Question Surround sound setup for new consoles

Lowrys

Novice Member
Hi all, I've tried my best but can't find the answer to this, so please go easy on me.

I have two old Yamaha receivers: 373 and 673 (one's on a plasma I use for movies only). Right now I have an old Samsung F5000 and run my consoles into the Yamaha and then from that into my TV.

I need to work out how I can get Dolby Digital 5.1 (non-pro logic) surround sound from the new consoles (Xbox Series X and PS5) while also enjoying 4K, HDR, VRR, 120hz and all the rest of it.

Both consoles will output from HDMI 2.1. Neither of my Yamahas nor my Samsung do 4K, let alone HDMI 2.1. I am planning on buying the Sony 55" XH9296, which will be getting a firmware update to make 2 ports HDMI 2.1.

The problem is one of those two ports is also the eARC port. So I can't use that to route audio to the Yamaha, because I need to use both ports for the console input. The new consoles don't have an optical output.

So the only possible solution I can see is to run HDMI 2.1 x 2 (each console) into the TV, then output Dolby Digital 5.1 sound from the TV via optical to the Yamaha. As I understand it, this would mean setting both consoles to output Bitstream rather than PCM. The Sony TV appears to do 5.1 pass through over optical.

I can't test this solution with my current setup, of course, because my F5000 doesn't pass through 5.1 over optical. I've tried connecting my Xbox One X to the Yamaha via optical and I could get 5.1, so the Yamaha can definitely receive that signal OK. But I don't know if it'll work via the TV. I don't know for sure whether you can input via HDMI to the TV and then output only the audio over optical.

Can anyone help me? I've tried my best to research this but the above is as far as I can get on my own.

Thank you in advance for helping me. If I've left out any important info I can add it.
 

Darbo

Active Member
Hi all, I've tried my best but can't find the answer to this, so please go easy on me.

I have two old Yamaha receivers: 373 and 673 (one's on a plasma I use for movies only). Right now I have an old Samsung F5000 and run my consoles into the Yamaha and then from that into my TV.

I need to work out how I can get Dolby Digital 5.1 (non-pro logic) surround sound from the new consoles (Xbox Series X and PS5) while also enjoying 4K, HDR, VRR, 120hz and all the rest of it.

Both consoles will output from HDMI 2.1. Neither of my Yamahas nor my Samsung do 4K, let alone HDMI 2.1. I am planning on buying the Sony 55" XH9296, which will be getting a firmware update to make 2 ports HDMI 2.1.

The problem is one of those two ports is also the eARC port. So I can't use that to route audio to the Yamaha, because I need to use both ports for the console input. The new consoles don't have an optical output.

So the only possible solution I can see is to run HDMI 2.1 x 2 (each console) into the TV, then output Dolby Digital 5.1 sound from the TV via optical to the Yamaha. As I understand it, this would mean setting both consoles to output Bitstream rather than PCM. The Sony TV appears to do 5.1 pass through over optical.

I can't test this solution with my current setup, of course, because my F5000 doesn't pass through 5.1 over optical. I've tried connecting my Xbox One X to the Yamaha via optical and I could get 5.1, so the Yamaha can definitely receive that signal OK. But I don't know if it'll work via the TV. I don't know for sure whether you can input via HDMI to the TV and then output only the audio over optical.

Can anyone help me? I've tried my best to research this but the above is as far as I can get on my own.

Thank you in advance for helping me. If I've left out any important info I can add it.
If the tv has optical out then yeah you can do that, just leave the amp on the same channel you would use when watching TV, in my experience though you won't be blown away by the sound and you might introduce sync issues too, I currently run optical from my ps4 to my amp and it's fine but from the tv the quality takes a hit.
Obviously the new consoles don't have optical output which is why I'm very reluctantly getting a new amp...
 

dante01

Distinguished Member
The audio formats are the exact same formats as previously associated with HDMI version 2.0 setups.

You'd get the same audio irrespective of whether the AV receiver you are using includes HDMI version 2.1 or a version of HDMI predating this.

The issue you'd have with a games console is that games rely upon multrichannel PCM and you can only convey this via HDMI or using eARC. ARC and S/PDIF optical would be limited to just 2 channels of PCM audio data.

Games consoles use multichannel PCM in association with the audio they output for games because these makes it possible for the console to easilly mix in audio it creates. If bitstreaming the audio then the console wouldn't be able to mix in audio it creates into the audio being accessed from the game disc or program. The console decodes the formatted Dolby Digital or DTS encoded audio resulting in PCM and can then create sound effects as PCM prior to mixing the soundtrack and the effects prior to outputting them as mu,tichannel PCM.

IF wanting access to LPCM in association with games then you would need to use a direct HDMI connection to the AV receiver or use eARC to pass the audio through the TV to an eARC enabled AV receiver.

Neither the Sony PS5 or the new XBox will include an optical audio output.
 
Last edited:

Lowrys

Novice Member
The audio formats are the exact same formats as previously associated with HDMI version 2.0 setups.

You'd get the same audio irrespective of whether the AV receiver you are using includes HDMI version 2.1 or a version of HDMI predating this.

The issue you'd have with a games console is that games rely upon multrichannel PCM and you can only convey this via HDMI or using eARC. ARC and S/PDIF optical would be limited to just 2 channels of PCM audio data.

Games consoles use multichannel PCM in association with the audio they output for games because these makes it possible for the console to easilly mix in audio it creates. If bitstreaming the audio then the console wouldn't be able to mix in audio it creates into the audio being accessed from the game disc or program. The console decodes the formatted Dolby Digital or DTS encoded audio resulting in PCM and can then create sound effects as PCM prior to mixing the soundtrack and the effects prior to outputting them as mu,tichannel PCM.

IF wanting access to LPCM in association with games then you would need to use a direct HDMI connection to the AV receiver or use eARC to pass the audio through the TV to an eARC enabled AV receiver.

Neither the Sony PS5 or the new XBox will include an optical audio output.
Thanks. But both Xbox One X and PS4 Pro have an option to output Bitstream (instead of PCM) over HDMI to the TV, which can - if it has 5.1 pass through over optical - output 5.1 over optical to the receiver, right?

So if the new consoles have the same option to output Bitstream, then that solution should work there too.

Is my understanding correct?
 

The latest video from AVForums

Samsung Micro LED, Mini LED, NEO QLED TVs and More: AVForums Podcast Interview
Subscribe to our YouTube channel
Support AVForums with Patreon

Top Bottom