AVR only getting PCM 2.0 output from Vero 2 HDMI

This used to work fine, but I recently noticed that all my 5.1 channel kodi audio was being received at my Onkyo AVR as PCM 2.0 over the HDMI connection, despite Kodi saying it’s successfully processing 5.1 audio streams.

I assumed it was a settings issue, but I’ve tried pretty much every variation of the Kodi audio settings, including AML-M8AUDIO-Analog 5.1 and S/PDIF, passthrough and non passthrough, and various options on the encoding.

I then tested my AVR with a Blueray player to make sure it could still pick up 5.1 sources, and that worked fine.

Any troubleshooting suggestions? I’m hoping I’m being stupid somewhere…

Current audio settings are:
S/PDIF, Best match, 192KHz, Enable AC3 and DTS passthrough


  • Select SPDIF
  • Enable DTS/AC3 passthrough
  • Press Play on a video that isn’t outputting DTS/AC3 when you think it should be, and press the three lined button on the remote (context menu) and see what that says.

Where are you reading this from?

It may also help to:

  • Take a photo of your audio settings in Kodi
  • Enable debug logging, go to My OSMC -> Logs and upload a full set of logs. Might give us some clues



Just a quick update in case anyone else runs into this…

Turns out that I was watching a bunch of videos which all used the AAC audio codec for 5.1 streams, which kodi can’t handle and reduces to 2.0 PCM. (As discussed here: AAC Audio 5.1)

I discovered this when I used some 5.1 test files, which were passed through successfully. http://thedigitaltheater.com/index.php/dolby-trailers/

The solution was to turn on AC3 transcoding, which turned the 5.1 AAC into 5.1 AC3.

Sorry for being an idiot, but feels great to have 5.1 all working again. Now we just need that HD audio passthrough that’s available in v17 for android! lol

Yes, if you enable AC3 transcoding, it will be transcoded on the fly, and the change in quality is not noticeable to most people.

Oh ya, quality is great (so I guess I’m ‘most people’)… it was just surprising to learn that kodi (and most AVRs) don’t support a very commonly used codec.

But no worries, at least we have a workaround that effectively solves the problem.

AAC passthrough support is very rare. I think AAC has been mainly normalised by Apple. It’s used for audio and WEB-DL (iTunes Store) content. That seems to be the extent of its reach, although that is a large reach.