Audio Downmix sound missing playing 5.1 media through 2 channel zone

Apologies for the slightly long description…

I’ve got a Denon AVCX4700H receiver. It’s capable of Dolby Atmos, Dolby TrueHD, Dolby Digital Plus, Dolby Digital, Dolby Surround, DTS Surround, etc

I have 3 zones, so I play 5.1 with telly, 2.0 with projector in another zone and 2.0 in kitchen, with or without the 5.1 zone. This all works perfectly with everything and other sources. If I play firestick etc through projector zone it plays through the 2 speakers dedicated for that viewing position and is downmixed without me thinking about it.

Been falling in love with my Nero V since it came, but then came time to play a 5.1 E-AC-3 Dolby Digital Plus file, which we chose to watch on the projector. Sat down, video through the projector which is fed from the amp, but no audio through that zone. So the main zone was still receiving and playing audio fine and I could play this source through those speakers - but nothing came out in 2.0 mode through the other zone.

Wondering perhaps if I need to test something in my audio or passthrough settings such as in this thread - Audio downmix issue with v17? - #6 by ActionA

Any suggestions gratefully received :slight_smile:

You didn’t post logs so we could see what audio settings your currently running are but I’d guess that if they are channels set to 7.1 and eAC3 not one of the enabled passthrough formats then your AVR would not be able to deal with this multichannel PCM signal outside of the main zone. At least that is how I was interpreting this excerpt from the manual you linked to…

If the input for ZONE2 is set to a specific source (like CBL/SAT), only analog signal or 2-channel PCM signal input (from HDMI connectors or digital connectors (OPTICAL/COAXIAL)) can be listened to from ZONE2. To playback HDMI signal other than 2-channel PCM in ZONE2, set “HDMI Audio” to “PCM”. link
2-channel PCM signals are output from a device connected to the input source selected for ZONE2 and can be played back in ZONE2. In this case, the MAIN ZONE audio will also be converted to 2-channel PCM signals if the MAIN ZONE and ZONE2 are set to the same input source. However, depending on the playback device, the playback signal may not be converted to PCM even if this setting is configured.

So the correct settings I think would be to set channels to 2.0 and enable all the passthrough formats that your AVR supports. You may have to switch the view in Kodi’s settings to “expert” to see all the passthrough options.

Thank you very much for all your time, it’s massively appreciated :slight_smile:

I set it to 2.0 and all my passthrough modes enabled, vero is already on so I switched on projector and denon, with them set to their respective inputs.

I could see the vero menus OK, choose a title and then the projector went to bluescreen. Intriguingly if I used an older title I could see, but a couple of newer files (but still 264 rather than any newer codecs) and the projector stopped displaying once the title played. stop the title and the menu reappeared on the projector.

In the meantime I can use the amp to switch on what they call the main zone (which in my case feeds the telly) and the telly could see both the vero menus and the old and new titles.

Both the telly and projector are ancient compared to the vero, so it may well be that I need to tweak a setting to cope with their 1080/720 specs.

Again, without logs to actually verify this, I’d guess what you are seeing with the blue screen is an unsupported video signal, or else your pushing more than your projectors HDMI cable can push. I’m not going to read through your AVR’s manual or figure out what modes your displays support, but basically your TV supports some display modes, your projector may, or may not support all the same modes, and your AVR likely has display modes it supports, and ones that it does not. Additionally your AVR may or may not support converting video formats to match inputs to output sources. On top of that on all these devices there may be menu options that control if certain modes are available. On top of that if your going multi-room or just have a long run to a projector then cable length can limit what can be output. Outputting 1080p@60 isn’t much of a problem at 2m, but the type and quality of the cable really comes into play when your pushing anything over twice that.

So, I would take this step by step and make yourself some notes. Boot your Vero with the TV active, generate logs, and take a look at the display modes Kodi is showing as supported. Switch to the projector and see if Kodi updated its display capabilities. Dig through your AVR manual to see if you have any kind of video conversion capabilities there. When outputting to the projector go to Kodi’s display settings and try different resolutions and frame rates to figure out what will output and what doesn’t.

Once you have a listing of what capabilities you have you can then use that to inform changes to settings to work with your equipment. For example your projector might not support 1080p@23.976hz and that is why the screen goes blue. In that case you could choose to make a whitelist that disables outputting that mode. Maybe it works on your projector at 1080p for anything below 50hz in which case you might consider trying a cable upgrade.

Thank you ever so much, again that’s hugely helpful.

I think one of the aspects that surprised me is that thus far when I’ve pushed other sources through the same amp feeding the telly and projector they have all displayed without me needing to trouble my stupid brain - firestick, roku, manhattan pvr.

You’ve said one thing which struck a massive chord and a key differentiator between telly and projector - the latter only does 720p or 1080i - so maybe I need to tell vero to not output 1080p?

Thanks again and sorry for my old kit :wink:

I’d guess the default for all those devices is to operate at a fixed output to maximize compatibility. By default OSMC tries to optimize picture quality. Normally this wouldn’t require much thinking as it would just be a single display, most likely relatively modern, and it would just work. Your setup is a bit more complicated than that.

That is a pretty big omission. I think optimal would probably be 720p. I actually don’t think we allow interlaced output anymore.

Curses, I’ve just checked and it’s already set (when I check whilst outputting via the telly)

The question is that you can see that output on your projector but when you start playback it goes to a blue screen? If that is the case then you can either settings>player>videos>sync playback to display Adjust display refresh rate>off so it operates in a fixed mode, or else setup a whitelist to limit what modes can switch to…

Thank you so much for your time, that seems to already be disabled, so looks like I need a whitelist then :blush:

Sorry, my brain went a bit sideways when typing that apparently and I posted the wrong setting. The relevant setting is adjust display refresh rate. To clarify, I’m assuming that the Vero is picking up the display modes from your TV which include modes not supported by your projector. With adjust display refresh rate enabled the Vero will try to switch to an optimal supported display mode according to what is being played. Thus, if your TV supports 1080p and your projector doesn’t, then playing back any full HD or higher material will cause a problem. Disabling that option will make it so all video will play in the same display mode as you have your UI set in.

Have I told you lately that I love you? :wink:

I’m delighted to report that the video is working having changed that.

Now I’ve still got something to tweak to get the audio going for all the files when playing on the projector zone.

My older files, such as 2 channel aac are fine, but newer files such as with 6 channel dolby digital plus or 6 channel dolby digital plus with atmos (which the amp can play) are displayed by the player as raw. This leads me to wonder if this confirms they’re being passed through, where I want them down mixed?

Thanks, but I’m already spoken for :grin:

Yes, the RAW in that display is indicating passthrough. If your AVR is not willing, or able to convert the bitstream to stereo PCM for the secondary output then I think the best solution might be to just toggle passthrough back and forth when you are using the projector vs when you are not. With channels set to 2.0 turning off passthrough will make Kodi do the conversion. You can find the passthrough option during playback in the audio settings that you can bring up during playback from the OSD. If you want a bit quicker and/or easier access to it there is the option to add this action to your remote control with a keymap.

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I appreciate your loyalty.


Because you mentioned the Denon not bit streaming PCM and there was a related setting, I really thought some magic was about to happen when I set the below (from their manual) , but alas not
" HDMI Audio(ZONE2 only)

Selects the audio signal format for playing an HDMI source in ZONE2.

(De­fault):|The HDMI audio sig­nal is passed through this unit to the de­vice in ZONE2.
PCM:|The HDMI audio sig­nal input into this unit is con­verted to a PCM sig­nal that can be out­put from the ZONE2 PRE OUT con­nec­tors or speaker ter­mi­nals

That sounds to me like just turning passthrough on/off is going to be the simplest way to deal with the limitations of the projector in zone 2 unless you wanted to add speakers in zone 2 to take advantage of that setting.

Thanks again so much, have proved concept by going into system, audio and disable “allow pass through” and the audio is back on - woohoo :blush:

It was perplexing me so much that the gui played fine as did other codecs.

Thankfully I’ve got a harmony remote, so should be able to programme the toggling, but for the fact I haven’t even seen the audio osd yet and I had a quick search with no joy - I can see the video one no problem and tried random button mashing :wink:

When you are playing a video and you press the OK/enter/select button there is the screen which shows player controls and other options. This is what I was referring to as the OSD (on screen display). Where the audio settings are located there are skin specific but with Estuary you click on the gear icon and then a popup shoes a list which includes audio settings. In the audio settings there is a toggle for passthrough.

As for the remote the easy way would be to install the “keymap editor” add-on from Kodi’s repository and then edit>fullscreen video>audio>toggle digital/analog> and then when it asks press the button on your remote that you want to assign to this function. You would then just press back/cancel until you hit that first screen again and tell it to save the keymap. You would then test it to make sure that the button is toggling that setting. Do note that this would only be mapping this function to the fullscreen video window so it will not perform this action if the OSD or any other window is active on top of the playing video. If you want to add this to a macro in your Harmony for switching to the projector setup you might want keymap to “global” instead “fullscreenvideo” so it works if your playing video or not, but in this case you would need to find a button that you don’t want to use for anything else, anywhere else. If your harmony has a display then ideal may be to assign an extra button to a labeled menu item (so it is easy to remember what the assignment is).

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Ha ha, can’t believe the one thing I hadn’t thought to do was push OK, sorry :blush:

When I’d been enabling subtitles previously I was doing it through the settings but thinking “I bet there’s a better way” and now I know it too thanks.

That all worked perfectly as well of course, thanks again, you’ve sorted it all out a treat :smiley:

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The settings, as in Kodi’s main settings panel? :rofl:
If your better way is to use the OSD I should mention that toggling subtitles can also be done with your remote via a keymap. The OSMC remote is configured to toggle them when you hold down the play button for example.

Your welcome. I’m glad you found your happy place.