Author Topic: WD TV Live HD - DTS with Onkyo - no audio...  (Read 7275 times)

November 14, 2010, 04:34:07 PM
Read 7275 times

orion6192

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Hello -

i have a couple of questions and was not sure where to post.

I just bought my WDTV Live HD WDBAAN0000NBK-NESN.  I can play AC3 but not DTS.

I have an ONKYO TX-SR705 hooked up VIA HDMI cables.  From what I have read, The WDTV Live HD cannot decode DTS, but my ONKYO should.  Nothing will read this file.

Everything is hooked up HDMI. In this case it's WDTV Live ---> Onkyo TX-SR705 ---> TV (TH-50PX75U)

Picture is great - no audio :(

Is there other firmware I should try?  I have Release 1.02.21 (3/30/10) installed on it.

I am confused.  I read all the firmware updates out there and Generation 1 or 2, etc.  Which generation do I have?

Thanks...


November 14, 2010, 07:08:41 PM
Reply #1

RoofingGuy

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The "Gen 1" and "Gen 2" only apply to the original WDTV HD devices, that had no networking.

The WDAVN00 and WDAVP00 models were the original Gen 1 devices.  They could not mix DTS down to stereo because they didn't have a DTS licence, but could pass the DTS over HDMI and SPDIF to a receiver.

The WDBABF0000NBK and WDBABG0000NBK were the Generation 2 devices.  They did have DTS downmix to stereo, as well as passthrough to AVRs.  The DTS down to 2.0 is pretty much the biggest difference between the 2 models.  The Gen 2 also didn't have networking.


The WDBAAN0000NBK and WDBAAP0000NBK models are the WDTV Live.  They have networking.  They also have DTS licencing.  They will downmix DTS to stereo, as well as passing it through HDMI and SPDIF.

The WDBABX0000NBK is the WDTV Live Plus.  It is functionally identical to the WDTV Live, except that it has a DRM-capable version of the processing chip, so it can play DRM-protected streams (such as NetFlix).  It also has DTS licencing and will downmix DTS to stereo as well as passing it through HDMI and SPDIF.


What none of the WD players will do is play back a DTS-MA signal, or other flavours of HD DTS.

Regular 5.1 DTS is handled by all players, at least in passthrough, if not stereo downmix.  But the problem then comes that the TV can't decode the signal passed over HDMI unless it has a DTS licence.  So, if you're using a DTS-capable receiver you get full DTS 5.1 from the entire WDTV line... if your TV won't accept DTS (which is almost all of them) and you don't have an AV receiver, then you have to set the WDTV's mode to "Stereo" and not "Digital", so that your TV is getting the 2.0 DTS downmix (from all but a Gen1), because the TV won't know what to do with the 5.1 signal on HDMI. (That doesn't apply to you, since you have a DTS receiver, but I had to include it for others reading, who don't and aren't getting any sound.)

7.1 DTS-MA is not handled by any of the players.  WD says DTS won't give them a licence to do HD audio.

According to from what I can see over at DTS, all of the players should pass the 5.1 core out of a DTS-MA signal.  But none of them do, to my knowledge.


If you're trying to play a file with 7.1 DTS-MA audio, you'll get no output.  Until WD changes this in the stock firmwares (if they ever do), custom firmware won't be able to play back 7.1 either, since it's based on the stock firmwares and doesn't touch any of the protected code.

About all you can do, is extract the 5.1 core from the 7.1 DTS-MA when you're making your rip.  Then you'll at least get 5.1 DTS playback.
« Last Edit: November 14, 2010, 07:22:19 PM by RoofingGuy »

November 15, 2010, 04:13:56 AM
Reply #2

orion6192

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So most likely the WDTV Live is not passing the signal through for my receiver to decode it?  At least that makes more sense.  I know my TX-SR705 can decode DTS-MA but all i got was a great picture and no sound :(.

Am I understanding you correctly?

November 15, 2010, 05:20:10 AM
Reply #3

RoofingGuy

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Yes, as far as I know, your setup will work fine with any 5.1 DTS files, but anything with 7.1 DTS-MA, you'll have no audio at all.

November 15, 2010, 12:45:43 PM
Reply #4

orion6192

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Because of the WDTV Live, not because of the Onkyo correct?  I'm pretty sure the Onkyo can handle DTS-MA.

November 15, 2010, 01:22:00 PM
Reply #5

RoofingGuy

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Yep... because of DTS and Western Digital, and the fact none of the WDTV's will play DTS-MA.

The specs for your Onkyo AVR say it supports 7.1 DTS-MA.  You'll get perfect 7.1 DTS-MA from a Blu-Ray that has it, played through a BR player.





Actually, I should clarify something... SPDIF can't handle DTS-MA anyways, so even if the player could output a DTS-MA track, you'd have to be connected via HDMI from the WDTV to the receiver.  (And again, you said you're HDMI anyways, but this is clarification for others).

But as far as I know, anybody who has tried playing back a DTS-MA track has gotten no audio at all.  The thing should be at least sending the 5.1 core.  :(
« Last Edit: November 15, 2010, 01:52:41 PM by RoofingGuy »

November 16, 2010, 10:09:15 AM
Reply #6

orion6192

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Just for feedback and to close the loop a little. I upgrade to 1_03_49_V and at first had no audio.  I changed the audio output from Digital to Stereo and had sound!  I know I tried this on the old firmware (because I tried every setting :)) and it didn't work.

Coincidence?  Maybe... I also see 1.03.49V added MediaFly as an option - or maybe I just never noticed it before. 

From what I gathered, digital setting just does passthrough audio, but if the player is not passing the audio through then my Onkyo cannot decode it.

Hmmmmm.....

November 17, 2010, 06:44:01 AM
Reply #7

RoofingGuy

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I have an update for you as well.

I don't have a receiver myself, so I've just been going by what I've seen others reporting.

But apparently I have it somewhat wrong.

If you have a proper DTS-MA stream, then the Live and Live Plus will play back the 5.1 core, even if they won't play the full 7.1.

The problem seems to lie in that "proper DTS-MA stream" part.  It seems as if many/most downloads don't actually have a proper DTS stream in them.  I've also now read of bugs in Haali and ffdshow which was passing no audio at all from MA... so, it appears as if in many cases the ripper thinks they're putting an MA stream into the file (or the 5.1 core from an MA stream), but instead they're just including silence.