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Binge Watcher

HBO Max Audio Problems Roku TCL TV / Vizio Soundbar

Anyone have any ideas on why audio is fine thru my Vizio soundbar on other apps (YTTV, Tubi, Kanopy, Netflix, Cable) but going to HBO Max app I have no audio. To make it even more frustrating, when I switch back from HBO Max to YTTV (for example) the audio is gone there too. I have to "reset" the soundbar by unplugging it (audio is fine through the TV speakers when I do this) and then power it up again. 

SOOO done with both of these products. But for now I have little choice but to deal with the issue. 

Any help appreciated. 


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Roku Guru

Re: HBO Max Audio Problems Roku TCL TV / Vizio Soundbar

You didnt mention your Roku model # or firmware version (Settings/System/About) or HBO Max app version (highlight the app and press Options (*) on the remote).

You also didnt indicate whether your soundbar is connected via ARC/eARC or Optical

A)    Try reinstalling the HBO Max app:

   1) Remove the HBO Max app (Highlight the app, press the Options (*) button on the remote, then Remove)

   2) RESTART the Roku (Settings/System/System restart/Restart) <-- MUST DO THIS HERE!!!

   3) Re-install the HBO Max app

   (If you dont restart after removal, settings/cached data associated with the app are left behind and it wont be a clean re-install)

B) Otherwise, the behavior certainly suggests the HBO Max's audio output is causing the behavior - and it may well be:  HBO Max uses DD for 5.1 and DD+ for Atmos output.

A good test would be to load a 5.1 content on either The Roku Channel (e.g. The Terminator) or Apple TV (e.g. See) - they also use DD for 5.1 output like HBO Max.  If it happens with the 5.1 output on those too, then its a DD playback/output issue.

It may be that the DD output relative to your current audio settings or a bug in the firmware related to handling DD audio is causing this - you might want to verify/change audio settings in Settings/Audio/SPDIF and ARC and see if it impacts this behavior (e.g. Change to "Auto passthrough", or "Dolby Digital").

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Binge Watcher

Re: HBO Max Audio Problems Roku TCL TV / Vizio Soundbar

Thank you very much for the response! I will try this when I get home.

The TCL is model 55R625 from 2019. I am running out from the TCL to the Vizio soundbar via ARC. I know that the firmware on the TV was updated about a month ago and is set for auto updates.

I can get 5.1 fine from Netflix and from my 4K Sony player (which is also running into the TV and out via ARC.)

I have tried changing the audio setting to every option without luck. Currently it is set to "Auto Passthrough."

The only thing that seems to work is resetting the soundbar, which makes no sense to me. If the sound plays fine while being on the DD/Atmos program in the app after resetting, it's not that the soundbar can't decode it. Also can't figure out what would cause it to stop playing sound all-together going back to a "known good" app like YTTV.

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