Arris Freesat UHD Box

brownin88

Novice Member
My old faithful Humax 1100S started to give up, decided to look at the next gen.

Seems its been rushed to market, software bugs etc

It's not the best youtube clip, but i recorded this.

Arris Freesat UHD recorder box

I'm going to raise it with freesat customer support, but I don't hold out much hope, any other tips etc, please feel free to contribute/comment
 

blairja

Novice Member
I have a surround system connected via HDMI and don't have these issues. I get surround 5.1. I have not seem DOLBY atmos mentioned by freesat or the manufacturer at all. I have both dolby vision and atmos and can confirm the box only displays HDR not dolby vision and sound is dolby 5.1 but not atmos. that is deliberate.
 

brownin88

Novice Member
I have a surround system connected via HDMI and don't have these issues. I get surround 5.1. I have not seem DOLBY atmos mentioned by freesat or the manufacturer at all. I have both dolby vision and atmos and can confirm the box only displays HDR not dolby vision and sound is dolby 5.1 but not atmos. that is deliberate.


Its not something I would just throw out there as supported in a forum like this and when I bought it lots of research suggested it was supporting atmos in selective on demand services if nothing else. That's beside the point anyway as the main issue is HD channels lose sound when this happens and thats the main issue. There's evidently a bug in mine if not anyone elses. As this intermittent issue happens regularly with literally zero correlation or regular criteria to pin point or isolate as the root cause.
 

blairja

Novice Member
Please check Recordable 4K TV Box no where do the specifications mention ATMOS. Netflix can deliver this via other platforms. Arris or freesat have not set Dolby accreditation. So on this you are mistaken. I have HD channels in 5.1, no issues switching to from SD or via versa. This will be a specific issue for you not the box.
 

brownin88

Novice Member
The arris freesat does have dolby accreditation. And several sources say it passes it through atmos using dolby digital plus, granted the freesat site doesn't but im not surprised there is very little outside of a "pretty" web interface aimed at the average consumer to sell the product.
Outside of all that, and by looking at my case you can see it does, but intermittently with other bugs.

I've raised with freesat/arris customer support team anyhow.
I have a new TV on order and I will change all hdmi cables for newer faster items as part of this.

May I suggest you review your forum etiquette as you literally started on the offensive immediately offering zero help and just set out to disprove anything I had to say.
 

blairja

Novice Member
I’m sorry if you feel on the defensive. I did not meant to be. Your responses are defensive and asserting something that even freesat don’t talk about, please share with the forum this information about pass thorough. The only atmos source is Netflix. No other app would offer it. Is atmos listed in the Netflix compatible devices for Freesat? I don’t seem to see that either.
 

grahamlthompson

In memoriam
Disney+ has Atmos and 4K-HDR as well.
 

blairja

Novice Member
No, this box by freesat does not have Disney and is not related to this thread. Disney does have atmos. Contrary to the posters assertion the box does not have Dolby atmos.
 

Dom2061

Novice Member
I have a problem which, while not identical, is similar to this and therefore might be worth a mention.
When I enable "stereo" there is sound on all channels, but when I enable "surround" there is no sound at all on HD channels but normal sound on SD channels.
My amplifier is pretty old but in perfect working order – it's a Sony HT-IS 100 – I connected it via optical at first and then added HDMI to see if that would help, but it didn't.
Apart from the Atmos element, it does seem similar to what the OP is experiencing… Any ideas?
Thank you for any suggestions.
 

grahamlthompson

In memoriam
The HD channels use Dolby Digital audio, If your amp does not have dolby digital decoding you will get no sound.

The box should have an option to recode dolby digital on HD channels to stereo PCM. Look for an option for digital audio out from surround to stereo or similar
 

Dom2061

Novice Member
Thank you for your reply, Graham. My amp DOES have Dolby Digital decoding, and worked a dream with my previous Freeview box, (a Humax FVP-4000T), which I only replaced because of appalling reception in my area.
I am in a rather awkward situation because I am quadriplegic, so I have to rely on carers to do my tinkering for me – under my instruction – so I can't just get on my knees and start swapping cables. Having said that, everything works fine EXCEPT surroundsound, so I am reasonably confident it's not a wrong connection,
Dom
 

grahamlthompson

In memoriam
I have downloaded the manual, Page 32 Digital Audio Out try setting to stereo and turn up the box volume using it's own remote.

Digital Audio Output If you have external speakers, such as a soundbar, amplifier or AV receiver connected to your Box via the Optical output, you can use this option to set the audio output to Stereo or Surround according to your speaker capabilities.

There does not seem to be a setting for audio out using HDMI. Above suggests it only works for toslink.

Try a toslink connection. I presume your amp has this input. Toslink will do DD 5.1 surround.
 

Dom2061

Novice Member
Hello Graham,
My amplifier is connected to the Arris via optical. The problem arises when I select, "digital audio output surround", at which point all HD channels lose their sound entirely, while the SD channels have normal stereo sound.
If I select, "digital audio output stereo", then all channels have stereo sound output, but I really miss surround sound!
 

grahamlthompson

In memoriam
Suspect this is a software bug. You are aware that HD programmes are rarely in 5.1. Most are DD 2.0 (aka stereo), No ITV-HD content is 2.0. Even Strictly Come Dancing saturday show is 2.0 even though it used to be 5.1.

Nefflix, NOW TV (boost subscription) has 5.1. Disney plus has up to 4K and up to Dolby atmos which Your AVR I guess does not support.
 

Clem_Dye

Distinguished Member
There’s actually quite a lot of stuff on BBC1HD and BBC2HD that’s encoded in 5.1 on both Freeview and Freesat at present, and C4HD on Freeview. Oddly, on Freesat, C5HD and QuestHD are transmitted with a false 5.1 audio flag, which results in crap audio. I asked both C5 and Quest why this was so, and the response that I got was basically “meh, switch your kit to stereo as we can’t be arsed to do anything about it”. Trouble is, even switching to stereo the audio is just wrong.
 

grahamlthompson

In memoriam
Quote me an example so I can check.

Technically there is no dolby digital (either 2.0 or 5.1) on Freeview-HD. The audio codec used is the more advanced Advanced Audio Codec (AAC) and that's what the audio stream contained in .ts container. is.

The boxes recode this on playback to Dolby Digital
 

Clem_Dye

Distinguished Member
OK, semantics perhaps, but on BBC2HD Battlestar Galactica (Friday night/Saturday morning) is in full surround, as is Life on BBC1HD (Tuesdays) as is Roadkill, also on BBC1HD (Sundays). Most films aired on the BBC HD channels also seem to be in surround, and by that I mean a 5.1 audio stream.
 

Dom2061

Novice Member
The display on my Sony certainly switches to 5.1 on those programs you mention and most films as you say, (or at least it used to before I got the Freesat box).
I feel I must apologise to the OP for somewhat hijacking this thread, but I still feel that – if this is a software bug – your problem and mine may be related.
 

grahamlthompson

In memoriam
I have that series recorded on a Humax Freesat+ Box. I can confirm it does have a Dolby Digital 5.1 audio track,

Not yet watched any of the recordings. Just tried the first recordings in the series.

Clearly the Arris box should have the identical 5.1 track in the file container.

Incidentally along with the main 5.1 track it has a subtiltle (graphics) track for the hard of hearing., and a stereo mpeg audio track for (AD) for the visually impaired.

The Arris should be able be able to select any of them.
 
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grahamlthompson

In memoriam
For information this is the content of the transport stream container from Strictly Come Dancing.

It in fact only has a stereo Dolby Digital track

I have added explanation of each track contained in bold

General
ID : 2050 (0x802)
Complete name : D:\StrictlyEpisodes\Strictly Come Dancing_20170930_1844.ts
Format : BDAV
Format/Info : Blu-ray Video
File size : 7.68 GiB
Duration : 2 h 6 min
Overall bit rate mode : Variable
Overall bit rate : 8 699 kb/s
FileExtension_Invalid : m2ts mts ssif

Full HD 1080i H264/AVC compressed Video track

Video
ID : 5400 (0x1518)
Menu ID : 6941 (0x1B1D)
Format : AVC
Format/Info : Advanced Video Codec
Format profile : [email protected]
Format settings, CABAC : Yes
Format settings, RefFrames : 4 frames
Format settings, GOP : M=8, N=24
Codec ID : 27
Duration : 2 h 6 min
Bit rate : 7 893 kb/s
Width : 1 920 pixels
Height : 1 080 pixels
Display aspect ratio : 16:9
Frame rate : 25.000 FPS
Standard : Component
Color space : YUV
Chroma subsampling : 4:2:0
Bit depth : 8 bits
Scan type : MBAFF
Scan type, store method : Interleaved fields
Scan order : Top Field First
Bits/(Pixel*Frame) : 0.152
Stream size : 6.96 GiB (91%)
Color range : Limited
Color primaries : BT.709
Transfer characteristics : BT.709
Matrix coefficients : BT.709

Dolby Digital AC3 Stereo (2.0) track

Audio #1
ID : 5401 (0x1519)
Menu ID : 6941 (0x1B1D)
Format : AC-3
Format/Info : Audio Coding 3
Format settings, Endianness : Big
Codec ID : 6
Duration : 1 h 44 min
Bit rate mode : Constant
Bit rate : 192 kb/s
Channel(s) : 2 channels
Channel positions : Front: L R
Sampling rate : 48.0 kHz
Frame rate : 31.250 FPS (1536 SPF)
Bit depth : 16 bits
Compression mode : Lossy
Delay relative to video : -776 ms
Stream size : 144 MiB (2%)
Language : English
Service kind : Complete Main


stereo mpeg audio Audio described track

Audio #2
ID : 5402 (0x151A)
Menu ID : 6941 (0x1B1D)
Format : MPEG Audio
Format version : Version 1
Format profile : Layer 2
Codec ID : 3
Duration : 2 h 6 min
Bit rate mode : Constant
Bit rate : 256 kb/s
Channel(s) : 2 channels
Sampling rate : 48.0 kHz
Compression mode : Lossy
Delay relative to video : -1 s 96 ms
Stream size : 231 MiB (3%)
Language : nar

DVB Subtitle track

Text
ID : 5404 (0x151C)
Menu ID : 6941 (0x1B1D)
Format : DVB Subtitle
Codec ID : 6
Duration : 2 h 6 min
Delay relative to video : 5 s 648 ms
Language : English

legacy teletext subtitle track for kit not compatible with DVB subtitles

Other
ID : 5403 (0x151B)-888
Menu ID : 6941 (0x1B1D)
Format : Teletext
Language : English

Menu
ID : 260 (0x104)
Menu ID : 6941 (0x1B1D)
Duration : 2 h 6 min
 
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JonMace

Well-known Member
There used to be a setting on amps to convert stereo to a fake 5.1 sound, maybe you had that engaged on the amp and dont now?
 

grahamlthompson

In memoriam
There used to be a setting on amps to convert stereo to a fake 5.1 sound, maybe you had that engaged on the amp and dont now?


Dom 2061 should record the two tonight's battlestar Galactiica on BBC2-HD. At least we know what options it should offer. 5.1 main audio, 2,0 Audio description and subtitles.

They all have it. It's a digital sound processing option. You can set them to use this for stereo content. If real 5.1 is present it should choose real 5.1.

They have names like Dolby Prologic.

Image of options available on my Denon AVR





If the box cannot handle Audio Description and Subtitles it's not fit for purpose.
 

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JonMace

Well-known Member
Dom 2061 should record the two tonight's battlestar Galactiica on BBC2-HD. At least we know what options it should offer. 5.1 main audio, 2,0 Audio description and subtitles.

They all have it. It's a digital sound processing option. You can set them to use this for stereo content. If real 5.1 is present it should choose real 5.1.

They have names like Dolby Prologic.

Image of options available on my Denon AVR





If the box cannot handle Audio Description and Subtitles it's not fit for purpose.
That was it Dolby Prologic, is it possible that the poster had that engaged before but not now?
 

grahamlthompson

In memoriam
That was it Dolby Prologic, is it possible that the poster had that engaged before but not now?

The AVR would say Prologic on the display and Dolby Surround for a 5.1 source.

If I press info on my AVR remote. It brings up a display showing the channels being input and the speakers getting audio.

In the case of prologic. The input will be front left and front right only and outputs for all 6 speakers (5 + Subwoofer (LFE).
 

Dom2061

Novice Member
Thank you for all of your input, but I'm not convinced the amplifier is the problem. Although it's 10 years old it can decode Dolby Digital and DTS whether the input is optical or HDMI, and it will automatically switch depending on the source format.
The problem only began a couple of weeks ago when I switched from a Humax Freeview terrestrial box to the Arris Freesat box.
When I set the audio output on the Arris box to "surround" there is no sound at all on HD channels, but there is normal sound output on SD channels.
When I set the audio output to "stereo" there is two-channel sound output on all channels as there should be.
I have emailed Free sat – no response so far – but I was hoping someone here might have some insight into the Arris machine.
 

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