Is there Dolby 5.1 on T.V. ?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Ruben Salinas Stern, Mar 11, 2002.

  1. Ruben Salinas Stern

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    I just got my surround sound hooked up and dvd's sound great. I was wondering if there are surround sound broadcasts on movies and shows on T.V. I am mostly referring to premium channels like HBO, etc. If there are, are there any extra wires to hook up and does it matter what type of wires are used?
     
  2. Vince Maskeeper

    Vince Maskeeper Producer

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    Depends.

    HBO and other premium and pay per view channels do offer some films in 5.1 dolby digital.

    Some cable systems or Sat systems do offer that DD signal in their braodcast to you.

    Some cable boxes or sat receivers have digital output to provide this signal to your receiver.

    So, the answer is: YES.

    As long as the film is being provided by the station in 5.1, as long as your cable/sat provider is able to relay that signal to customers, and as long as you have a cable/sat box which has the abaility to pass that dolby digital signal via a digital output to your receiver.

    whew.

    -Vince
     
  3. Ruben Salinas Stern

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    I watched Six Feet Under last night on HBO with satellite. It seemed like it was surround sound but I am not 100% sure. It sounded pretty good though. I have a directv receiver but I don't think it offers dolby surround sound. I wasn't aware that there were different types of directv receivers.
     
  4. Vince Maskeeper

    Vince Maskeeper Producer

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  5. John Berggren

    John Berggren Producer

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    My cable receiver has a coax audio output, and upon asking Time Warner they swore up and down that they broadcast in Dolby Digital surround. So I go and get a coax connector for my box and not only do they only do 2.0, but 70% of the channels don't have digital output, so I have to switch back and forth between connectors on my receiver while watching cable.

    Of course I'm also annoyed by digital video glitches that occur all the time.

    Every day Time Warner encourages me further to go for DirectTV.
     
  6. Selden Ball

    Selden Ball Second Unit

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    John,

    TW can only provide digital audio for the digital channels. On most TW cable systems, the channels below 100 are still analog. TW usually just passes along the signal that they downlink. They don't create the digital audio streams, although apparently some TW franchises can only transmit DD2.0.

    Some of the premium channels (HBO, Showtime, etc) sometimes transmit DD 5.1 audio for some of the movies on the TW cable system we have here. They aren't consistant, though. When Bagger Vance was first shown on the primary HBO channel, it was 5.1, but when it was shown recently on one of the other HBO channels, it was only 2.0. I was recently surprised to encounter one program that my pre/pro reported as being DD 2.1. I didn't notice if the LFE channel really was active, though.

    I do hope you mean that you use your remote to select the appropriate audio input on your receiver and that you don't actually change the cabling. Some receivers (like the Pioneer I used to have) will automatically switch to the analog inputs when the corresponding digital signal goes away (as when surfing channels from digital to analog).
     
  7. Ryan L B

    Ryan L B Supporting Actor

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    If it is Dobly Digital 5.1 on cable, it will probably turn out to be Dobly Pro Logic
     
  8. Sean Dayton

    Sean Dayton Stunt Coordinator

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  9. John Berggren

    John Berggren Producer

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    I haven't tested which channels are not digital. It may well be just under 100. HBO has specifically stated 5.1 for films, and I still get 2.0. So they aren't passing that signal, though they said they would.

    I am using my remote, but I have to page through a menu, and I'm the only one in my house willing to deal with it, so mostly I keep it on analog as all I'm getting is 2.0 anyhow.

    I'm seriously considering sattellite as it is since I get digital video drops with TW Digital.
     
  10. Selden Ball

    Selden Ball Second Unit

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    Ryan,

    I'm not quite sure what you meant when you wrote

     
  11. Haywood

    Haywood Stunt Coordinator

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    Hey Guys
    Just to clear things up a little. HBO only broadcasts 5.1 material on HBO/Channel 501 and HBOW/Channel 504 on DTV. Starz/520 also broadcasts some 5.1 material. I don't have Showtime so I can't verify those broadcasts. Before the program starts they always tell you what format is being used. 5.1 or Dolby surround.
    Later Haywood [​IMG]
     
  12. John_Bonner

    John_Bonner Supporting Actor

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    Ruben:
    Bookmark this site: TV Shows in Dolby 5.1
    As others have stated, your DirecTV receiver must be capable of passing on the 5.1 signal to your reciever (in which case it should be connected to your receiver via optical or coaxial input).
     
  13. Hugh Scrivener

    Hugh Scrivener Stunt Coordinator

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    Almost 2 years ago Adelphia switched to digital cable in my area, and claims that we are one of the premire systems. I'll have to agree. Its true that all our 'basic' cable channels are only broadcast in regular stereo, while all the 'digital' channels come through in DD 2.0, at least. With the exception of Much Music and a couple of international/news channels that are broadcast in PCM 48. Its kind of a trip to watch the amp deal with the changes as I surf. Now on to the premium channels....HBO only broadcast its main channel in 5.1, and only on certain flicks.We have like 12 Hbo's cause we get both east and west and its only on the main "HBO" hbo that 5.1 is broadcast. Showtime of which we get 8 channels, both east and west is capable of 5.1 broadcast on all its channels. Sci Friday with Stargate, a Showtime produced show in 5.1, is a must see weekly.The Movie Channel ....5.1 capable on all channels. Flix also. Starz 1,2 & 3....5.1 capable. Only Encore 1 & 2 5.1 capable out of the 12 Starz super-pack channels. And Cinemax doesn't broadcast 5.1 at all.

    All total I have like 40 premium movie channels, with just below half of the capable of 5.1 broadcast.

    I don't get HBO's deal because aren't they owned by the same company as Showtime....AOL/Time-Warner?And I know Cinemax is.

    Of course all these channels only broadcast 5.1 at their own discretion....i'm like flip the switch and leave it on. When was the last 'stereo' movie made?
     
  14. Seth Paxton

    Seth Paxton Lead Actor

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    And as far as I know the RCA brand DirecTV boxes only have one OPTICAL digital out, no coax. So make sure you have an available optical input on the receiver if you are doing this upgrade.

    BTW, once you get a digital box you can send the digital PCM straight over to the receiver as well rather than by the analog lines. If you have a good receiver I would trust it to do the digital to analog more than any DSS box (since that's not really their #1 priority).
     

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