Simultaneous 6 and 2 channel output?

Discussion in 'AV Receivers' started by Reg_C, Feb 23, 2006.

  1. Reg_C

    Reg_C Auditioning

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    hello...i'm a forum newb & joined just for the purpose of asking this question, as i seem to be unable to find a solution on my own...so, here goes...hope all of you experts can shed some light for me :)

    i'm setting up a home theater system for my mother (such a good boy) & trying to integrate it into her existing multi-room speaker setup. She watches movies, but mainly, this is designed for surround audio. I was hoping to be able to send multichannel output to her living room while sending a stereo source to her speaker switchbox that sends the signals to the other four rooms.

    my problem is doing both at the same time. i have tried three dvd players (a yamaha, a pioneer and a phillips) and 2 receivers (yamaha and harmon kardon), but the problem always seems to be the same: in multichannel mode, the front satellites in the living room switch off & the signal gets sent to the other rooms. it seems i'm having a hard time getting any dvd player to send both multichannel and stereo signals out simultaneously, even through a multi-zone receiver.

    so, ive looked for a 6-to-2 channel switchbox w/ no luck & am basically stumped now.

    i've tried digital & analog out from dvd player, both with the same results.

    so, here's the meat:
    is there any way for a dvd player or reciever to downsample a multichannel source to stereo & send to speakers "B" while still sending 6 discreet channels to speakers "A"?

    thanks in advance,
    Reg
     
  2. JeremyErwin

    JeremyErwin Producer

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    hmm. The following solution is pretty kludgy,

    Connect the dvd player up using both the stereo analogue jacks and the spdif/toslink jack, but route spdif to the "DVD" input, and the analogue to some other input "CD", perhaps. Play DVD on Zone1, and CD on Zone2.
     
  3. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

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    This is not a function of the player, it is the receiver that needs to have this abiltiy. The problem you are having would suggest you are not using a receiver that has the ability to power zone 2 separately, and this is common for most 6.1 reicevers, though the simplest solution and probably the best choice would be to use a separate amp to power the other zones. A decent 7.1 receiver should be able to do this however - most will be capbable of playing 5.1 in the main room and reassigning the rear surround channels to zone 2, but I still say an separate amp is the way to go to reduce the strain on the amp.
     
  4. Reg_C

    Reg_C Auditioning

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    jeremy...i did try the stereo outs from the dvd player, but the output modes in the setup of all three dvd players i've tried limit me to either stereo or multichannel modes...the signal that gets sent from the stereo outs of the dvd player is not really downmixed version of the 6ch output, but only 2 of the 6 channels.

    john...i thought that was my problem as well, but the HK receiver i tried is multi-zone, but i think the real issue here is getting 2 complete & different signal types from the dvd player into the receiver...this is when i began to look to branch off of the 6ch output & downmix it after it left the dvd & before it came into the receiver. i did also try an older onkyo stereo amp in addition to the 5.1, but obvoiusly the signal from the dvd player didnt change ;-)

    maybe i'm looking for a dvd player that doesnt exist, but at the same time if i had a receiver that was smart enough to do 2 things from one digital input, i think i'd be set...

    does such a beast exist & is it affordable enough to buy for one's mother? hehe :-D

    thx for the input,
    Reg
     
  5. Brian Osborne

    Brian Osborne Stunt Coordinator

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    I did just this by using a second amp. I use the unpowered zone 2 feed going to my second amp on the CD input. now I can switch to any audio input from the main amp send it to my second amp and power my speakers in the rest of the house. controling zone 2 is a problem, but nothing that can't be solved when I get another Harmony remote.
    I do this because the Onkyo that I have is either 5.1 with powered zone 2 or 7.1 with unpowered zone 2. this is typical of most recievers under $1K.
     
  6. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

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    With nearly all receivers, you CANNOT use a digital input for other zones. You can get past this the way Jeremey mentioned - use the stereo analog out to a different source input (CD, VCR, MD, etc...)

    No gear lists in signature, see #6 here.
     
  7. JeremyErwin

    JeremyErwin Producer

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    I imagine this can be configured in one of the DVD player's setup menus.
     
  8. Reg_C

    Reg_C Auditioning

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    yeah, i'd think so too (and that's why i thought this would be easier than it's proven to be), but apparently all the dvd players i tried either output one or the other mode (6 or 2ch)

    your comments lead me to believe i need to get a new dvd player that offers some more robust output options than the ones i have tried.

    thanks for all the replies, much appreciated!
    Reg
     
  9. JeremyErwin

    JeremyErwin Producer

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    what make and model of dvd player?
     

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