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hdmi or 5.1 analog???

Discussion in 'HD DVD discussion' started by shabre, Apr 11, 2007.

  1. dblbogey7

    dblbogey7 Guest

    Good discussion indeed.

    Just a point of clarification: If a disc has a DTS HD Master Audio or DTS HD High Resolution Audio soundtrack, it still contains the "Core Only" data. So if you have a player like the XA2 that can decode "Core Only" it will extract this data from the main DTS HD soundtrack and transmit that at a maximum of 1.5 Mbps and 5.1 channels thru HDMI or analog.

    If, for example, you upgrade in the future to a receiver that can decode DTS HD Master Audio or High Res Audio, you can send this to the receiver using the XA2's HDMI 1.3 port and get full resolution and 7.1 channels.

    BTW, I have my XA2 connected by 5.1 analog to my Rotel preamp/processor and the Dolby TruHD soundtracks are outstanding.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 13, 2007
  2. eatsushi

    eatsushi Regular member

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    Hey dblbogey7 - haven't heard from you in a while. You're exactly right. The DTS HD High Resolution soundtrack will contain the Core Only component and this is the one that will be extracted by the XA2. Did you see the thread on avsforums about the upcoming Onkyo TX-SR605 7.1 channel receiver that has HDMI 1.3 and can decode DTS-HD Master Audio and Dolby Tru HD - all for $399?
     
  3. dblbogey7

    dblbogey7 Guest

    @eatsushi: Yes, I've read about the Onkyo. It should be a great choice for those who need Dolby TruHD and DTS-HDMA decoding on a budget. Just to point out - the $399 price is for preorders. It will retail for $499. Do you plan to upgrade your Denon receiver soon?
     
  4. diabolos

    diabolos Guest

    I can't believe that price point. It will be interesting reading reviews on how well it decodes lossless audio formats. There just has to be a catch (other than the output power). I wonder though, is there any advantage to doing the processing inside the receiver (especially a receiver half the price of the player outputting the signal)?

    I feel the same way about 1080p@24fps pass though to a TV set that can only display 1080p@60fps anyway (and has video processors less than half as powerful as the outputting player). But I'm just splitting hairs now...

    Ced
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 14, 2007
  5. error5

    error5 Regular member

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    Well back to the original question: I did the HDMI to 5.1 analog comparison last night after looking all day for my audio cables. First off I didn't ancounter the LFE bug on the Marantz SR6001 using analog. Secondly, I must say that I don't hear any audible difference between the two at least on my system. I sampled the DolbyTru HD soundtracks on Troy, Superman Returns and The Departed. The burning plane scene in Superman Returns still results in deep but clearly detailed bass and overall soundfield quality is still there on both digital and analog connections.

    I guess with the right system and with proper calibration there should be no significant difference between the two.
     
  6. diabolos

    diabolos Guest

    Yep. Thats why quality analog audio isn't a bad choice. It just requires a lot more cables.

    Ced
     
  7. shabre

    shabre Member

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    Error5, thank you so much for sharing that information with me/us.
    I will be recieving my xa2 Tommorrow via. ups. Very excited to experience the hd dvd revolution! It's always amazing that when we all get excited for new technology, boom-they come out with something newer and better
     
  8. eatsushi

    eatsushi Regular member

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    @error5: Did you have the +10dB bass boost in your receiver like they suggested or did you just set all speakers to large? I have mine with the +10dB and it seems a quick workaround until they get it fixed by firmware.
     
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2007
  9. error5

    error5 Regular member

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    @eatsushi: I do all adjustments in the receiver and I have all speakers at large with the no bass boost. I don't do any adjustments at the player and I don't use the player's test tones.
     
  10. shabre

    shabre Member

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    I just recieved my xa2 yesterday and it is simply amazing. Put in Pink Floyd Pulse dvd, the sound and pq is supberb. Just waiting now for Blockbuster to ship Superman hd and The Eagles hd dvd to me for further sound tests and pq tests. So far, excellent surround and bass management!
     
  11. error5

    error5 Regular member

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    @shabre: Congrats and welcome to the world of HD. Once you experience it there's no turning back.

    BTW, just curious, what display do you have and how did you connect the XA2?
     
  12. shabre

    shabre Member

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    Samsung 56" dlp 1080i; Pioneer THX reciever. Connections are hdmi to television, coax audio cable (I prefer over opitcal), and 5.1 analog for the Dolby True HD and DTS Hd sound formats. The sound and picture are amazing, even on the sd. dvd's (which is a remarkable difference from the sammy hd upconverting dvd player) Also, plays dvd-r and dvd d/l discs w/o any problems.

    Paid $585.00 thru Amazon
     
  13. eatsushi

    eatsushi Regular member

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    The reason why you're getting a really great upconverted picture from standard DVD's is the Silicon Optix Reon VX chip in the XA2. It's one of the best decoding chips out there and is used in high-end upconvert DVD players.

    http://www.siliconoptix.com/products/ReonVX/Features.cfm
     
  14. shabre

    shabre Member

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    Thank you for the link, very good reading :-0
     
  15. diabolos

    diabolos Guest

    For those that like visuals the HQV site has videos that demonstrate what all that mumbo jumbo means... They also give an elementary introduction to what a Video Processor's purpose is.

    HQV (Tech):
    http://www.hqv.com/technology.cfm

    Ced
     
  16. error5

    error5 Regular member

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    Thanks, Ced.
     
  17. eatsushi

    eatsushi Regular member

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    I'm also interested in this aspect of HD-DVD playback. It will be interesting to see real-life comparisons and reviews of upcoming receivers that can decode the lossless formats. Most user comments I've seen show a preference to player decoding but I think this is because very few receivers at this time can decode the new lossless formats. It will be interesting to see at which price point does receiver decoding surpass the performance of player decoding.
     
  18. error5

    error5 Regular member

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    @eatsushi: It think the other advantage of letting the player do the decoding is that there's less chance of audio processing becoming "out-of-sync" with the video processing.
     
  19. diabolos

    diabolos Guest

    Isn't Lossless audio, lossless? It shouldn't depend on how good the decoders are but how good the DACs and other hardware are (which you already know from the spec sheet).

    I think PCM is all that is needed since the special interactive features all need to be mixed into a common audio format with the the main audio track before being exported to an audio receiver. That format is uncompressed PCM.

    Ced

     
  20. dblbogey7

    dblbogey7 Guest

    I've just gotten some clarification on the HDMI 1.3 capabilities of the XA2.

    At this point in time the XA2 CANNOT send undecoded Dolby True HD and DTS HD-MA bitstream thru HDMI 1.3 to a receiver that can do the decoding. The recently released 2.0 firmware update does not fix this. A firmware update fix is said to be forthcoming in September.

    As previously stated, the XA2 can internally decode Dolby True HD and send it as multichannel PCM thru HDMI or as analog 5.1. It cannot decode DTS HD-MA but it can extract the DTS Core Only data.

    The other issue is the authoring process for HD DVD discs. The great majority of HD DVD releases are authored in "Advanced Mode" which forces decoding in the player. The firmware will have to enable a bypass mode to let the player send the audio bitstream if the disc is authored in "Advanced Mode."

    On the BluRay side, the only standalone player at this time with HDMI 1.3 is the Samsung BD-P1200. With the current firmware this player also CANNOT pass undecoded Dolby True HD and DTS HD-MA bitstream thru HDMI. It's not known if a future firmware update will enable this in this model.

    As for the PS3, it too cannot pass the undecoded bitstreams thru its HDMI 1.3 port. Also, the PS3's HDMI 1.3 transmitter chip is an older model used only for this console and I don't know if it can be firmware upgraded to be able to pass theses bitstreams.

    All the BluRay players are able to pass uncompressed PCM thru HDMI.

    Anyone who's looking to buy the new Onkyo receivers with advanced audio format decoding and HDMI 1.3 would be better off waiting for future models that have the bitstream transmission enabled. Those who already have the XA2 can in the meantime let the player do the decoding and just wait for the firmware update that enables bitstream transmission of the advanced audio formats.
     

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