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HDMI output audio to TV ?? (1 Viewer)


Dec 7, 2022
Real Name
Wondering if what I am trying or have done is possible. Issues with a couple of AVRs that do not do, seemingly, what I would like them to do. Manuals don't discuss this phenomenon ...

Current Setup:
Samsung TV (old .. no ARC, but not really interested in ARC)
Onkyo 5.1 AVR (Old, moving to a newer one, see below)
4 HDMI inputs (Cable, Roku, Bluel Ray, Game)
Definitive Technology SSA-50 Soundbar (wired, not HDMI) has inputs for surround sans Woofer
Single Sub
**** Sennheiser RS-** wireless headphone station, supports 2 headphones with optical and/or 3mm inputs

Will be upgrading TV to LG B2 OLED in a couple of days.

Yes, we're kind of old and we use headphones for much of the time when dialogue is important and Dolby/DTS not so much.
So, we need to be able to push audio signal to the headphones and/or to the speakers through the AVR whenever.

1) It would appear that AVRs do not support alternate audio output, aside from a headphone jack which needs to be manually plugged in and when it is, shuts off audio elsewhere.

So, what we have done is connect TV Optical audio out to Headphones, that works fine, except
AVR needs to be set to output HDMI audio to TV in order to get this, it is a setting, and herein lies the issue.

Trying with Denon and Onkyo, playing pure DTS or Dolby video, works great through the speakers, etc. It plays in Dolby.
However, if I make a setting to "also" send audio to TV, it downgrades it to Stereo (I believe) but clearly not Dolby. Dolby Pro Logic II takes over which emulates 5.1.

So, why is this the case? Is this normal? Is it predicated on the TV (I have the LG coming in a day or 2 which supports Dolby Digital, perhaps it will work). However, Denon won't even play the downgraded signal to both the TV and the speakers, you pick one, the other doesn't work. Onkyo, at least, will push audio to both places but again, downgrades the DTS or Dolby signal.

Perhaps I"m the only one trying to do this, not much written about how that works. I suppose, with the new TV I could plug all the HDMI cables into the TV and try that, but the cabling is ugly, and I've read that Arc can be sketchy, and i'm used to using the AVR to switch components.

If anybody has run into this (i'm guessing probably not) and has any ideas, would appreciate input. I've currently upgraded my AVR (old one didn't support what is needed) to the low end Onkyo TX-SR393. I don't need a lot to push my soundbar and woofer.

Thanks for any advice.

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