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Audio Confusion (1 Viewer)

Brewder

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I'm at a bit of a loss and hoping someone can help me understand.

I have Roku Ultra connected to my 4k TV via HDMI. TV Input HDMI is 4k @ 60Hz HDCP 2.2. The TV then has a Toslink Optical cable into my Denon 1312 Receiver for "audio return channel".

When I stream movies via the Plex App, my Denon switches to Dolby Digital and my 5.1 speaker system is activated and sounds amazing.

When I stream movies via the Netflix, Hulu, or Amazon apps, all on the Roku just like the Plex app, it ONLY streams in 3 Channel Stereo...

What is happening?? Why would different apps send audio, via Toslink to the Denon, using different formats?

//Brew
 

JohnRice

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Do you always use the receiver for audio? If so, then connect the Roku to the receiver and pass the video from the receiver to the TV, instead of connecting the Roku to the TV. That’s the best way to connect things.
 

Brewder

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I would but the problem is the Denon doesn't support 4k UHD pass through in the model I have... so I would have to downgrade the picture quality and I don't want to do that... My other option is to replace the Denon and that's a huge PITA for me right now....

It's clear my TV is capable of sending Dolby Digital via the ARC Optical cable, so I really want to understand why it does for Plex, but not for any other streaming app...

//Brew
 

JohnRice

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First off, Hulu is only two channel on most devices, so there’s no way to change that. As far as the others, depending on the Roku model and how it’s set up, I’d certainly think you would get 5.1 on at least NetFlix. A lot of TVs only send out 2 channel the way you have things connected, but the fact you get 5.1 with plex indicates that’s not the case. Unless it’s not really sending 5.1 but your receiver is set up to matrix the 2 channel signal from plex but not the other apps. I know you’re probably expecting a simple, one sentence solution, but it’s not that simple.
 

JohnRice

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BTW, when the audio is two channel, like Hulu, select the surround modes until you get to PLII and it’ll matrix 5.1 channels.
 

Brewder

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Thanks so much for the info and replies... just seems strange that the audio appears to be "app based" and not content based.

I can only assume that if I upgraded the Denon to something that supports 4k video (so i can route video and audio through it) that i'll get more than just 2 channel audio from my Netflix programs coming from the Roku Ultra..

thanks again.

//Brew
 

Todd Erwin

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With Hulu on Roku, you will often need to use the options button on your Roku remote (*) to switch from stereo to 5.1 audio. CBS All Access has a similar issue.
 

Brewder

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Hmmm so while in-movie/show I assume you mean. I'll check that out. Thanks for the suggestion!
 

JohnRice

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This stuff can get so messy. I can only help so much, since I don't use any Roku devices. My streaming is all with AppleTV 4K, which is expensive, but almost always provides the best levels of streaming available. The exception is Hulu, which is 2 channel where some Roku implementations are 5.1.
 

Brewder

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SOLUTION:

So I found a solution that works awesome for me and I'm no longer limited to Stereo audio from Roku Ultra. This setup is only necessary because my existing Denon doesn't support HDMI switching 4K Video and I wanted at least Dolby Digital from Netflix and Prime Video whenever possible

My TV is the Vizio M55-C2. I configured the Digital Audio Out configured for Bitstream. I'm using an Optical cable from the TV to the Denon 1312 receiver.

The Ultra is connected directly to the 4k HDMI Input (my Denon doesn't support 4K video). I set the Roku Ultra Audio setting to Dolby Digital Plus, DTS.

Now when I stream from Netflix, the Denon automatically detects the proper audio (Dolby Digital).... Same goes for Prime and Plex.. Some of the Plex movies also stream DTS-HD directly.

Working exactly as I hoped.

//Brew
 
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