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My Sony & surround EX??? (1 Viewer)

Joe Tilley

Supporting Actor
Joined
Jan 1, 2002
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686
I have the Sony STRDA-5ES & I dont understand what is up with surround EX disk's.If I pop in a disk with EX on it my reciver only showes it's (3/2 on the display)but on the other hand if the disk is DTS ES it will show (3/2+1 on the display).The thing that makes me wonder about this is that not all my surround EX disk's do this,so is this a reading error or is there something with the recever that it's not picking up the EX flag.
It seames like its has good seperation in the back channels but I also have the reciver in 6.1 decode on,so I dont know if this is just the effect of the recever or what. I have tryed setting the 6.1 to auto & off with the same results,but if in auto mode I get no rear channel on most disks.
Like I said I've got no problems with DTS ES disks just the surround EX disks it dosent seam to work with,has anybody else noticed this or mabey have any idea whats going on cause I'm stumpped:confused:
Thanks for any help & if need be I can give a list of disks that do & dont work...
 

Harold_C

Stunt Coordinator
Joined
Apr 1, 2002
Messages
198
Dolby screwed up all of the early Surround EX discs and neglected to embed the Surround EX flag. Thus, there is nothing to trigger the Surround EX light or activate the Surround EX decoder.

Some receivers have a way of manually forcing the receiver into Surround EX mode. Otherwise, they will just automatically derive a center back channel using the receiver's proprietary extended surround processor.
 

JackS

Supporting Actor
Joined
Jan 17, 2002
Messages
634
Here's my guess. Since it displays correctly for DTS, the disk your are refering to has been mislabled, Have you tried other DD EX disks? These things are becomming so complicated now, it really is trick trying to figure. Maybe a setting in the player? I don't beleive that a receiver could detect one format and not be able to detect another. Keep looking and guessing and I'm confident the solution to this riddle can be solved. Jack
 

Joe Tilley

Supporting Actor
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Jan 1, 2002
Messages
686
Ok let me name just a few disks that work
Gladiator DTS ES
Cast away DTS ES
Seven DTS ES
The Haunting DTS ES
Terminator 2 DTS ES These all play perfectley now what dosent work,
Star Wars TFM Surround EX
Toy Story 2 Surround EX
Cast Away if played in Surround Ex it will not work,I also have a few other disks that I've been told are Surround EX but they were not labled as this from the manufacture but should play as EX.
Just to name a couple they are Fight Club,102 Dalmations,Pitch Black,Austin Powers TSWSM,& if I rember right Unbrakeable,I've tryed all of these with no results.
The two that really surprize me was Toy Story 2,& Stars Wars TFM because everybody is alaways raveing about these disks.
These are all I'm sure of right know I may have a few more but I'd have to go look & see what I have.Please If you have anymore idea's I'd love to figure this out:frowning:
Thanks once again....
 

Harold_C

Stunt Coordinator
Joined
Apr 1, 2002
Messages
198
I gave you the answer. It is a known fact that many of the Surround EX discs do not have the flag embedded in bitstream to turn on the Surround EX decoder.

It's really not a big deal. As long as you have a center back speaker configured, the receiver is going to automatically use its matrix decoding to extract a center back signal from any 5.1 channel source, whether there is a Surround EX flag embedded in the bitstream or not.
 

Joe Tilley

Supporting Actor
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Jan 1, 2002
Messages
686
Harold,Yes I know you'r reply was well takin,but I just figured that with TFM,Toy Story,& Cast Away being fairley new releses this may or may not be the problem.My main concern is that there is not something with my reciever that wont allow it to read the EX disk's,I was more or less wondering if anyone else has this reciver & is haveing trobule with these disk's or if theres will work as they are supposed to.

I'm not trying to offend you or anything buy asking for anyone elses opion, I would just like to see if anyone has the same reciver & movies with differnt results.

One last thing you pointed out, when I set the 6.1 decodeing on I do get the rear channel whatever the source be it 5.1DD or 5.1DTS ext I'm just new with the EX stuff so I wonted to make sure there was no real differance there if it was my reciever adding the effect of the rear channel or if there would be better seperation at all if it was picking up the disk properley.
 

JackS

Supporting Actor
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Jan 17, 2002
Messages
634
It wouldn't be the receiver since you have successfully played other disks. If it's not the disks, look at the player. Have you tried these DVD's on another player?
 

Doug Smith

Second Unit
Joined
Mar 14, 2002
Messages
361
I have the exact same problem with my Marantz. The receiver will light up with the rear channel operating in any DTS ES movie. However in my case anything in EX will not light up the rear channel. It still outputs however, when in 6.1 mode. I think its simply a problem of reading the EX flag. I thought I might be missing something, so I went back to the dealership and had him fire up a "true" higher priced DD EX labelled model. I listened to the rear surround channel (Castaway) and it did not differ from my "generic" 6.1 in the least - at least to my old ears. Perhaps the reason the 6th channel lights up easily in DTS is simply an easier to read chip. Unknown.
 

JackS

Supporting Actor
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Jan 17, 2002
Messages
634
Another guess. If the disk is not discrete, the indicator light on the receiver does not light up. Could be normal so look in the owners manual and see if theres any mention of this.
 

rodney wiley

Second Unit
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Nov 23, 2001
Messages
307
JackS I second that opinion. Dolby ex has a matrixed rear where DTS has a discrete rear channel. I think there is where your issue lies Dolby EX IS 5.1
 

Joe Tilley

Supporting Actor
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Jan 1, 2002
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686
I never thought about it not being Discrete that dose make sence to me. As for trying another player NO I never have tryed that before.I dont know I'm probley overreacting to nothing,but I couldent understand what was going on.
But like Jack said it may be becaucs its not a Discrete channel that's causeing it not to indacate 6.1.I have not looked in the manual yet but I will be sure to look & see if it say's anything about it..;)
 

Doug Smith

Second Unit
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Mar 14, 2002
Messages
361
I don't think the fact it is DTS discrete is the answer. My receiver lights up with a centre surround even when DTS matrix is playing. I still think its a flag problem, and your receiver will still play it when in 6.1. Why don't you contact Dolby with the name of your machine and ask them. I'd be interested in their response.
 

Harold_C

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Apr 1, 2002
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198
There is no such thing as a Dolby Surround EX "discrete" recording.

In fact, there is no difference between a Dolby Digital 5.1 and a Dolby Digital Surround EX disc. If the original movie master had a center back signal matrix encoded into the surround channels, the Dolby Digital DVD of that movie master will have it, too -- whether it's labeled Surround EX or not. In fact, Dolby specifically forbids Dolby licensees from refering to Surround EX as a 6.1 channel format. It is a 5.1 channel format from which a center back signal can be extracted by a "Pro Logic style" matrix decoder.

The only way the receiver knows that it is a Surround EX disc is by detecting the flag embedded in the bitstream. If the flag isn't there, the decoder can't possibly know its a Surround EX disc.

The reason that DTS-ES discs light up the indicator is because most DTS-ES discs have the proper flag embedded.

Again, not to worry. Your receiver is going to use its own matrix decoding processor to derive a center back signal -- whether its a Dolby Surround EX disc or a Dolby Digital 5.1 channel disc. Put your ear up to the center back speaker and hear for yourself!
 

Harold_C

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Apr 1, 2002
Messages
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Harold,Yes I know you'r reply was well takin,but I just figured that with TFM,Toy Story,& Cast Away being fairley new releses this may or may not be the problem.
I have no reason to think that Dolby has corrected the Surround EX flag problem yet. From my discussions with a design engineer in Japan on this topic, the flag problem had still not been corrected at least as recently as releases from early this year.

BTW, the chipsets provide an option to disregard the Surround EX flag, even if it exists, and use the "generic" decoder instead of the Surround EX mode for all discs. The reason this option exists is that at least some engineers believe the "generic" mode does a better job. Don't look for any manufacturer to tell you that in an owner's manual because Dolby doesn't like people telling consumers that some other decoder might work better!
 

Joe Tilley

Supporting Actor
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Jan 1, 2002
Messages
686
Harold, I dont know who implyed that Surround EX was Discrete,or if you may have took it that I mabey said that but that was not what was implyed.
I'm not trying to sound like an ass but it seames that all this is getting you pissed,& I sorry if that is true. I'm by no means trying to get a fight started here,or get anybody upset.Thanks :D
 

Angelo_Petralba

Second Unit
Joined
Jan 22, 2002
Messages
366
Real Name
Angelo
Joe-

I too am an owner of the Sony 5ES and also have ALL the disks you have mentioned and YES the DTS-ES light (6.1 decoding amber light) is on when playing DTS-ES tracks.

However, the DD-EX movies like TPM and TS2 does NOT light up the 6.1 button but I DO HEAR the sound coming from my Rear Center (single speaker), so I believe that It DOES decode in MATRIX format (not discrete)hence its only showing 5 speakers and not six. You could try and set it to one of Sony's DSPs like Cinema Surround EX A/B/C, it actually sounds pretty good. I like using these modes for TV and VCR and some DD movies. I specially like using them while watching MTV. Very nice DSP. Try it.

I hope this helps.

Angelo
 

Doug Smith

Second Unit
Joined
Mar 14, 2002
Messages
361
Harold C makes some interesting points. Perhaps I could change the direction of the thread somewhat and ask the following: do the generic 6.1 receivers (which we all seem to agree, play EX and ES material -whether or not it lights up as an extra channel on the receivers in question)perform as good as the receivers that have the EX and EX advertising emblazoned right on the receiver chassis? In my opinion they don't seem to. But perhaps there are differences between these 6.1 receivers?
 

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