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Streaming music from phone while watching TV (1 Viewer)

ChuckW123

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Chuck
I am new to the forum and apologize if this has already been asked/answered and I just couldn't find the post. I have an entry level 5.1 system in an upstairs bonus room/workout room which consists of:

2017/18 Sony Bravia xbr-55x800e
Sony str-dh590 receiver
Polk T50 fronts
Polk T30 center
Polk PSW108 Sub
Klipsch r14s surrounds
Sony Blu Ray DVD Player (not sure what model)
Harmony 630 remote

My content input primarily comes from over the air channels and streaming services Netflix, YoutubeTV, Prime Video, HBO, etc. I use the apps on the TV for streaming, not a separate streaming box like Roku, Fire Tv, etc.

Currently I am using the HMDI ARC connection between TV and receiver. In a prior configuration of the same equipment, I was using standard HDMI and an optical cable. In this configuration I could stream music from Spotify on my phone to my receiver via bluetooth and watch a sporting event, muted on the TV at the same time. This is nice to be able to do when using the treadmill or elliptical.

With the configuration of using HDMI ARC, that doesn't seem possible anymore, or I am not finding the right combination of settings to make it work. I can do one or the other but not both. I would like to continue to use the ARC port because the Dolby Plus movie content seems to definitely have better sound than with the optical cable.

My workaround is using an old set of standalone multimedia speakers with an RCA jack for the music from my phone. However, it doesn't sound great and just seems like a waste to not be able to incorporate my nicer speakers into the solution somehow.

Any ideas on how this functionality could work while still using the HDMI ARC port either with settings in the existing equipment or upgrading/adding equipment?

Thanks,

Chuck
 
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Johnny Yak

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Hey Chuck,

I just posted something similar...I was trying to watch football and listen to music.

I don't know how to do it either, but I feel your pain....there has to be a way to do this....right?
 

ManW_TheUncool

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I don't use HDMI ARC, but are you saying the AVR simply won't let you switch audio source to whatever streaming source it normally/otherwise allowed when not using HDMI ARC for TV connection (or when the TV's simply off)?

IF so, maybe you could just mute the TV to see if that allows it? OR maybe just (temporarily) disable ARC (either on TV side or AVR side) whenever you want to stream music to the AVR? IF that works and you're using a decent universal remote, maybe you can just add that to a programmed command sequence to switch for that particular purpose to simplify/streamline that access.

_Man_
 

ChuckW123

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I don't use HDMI ARC, but are you saying the AVR simply won't let you switch audio source to whatever streaming source it normally/otherwise allowed when not using HDMI ARC for TV connection (or when the TV's simply off)?

IF so, maybe you could just mute the TV to see if that allows it? OR maybe just (temporarily) disable ARC (either on TV side or AVR side) whenever you want to stream music to the AVR? IF that works and you're using a decent universal remote, maybe you can just add that to a programmed command sequence to switch for that particular purpose to simplify/streamline that access.

_Man_
I think I have this working more or less. As you mentioned to try, I had also previously tried to disable CEC, but only within the TV settings. I had not tried to do it on the receiver only. I left the TV CEC settings alone and changed a setting in the AVR called CNTL.HDMI to "off". On my setup, this also automatically flips the TV speakers to being active instead of the audio system. At this point, I hit the bluetooth button on the AVR and I retain the TV picture and can stream from my phone. YAY!

Step 2 was to add commands to the Harmony remote to add steps to my "play music" activity to disable the CNTL.HDMI and add steps to my "Watch TV" activity to enable the CNTL.HDMI which also automatically re-enables the output sound on the TV to audio system. I am not really an expert with the remote. I had to use lots of up/down arrows, some selects and a several second delay on each activity to correctly navigate to that menu item to get it to work. Doesn't seem like a direct way to access that menu option on the AVR. Could be an easier way, not sure. The only downside to all of this is it adds some time to the sequence to turn everything on or switch activities but all in all, it works pretty well.

Thanks for helping,

Chuck
 

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