Why do processors need ANY video hookups?

T

tonyE

Junior Audioholic
...

To put it another way, we are not swayed by superstitions, just the hard data driven facts.
I'm a physicist by training, engineer by employment.

Want to pass that "hard data" bit by me again? Because, it won't. I got more data than you can handle. Not only that, but I have the skills to determine what data is appropriate and whether more data of different kinds is required. With those skills I've paid the family bills for more than 45 years now.

Is it possible for you to stop the cr@p and stick to the question posted in the beginning?
 
T

tonyE

Junior Audioholic
You have to back up what you say on this site. So what are our errors from what you call an audiophile point of view? He we deal in scientifically backed up data and practice. We do not subscribe to superstition. I don't need your advice on how to place my speakers, as the room and speakers are a coherent design. Yes, I have that luxury.

We need evidence, and not what we recognize as superstition, which we call "audiophoolery" of "audiophools." The amount of time we have to spend debunking all sorts of ridiculous premises, and odd superstitions is legion. We do this, so people can come to this forum and rely on hard provable facts. "Funny wire" for instance surfacess again and again.

Here we help people spend their budgets on needed items with a reasoned approach. Claiming audiophile approbation is a definite red flag here, and puts us on high alert. So your claim that we have serious issues from an audiophile point of view, just makes us beam with pride and satisfaction.
Forget it. you're ignored.

Go enjoy ASR.

Adios.
 
T

Trebdp83

Audioholic Ninja
The HDMI and HDCP specs have evolved over time. Your CX will support HDMI 2.0 features and the C1 HDMI 2.1.

If using newer HDMI 2.1 devices in a setup, I always recommend “Ultra Certified” HDMI cables. These have been tested and the “Ultra” designation is for their support of 48Gbps bandwidth. Let the devices communicate their capabilities to each other rather than have inferior cables impose any limitations on them.


While a PC can decode various signals and output them as multichannel PCM to the LG CX and C1 which will pass it onto an AVP or AVR, the Rokus do things differently. Setting the Rokus to PCM output will result in the downmixing of any Dolby multichannel signals to two channel PCM for output rather than a decode and output of multichannel PCM.

When a source device is set to decode or bitstream a signal for delivery to an AVP or AVR through a TV using eARC, the TV HDMI port to which the device is connected must be set to bitstream so that it is unaltered by the TV. Setting it to PCM here will also result in the down mix of any multichannel signals. Once the HDMI ports are set to bitstream, eARC must also be turned ON or only the limited bandwidth of ARC will be available and will only work with HDMI-CEC turned on in the LG TV(Simplink) and also in the AVP.

The sound output settings of the Roku Ultra are a bit convoluted. Made worse for audio output of any streaming device are streaming service limitations based on a selected service tier. Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos(Dolby Digital Plus 7.1 with Atmos metadata) output aren’t supported on every service and some that do support it require a subscription to their highest and/or ad free tiers.
 
T

tonyE

Junior Audioholic
The HDMI and HDCP specs have evolved over time. Your CX will support HDMI 2.0 features and the C1 HDMI 2.1.

If using newer HDMI 2.1 devices in a setup, I always recommend “Ultra Certified” HDMI cables. These have been tested and the “Ultra” designation is for their support of 48Gbps bandwidth. Let the devices communicate their capabilities to each other rather than have inferior cables impose any limitations on them.


While a PC can decode various signals and output them as multichannel PCM to the LG CX and C1 which will pass it onto an AVP or AVR, the Rokus do things differently. Setting the Rokus to PCM output will result in the downmixing of any Dolby multichannel signals to two channel PCM for output rather than a decode and output of multichannel PCM.

When a source device is set to decode or bitstream a signal for delivery to an AVP or AVR through a TV using eARC, the TV HDMI port to which the device is connected must be set to bitstream so that it is unaltered by the TV. Setting it to PCM here will also result in the down mix of any multichannel signals. Once the HDMI ports are set to bitstream, eARC must also be turned ON or only the limited bandwidth of ARC will be available and will only work with HDMI-CEC turned on in the LG TV(Simplink) and also in the AVP.

The sound output settings of the Roku Ultra are a bit convoluted. Made worse for audio output of any streaming device are streaming service limitations based on a selected service tier. Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos(Dolby Digital Plus 7.1 with Atmos metadata) output aren’t supported on every service and some that do support it require a subscription to their highest and/or ad free tiers.
Yes, the HDMI cables I ended up using are from Monoprice and were the "latest" 16 months ago, or so. They work fine between the Rokus and the newer TVs. Heck, my "oldest" TV is just six years old...

As a rule of thumb, I always subscribe the highest fidelity plan and in their family format..

So, I have to make sure the Roku is set to output DD and DTS and that the TV is set up to handle them... but isn't that the point of eARC? I suppose the settings for the applications running in a device are not passed along to the hardware interface layers (eARC and HDMI), so it's up to user to select a network/hardware configuration that supports the applications... sort of backwards if you ask me.

Anyhow, then the TV has to be set to output that bitstream out the HDMI cable to which the decoder is set up?

In essence I want to configure the Roku to output the surround stream and the TV to pass through the surround audio signal to the other side.

Seems to me like I should just use the PC for ALL sourcing and decoding then... except the remote will be the issue.

I miss the good old days when the hardest thing was to connect the AC-3 output of your Laserdisc.

To give you the other side of the coin... I just connected today a brand new phono preamp to compare with my one year old "older" one. All I had to do was reach over, reconnect four RCA jacks and one ground wire.

Thanks for the info.
 
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T

Trebdp83

Audioholic Ninja
Ah, yes, the AC-3 RF output of laserdisc players. Luckily, I picked up a modified Pioneer CLD-97 that had been modified by MSB Technology to output DD 5.1 from the coaxial digital port as it lacked the AC-3 RF port. Damn, that was a nice machine. I mourn it still.

Anyway, the point of eARC was to increase the bandwidth available to the receiving end when sending audio signals out of the TV. While optical can support DD/DTS 5.1 and ARC can support DD+ 7.1 with or without Atmos metadata, multichannel PCM, Dolby TrueHD, DTS HD Master Audio and DTS:X require the bandwidth available only over eARC when being sent through a TV.

Netflix Movies or TV shows that are labeled Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos will display as much on the TV and AVP/AVR when all is configured correctly. While an AVP or AVR may support Dolby Atmos, it may not display the input signal as such depending on the speaker configuration when bitstreaming the signal.

So, if a speaker configuration does not support the processing of Atmos metadata, the signal from the Roku will change and will output DD+ 5.1 rather than Atmos/DD+ when watching content with a Dolby Atmos track. When this happens, the AVP or AVR will display DD+ 5.1 as the incoming signal. The AVP will need to be configured to 5.1.2 or 7.1 for Atmos metadata to be in the mix.

Roku models vary and as do their capabilities and settings. For optimal audio output of my Roku Ultra, I must set “Preferred streaming format” to “Auto” and set “Digital output format” to “Passthrough” for the proper bitstream of the streaming service signals.

The exception to the bitstream rule when sending DTS signals to the CX and C1 is that they will be converted to multichannel PCM but not down mixed for output. The LG TVs can actually re encode signals for reasons such as not supporting DTS or trying to send signals that exceed the ARC spec to ARC equipped AVPs and AVRs. But, that is another can of worms.
 
T

tonyE

Junior Audioholic
God info.. so I hook up the Roku to the LG as you recommend and then that goes out to a non eARC output port (TV only has a single eARC HDMI port )... will the 7.1 signal go out after DD and DTS 7.1 processing?

That is, the and DTS 7.1 processing is done within the Roku?

How about DD? Where would that be processed.

Will the multichannel coming our the LG then be over an HDMI cable or over it's PCM digital cable?

So, if that's the case, then do I need to worry about DD and DTS 7.1 processing on my putative box between the TV and the P7 preamp? That is, can I get a simple box that will process the PCM multi channel audio data? The ones I see seem to be pretty cheap so I wonder about the quality of their audio.

I still got two LD players... one is the top of the line Sony ES, has a digital buffer that offers frame by frame for both CAV and CLV. The other is a Pioneer that does auto reverse. Plus a Sony Super Beta, SLHF-1000 and Sony Super VHS.... the Super Beta needs some head alignment, but otherwise is all works still... crazy.

Again, thanks for the info. I knew about eARC and so... but it seems to me like a very much a consumer plug and play affair with lots of restrictions.

HDCP is indeed a tool of the devil.

Oh, note I don't care about Atmos or the like. It seems to be a very different animal as to how it encoded the sound field... by assigning a vector to each sound.. pretty much like CG audio.

Thanks again.
 
T

Trebdp83

Audioholic Ninja
I’m getting your equipment and TVs confused as more info is presented so I’ll just offer up a scenario based on your gear and desire for using eARC out of a TV to a processor such as the Emotiva BasX MC1’s eARC

If your are connecting a Roku Ultra and PC to the C1, you would use HDMI ports #1 and #3 or #4 of the C1 to connect them. The #2(eARC) port would be used to connect to the Emotiva BasX MC1’s eARC port. These are the only ports that can be used together to get a 7.1 multichannel audio signal from the C1 to the MC1. The optical port on the C1 will only support up to DD/DTS 5.1.

The PC can be set up to decode all signals and output multichannel PCM rather than bitstream them through the C1 and have the MC1 do a straight decode of them or apply an up mixer with a selected sound mode such Dolby Surround or DTS Neural:X. The Roku is best set to passthrough(bitstream) audio signals. The C1 will pass the signal to the MC1 without additional processing when set correctly and the MC1 will decode it and output audio based on the sound mode used for processing.

Things get messy when a Plex app is used to deliver rips from a PC to certain streaming devices. I’ll be nearly useless in helping to achieve optimal audio output in that case.

I did forget to mention yet another audio output setting in the TV. In the C1 TV’s Sound>Advanced Settings, the “Digital Sound Output” should be set to Passthrough, NOT PCM or Auto and eARC Support should be ON to passthrough signals with maximum bandwidth enabled.
 
T

tonyE

Junior Audioholic
OK, let me simplify things a lot.

Today:

The PC is already taken care of, it has an ASUS 7.1 USB audio decoder. It outputs video to the C1 via an HDMI port ( running as a 2nd monitor ) and the audio goes to the UMC1 via it's 7.1 analog input.

The Roku is wired to the C1 via an HDMI port. It carries audio and video.

The C1 is wired then to the UMC1 via the eARC HDMI port. Required to access the UMC1 menus.

The UMC1 is then wired to the multichannel amp. It has no eARC capability.

I select the video source with the C1 (Roku or PC).
Then the surround audio system source is selected in the UMC1 (TV or PC).

But I don't see surround from the stuff the Roku is playing... Ignore the audio flowing from the PC to the TV... there is none.

Future:

I'm adding the Parasound P7 multichannel audio only preamp... so the PC will run one of it's 7.1 inputs directly to it. That means the audio from the PC will never have to go through the UMC1. All analog processing from PC to amp.

NOTE: I reason for the P7 is the quality of its sound processing. Which is close to transparent. No need for adittional useless processing...

Now the reason for my question. Since I won't need the UMC1's 7.1 analog inputs anymore, I just want some simpler means of taking whatever my wife is tuning via the Roku (or the TV is she so chooses) and decoding the surround sound. This would be the Tablo OTA or streaming apps like Netflix.

I don't want/need Atmos.... I just want 7.1.

Plex wise, well, if it comes to it, the DVD rips can be seen as a file system in the PC and VLAN decodes them directly, so the main TVs do not need to use Plex. It works great for our wireless phones, tablets and desktop PCs though... but THAT is a different issue. Ignore Plex, sorry to have brought it up to the discussion.

PROPOSED SOLUTION:

So, if I set up the Roku to passthrough(bitstream) audio signals and hook it up via a "standard" HDMI connection to the TV.

Then the TV output over the eARC HDMI port to the decoder. In this case you call out for the BasX.

Use cases will be almost identical than today:

I select the video source with the C1 (Roku or PC).
Then the surround audio system source is selected in the UMC1 P7 (TV or PC).

But it gains me better audio processing for the PC and surround for the whatever the Roku/TV are playing.

Note 2: I was thinking of getting a used XMC-1 but I doubt it does what the BasX MC11 does... and I don't know if it does eARC... there is a low mileage BasX MC11 on sale... hmmm... it does a lot more than I want but if it decoded surround for Netflix and I can get it for under 600 bucks...

Note 3: The BasX does indeed do too much, but it has the necessary eARC connection support that should allow me to pass through the DD and DTS 5.1 from the Roku to the surround sound system... And hopefully it will be a plug and forget with a 12V on/off trigger.


Let me give it a try to see how it works out.

My fundamental beef has been the disappearance of the external 7.1 analog input - plus the concomitant pile on features I don't need nor want, and the complexity of usage that it entails.

Thanks
 
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T

Trebdp83

Audioholic Ninja
Ok, got it. It’s not an entirely different set of priorities than my own except that I’ve gone the AVR route. After Oppo players and AVRs with 7.1 analog inputs became increasingly expensive, I decided to look into players and AVRs that could do what I needed them to do using HDMI. Those requirements changed again when 4K @120Hz became available with PC and next gen gaming consoles. I looked for inexpensive devices to accommodate my experiments as the TV would ultimately be the device that could not be compromised. The C1 77” TV was not exactly cheap.

I’ve changed out devices many times and also the way they are connected to my TV and AVR. My latest configuration has all of my devices, including the Roku Ultra, TiVo Roamio 4 tuner DVR for OTA recording and Mac mini M1 connected directly to the AVR via HDMI. The AVR is connected to the LG C1 via eARC so that all of the video feeds from the connected devices are sent out through the AVR and the TV’s audio can be sent back using the same cable using eARC when using its streaming apps.

The XMC-1 does include an analog 7.1 input but is otherwise obsolete in every other way compared to the BasX MC1, including its HDMI and HDCP specs. I just wouldn’t invest in an already obsolete unit just to get the 7.1 analog inputs. A current processor that also includes 7.1 analog inputs is the Marantz AV7706 but it is triple the size and cost of an Emotiva BasX MC1.

While the BasX MC1 may do more than you care for it to do, if all of the devices connected to the TV via HDMI have their audio signal sent to it using eARC, you can set its sound mode to Dolby Surround and never touch it again. It will up mix any 2.0 or 5.1 signals to make use of all of the speakers in a 7.1 configuration.
 
isolar8001

isolar8001

Audioholic Chief
So...all this bickering has been over trying to get better sound from streaming tv/movies over a POS Roku ?
Holy Hell, what's this world come to.
 
T

Trebdp83

Audioholic Ninja
S#%t stirring f#%kers, the lot of you! It’s both infuriating and funny at times. But, continuing to read sentences ending with prepositions is always infuriating and never funny. Hey, we have to keep at least one standard around this joint.;)
 
T

tonyE

Junior Audioholic
So...all this bickering has been over trying to get better sound from streaming tv/movies over a POS Roku ?
Holy Hell, what's this world come to.

Well, there's a lot more to it... because there are other devices hooked up to the TV. Basically anything that supports the Roku will support the other devices.

All of this is simply to replace the full blown Emo with something simpler.

For another thing, I might put a Kenwood T-9900 or LT-7 FM a Parasound T-3 FM tuner in the den, much better then the one built into the EMO. That will make listening to the "radio" very easy and of pretty high quality. Those are very good tuners and the P7 is also of high quality. Analog audio being routed through the Emo suffers... I figure all analog audio will suffer going through a complicate AVP as well, they are just not designed for that.

You might note that your use of "POS" is also not needed.... too many people use too many emotions in here... I think the word "AVR" is a Pavlov's Dog trigger around here. Turns out the Roku Ultra is a pretty nice little unit to watch TV and the Tablos allow us to watch and record OTA TV. We got two Tablos now.
 
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T

tonyE

Junior Audioholic
Ok, got it. It’s not an entirely different set of priorities than my own except that I’ve gone the AVR route. After Oppo players and AVRs with 7.1 analog inputs became increasingly expensive, I decided to look into players and AVRs that could do what I needed them to do using HDMI. Those requirements changed again when 4K @120Hz became available with PC and next gen gaming consoles. I looked for inexpensive devices to accommodate my experiments as the TV would ultimately be the device that could not be compromised. The C1 77” TV was not exactly cheap.

I’ve changed out devices many times and also the way they are connected to my TV and AVR. My latest configuration has all of my devices, including the Roku Ultra, TiVo Roamio 4 tuner DVR for OTA recording and Mac mini M1 connected directly to the AVR via HDMI. The AVR is connected to the LG C1 via eARC so that all of the video feeds from the connected devices are sent out through the AVR and the TV’s audio can be sent back using the same cable using eARC when using its streaming apps.

The XMC-1 does include an analog 7.1 input but is otherwise obsolete in every other way compared to the BasX MC1, including its HDMI and HDCP specs. I just wouldn’t invest in an already obsolete unit just to get the 7.1 analog inputs. A current processor that also includes 7.1 analog inputs is the Marantz AV7706 but it is triple the size and cost of an Emotiva BasX MC1.

While the BasX MC1 may do more than you care for it to do, if all of the devices connected to the TV via HDMI have their audio signal sent to it using eARC, you can set its sound mode to Dolby Surround and never touch it again. It will up mix any 2.0 or 5.1 signals to make use of all of the speakers in a 7.1 configuration.
Thanks!

We got the Tablos in lieu of your Tivo.... and a Dell i7 Laptop in lieu of your Apple...

One of the reasons I don't want an All-In-One AVR or even Almost-All-In-One AVP is that I got lots and lots of stereo amps... so I like to move things around. I tend to rotate amps through the system, preamps too.. now I've collapsed it to a single Nuforce 8 channel amp and the Parasound P7.

Once upon a time, in the 90s and 00s, when I was driving an Infinity Video Reference projector ( upscaled to 480p) a 9 1/2 foot screen.... I had a full stack of Sony ES/studio components, video/audio editing console, Kenwood amps, plus a couple of fancy processors... and ADS 5.0 and later PSB 5.0 speaker set up. Even had a PC running Unix on the rack.

That was impressive... but then I was directly working in doing video so part of that was my "home office".

But the good thing then was that the lawyers had not gotten involved in the game... there was no HDCP or anything like that.

Today I just got a few boxes but the "standards" are a PITA.
 
T

tonyE

Junior Audioholic
OK, I verified there is an ARC/ eARC port in the TV... turns out it's a CX not a C1... my bad... I bought it on sale at Costco... It looks like I got the eARC hooked up to the Emo UMC1 already, so that should be easy.

Made a bid on a used Emo BasX MC1 13.2 channel... we'll see if that deal goes through. You didn't think I was gonna buy it.. .ahem... "new".... huh? ;)

Thanks
 
T

tonyE

Junior Audioholic
Some people post their stuff for sale... it has been there for like 3 months and the price is too high.

So, you send them an offer... reasonable but a little on the low side.

Their typical answer... "Thanks but I won't sell it for that"

So, then, the negotiation is dead.... WTH will you sell if for?

The game is called N.E.G.O.T.I.A.T.E If you don't want to negotiate, you won't sell it.

When something has been sitting "for sale" for four months, you know something is wrong. Could be the price, could he the complete lack of negotiation skills by the seller... who knows?

Oh, well, I'm in no hurry. it's the Golden Rule.

I recall about 25 years ago, I made an offer on a pair of Platinum Solo speakers. The seller was nuts, but I still made an offer because I have other speakers by Phil Jones. Naturally the offer was adjusted because the factory had folder and so getting parts for long term ownership might be quite difficult.

The seller did not reply.. I tried twice more... Eventually, he came back with a "do no insult me with a low ball offer"..

OK... whatever.

I went and I bought something else...

Four months later, the seller of the Platinum speakers sends me an email, out of the blue, "kindly informing me" that he was ready to accept my offer.

WTH? I "kindly replied" that I pay really fast and I expect my offers to be perfected within 48 hours. Either way it's fine with me.

We'll see what his seller asks.

Sometimes, I prefer dealing with dealers of used stuff... not always, but at least they are not emotionally tied into their stuff.

"This box is worth so much because it's mine!"

Pfft...

Oh well, I'll just go back to my typical wait attitude. Another one will come up, it's not like these things are rare... I mean, maybe a Pass Aleph 1.2... or a Nak P7 MkI.... but a mid priced AVP?

Anyways, I was hoping to get back with news of the setup, but it looks like I'll just have to wait.

Thanks for the help. those of you who kindly did help.
 
T

Trebdp83

Audioholic Ninja
Yes, not needing it and being able to wait it out for a better deal will save you some aggregation and money.
 
lovinthehd

lovinthehd

Audioholic Jedi
Why I don't like selling gear, too much "negotiating"....I'm old school murican, my stated price is it, the end, fini! :)
 
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