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Sky HD box audio not working with optical switch

northerngeezer

Active Member
Hi,

I have just purchased an optical switch with optical cables to avoid having to switch cables from blu-ray player and HD box to the theatre system.

Having set it up I can't for the life of me get any audio from the HD box going through the optical switch but when I connect the cable directly to the theatre it works fine.

The blu-ray player works fine through the switcher.

I have swapped the cables around but still no success.

I have read a few other threads about HD boxes having optical problems and so should I ring for a replacement.

Any help or advice appreciated.

Thankyou
 

Stevenage Neil

Distinguished Member
Does you Home Theatre have a co-ax input as well as optical?
If so I would use one for Sky and the other for Blu Ray and dump the switch.

As the Sky box works fine connected directly you would have a hard time convincing Sky the box was faulty.
 

gmp

Active Member
Until I got a new amp recently I had a 3 way switch for sky/bray/pc and had real grief getting it set up properly. Never had problem with bray/pc but kept having problems with sky. Got it sorted in end and left it alone after experimenting with number of optical leads. Though it probably should make no difference what worked for me was ensuring I had a short lead from sky to switch and and the same make of short lead from switch to amp. Also secured sky optical to switch and and hd box with lumps of blue tack to ensure they were firmly in place.
 

ianbuckley

Active Member
You could use the RCA plugs or scart connection for one of audio inputs.
 

ianbuckley

Active Member
But then you would only get DPL and not DD5.1

Agreed, but these are the limitations of Cinema systems. There may be work arounds, but you are far better investing in the products that are designed to do the job in the first place. Invest in an amp with multiple inputs.
 

ianbuckley

Active Member
I don't understand that statement at all.

The "limitation" is that you cannot get DD from an analogue connection.

All-in-one cinema systems have limited connections, usually only one of each type. What else would you expect when you have an amp of sorts, tuner and five speakers for less than £300? If you want flexibility and multi device connections then you need to invest in the products that are designed for that purpose. Switches and splitters are never the best solution.
 

Broadz

Distinguished Member
Ian, I think what Neil was getting at was that regardless of whether you have a home cinema, a surround sound all-in-one system or a seperate AV amp/receiver and speakers, if you connect your Sky box to this external piece of kit using RCA or scart you will ony ever get an analogue audio singal passed from one to other, so will never get DD.

You then said that this was a limitation of having a home cinema. No it isn't. It is a limitation of using an analogue method of distributing audio from Sky box to receiver.

In a way you are both right. Neil is right in that using your suggestion will never distribute DD5.1 surround sound - not because it is connected to a home cinema rather than an AV amp, but because you are suggesting analogue audio transmission. You are right in that you suggested only using RCA or scart if the home cinema doesn't provide any digital audio inputs - which will ensure that DD5.1 cannot be used.

Top and bottom - a home cinema system that does provide external connectivity for optical or digital coaxial will always provide DD5.1.

And connecting a Sky box to anything using only RCA stereo or scart will never give DD5.1.
 

Stevenage Neil

Distinguished Member
Broadz, you are a gentleman. (Never thought I would hear myself saying that :D)

If the OP is still reading, I have long considered the Sky box a bit weak on the strength of the optical output which is why I suggested the use of a Co-ax to Optical converter.
 
Last edited:

logiciel

Moderator
I have read a few other threads about HD boxes having optical problems and so should I ring for a replacement.
Sky HD receivers are no different from any other device in this respect and work quite well with a switch like these:
3 Way Optical Switch Toslink Digital Splitter Selector.
If you take care to have only one device powered on at a time even these usually do the job automatically without a switch to manipulate: Optical Digital TOS SPLITTER Adapter 1 socket to 2.
 

ianbuckley

Active Member
Ian, I think what Neil was getting at was that regardless of whether you have a home cinema, a surround sound all-in-one system or a seperate AV amp/receiver and speakers, if you connect your Sky box to this external piece of kit using RCA or scart you will ony ever get an analogue audio singal passed from one to other, so will never get DD.

You then said that this was a limitation of having a home cinema. No it isn't. It is a limitation of using an analogue method of distributing audio from Sky box to receiver.

In a way you are both right. Neil is right in that using your suggestion will never distribute DD5.1 surround sound - not because it is connected to a home cinema rather than an AV amp, but because you are suggesting analogue audio transmission. You are right in that you suggested only using RCA or scart if the home cinema doesn't provide any digital audio inputs - which will ensure that DD5.1 cannot be used.

Top and bottom - a home cinema system that does provide external connectivity for optical or digital coaxial will always provide DD5.1.

And connecting a Sky box to anything using only RCA stereo or scart will never give DD5.1.

You are missing my point. See post 10. I know what signals are supported through the different connection types. The OP didn't say he wanted DD5.1 this was assumed by those that replied. I was mealy pointing out there were other options available, but in hindsight I should have specified what restrictions there would be in the type of signal received to negate the confusion. It still doesn't alter the fact that the Samsung HT-TX35 was designed with only one digital audio input and he wishes to connect two audio inputs.
 

JH4

Well-known Member
Broadz, you are a gentleman. (Never thought I would hear myself saying that :D)

If the OP is still reading, I have long considered the Sky box a bit weak on the strength of the optical output which is why I suggested the use of a Co-ax to Optical converter.

Yeh, I had the same problem with a long optical lead. Converting it to a co-ax signal solved the problem with the same length of cable.
Hope this helps.
 

northerngeezer

Active Member
Thanks for all the replies.

I should have stated in my original post that I do actually require DD5.1 from my Sky HD box since myself and the kids enjoy the surround sound when watching films.

With the limitations of my Samsung HT-TX35 I suppose my options are

1) Speak to Sky and see if they replace the box with maybe a stronger optical signal that the switch will pick up.

2) Get a Co-ax cable and then use a 'Co-ax to Optical converter' to connect to an optical cable which will feed into the switch. (a bit tedious I suppose)

3) Keep the 5.1 speakers but replace the Samsung HT-TX35 unit and the Sony BDP SP370 blu ray unit with something that will do everything.

4) Or go back to the original method and swap cables everytime I use either device. :facepalm:

Any further advice greatly appreciated and thanks to all who have contributed to this thread.
 

logiciel

Moderator
The ideal but expensive solution is to get an amplifier/receiver - no need for a new BluRay player.
I'd start at the other end of the scale though and try or two other switches, and also splitters.
It was news to me that an optical signal could vary in "strength" but I must take SN's word for that.
There's not much chance of Sky going along with that idea though and supplying a new receiver.
 

planetf1

Standard Member
I'm doing exactly this with a "cheap" optical switch and it is working.

I did find the "cheap" optical cables I bought are a little variable in their connection stability - whether they plug firmly or are a little loose, but by swapping around I have a good combination. Next time I might spend slightly more on the cables (these were £1 each for 1m, £1.80 for 3m) ish from memory!
 

logiciel

Moderator
Yes, I've used cheap and cheerful cables with equally cheap and cheerful switches AND splitters, with variable results, but mostly success.
That was before I did the job properly with a quality amplifier/receiver.;)
 

anlygi

Well-known Member
I have my equiptment connected through a cheap 3 way optical switch that come with 4 optical cables for less than £10 off ebay. All works fine. No issues at all! I will eb upgrading to a decent system in the new year though.
 

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