Playback Issues - Audio/Video & Power

Help with audio & video playback issues, TV display type recognition & compatibility, HDCP messages, troubleshooting playback errors, advertisements, and resolving power issues.
cancel
Showing results for 
Show  only  | Search instead for 
Did you mean: 
Heyitsrick
Level 12

Re: Update 9.2 broke dolby digital

Jump to solution

@yawitz wrote:

@vodil wrote:


For many of these issues the information is on the boards, but the buyer often does not know what to ask regarding something that should ostensibly work. [Emphasis added]

Yes, this. The emergence of DD+ as an enhancement to DD, without it being called out by the vendor, is not something that an otherwise informed purchaser would think of investigating unless they followed the topic in detail.

Forums such as this one, and some reviewers, do some of the work that in past times you'd expect the vendor to do. Better than nothing, I suppose. Call me old-fashioned, but shifting the burden to the customer seems like a bad trend to me.


Dolby Digital Plus is over 15 years old now.  What needs to be called out at this late date? 

0 Kudos
StreamerUser
Level 17

Re: Update 9.2 broke dolby digital

Jump to solution
@vodil wrote:

@Heyitsrick wrote:

@yawitz wrote:

The biggest issue I have with your comments here is (paraphrasing) that it's not reasonable to expect that consumers should have to educate themselves about what products can and can't do. I couldn't disagree more. Consumers have to know what they're buying. If they don't understand something, ask.  It's not reasonable to lay this off on a manufacturer. It's part of the job of being an informed buyer. 

 


TBF, there is a limit.  ROKU, just like other  tech product companies, does not make it easy to find out a lot of information that one wishes to know.  It is intentional, of course.  While trying to do my due dilligence, I could not determine ahead of time: that the ROKU remote cannot control the volume of my AVR;  that the AVR OSD disappears on some ROKU channels, that "Auto detect"  will interfere with ARC; even with the ROKU is off; that ROKU does not always provide the full A/V that channels advertise (e.g. Netflix).

For many of these issues the information is on the boards, but the buyer often does not know what to ask regarding something that should ostensibly work.  But I would agree that buyers need to do the basic due dillegence first as many issues are actually easy to suss out. 

P.S Probably this is all off topic and should be spunoff. 


1) The Dolby passthrough versus decoding capabilities of different models is easily accessible at the roku.com website's product pages as I previously showed ("easy to find out a lot of information") as per the previous complainant.  For whatever reason, they chose NOT to get information from the original source (Roku) that would have and does in fact address their specific issue, and instead relied on "reviews".

2) As to your specific issues:

A) Specific issue for your AVR/config:  Though Roku explicitly states that the remote cannot be used to control AVRS/soundbars/etc, all my volume control-enabled Rokus can/do control my AVRs by default when on, re-programmed with AVR off to force TV volume OSD always, whether using TV internal speakers or external/AVR - further advanced configuration for AVR querying/programming available in advanced hidden RF Remote Menu submenus.

B) Specific issue for your AVR/config: AVR OSD disappearing is a limitation/issue/bug of your AVR, whether triggered by Roku HDMI handshaking/etc or not.

C) Specific issue for your TV/AVR/config:  HDMI/Audio/"Auto detect" does conversion/transcoding always (its even stated in the info for the setting) and should not be used (even if it is the poorly chosen default).  Regardless, the fact that configuring it causes ARC problems between your TV & AVR indicates an issue/limitation of the TV/AVR ARC processing/connection.

D) NetFlix issue:  Roku lists which models support Atmos (they are correctly listed).  NetFlix controls what scenarios it delivers Atmos in - it is NetFlix's platform requirements (Atmos-level Dolby decoder) that limit its app's Atmos output, not Roku's (or e.g. the FS4Ks) platform.  Clearly all other services are able to output Atmos without a Dolby-Atmos level decoder (passthrough works just fine). This issue is not limited to Roku, and affects all platforms that do not provide Dolby Atmos-level decoding - you wont find other Atmos-capable platforms without Atmos-level Dolby decoders listing their lack of NF Atmos either.

FYI, you'll notice a common element in almost all of your issues - your AVR (which Roku cannot possibly know every model/configuration thereof) - probably worth pursuing more inspection there on your end.

3) Much of the basic information/specs is available from the product pages, however, consumer-facing detailed granular technical specifications and listing of all implemented standards/protocols and configuration caveats/nuances (and all the changes to all of that over time with firmware updates/hardware revisions) is almost never found, for Roku or any other product .  If only it were so... 

(One can sometimes find much of this information on the platform's/product's developer site/pages however).

0 Kudos
StreamerUser
Level 17

Re: Update 9.2 broke dolby digital

Jump to solution

@yawitz wrote:

@vodil wrote:


For many of these issues the information is on the boards, but the buyer often does not know what to ask regarding something that should ostensibly work. [Emphasis added]

Yes, this. The emergence of DD+ as an enhancement to DD, without it being called out by the vendor, is not something that an otherwise informed purchaser would think of investigating unless they followed the topic in detail.

Forums such as this one, and some reviewers, do some of the work that in past times you'd expect the vendor to do. Better than nothing, I suppose. Call me old-fashioned, but shifting the burden to the customer seems like a bad trend to me.


DD+ isn't new though - it's been around for nearly 20 years, standardized into ATSC for 15, and mainstreamed into CE 8-10 years ago at least.

Despite DD+ being named/referred to as "Enhanced AC3" (E-AC3), its actually a different codec than AC3, and not directly backwards compatible, though with a relatively "easy" conversion/transcoding ability to DD with an appropriate decoder (Dolby requires all licensed DD+ (and higher) decoders include DD transcoding).

Not sure what exactly you mean by "called out by the vendor" (which vendor? Dolby? NetFlix? Roku?), but if your issue is the general lack of exhaustive detailed granular technical specification listings (and their changes) being made easily accessible to the consumer part of the CE industry, then that's a legitimate criticism. 

Regardless, this (lack of detailed technical documentation for consumers) isnt exactly a new issue in CE, its been around as long as CEs have existed, and certainly isnt limited to Roku.

...which is all the more reason anyone with any experience in CE, especially after having been "out of the game for a while", knowing how quickly standards/specs/protocols/etc do change, especially in modern CE, should do more pre-purchase research, not less (e.g. such as opening up the product pages at the company website and looking at the specs).

The burden is always ultimately on the consumer to inform themselves as much as possible about the products/services they intend to purchase, and if they refuse it, to accept whatever results may come (again, buy/return is available, and easier than ever).

 

0 Kudos
yawitz
Level 9

Re: Update 9.2 broke dolby digital

Jump to solution

@StreamerUser wrote:

DD+ isn't new though - it's been around for nearly 20 years, standardized into ATSC for 15, and mainstreamed into CE 8-10 years ago at least.

...

Not sure what exactly you mean by "called out by the vendor" (which vendor? Dolby? NetFlix? Roku?), but if your issue is the general lack of exhaustive detailed granular technical specification listings (and their changes) being made easily accessible to the consumer part of the CE industry, then that's a legitimate criticism. 

The age of the format in question is not my point; in fact, if it's been around for so long, why not simply list the formats that require downstream capabilities to work? "Supporting pass-through" does not imply a requirement for the downstream device. (For example, include a simple statement or table in the Audio Features section of the product specs indicating which formats are so affected.) I would not consider this an "exhaustive detailed granular technical specification," rather a salient and important bit of pre-purchase information. (Including some of the requirements for popular services such as Netflix would also be nice.) If any of this was listed, it would have kept me from falling down this particular rabbit hole.

It's great (and helpful to this forum, and appreciated) that you're an expert in many of these technical details (as evidenced by your reference to the platform's/product's developer site/pages). But you can't expect most consumers to commit to that level of research to make a $50 purchase. From a customer experience and/or marketing perspective, it's a bit of a fail that, IMHO, is easily fixed.

0 Kudos
lesmikesell
Level 13

Re: Update 9.2 broke dolby digital

Jump to solution

@yawitz wrote:

The age of the format in question is not my point; in fact, if it's been around for so long, why not simply list the formats that require downstream capabilities to work? "Supporting pass-through" does not imply a requirement for the downstream device. (For example, include a simple statement or table in the Audio Features section of the product specs indicating which formats are so affected.)

Yes, this chart makes it clear that the Ultra does something different but it is not at all clear what that is or why you need it.  And it just calls the format Dolby Audio. https://image.roku.com/ww/docs/compare-chart-new-old-en-us.pdf

yawitz
Level 9

Re: Update 9.2 broke dolby digital

Jump to solution

@lesmikesell wrote:

@yawitz wrote:

The age of the format in question is not my point; in fact, if it's been around for so long, why not simply list the formats that require downstream capabilities to work? "Supporting pass-through" does not imply a requirement for the downstream device. (For example, include a simple statement or table in the Audio Features section of the product specs indicating which formats are so affected.)

Yes, this chart makes it clear that the Ultra does something different but it is not at all clear what that is or why you need it.  And it just calls the format Dolby Audio. https://image.roku.com/ww/docs/compare-chart-new-old-en-us.pdf


Yup, while that table is out-of-date, the information and format is mostly helpful. The current Compare page (https://www.roku.com/products/compare) is similar and up-to-date. I'd add notes in the bottom about audio support, similar to the existing notes regarding 4K and HDR compatibility. (Providing an up-to-date FAQ entry listing format requirements for popular services, e.g. Netflix, Disney+, etc., would also be a great service to customers.)

0 Kudos
Heyitsrick
Level 12

Re: Update 9.2 broke dolby digital

Jump to solution

@yawitz wrote:

@StreamerUser wrote:

DD+ isn't new though - it's been around for nearly 20 years, standardized into ATSC for 15, and mainstreamed into CE 8-10 years ago at least.

...

Not sure what exactly you mean by "called out by the vendor" (which vendor? Dolby? NetFlix? Roku?), but if your issue is the general lack of exhaustive detailed granular technical specification listings (and their changes) being made easily accessible to the consumer part of the CE industry, then that's a legitimate criticism. 

The age of the format in question is not my point; in fact, if it's been around for so long, why not simply list the formats that require downstream capabilities to work? "Supporting pass-through" does not imply a requirement for the downstream device. (For example, include a simple statement or table in the Audio Features section of the product specs indicating which formats are so affected.) I would not consider this an "exhaustive detailed granular technical specification," rather a salient and important bit of pre-purchase information. (Including some of the requirements for popular services such as Netflix would also be nice.) If any of this was listed, it would have kept me from falling down this particular rabbit hole.

It's great (and helpful to this forum, and appreciated) that you're an expert in many of these technical details (as evidenced by your reference to the platform's/product's developer site/pages). But you can't expect most consumers to commit to that level of research to make a $50 purchase. From a customer experience and/or marketing perspective, it's a bit of a fail that, IMHO, is easily fixed.




Didn't you buy an AVR way back when that had Dolby 5.1 decoding capabilities built in?  Why did you do that at the time? Was it because DVDs had a Dolby and/or DTS surround sound option? Wouldn't you say those were "downstream capabilities required" formats?  Why wouldn't you expect newer Dolby formats to fall into this spectrum? 

Where is it you want this "pre-purchase" information? On the packing boxes? Online? (Hint: Roku's information is there online.) You want Roku and others to list what various apps require for optimal sound? How about actually going to the app creators' sites and looking there to see what they require and/or recommend? Go to Netflix.com.

I'll save you the search:

Netflix Surround Problems.png

Link: https://help.netflix.com/en/node/14163 

You've been directing your comments primarily toward Roku and use of the terms like "pass through". You know who else uses that? Amazon. Here's a screen shot from their tech specs page for the Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K:

Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K.png

 

 

 

Note that "HDMI audio pass through up to 5.1" sentence. 

Link: https://www.amazon.com/Fire-TV-Stick-4K-with-Alexa-Voice-Remote-dp-B079QHML21/ 

I didn't see any mention at all on their promotion/sales page of "transcoding DD+ to DD", either.

What about Apple? Do they mention this transcoding DD+ to DD feature?  Not that I saw. They have an "Audio Formats" section on their tech specs page that shows the supported formats. But that has nothing to do with transcoding. It just means that if a channel app is natively in one of the supported formats, the Apple TV 4K can play it back.  Here's the screen shot of their audio tech specs:

Apple TV 4K Audio Formats.png

Link: https://www.apple.com/apple-tv-4k/specs/ 

Google TV? They don't even mention any specs on their sales page.  I had to look up their tech specs page to find more info. Audio isn't even mentioned on the tech specs page (except for the voice remote).

Link:  https://store.google.com/us/product/chromecast_google_tv_specs

I looked up how to set up Rokus for surround sound. Here's a screen shot:

Roku Surround Sound Set Up.png

You can see that's how they define/explain "pass through".  

Link: https://support.roku.com/article/208754498 

A much more comprehensive specs page is available here:  https://developer.roku.com/docs/specs/media/streaming-specifications.md 

0 Kudos
lesmikesell
Level 13

Re: Update 9.2 broke dolby digital

Jump to solution

The thing is that HDMI-connected equipment is supposed to detect the capabilities of the connected device and deliver the best available format to it automatically.   That's why the Apple TV description doesn't mention what it does - it does what it is supposed to do and the user isn't supposed to have to know about it.  If the connected device doesn't accept DD+, it gets DD 5.1.  Like it should.  Like a TV that handles DD+ is required to do if it is connected to an A/V receiver that only takes 5.1 or the connection is over optical.

Heyitsrick
Level 12

Re: Update 9.2 broke dolby digital

Jump to solution

@lesmikesell wrote:

The thing is that HDMI-connected equipment is supposed to detect the capabilities of the connected device and deliver the best available format to it automatically.   That's why the Apple TV description doesn't mention what it does - it does what it is supposed to do and the user isn't supposed to have to know about it.  If the connected device doesn't accept DD+, it gets DD 5.1.  Like it should.  Like a TV that handles DD+ is required to do if it is connected to an A/V receiver that only takes 5.1 or the connection is over optical.


Your key words were in the last sentence. "Like a TV that handles DD+..." In that case, the Roku would send DD+ to the TV (pass through), and the TV could do the transcoding to DD over optical to an older AVR. I know this because that's exactly how I used to get surround audio to my non-DD+ Denon AVR a few years ago. My LG HDTV had a Dolby Digital Plus license. Channel apps on my Roku were Dolby Digital Plus. The only way I could get surround in my system was to let the LG transcode the DD+ to DD and let my Denon AVR handle the DD audio from the optical connection.

"The best available format" is stereo if the streaming device doesn't natively decode surround formats but rather passes them through. That's what most Roku models provide when the far-end device can't decode the channel app's surround format. 

However, what you're saying about Apple does apply to the 2020 Roku Ultra, which can decode surround formats in the Ultra box, itself. In that case, it would deliver the optimal surround output to the far-end device based upon the far-end device's capabilities. And, at about $100 cheaper than an Apple TV 4K. 

0 Kudos
lesmikesell
Level 13

Re: Update 9.2 broke dolby digital

Jump to solution

@Heyitsrick wrote:

"The best available format" is stereo if the streaming device doesn't natively decode surround formats but rather passes them through. That's what most Roku models provide when the far-end device can't decode the channel app's surround format. 

However, what you're saying about Apple does apply to the 2020 Roku Ultra, which can decode surround formats in the Ultra box, itself. In that case, it would deliver the optimal surround output to the far-end device based upon the far-end device's capabilities. And, at about $100 cheaper than an Apple TV 4K. 


And what this whole thread is about is that Roku does not do a good job of documenting the expected thing that their devices other than the Ultra will fail to do.   Apple doesn't need to document it because their devices all do what is expected.