Problem connecting audio FROM a Samsung TV TO Onkyo AV Receiver HT-RC160

emillio bazoom

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Hello! I’m trying to connect the audio (only) FROM a Samsung Series 6000 HD LED TV TO an Onkyo AV Receiver HT-RC160. (I purchased both of them in 2011, so they’re getting a little long in the tooth. I only use the Onkyo to process audio signals, not TV signals—that’s way too complicated for me.)

Seems to me that this should be relatively simple and straightforward, but I’ve tried everything I can possibly find in the instruction manuals for both devices as well as online, with no success. Onkyo sup[ort hs not responded to my please for help. Can anyone help me? I know the problem can be with either one of the devices, or possibly both of them, but I’m unable to eliminate either one.

Here’s what I’ve tried:
  • Digital audio out (audio) on the TV to the optical digital in ports on the receiver (I tried them both)
  • HDMI from the TV to the receiver (interestingly, I say a post here from 2014 about Onkyo doing a recall because of problems with audio from TVs using HDMI!)
  • Analog audio from audio out port on the TV to appropriate inputs on the receiver
In each case I scrupulously followed—to the best of my abilityZ—all setup instructions I could find in the Onkyo manual for assigning jacks to an input selector. The only setting I could find on the TV was for external or internal speaker, which I set to ‘external’.

I’ve scoured the Onkyo manual thoroughly, and I’ve managed to connect a VCR and a DVD player to the TV, and a cassette tape deck to the receiver with no problem—they all work fine—so I consider myself fairly competent. I’m confident that my various cables are good.

Can anyone please help clear up this problem? Many thanks!
 

JohnRice

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I only use the Onkyo to process audio signals, not TV signals—that’s way too complicated for me.)
Actually, you're making it more complicated, not less. Receivers are designed to do the switching for the entire system. Mixing that between the the receiver and TV makes things a lot more messy, which is what you're discovering.
 

JohnRice

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One problem is, the TV only has a digital audio output, and it won't output digital audio from an analog audio source.
 

Jeff Whitford

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When you plug the digital cable into just the tv and the tv is on, is there a red light emitted from the other end of the cable?
 

emillio bazoom

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Hello Jan - Looks like they both have optical input/output, but only the receiver has coax. The receiver manual lists "These coaxial digital audio inputs are for connecting components with coaxial digital audio outputs, such as CD and DVD/BD players. They’re assignable, which means you can assign each one to an input selector to suit your setup", so yes, for the receiver.

However, the manual for the TV only mentions coax in the context of the antenna connections ("Input Cables (Sold Separately)"

Under "Audio Connection Formats", the receiver manual says, "Audio equipment can be connected to the AV receiver by using any of the following audio con- nection formats: analog, optical, coaxial, or HDMI.
When choosing a connection format, bear in mind that the AV receiver does not convert digital input signals for analog line outputs and vice versa. For example, audio signals connected to an optical or coaxial digital input are not output by the analog TV/TAPE OUT."
 

jbp110

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I'm not an expert in this area, but I did experience a similar problem with my Samsung TV and Onkyo receiver a few years ago. Go to your "Sound" settings in your TV Setup, and look for "Digital Audio Output". It might be under a sub catagory called "Expert Setting". Make sure your output format is set to PCM. There are probably a couple of Dolby Digital choices there, but those only work if you are outputting the sound via HDMI. PCM output is required for the Digital Audio Output directly to the receiver. Hope this helps. Jp
 

emillio bazoom

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I'm not an expert in this area, but I did experience a similar problem with my Samsung TV and Onkyo receiver a few years ago. Go to your "Sound" settings in your TV Setup, and look for "Digital Audio Output". It might be under a sub catagory called "Expert Setting". Make sure your output format is set to PCM. There are probably a couple of Dolby Digital choices there, but those only work if you are outputting the sound via HDMI. PCM output is required for the Digital Audio Output directly to the receiver. Hope this helps. Jp
Hi JPB110
Thanks for the suggestion. I just checked and it’s already set to PCM.
 

Jeff Whitford

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Hi Jeff - No red light, either with the TV set on internal or external speakers.
That means the TV is not outputing any digital audio signal. So that's where you need to focus. What do you have hooked up to watch TV (cable,Sat,Ant)? Some TV's only outputed digital audio from the internal source I.E. antenna input back in the day. Some will only output digital audio if the source is hooked up digitally I.E. HDMI and some require you tell it to pass the signal thru. :blink:
 
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emillio bazoom

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That means the TV is not outputing any digital audio signal. So that's where you need to focus. What do you have hooked up to watch TV (cable,Sat,Ant)? Some TV's only outputed digital audio from the internal source I.E. antenna input back in the day. Some will only output digital audio if the source is hooked up digitally I.E. HDMI and some require you tell it to pass the signal thru. :blink:
Hi Jeff - That's weird, but it makes sense - I think. We currently have Bell (Canada) Fibe TV service, so the signal comes in on the phone lines and is transmitted wirelessly from the Bell modem to their TV box, which connects to the TV with an HDMI cable. So the source is hooked up digitally. We just switched to Bell 2 weeks ago; previously we had Rogers. Same arrangement, except the signal came in on their cable. Had the same problem then that I'm trying to solve now.

I've checked thoroughly and can't find any menu on the TV where I can tell it to pass the signal thru digitally. The only setting I could find was for external or internal speaker, which I set to ‘external’.

Here's what the receiver manual says under "Audio Connection Formats": "Audio equipment can be connected to the AV receiver by using any of the following audio connection formats: analog, optical, coaxial, or HDMI.
When choosing a connection format, bear in mind that the AV receiver does not convert digital input signals for analog line outputs and vice versa. For example, audio signals connected to an optical or coaxial digital input are not output by the analog TV/TAPE OUT."

I've tried analog, optical, and HDMI with no success; the TV does not appear to have a coaxial audio output. As I mentioned originally, in each case I scrupulously followed all setup instructions I could find in the Onkyo manual for assigning jacks to an input selector.

Thanks much for your efforts here! Much appreciated.
 

emillio bazoom

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Hahah - mostly because my wife would never be able to figure out how to run the TV! And then she'd hate me even more! But also I don't know how to operate the receiver myself - it's just too damn complicated (plus the remote also has never worked properly) - and I thought this would be a simple solution. Everything else (all my various components) is working fine with my current arrangement, except for getting an audio signal from my TV to the receiver. [My wife has an ancient NAD amplifier and tuner, and I'm sorely tempted just to go back to the old tried and true and simple solution! Except now I'm doubting that there's any way to get an audio signal out of the TV. Arrrrgh!] BTW, we are pretty simple people who only use two speakers anyway. Don't feel any need for 5 or more. So this receiver is way more horse power that we really need or want. It was a spur of the moment impulse buy without proper research. I'm about ready to just chuck it.
 

Jeff Whitford

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I take it the Bell TV box doesn't have an optical out? If it's HDMI only, you can get an HDMI distribution box (splitter). The other alternative is get a Harmony universal remote which will do all the switching, power on and off's etc at the touch of one button. Anybody can use one of those and they don't have a billion buttons on them
 

emillio bazoom

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Hello everybody - and especially JohnRice and Jeff Whitford. Problem solved, thanks to your advice. I spent so much time ploughing through the manual for my receiver that I finally got the confidence and just bit the bullet and routed everything through the Onkyo receiver. Et voila! It all works now (well, I had to get RCA—>HDMI converters for my wife's ancient VCR and DVD players) and I can finally listen to the TV on my wife's ancient Rogers LS3-5A speakers (which are really great). To top it off I got a Harmony universal remote, which just works and makes everything very simple. Now even my wife can make it all work. So thanks everybody for your help and encouragement. It has really paid off.
 
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JohnRice

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Hello everybody - and especially JohnRice and Jeff Whitford. Problem solved, thanks to your advice. I spent so much time ploughing through the manual for my receiver that I finally got the confidence and just bit the bullet and routed everything through the Onkyo receiver. Et voila! It all works now (well, I had to get RCA—>HDMI converters for my wife's ancient VCR and DVD players) and I can finally listen to the TV on my wife's ancient Rogers LS3-5A speakers (which are really great). To top it off I got a Harmony universal remote, which just works and makes everything very simple. Now even my wife can make it all work. So thanks everybody for your help and encouragement. It has really paid off.
Glad to help.

BTW, if you get a new Blu-Ray/UHD player, it'll have an hdmi output, and that will give a significant improvement in image quality of anything you play with it compared to using the converter. Sorry that wasn't mentioned prior to getting a converter. You can get Blu-Ray players pretty cheap. It'll be worth it, as far as I'm concerned.
 

emillio bazoom

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Glad to help.

BTW, if you get a new Blu-Ray/UHD player...

Great suggestion—I'll definitely check it out. Turns out she also has a good library of interesting VHS movies, and you're right—the quality right now is pretty lousy. Thanks again.
 

JohnRice

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There's not a lot to do about the VHS, unfortunately. Any discs you play will be significantly degraded through the digital/analog/digital process of using the converter, though. You can eliminate that by having a player with an hdmi output.
 

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