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5.1 Pass Through Question (1 Viewer)


Stunt Coordinator
Feb 27, 2005
  • i have a question on passing through multichannel audio signals from my Sony blu-ray/SACD player to my TCL 65R615 tv and then to my Samsung J4500 5.1 channel home theater in a box. Details -- my Sony blu-ray BDP-BX38 (sold at Costco; I think identical to BDPS380) -- although lacking the SACD logo -- does have SACD setup options to play in their multichannel format. This blu-ray player is connected to HDMI 2 on my tv. The tv is hooked to my home theater system with an HDMI cord, using ARC. I want to be able, if possible, to play SACDs in multichannel sound through the tv and then to the home theater and its speakers through the ARC connection. This is, I think, the only way to play SACDs in multichannel -- i cannot hook the blu-Ray player directly to the home theater system via HDMI, as the home theater lacks HDMI in. Further, while both the blu-ray player and home theater have digital optical connections, I've read that SACD will not play in multichannel through a digital optical connection. Anyhow, ratings.com says this tv will pass a 5.1 audio signal through ARC Dolby Digital (but not through Dolby DTS), which means, I believe, that playing a multichannel SACD on the blu-Ray should result in multichannel sound coming from the home theater system's 5.1 speakers. But I can't make it work -- when I played the SACD on the blu-ray player, I get no sound at all. I have the tv's "Audio - S/PDIF and ARC" setting at "Dolby D, DTS," but am not sure if this is correct. Any recommendations on set-up are appreciated. Thank you

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Bounded In a Nutshell
HW Reviewer
Senior HTF Member
Jun 20, 2000
A Mile High
Real Name
Unfortunately, there's probably a dozen different reasons you can't accomplish what you want with the equipment you have.

SACD is strictly content managed, and it can only play back when everything in the digital part of the chain is designed for it. I doubt there's ever been a TV made that has the capability to process an SACD signal.

I know ARC is promoted as some kind of miracle cure for everything, but the reality is, it's pretty much worthless. It most definitely can NOT pass SACD. Not. Ever.

Your Samsung isn't quite a home theater in a box. From what I can tell, it's pretty much self contained, and has no useful inputs or connectivity. In essence, you can't use the Sony player you have with it for any really productive purpose. Why? the Samsung doesn't have hdmi inputs, which limits you to ARC... refer to my last comment about ARC.

Most TVs can NOT pass any kind of 5.1 through ARC. Some can, but not most. Maybe your TV is one which can, maybe it isn't. I don't know. Refer back again to my comment about ARC. Mostly ARC, when it works, is intended only for sources that originate inside the TV, such as the terrestrial broadcast tuner and streaming apps. It's a neat idea, but in reality it tends to be a complete pain and not worth the time. There are other options that work much better.

You can play an SACD disc with the Sony BR player, but to actually listen to it, you'll need a receiver capable of processing the signal. If the Sony has an option to output SACD as PCM, then that means pretty much any surround sound receiver available can do it. If it doesn't, then you need a receiver that can process a multichannel DSD signal, which are not very common.
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