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eab6287
Aug 15, 2009, 09:18 PM
Hey...

For some reason my ATV is not outputting Dolby digital signals during the playback of HD movies and trailers from the iTunes store. I've made sure the material has the Dolby logo, so it should be in dolby digital.

I have the ATV connected to an onkyo receiver via HDMI and I know there's no problem here since the opening scene (when you first plug in apple tv) plays in DTS surround (reciever displays "dts" indicator)

Any ideas? I think the dolby digital used to work....



eab6287
Aug 15, 2009, 09:19 PM
I did make sure the Dolby digital out setting in the ATV setup menu is on btw

skrutzen
Aug 15, 2009, 10:03 PM
I assume your other content is working (music, podcasts, all the stuff that's in stereo)? If so I had the same problem about a month ago. I too have an Onkyo receiver although I'm going in via component and optical. I ended up having to restore and update the ATV and then started fresh. I haven't had an issue since.

Cave Man
Aug 16, 2009, 04:00 AM
For some reason my ATV is not outputting Dolby digital signals during the playback of HD movies and trailers from the iTunes store.

Unless something's changed, none of the trailers have Dolby Digital AC3.

I've made sure the material has the Dolby logo, so it should be in dolby digital.

What's an example movie having this problem?

I have the ATV connected to an onkyo receiver via HDMI and I know there's no problem here since the opening scene (when you first plug in apple tv) plays in DTS surround (reciever displays "dts" indicator)

That can't be. The ATV does not support DTS.

forerx
Aug 16, 2009, 04:19 AM
Well,I'm sorry I am not professional...Good luck....

eab6287
Aug 16, 2009, 09:01 PM
Unless something's changed, none of the trailers have Dolby Digital AC3.



What's an example movie having this problem?



That can't be. The ATV does not support DTS.

The HD versions of trailers have always played in AC3 for me until this problem started. Apple began packaging most HD content with AC3 after the latest firmware update.

This issue is happening with every movie that claims to have AC3. I haven't yet found one which does work.

As far as DTS, apple tv does support it and the startup video is encoded in DTS

By "support" I mean only that it's capable of passing a DTS signal to an appropriately equipped receiver which can then do the decoding. Same as ac3. Maybe by "support" you mean that the content in the iTunes store is not DTS encoded, which I realize.

dynaflash
Aug 16, 2009, 10:08 PM
As far as DTS, apple tv does support it and the startup video is encoded in DTS

I hate to argue the point but the intro movie for the atv is done in aac and ac3. Reverse engineering that very movie is how hb first got ac3 passthru working in mp4.

Would love to see a screenshot of that intro movie in qt player showing the dts track. I wish you were right (DTS Passthru would be awesome) but I am afraid not on this one.

Cave Man
Aug 16, 2009, 10:11 PM
The HD versions of trailers have always played in AC3 for me until this problem started. Apple began packaging most HD content with AC3 after the latest firmware update.

They are AAC, not AC3.

This issue is happening with every movie that claims to have AC3. I haven't yet found one which does work.

The first audio track must be AAC and the second audio track must be AC3 to get Dolby Digital (5.1).

As far as DTS, apple tv does support it and the startup video is encoded in DTS

No, the startup video (see attachment) has AAC as its first audio track and AC3 as its second audio track. You cannot sync or stream any file that has DTS audio because DTS cannot be put into an MP4 container, which is required by the Apple TV.

By "support" I mean only that it's capable of passing a DTS signal to an appropriately equipped receiver which can then do the decoding. Same as ac3. Maybe by "support" you mean that the content in the iTunes store is not DTS encoded, which I realize.

No, I mean the Apple TV will reject any file that has a DTS audio track.

eab6287
Aug 16, 2009, 10:43 PM
While I believe what you guys are saying, that doesn't explain the fact that my receiver displays 'DTS' during the intro movie and the DTS logo lights up (just as if I were playing a bluray or something with a DTS soundtrack). If you really don't believe me I'll take a picture of it or something. Strange...

As far as this AAC/AC3 discussion, I don't know what AAC is. All I know is that purportedly most HD movies that you can rent on ATV are supposedly capable of playing in Dolby Digital (5.1 discrete channels). When playing one of these movies, my receiver (up until this week) displayed 'DD 5.1' (or DD EX 7.1 if I so chose), and now it doesn't; it can only be set to Pro Logic II.


So far, I don't think anyone has explained why this is happening or how to fix it, but please correct me if I'm wrong.

eab6287
Aug 16, 2009, 10:48 PM
They are AAC, not AC3.


That can't be correct. Apple states on the AppleTV and iTunes websites that many HD titles come with Dolby Digital 5.1 surround. Therefore they must have an AC3 encoded track, right?.

Further, this used to work. I've rented HD movies on ATV that DID have AC3 surround as indicated by the receiver's DD 5.1 display. When I rented an SD movie or an HD movie without the Dolby logo in its info page listing, the receiver just used Pro Logic II. Now it uses Pro Logic II even for movies which have the 'double d' logo that's supposed to indicate an AC3 track.

The question is what would cause this to stop working and how might I fix it.

Cave Man
Aug 16, 2009, 11:14 PM
While I believe what you guys are saying, that doesn't explain the fact that my receiver displays 'DTS' during the intro movie and the DTS logo lights up (just as if I were playing a bluray or something with a DTS soundtrack). If you really don't believe me I'll take a picture of it or something. Strange...

My Onkyo receiver illuminates the DD symbol with the startup video. Something about your receiver, I suspect, unless you've managed to disable DD out on your ATV.

As far as this AAC/AC3 discussion, I don't know what AAC is.

AAC is the 'analog' audio that is part of the MPEG-4 standard. All iTunes video and audio files use it.

All I know is that purportedly most HD movies that you can rent on ATV are supposedly capable of playing in Dolby Digital (5.1 discrete channels).

All of them have AAC audio as track 1. If they have digital audio they will have the double-D emblem denoting Dolby Digital (AC3) or explicitly state Dolby Digital 5.1.

When playing one of these movies, my receiver (up until this week) displayed 'DD 5.1' (or DD EX 7.1 if I so chose), and now it doesn't; it can only be set to Pro Logic II.

None of them come with 7.1, which would be Dolby Digital Plus (E-AC3). AAC is a two-channel matrix that can contain Dolby Pro Logic II (up to 5 channel surround). Since it was working for you before, there must be some setting issue on your receiver that has been changed.

That can't be correct. Apple states on the AppleTV and iTunes websites that many HD titles come with Dolby Digital 5.1 surround. Therefore they must have an AC3 encoded track, right?.

The purchased or rented TV shows and movies can have AC3 Dolby Digital (and all have AAC audio), but none of the trailers have AC3 (not even the HD trailers); they all have AAC audio tracks.

Further, this used to work. I've rented HD movies on ATV that DID have AC3 surround as indicated by the receiver's DD 5.1 display. When I rented an SD movie or an HD movie without the Dolby logo in its info page listing, the receiver just used Pro Logic II. Now it uses Pro Logic II even for movies which have the 'double d' logo that's supposed to indicate an AC3 track. The question is what would cause this to stop working and how might I fix it.

I can't help you there (I assume you have Settings > Audio & Video > Dolby Digital enabled on your Apple TV). I haven't rented an HD movie from iTS since the early days of the 2.0 update, and I've never bought one. When I did rent Live Free Or Die Hard (http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=436189), it had AAC audio for track 1 and AC3 audio for track 2. All of my DVDs and Blu-rays have been transcoded for the Apple TV with AAC audio on track 1 and (when available) AC3 on track 2.

eab6287
Aug 16, 2009, 11:27 PM
My Onkyo receiver illuminates the DD symbol with the startup video. Something about your receiver, I suspect, unless you've managed to disable DD out on your ATV.

I didn't disable DD out on the ATV as I've stated. There shouldn't be anything wrong with the receiver, since it works perfectly in every other scenario (Bluray, cable box, etc). Very weird...


None of them come with 7.1, which would be Dolby Digital Plus (E-AC3). AAC is a two-channel matrix that can contain Dolby Pro Logic II (up to 5 channel surround). Since it was working for you before, there must be some setting issue on your receiver that has been changed.

I realize obviously that they don't come with 7.1 discrete channels. However, if you have a receiver with DD EX processing, it creates the extra two channels for the rear using an algorithm. You can use DD EX processing on any AC3 material. DD Plus (and it's lossless sibling, DD TrueHD) are not the same thing as DD EX, and you're correct, they can contain 7.1 discrete channels.

No setting on the receiver has been changed.

The purchased or rented TV shows and movies can have AC3 Dolby Digital (and all have AAC audio), but none of the trailers have AC3 (not even the HD trailers); they all have AAC audio tracks.

Some of the HD trailers do have AC3 audio (or at least used to). I've played HD trailers in DD/AC3/whatever your preferred acronym is.

I can't help you there (I assume you have Settings > Audio & Video > Dolby Digital enabled on your Apple TV). I haven't rented an HD movie from iTS since the early days of the 2.0 update, and I've never bought one. When I did rent Live Free Or Die Hard, it had AAC audio for track 1 and AC3 audio for track 2. All of my DVDs and Blu-rays have been transcoded for the Apple TV with AAC audio on track 1 and (when available) AC3 on track 2.

eab6287
Aug 16, 2009, 11:30 PM
Does anyone know how to solve this problem?

This discussion has wandered a bunch....

In short:

I used to be able to play DD/AC3 5.1 soundtracks from some rented HD movies which have the 'double d' logo which indicates the presence of an AC3 track. The receiver would receive the AC3 signal and decode it, displaying 'DD 5.1'.

This week out of nowhere, with no setting changed on the receiver or ATV and no connections changed, rented titles with the DD logo which the receiver SHOULD decode into 5.1 are no longer recognized as such. The receiver uses Pro Logic II crap decoding instead.

If it helps, I have an Onkyo TX-SR606 and again, the signal (audio and video) are being transferred via HDMI to the receiver and then to the TV.

Cave Man
Aug 16, 2009, 11:40 PM
Some of the HD trailers do have AC3 audio (or at least used to). I've played HD trailers in DD/AC3/whatever your preferred acronym is.

While I've not downloaded all of the Apple HD trailers, I have downloaded more than 50 and not one of them had an AC3 track. If you can point to one that does, I'll be convinced that some do. But until then, I'm skeptical.

Now back to your problem. Have you transcoded any of your DVDs using Handbrake (0.9.3 or higher) with the Apple TV preset? If so, do these provide Dolby Digital to your receiver?

bucksaddle
Aug 17, 2009, 02:09 AM
I have an Onkyo 606 as well (ATV connected via HDMI), but have to agree with everyone else - the startup movie is definitely AC3 not DTS. If your receiver is showing DTS then you have the surround mode on one of the DTS equivalent Pro Logic modes, such as DTS:NEO 6 or DTS Express - the receiver lights up DTS when in these modes however these are obviously not 5.1 discrete surround.
It should say on the front of the receiver which DTS mode it is in - if it is pure discrete 5.1 DTS, then that's all it will say.
Are you sure you haven't accidently hit the Movie/TV button on the front of the receiver or on the remote, as this will cycle the surround modes for the channel input you are on.
As Cave Man has mentioned, certain Movies & TV Shows are in AC3, but I've yet to see a trailer encoded with such a track.
Cheers

NOD
Aug 17, 2009, 05:04 AM
I must agree w/ the above posters that DTS pass-through on :apple:TV is an impossibility unless you do a little hackage.

As for QT trailers -- I actually could swear that I've seen a precious few that came up as 'Dolby Digital' rather than DPL on my rcvrs.

I'll see if I can find some tomorrow.

eab6287
Aug 17, 2009, 03:15 PM
While I appreciate the discussion this question has spurred, I stilllll haven't been offered any solution to the problem. Anyone have any ideas? We seem to be talking about everything except the actual issue.

Forgetting all this DTS/Trailers vs. Rentals/other misc. unrelated stuff...


Why, when I watch a rented HD movie which does have AC3 encoding (as evidenced by the double d logo on the rental page), does my receiver no longer recognize this and therefore play the soundtrack in AC3/5.1 discrete?

This used to work just as it should, and now it does not. I have tried resetting the receiver, ATV, etc. although I haven't done a full restore of the ATV.

eab6287
Aug 17, 2009, 03:19 PM
Now back to your problem. Have you transcoded any of your DVDs using Handbrake (0.9.3 or higher) with the Apple TV preset? If so, do these provide Dolby Digital to your receiver?

I haven't done this because I don't really have any reason to. For me, it's easier (and provides far superior video quality) to just stick discs in my Oppo Blu-Ray player, which upconverts DVDs to look as good as they possibly can. I've never really understood why it's worth the time and effort to rip DVDs. I guess it's more convenient to store them on a drive if you have a big library?

If you think this would somehow be a good troubleshooting step I'm willing to try it.

Cave Man
Aug 17, 2009, 03:43 PM
If you use a DVD with Dolby Digital AC3 audio (which is virtually all of them) and use the Apple TV present in Handbrake, then you're guaranteed a movie file that will have both AAC (track 1) and AC3 (track 2) that is required by the Apple TV for Dolby Digital passthrough to your receiver. If that fails to work, then the problem likely lies with a receiver setting of some kind.

dynaflash
Aug 17, 2009, 04:00 PM
I second Cave Man's reply. I have never seen an atv suddenly stop outputting a properly setup aac + ac3 soundtrack scenario.

Fwiw, I too have an onkyo and would wager that somewhere along the way something was switched.

As a test, try running toslink right from the atv to the onkyo and see what happens.

Cordeiro
Aug 17, 2009, 07:17 PM
I second Cave Man's reply. I have never seen an atv suddenly stop outputting a properly setup aac + ac3 soundtrack scenario.

Fwiw, I too have an onkyo and would wager that somewhere along the way something was switched.

As a test, try running toslink right from the atv to the onkyo and see what happens.

I would like just to add something:
Definitely something changed the way TV shows are encoded on iTunes store.
I bought LOST season 5 HD. Until episode 7 all the episodes presented Dolby Digital audio automatically recognized by my receiver( by the way is a Denon).
After episode 8 and until the end of the show, bye bye Dolby Digital. The receiver automatically switches to Dolby Prologic.
And guess what afterwards I bought Dexter season 3 (HD) and the same happened after episode 7!.
I didn't had the the time to investigate the files but I'm pretty sure that something changed in the way the audio was encoded after all the receiver is the same and also the ATV SW version( and yes I didn't disabled DD audio output on my ATV).
Cheers

dynaflash
Aug 17, 2009, 09:43 PM
Well, there is one change in the 2.4 software itself that I know of regarding audio, you can now use *just* an ac3 track which had previously been broken by 2.3 ( not sure on the rev number to be honest ) 2.4 when i tested it will play a video with just an ac3 track again.

Having said that, I don't know what that would have to do with any broken dd 5.1 output from existing encodes. Mine all still work fine.

bucksaddle
Aug 18, 2009, 01:56 AM
While I appreciate the discussion this question has spurred, I stilllll haven't been offered any solution to the problem. Anyone have any ideas? We seem to be talking about everything except the actual issue.

Did you check what I mentioned a few posts earlier? What does the front of the receiver say? DTS, DTS:Neo or DTS Express when either the ATV startup movie is playing or a known AC3 encoded movie?

Why, when I watch a rented HD movie which does have AC3 encoding (as evidenced by the double d logo on the rental page), does my receiver no longer recognize this and therefore play the soundtrack in AC3/5.1 discrete?

You must have something set-up wrong on the receiver. Have you cycled through the sound inputs? I would set the ATV input on your receiver to something that is not a surround mode (such as Stereo) then play a movie or TV show with an AC3 track to see if it auto-switches. This is how I have my receiver set-up so I get Stereo when listening to music, it auto-switches when I watch a movie, and then back again when finished.

The other option, as per dynaflash's post, is to try a toslink to make sure it isn't hardware / cable

As mentioned, I have a 606 and no problems with movies (rented or handbrake'd) or TV Shows that have an AC3 track over HDMI

bohbot16
Aug 18, 2009, 05:35 AM
I know it's a pain to go through, but you should restore your Apple TV to the factory defaults through the menu, then update to version 2.4 and re-link it to iTunes on your computer.

bkkress
Sep 3, 2009, 12:45 PM
Did you check what I mentioned a few posts earlier? What does the front of the receiver say? DTS, DTS:Neo or DTS Express when either the ATV startup movie is playing or a known AC3 encoded movie?



You must have something set-up wrong on the receiver. Have you cycled through the sound inputs? I would set the ATV input on your receiver to something that is not a surround mode (such as Stereo) then play a movie or TV show with an AC3 track to see if it auto-switches. This is how I have my receiver set-up so I get Stereo when listening to music, it auto-switches when I watch a movie, and then back again when finished.

The other option, as per dynaflash's post, is to try a toslink to make sure it isn't hardware / cable

As mentioned, I have a 606 and no problems with movies (rented or handbrake'd) or TV Shows that have an AC3 track over HDMI


I have to support the poster of this issue. I have a Pioneer Elite SC-07. I formerly had a Yamaha DSP A1; they are similar although the Pioneer supports more formats, HDMI, etc. I use it for EVERYTHING. I've had enough receivers to know the problem I'm experiencing w/ my new Apple TV is absolutely not a receiver setting. I have the same issue, I have it wired via HDMI Monster High Capacity cables, when the unit boots, i have it set as everything else (PS3, DirecTV, Elite Blue Ray player, etc. to auto-surround. Its not in NEO mode or any others, I have also tried PCM, Pure, Pure Direct, etc. for signaling. When I boot up, as I said, I get the Dolby Digital symbol AND it plays DD - sounds great. When I play the move or tv show previews, even the ones w/ DD, it goes immediately into Pro Logic II mode - it has never once gone to DD yet. It could be that they don't broadcast the 'previews' in DD - I have yet to rent a movie, but all is hooked up well, same hookup that works for every other device. Since I do get the broadcast during the plug in/start up, it is recognizing the DD as well when it's sent. It means to me that either a) Apple does not support Dolby Digital or b) They just don't use it for the previews but if I actually 'buy' or 'rent' the movie, it will be in DD. Any thoughts? (DD is enabled on my ATV)

bucksaddle
Sep 3, 2009, 12:52 PM
No, they do not use DD for the previews and yes, if you were to buy or rent a movie with the DD symbol you would get DD.
Sounds like to me that you don't have any issues with your set-up but you have not yet tried any appropriate material, apart from the start up movie. If that's OK then your movies should be also.

Cave Man
Sep 3, 2009, 01:08 PM
IWhen I boot up, as I said, I get the Dolby Digital symbol AND it plays DD - sounds great.

This means your Apple TV is functioning properly.

When I play the move or tv show previews, even the ones w/ DD, it goes immediately into Pro Logic II mode - it has never once gone to DD yet. It could be that they don't broadcast the 'previews' in DD - I have yet to rent a movie, but all is hooked up well, same hookup that works for every other device.

There's your answer. Only purchased or rented movies or TV shows can have DD. None of the trailers or previews do.

Again, the way to verify this is to simply transcode a DVD rip using Handbrake and its Apple TV preset.

HobeSoundDarryl
Sep 3, 2009, 02:10 PM
While I appreciate the discussion this question has spurred, I stilllll haven't been offered any solution to the problem. Anyone have any ideas? We seem to be talking about everything except the actual issue.

Too many variables, and too many different points of view and problems being discussed in this thread. My suggestion is to simplify, and specifically isolate what is at fault. I too have an :apple:TV plus Onkyo setup, I have updated to 2.4, and am having no trouble getting Dolby Digital sound out of Handbrake encodes or rented iTunes movies. So...

Step 1. Isolate the problem. Pull the HDMI cable out of the :apple:TV and plug it into the HDMI out jack on your Blue Ray player. Put in a disc with Dolby Digital and see if the Onkyo auto-switches to Dolby Digital. If it does, the problem is your :apple:TV (factory restore :apple:TV, update back to 2.4, and test again). As an alternative, switch to a toslink cable hookup to see if :apple:TV is passing DD (don't forget to adapt your Onkyo audio input settings if you try this option).

If you've hacked the :apple:TV don't reapply the hacks until you first test the unhacked software to verify you do indeed get DD.

It you rule out :apple:TV with this test, the problem is either the cable or the Onkyo.

Step 2. Eliminate a problem with the cable by testing a different HDMI cable. If switching cables yields DD in the Onkyo (Blue Ray to Onkyo), try the working cable between :apple:TV and the Onkyo with a known DD sourced :apple:TV video. If you don't have any such video, I suggest ripping one chapter of a DD DVD with Handbrake (using the :apple:TV setting) and using that as your "for sure" DD test video. A one chapter rip will only take a short while to encode.

To this point, you should have ruled out :apple:TV and a bad cable.

Step 3. With the problem isolated to the Onkyo, try unplugging it, waiting a good while, then plugging it back in. A little power fluctuation recently had my Onkyo exhibiting some odd behavior (in spite of battery-based surge suppression)- but not your particular problem. A unplug-wait-replug did the trick.

Step 4. If you are definitely getting DD auto-switching from the Blue Ray, connect the :apple:TV to that same HDMI feed. In other words, pull the cable out of the Blue Ray, and put it into the :apple:TV. Then, try a "for sure" DD video via :apple:TV and see if Onkyo auto-switches to DD. If that works, the HDMI jack to which you've previously had your :apple:TV connected may be having an issue (but I bet Step 3 would lick that problem).

Step 5. Dig out the Onkyo manual (a glorious read for one & all:rolleyes:) and carefully go through everything- even the helpful(???) smaller print tips in the margins- related to enabling HDMI, DD, etc, checking to make sure all related Onkyo settings are correct. It's not that hard for Onkyo settings to be accessed accidently, and then changed (even a cat or dog can do it- no joke). Especially check and re-check the audio setup in the menus vs. the specific jacks to which you got stuff connected; and check your HDMI setup vs. your digital input setups.

Based on your feedback, my gut guess leans to the Onkyo, and I'm betting it will be solved with Step #3 or #5. But either way, if you'll try the above steps, you should be able to narrow it down to one component (vs. 3).

bkkress
Sep 4, 2009, 01:52 AM
I have to support the poster of this issue. I have a Pioneer Elite SC-07. I formerly had a Yamaha DSP A1; they are similar although the Pioneer supports more formats, HDMI, etc. I use it for EVERYTHING. I've had enough receivers to know the problem I'm experiencing w/ my new Apple TV is absolutely not a receiver setting. I have the same issue, I have it wired via HDMI Monster High Capacity cables, when the unit boots, i have it set as everything else (PS3, DirecTV, Elite Blue Ray player, etc. to auto-surround. Its not in NEO mode or any others, I have also tried PCM, Pure, Pure Direct, etc. for signaling. When I boot up, as I said, I get the Dolby Digital symbol AND it plays DD - sounds great. When I play the move or tv show previews, even the ones w/ DD, it goes immediately into Pro Logic II mode - it has never once gone to DD yet. It could be that they don't broadcast the 'previews' in DD - I have yet to rent a movie, but all is hooked up well, same hookup that works for every other device. Since I do get the broadcast during the plug in/start up, it is recognizing the DD as well when it's sent. It means to me that either a) Apple does not support Dolby Digital or b) They just don't use it for the previews but if I actually 'buy' or 'rent' the movie, it will be in DD. Any thoughts? (DD is enabled on my ATV)

For anyone still reading this chain, I tried the test tonight. I ordered a move - The Lake House off the Apple TV. After watching the preview multiple times, it only did Pro Logic II, HOWEVER, once I ordered the movie and payed for the rental, the actual movie lit up DD-Dolby Digital and sounded great/worked perfect. It appears to me from above that they don't use Dolby Digital for previews (maybe they once did) anymore.

osohardy
Sep 4, 2009, 03:00 PM
I noticed a similar issue when I was exclusively using HDMI. In my case the ATV and TV were both connected to a Sony receiver. Sometimes with my handbrake files, which always have the AAC + AC3 combo it would only play the stereo track. I could sometimes get it back by powering down the TV and receiver, but it was a bit unpredictable. I'm still not sure if it is the receiver or ATV, but it seems like they don't always handshake properly with audio over HDMI. I connected an optical cable instead and zero problems passing the AC3 that way...try that too if that wasn't mentioned.

...kinda a side note but I often use the ATV to play music via Remote app through the receiver with the TV off, which is a nice side benefit to the optical. But I do notice that sometimes it will only want to play through HDMI input on the stereo, for example if I was watching 'regular' TV on the TV input, turn the TV off and switch to the ATV optical input it wont play UNLESS I briefly play anything with AC3 with the TV off first :)

MacBlackBook22
Sep 5, 2009, 11:51 PM
I have the same problem here. Only 1 of my handbrake ripped movies plays the surround 5.1 track all the rest go to the PCM sound.
This is so frustrating as I had ripped all the movies to the appleTV setting.

I guess I will have to try the optical cord set-up as the hdmi is not cutting it for getting the sound to work

bucksaddle
Sep 6, 2009, 02:01 AM
I have the same problem here. Only 1 of my handbrake ripped movies plays the surround 5.1 track all the rest go to the PCM sound.
This is so frustrating as I had ripped all the movies to the appleTV setting.

I guess I will have to try the optical cord set-up as the hdmi is not cutting it for getting the sound to work

Well, if 1 of your movies is working then I guess the problem is with your rips and not HDMI. Does the start-up movie play in 5.1 over HDMI?

MacBlackBook22
Sep 6, 2009, 02:33 AM
Well, if 1 of your movies is working then I guess the problem is with your rips and not HDMI. Does the start-up movie play in 5.1 over HDMI?

Yes it plays over the HDMI. I don't have an optical cord connection

Funny enough I think the problem lie's with the transfer of the movie to the attached hard drive. I the ATV Flash program installed in the ATV and normally I was using FTP to move them from the computers to the hard drive. Tonight I moved a ripped DVD to the hard drive by bringing the laptop to the drive and using the usb direct transfer. In doing so it played the 5.1 soundtrack.
Now for a moment I thought I had the total answer to I tried copying some of the other movies I had backed up on another hard drive to the laptop and then moved them via the usb... no go though they all still wouldn't play the 5.1 soundtrack still just the 2 channel stereo. So now I am ripping another dvd on the laptop and once its done I will see if this one does transfer with the 5.1 intact.

GermanSuplex
Sep 7, 2009, 12:56 AM
What about 5.1 AAC? Some of my HDTV shows I've purchased have AAC 5.1 audio... do any recievers decode this, or am I just going to get downmixed stereo or silence with these shows unless I revert to the standard stereo track? And has Apple stopped the 5.1 AAC in favor of AC-3 or are they still doing some shows with 5.1? And how can you tell what you're getting before purchasing?

futsoulja
Sep 8, 2009, 12:47 PM
I have the same problem as the original poster. Some rented HD movies play in Dolby Digital and others do not. I also have an Onkyo receiver.

Cave Man
Sep 8, 2009, 02:05 PM
What movies didn't work with Dolby Digital?

HobeSoundDarryl
Sep 8, 2009, 04:23 PM
What about 5.1 AAC? Some of my HDTV shows I've purchased have AAC 5.1 audio... do any recievers decode this, or am I just going to get downmixed stereo or silence with these shows unless I revert to the standard stereo track? And has Apple stopped the 5.1 AAC in favor of AC-3 or are they still doing some shows with 5.1? And how can you tell what you're getting before purchasing?

AAC5.1 is not the same as AC-3. Your receiver will need to explicitly decode AAC5.1 to be able to render it as intended. I don't think there are any consumer receivers yet that can do that (someone correct me if I'm wrong). As a result, AAC5.1 encoded audio is rendered as stereo (not discrete surround).

AC-3 is Dolby Digital- the standard for DVD-based 5.1 surround sound. Many modern consumer receivers (if not all) will be able to decode this standard.

From what I've read, AAC5.1 is a better standard than the older AC-3, but no standard is much good unless you have a way to actually use it.

As to how you tell, the listings in iTunes seem to explicitly show whether a film has "Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound." If you don't see it, my take would be the film won't have it (see post #38 for a specific example).

HobeSoundDarryl
Sep 8, 2009, 04:38 PM
I have the same problem as the original poster. Some rented HD movies play in Dolby Digital and others do not. I also have an Onkyo receiver.

I know it looks like some trouble, but run through the steps in post #28. It is always important to isolate the problem. With what you share, the problem could be :apple:TV OR the cable OR the Onkyo OR the source material (not having a valid 5.1 Dolby Digital track).

My suggestion in your case is to do this first: Handbrake 1 chapter of a DVD with a Dolby Digital soundtrack. This way you have a "for sure" Dolby Digital 5.1 source video on which to evaluate which link in the chain is giving you trouble.

In your case, my guess is that some rented movies have a Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack and some do not. I went into the iTunes store, HD movies, looking for a tell-tale sign. I notice that a newer film like Casino Royale explicitly lists Dolby Digital 5.1 surround sound in it's specs, while an older film like This is Spinal Tap does not show that same feature in its specs. So there's at least one example where either Apple forgot to list that the latter is in 5.1, or perhaps it is NOT in 5.1.

msprouls
Sep 9, 2009, 12:36 AM
I skimmed through the thread so I hope this has not been posted.

Make sure your Onkyo's HDMI output is not set to "Through"