Onkyo HT-R550 for PC via HDMI

nap85

Novice Member
My pc doesn't have optical output, so I bought an Onkyo HT-R550 system because it had HDMI Input on the back panel, and I assumed this meant I could use an hdmi output from my pc to the receiver and get surround sound from my pc. I did this with my Yamaha rx-v367 and it worked fine, but the sound quality is horrendous, so I thought I was upgrading.

But now reading through the manual for the Onkyo, I'm getting the impression this system wont work that way. Here's a link to manualslib: Components With Hdmi - Onkyo HT-R550 Instruction Manual [Page 29] | ManualsLib

As I'm reading this, it only passes the HDMI signal through to the output? What the heck is the point of that? So I would still need an alternate input? In which case....this system is useless to me. I would just set it up and test but I've got limited space and am waiting to get a new computer desk.

Please tell me I'm wrong?
 

next010

Distinguished Member
I dont see anything in the manual, that says it wont work with your setup, its a regular AVR with HDMI inputs and an output, audio gets decoded by the AVR and video is passed to the output.

Windows uses multi-channel PCM as its default audio output, specific software must support things like Dolby/DTS and your media player properly configured to pass those audio formats.
 

unoduo

Active Member
You’re correct. The HDMI inputs are pass-through only. It says so in the manual & is confirmed on a few old AVSforum threads.

“Audio and video signals received via the HDMI IN 1 and 2 jacks are output by the HDMI OUT jack as they are (HDMI pass-through).

However, if you want to listen through the speakers connected to the AV receiver, in addition to an HDMI connection you'll also need to make a separate analog or digital audio connection.”


You could use a hdmi audio extractor with an optical output to get digital audio from your PC. There are loads on Amazon/ eBay for less than £20.

Example:

Amazon product
 
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nap85

Novice Member
I cannot conceive of a purpose for such a "feature." I'm so bummed. What a waste of money. I'd rather not bother with some cheap extractor that ruins sound quality and probably wont last a month. I'm probably going to just admit defeat and spend another $200 on a receiver and toss this one. Can't imagine I'll have any luck selling it.
 

nap85

Novice Member
There's an Onkyo ht-r990 for sale near me. Looks like it's a bit of a step down, from 130w per channel on the 550 to 80w channel for my 8 ohm speakers, anyone have an opinion on it or should I keep looking?
 

nap85

Novice Member
This is still bothering me lol. What. Is. The. Point? Why not just skip connecting the hdmi cable to the receiver and go straight to your tv with it? From what I've read it just allows you to watch tv or a dvd etc without playing through the surround speakers? So...just don't turn on the receiver? WHY?! Am I totally missing something?
 

unoduo

Active Member
This is still bothering me lol. What. Is. The. Point? Why not just skip connecting the hdmi cable to the receiver and go straight to your tv with it? From what I've read it just allows you to watch tv or a dvd etc without playing through the surround speakers? So...just don't turn on the receiver? WHY?! Am I totally missing something?
In the days before hdmi, it was the norm on avrs to route video & audio seperately. You could assign a source (eg dvd player) to use a variety of video & audio inputs - such as component or composite video combined with analogue or optical digital audio.

There was no real need to route the video through those early receivers - they really just acted as video switching devices which freed up inputs on your display.

Tvs today have multiple hdmi inputs but back in those days they only had one set of component, composite or scart inputs. So if you wanted to connect two component video devices to your tv you needed a switch.

This just sounds like an early implementation of hdmi where it can only be used as a video input/ output - needing additional audio.
 
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