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Thread: HDMI Question - Why doesn't my receiver pass on HDMI Audio

  1. #1
    Cabledude Avatar Fan purecomedy's Avatar
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    HDMI Question - Why doesn't my receiver pass on HDMI Audio

    I have a 5.1 Sony Receiver, bought around 2010 (will post exact model later)...

    I will pass an HDMI cable to the HDMI IN slot one each for blu-ray, cable box and laptop. I have an HDMI cable running to my TV (or projector).

    What I want/expect is: 1. the HDMI cable will pass in both video and audio to the Receiver, 2. The TV will display video of whatever output is selected on the receiver and 3. The receiver will play the audio associated with whatever output is selected on the receiver.

    What happens is: The video works as expected on the TV but I never receive any sound out of the speakers. To get sound from the speakers I must redundantly set up an optical or coax cable to get digital sound (I do have analog options for sound also). In the case of my projector I don't believe I can run a separate audio cable, HDMI

    Also, right now when I play something on the laptop, the sound won't play through the receiver speakers, but the HDMI cable going out from the receiver to the projector carries the signal and plays sound through the small projector speakers. It proves the sound signal is going through to the end, I just wish I could play it in the middle. In the case of my blu ray player it's a bit annoying but works fine to set up a redundant optical cable for sound. In the case of a laptop to projector, I could only put out analog audio from the headphone jack and transmit sound back to the projector via composite cable. I think I would not be able to mix analog sound and digital video successfully on any input of the projector.


    Questions:
    1. Am I doing something clearly wrong?
    2. Are all receivers like this or do I need a new one. If I get a new one is there some feature that I need to look for?
    3. Can you give me any key words, any good web sites to check etc. to figure this problem out. Right now my google searches are taking me all over the place because I'm not using the right magic words to get relevant searches.

    Thanks.

  2. #2
    Administrator Philip's Avatar
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    With HDMI, the last device has to send a return audio signal for the source (your blu-ray/cable box/laptop, etc.) to output audio over HDMI at all. There could be a setting on your receiver to act as the sound output, or to just pass the singal along to your TV/Projector. I would look for the manual of the receiver, and make sure it is set as the end audio device (AMP ?), rather than AMP+TV to decode the audio stream. There could be a different HDMI out port as well.

    The culprit is most likely your receiver. There could be a button/setting called "audio select" that lets you switch between HDMI audio and other digital/analog audio for the same video source - both can't work at the same time, there has to be a way to select it. It could also be automatic (i.e. if you plug in another audio cable, the HDMI audio stops working and it uses the alternate).

    There could be some compatibility issues if using DVI-to-HDMI at all.

    Finally, with some old receivers it is possible that your model is HDMI passthrough only, without support for decoding audio over HDMI - you'd have to check your model.

    If it is HDMI pass through only, you may still be able to hook up audio-out from your TV/projector back to the receiver (so HDMI audio will pass all the way to the TV, then back via optical/coax/whatever to the receiver).

    I hope this helps.

  3. #3
    Cabledude Avatar Fan purecomedy's Avatar
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    Thanks for responding Phillip. Yeah from other research it appears that the receiver is HDMI pass-through (switching) rather than repeating. This is some thing that I wish was more obvious years ago when I bought the unit as it is not explicitly stated (marketing BS, why actively market a bad feature or lack of a feature).

    I think I'm stuck, the only other way to get audio out of my laptop to the receiver out of the analog headphone jack but there isn't an analog sound input on one of the channels that digital HDMI into the receiver.

    Every new cable I need is also annoying because I need a 25 foot cord. I think I'm on the look for a basic 5.1 repeating HDMI receiver unit now as I think I can probably get something for $250 and my alternatives are probably spending $25-$75 on cables or weird switching equipment to hack my current setup.

  4. #4
    R.I.P. Nov 2015 RaisinCain's Avatar
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    Try using an optical cable. I am in the same situation.

  5. #5
    ♫♪ ♫♪ ♫♪ ♫♪ downhill's Avatar
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    I think that is a pretty common problem. Same thing if your trying to stream from say netflix. Yes imho your receiver should be able to extract that audio but I know most TVS won't pass on the audio and it being an older Sony.. my guess is it won't extract it for fear you'll make a digital copy of the audio.. Honestly you should ask a Sony person what's going on.
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