error when I tried to start it. I thought that was odd.



It appears that FFDShow is confused when talking to my receiver but not my Processor. I'm going to try Shark007 next to see how that behaves as I'm not sure what else I can do with FFDShow as I've tried all the different ouput settings permutations it allows.
 
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