Do all Blu Ray discs have Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtracks?

Discussion in 'Blu-ray & DVD discs' started by petet66, Jun 8, 2009.

  1. petet66

    petet66
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    Apologies for the somewhat noob question but I'm building up to my first HD TV and Blu Ray player purchase and was eyeing up some potential first disc purchases in Asda this lunch time when I noticed that some of the discs made no reference to Dolby Digital 5.1 as a surround sound option (though they did mention DTS).

    I will not be able to afford to upgrade my AV receiver at the moment and it is Dolby Digital 5.1 only (not DTS). After a nervous half hour of Googling I found a website that says it is mandatory for all Blu ray discs to have both DD5.1 and DTS 5.1 soundtracks. Is that true? Or am I looking at a new AV receiver to get any form of surround sound from all Blu Ray titles? :(

    Thanks
     
  2. terry77

    terry77
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    Hi, All blu ray titles have a dolby 5.1 or similar soundtrack (some less, Falling down is only in 2.0 stereo i believe), so you can listen to them via any amp.
     
  3. Grubert

    Grubert
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    That's not correct. Many discs (such as those from Fox or Universal) have only DTS (usually DTS-HD or DTS-MA, with a regular DTS core). So at the very least you need DD and DTS.
     
  4. petet66

    petet66
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    Or similar...? As I said mine is Dolby Digital only (or old school Pro Logic via analogue). Plus my amp will only output Dolby 2.0 as plain stereo which means I'll hear it but not in surround.

    Thanks for your help. Looks like I'll be needing to save even more pennies... :(
     
  5. Ian Dudley

    Ian Dudley
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    What amp and BD player do you have? You might be able to use multi-channel connections to get HD audio on an older amp. It's not for the faint hearted, but is a lot cheaper than a new amp!
     
  6. neeek

    neeek
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    Do you have 5.1 analogue phono inputs on your amp? You could always get a player that does the conversion internally (I have the Sony BDP-S500 for instance) and then send the analogue signals to the amp.

    Edit - Spooky, great minds thinking alike there...
     
  7. nwgarratt

    nwgarratt
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    You need a DD and DTS amp. They can be bought cheaply now if you don't intend to go all the way to HD sound. They go for around £50 on ebay if you use it.

    This is the model above my one and is worth keeping an eye on. Mine is still going after 9 years.

    Sony STR-DB940 Receiver

    Edit. As stated a BD player model such as a Sony 550 will do the conversion for you (and you get HD audio) if you have six analogue 5.1 phono connections.
     
  8. Ian Dudley

    Ian Dudley
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    The DB940 has ext in connections, so could potentially do this. Not sure if it can do the bass management though?

    I had a DB925 until recently (two models down from the 940) when it died. I was able to replace it with a Denon 1907 from ebay for £80. That does all the DVD audio format, plus it has an Ext In with bass management and channel leveling which is ideal for doing HD audio on the cheap.

    I've just got a Sont S550 to do this and am just waiting on my first BD disc to put in it :thumbsup:
     
  9. petet66

    petet66
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    Of course :) Doh! My amp does have multi-channel audio inputs. All I have to do is slightly upgrade my choice of Blu Ray player. I had been looking at the Sony 350 but the 550 has multi-channel analogue out.

    When you say not for the faint hearted.... other than a spaghetti storm of cables what are the issues?

    Thanks again to everyone for their help and advice.
     
  10. Ian Dudley

    Ian Dudley
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    Depending on how much you like balancing test tones, it can be a lot of fuss to get it sounding right. Bass management in particular can be quite awkward, especially with older amps. Plus some players and amps have odd quirks which can make it even harder.

    You can read about my trials and tribulations with the S550 here

    http://www.avforums.com/forums/av-a...0231-problem-decoding-bd-player-vs-amp-2.html

    Plus a new FAQ is just being put together in the Blu Ray players forum which talks through the issue of Bass Management in some detail.

    http://www.avforums.com/forums/blu-ray-players/1013651-blu-ray-audio-faq.html

    This is also a good general page on the topic.

    How To Set up a Blu-ray Player Using Multi-Channel Analog Outputs... And Why: BigPictureBigSound
     
  11. MartyMosh

    MartyMosh
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    Same problem here! Bought my receiver way back in '99...
    But can anybody explain, why DD is not mandatory for blu-ray?
     
  12. simonblue

    simonblue
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    Hi with Hd-dvd it was,but with blu ray it was left up to the studios,as it is a new format, it seem to have settled down with most studios,going for DD true or DTS master :)
     
  13. Grubert

    Grubert
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    That's not true. An HD DVD could be made without any Dolby Digital tracks as well (for example, the Terminator 2 HD DVD).
     
  14. Grubert

    Grubert
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    And back to the topic: Dolby Digital is mandatory on the players, not on the discs.

    I have some DVDs without a Dolby Digital track. For example, Björk Live Cambridge only had PCM stereo.

    The only difference is that DTS was optional with DVD, and mandatory with BD. For the players.

    The manufacturer of a disc must then include a PCM and/or DD and/or DTS track.

    Is that clear?
     
  15. petet66

    petet66
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    Yes perfectly thanks and explains some of the contradictory and confused explanantions I have found via Google.

    Still need a new amp though unfortunately... :)
     
  16. Ian Dudley

    Ian Dudley
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    Not if you go the multi-channel input option. Any BD player will decode both DD and DTS (on DVD as well as Bluray). Most of them will decode all the HD formats as well and everything in between.
     
  17. neeek

    neeek
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    Thanks for the extra detail here - it's really useful. I have to admit that I was lazy and just turned up the volume on my sub, but this has me thinking that I really should take the time to calibrate things properly...
     
    Last edited: Jun 9, 2009
  18. Ian Dudley

    Ian Dudley
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    In these days of plug and play digital connections, it can be quite involved. The ARC and primary audio quirks on the Sony drove me nuts till I figured them out.
     
  19. simonblue

    simonblue
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    :oops: sorry you right it was the players not the disc
     

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