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.
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Level 7

Nextgen OTA TV 4k - HEVC AC-4 - No Sound on Streaming Stick+

Nextgen OTA TV 4k in the United States uses AC-4 codec from Dolby.  My area recently upgraded its OTA channel line up to start broadcasting in HEVC 4k and I purchased the Silicondust Flex 4k to pickup and decode these channels.  Unfortunately the Roku Streaming Stick+ does not include the AC-4 codec which cost anywhere from .15 to $1.20 depending on the the type of device and volume of sales.  The overhead of decoding AC-4 is minimal.  Most Samsung and Vizio TVs started supporting this standard in 2017.  With that being said, no one in Roku Support can tell me real specs on their devices.  I suspect that the Roku Ultra probably has this codec but there is no way of telling.  Also really disappointing considering I just upgraded the whole house to the Roku Streaming Stick+.  Long time Roku fan, but I guess I can go get a Chromecast Ultra for $50 and it'll decode this audio...   again using the Silicondust HDHomerun application native to the Roku platform to stream HEVC Nextgen 4k OTA and there is no sound.  The HD channels at 1080 work fine.  Any ideas if Roku will firmware update the Streaming Stick+ if I pay them $1.20 to include the AC-4 royalties?  Anyone using the Roku Ultra with this solution to watch 4k OTA with HDHomerun and the Flex 4k?  One last thing... this is the default standard of OTA TV and as of right now... there is only one (and the highest end) Roku device that might support this.  A little disappointing since Roku typically caters to cord cutters and should have seen this one coming.  

Thanks in advance.

Level 20

Re: Nextgen OTA TV 4k - HEVC AC-4 - No Sound on Streaming Stick+

The 2020 Ultra (4800) supports AC4.

Chances of your current SS+ being upgraded to support AC4 decoding/passthrough are close to zero.

I don't own any HDHomeRun equipment, but...

Since the HDHomeRun FLEX 4K is decoding, why cant it it transcode it to EAC3/AC3 when streaming it to other devices?

For that matter, why doesn't their app know the model/platform limitations its running on and inform the server to transcode to EAC3/AC3?


Level 8

Re: Nextgen OTA TV 4k - HEVC AC-4 - No Sound on Streaming Stick+

I also got various Roku devices to replace all the cable boxes that I was getting charged monthly for, and it has been an awesome experience being able to access tons more content in any room without the need for cables running all over the place.  Aside from the soundbar product not feeding audio back into the TV so it can be played simultaneously on other audio devices, I've been really happy with the setup -- until now.

I too got an HDHomeRun FLEX 4K and a new antenna to try and reduce the need for subscriptions to get local channels, unfortunately all the ATSC 3.0 (HEVC) marketing **bleep** from all sides doesn't mention a thing about practically NO SUPPORT for the AC3 audio format.  Picture is great, but I only found 1 way to play content that results in audio, and that is using the HDHomeRun application on my fairly new MacBook Pro.  Playing through the HDHomeRun Roku App (which is really dated) won't even attempt to tune in the HEVC stations because they have virtual channel numbers that don't match anything it knows about (or for whatever reason).  Playing through Plex (browser and Roku) gets the video everywhere,  but it shows no audio is available.