Question Selecting the right sound mode on a Yamaha HTR 2067

Real Ramona

Standard Member
So I bought one of these, with the 5.1 speaker setup. Its not state of the art I know but better than what I had :/
The shop said that the unit can detect what the incoming sound stream is and set itself accordingly. Now I am not sure if its doing that. Frequently it tries to set itself to straight, and then I have no dialogue coming from centre channel.
I mostly watch BBC iplayer or Netflix, and the occasional DVD. And very seldom a BluRay.
So I am trying to determine what is the best default settting on the TV preset would be. I am not really bothered about choosing all of the Yamaha Cinema DSP programs - I would not change between Spectacle or SciFi or Sports for instance. All I want is for all channels to work properly if audio stream is transmitted as surround sound.
I could have this all wrong, but it seems that the Yamaha takes a 5.1 stream and enhances it with its own technology.
Straight will output unprocessed sound in 5.1 if it exists, but otherwise it will just be stereo.
Whereas, I could choose a surround decoder, such as ProLogic or ProLogic II to process a 2 channel source into 5.1
But...if a multichannel souce is there it will work as straight does.
Is that correct?
And where does DTS fit into the scheme of things?

I dont know how Netflix encode their stuff, or BBC.
I would be very grateful for any help and ideas.
Thanks :)
 

Ightenhill

Active Member
Both BBC and ITV are very lax when it comes to encoding anything - they broadcast in straight stereo and Yamahas correctly output this at 2.1 if your set to straight..

In fact it often baffles me how much new drama the BBC actually produces that is what you would call supposedly A class thats broadcast as straight stereo.. Yet a smaller production company can produce something like FAther Brown to fill the afternoon tea slot and its encoded in 5.1... (All my examples are from watching through SKY Q by the way).. CAn only surmise the BBC spends the audio budget on its Star presenters ;)

You could leave your app set to surround decoder which will add dolby to the stereo signal (or use one of the DSP settings) - or I think (never got my head around this) you can change each source to default to a certain setting.

Dante will correct me if Ive got this wrong but Straight will play exactly as its encoded with room peq correction and bass management (if speakers are set to small) - if Direct or Pure Direct is in use its exactly as encoded but your speaker sizes are ignored - though the .1 is sent to the sub and your speakers will be large with no bass management or peq.

As far as I know Netflix and Disney+ encode properly - Other TV channels also do - A lot of American TV stuff etc and Film 4 etc
 

dante01

Distinguished Member
All audio sourced via the BBC iPLayer will be 2 channel stereo in nature. I'd suggest engaging an upmixing Surround DEcoder mode relative to the audio accessed via the iPLayer. Even if STRAIGH mode were engaged, you'd still get dialogue vis the front left and right speakers, but none of the other speakers would be engaged without applying additional upmixing modes.

Netfdlix include content encoded with 2.0, 5.1 and Atmos. Most of what is on offer will include DD+ 5.1 encoded audio. STRAIGHT would give you this in the instances where the audio is encoded as such. You could also engage an upmixing mode such as Dolby Pro Logic II in order that the content devoid of a 5.1 soundtrack will be upmixed to create pseudo surround and utilise all of the speakers present.

You were given incorrect informationfrom the store and the AV receiver will not automatically determine the most apt mode to use. You need to make this choice for yourself. STRAIGHT will give you the audio as it was encoded. Note that each individial source returns the last mode you set it to until you select a different mode to be used in conjunction with that source.

I'd basically suggest you use the Dolby Pro LOgic II UR DECODER mode for most of your listening. This will be overrifen and bypassed if the content you are wating actually includes a discrete Dolby encoded 5.1 or more channel soundtrack. The content with fewer than 5.1 channels such as stereo content will be upmixed by the AV receiver to give you pseido surround and utilise all of your speakers.
 
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dante01

Distinguished Member
Both BBC and ITV are very lax when it comes to encoding anything - they broadcast in straight stereo and Yamahas correctly output this at 2.1 if your set to straight..

The iPlayer is an app and only ever conveys 2 channel audio. BBC HD broadcasts use Dolby Digital and the audio will depend upon what it was recorded with. You'd get both 2 channel 2.0 or multichannel 5.1 channel Dolby Digital via the HD channels, but only 2 channel PCM via the SD variants. ITV don't use Dolby Digital for either their HD or SD channels so you'd only get 2 channel PCM via ITV regardless of what you are watching.
 
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Ightenhill

Active Member
AH missed the i player bit - still cant get my head around why the beeb make (sometimes) great drama and then release it for broadcast with a simple stereo - yet(sometimes)when its then released on a blu ray or on Netflix (take sherlock as an example) it has a 5.1 soundtrack - yet an afternoon cheaper (take father brown) production can have a quite well steered enveloping 5.1 (well 5.0) is it a bandwidth issue or something
 

dante01

Distinguished Member
AH missed the i player bit - still cant get my head around why the beeb make (sometimes) great drama and then release it for broadcast with a simple stereo - yet(sometimes)when its then released on a blu ray or on Netflix (take sherlock as an example) it has a 5.1 soundtrack - yet an afternoon cheaper (take father brown) production can have a quite well steered enveloping 5.1 (well 5.0) is it a bandwidth issue or something

What audio is broadcast with a TV show via the HD channels is dependant upon what audio the show or film was originally encoded with. Not everthing is created with multichannel surround sound. The BBC can only broascast surround sound if the content has such a sioundtrack. THe production company, the director of a show or a film's director will have made a decision to use surround sound in advance of even starting production. It isn't something the BBC can add after a show or film has been made. There are also additional production costs associated with the inclusion of surround sound such as those associated with the, mixing, mastering and licensing.

It isn't always up to the BBC as to what they broadcast either. The BBC may not have the rights to broadcast some of the content they air with anything more than a stereo soundtrack. A lot of the content they screen is sourced via outside production houses who charge more for the rights to air a 5.1 soundtrack if there is one.

The BBC aren't a commercial operation so haven't the same monetary resources as you'd get via the likes of Netflix. Netflix throw money at anything that moves while the BBC is answerable to its board and ultimately the license payers funding it. Giving the One Show a 5.1 soundtrack isn't really a priority.

I also believe that the inclusion of a 5.1 soundtrack makes it impractical for the BBC to then also make an audio descriptive soundtrack option available and viable via HD channels. Maybe this explains why with some content you get 5.1 via disc or other outlets, but not via the BBC HD channels themselves?
 
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Real Ramona

Standard Member
It does cost more and is more work recording a show with surround sound. Most things like drama are fairly easy to record with just a stereo pair of room mics and lavaliers on the talent, or shotguns.
A lot of the surround, detail and FX you hear is made by Foley artists afterwards. Some of this will be made digitally but a lot is still made using "things" and mics. It is an easier job to make Foley sounds as surround, but as you say, the production company still has to factor in the cost of mixing it all down and whether it is practical to do it as anything other than stereo.
I had not considered the fact the the Beeb may have additional costs due to licensing.
 

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