Smyth Research Realiser A16
Jan 19, 2022 at 9:10 AM Post #12,976 of 14,324

Got the Shakes

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Still waiting for some kind of reply from James, but it's been crickets so far. Was going to wait until next Monday and try again if nothing by then. Not sure if he's the one I should have emailed anyway, but I don't really have any other contact info for someone that seemed to regularly reply in the past, and he was also the one who emailed me anyway back in 2017 for pre-order payment.
James has always been the one that I’ve dealt with for matters that involve sending money to the Smyths. He’s usually pretty quick to reply if you’re looking to buy something so if it were me I would try contacting him again.
 
Jan 19, 2022 at 9:19 AM Post #12,977 of 14,324

Sanctuary

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James has always been the one that I’ve dealt with for matters that involve sending money to the Smyths. He’s usually pretty quick to reply if you’re looking to buy something so if it were me I would try contacting him again.

Due to what weijiangnan said, I ended up bumping my previous email and he got back to me within a few minutes.
 
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Jan 22, 2022 at 8:24 AM Post #12,978 of 14,324

dsperber

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So there's been a 1-week temporary delay in implementation. I shall return to it next weekend, with all four of my source devices capable of delivering Dolby Vision plugged into four (of the seven) ports of the A1080 that support HDCP 2.2.
Actually, turns out that all seven ports of the A1080 support HDCP 2.3!

Anyway, the new AVR arrived today, along with the 6-ft USB cable allowing me to use that old phone charger in a wall power socket to power the splitter, avoiding the USB port on any of my devices which appear to only have power if the device itself is also powered on... which is undesirable.

So the surgery is now completed, and apparently was a complete success. The two Oppos (103 which is really obsolete and pretty much unused, and 203 which plays discs as well as through which my WMC and 720p/1080i HDTV goes) are plugged into AV1 and AV2 of the A1080. Roku, ATV4K and Shield are plugged into AV3, AV4 and AV5.

As prescribed, HDMI1 out of the A1080 goes to the splitter, which has HDMI1-out going to the TV and HDMI2-out (as 1080p) going to the A16.

The only wrinkle is that the Yamaha AVR does not actually pass-through HDMI audio out either HDMI1-out or HDMI2-out, except when you enable that option. Actually it's described as "enables/disables the audio output from a TV", as clearly they expected you'd not be feeding a second AVR with full HDMI audio when you've already got this one to do just that. So if you do turn this switch on what gets passed-through out as audio via both HDMI1-2 is downmixed 2.0 stereo to feed what are expected to be just two speakers in the TV. Obviously this is unacceptable for the intended use of the A16 now being fed from a split of HDMI1-out.

However, the solution is simply to configure the AVR to have "HDMI standby through" set to ON (actually AUTO, which is better). This is ideal, as it passes through FULL source audio and video received from whichever was the last input selected before powering down into standby mode. And as I mentioned in an earlier post, it's even better, in that the INPUT button on the remote is kept active during the AVR's standby state. So you can even change inputs... while the AVR is off. And in fact there's nothing that the AVR needs to do at all which would justify it's being powered on, when using the A16 for sound. Video goes to the TV and audio goes to the A16. That is exactly what I want... A16 powered on and AVR powered off.

And conversely, if I actually want to just "watch TV" and listen through speakers, the A16 is powered off and the AVR is powered on, supporting "2Ch Stereo" downmix to my 2.0 speakers from whatever source is selected (for TV it would be the Oppo 203, but it could also be for streaming sources).

In summary, it all looks good from here. Even using apps on the TV and feeding audio to the AVR via ARC/eARC is facilitated. If I want to listen to sound through the 2.0 speakers the existing cabling supports that, and audio goes back through the splitter to the AVR for handling. If I want to listen to multi-channel sound through headphones I do have to move that HDMI cable going to the TV from HDMI1-out of the AVR to HDMI-out of the A16, and change the audio source for a preset to "eARC". But it works.

There is a bit of an epilog here though, and I'll resume work tomorrow. There did appear to be a lip-sync problem when using the Shield and Hulu source. I don't know if that is going to be a problem on all sources, from all three of my streaming devices, and/or my two Oppos. The A1080 does have lip-sync adjustment capability but I don't know if it's global or local by source or what. Needs to be investigated. But not surprisingly it does appear that there's a bit of a time delay for the video getting through the spitter and on to the TV, vs. when sound is put out by the AVR (at least with the default lip-sync delay value of 0ms). I'm sure this can be dealt with, but it might have a different lip-sync delay when listening through the A16. We shall see what needs to be done.
 
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Jan 22, 2022 at 12:38 PM Post #12,979 of 14,324

dsperber

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Well, I guess I spoke a little too soon. Turns out the splitter technique does NOT support ARC/eARC for audio back to the splitter from the TV in order to then pass it further on back to the AVR. So there's no way with the splitter in place to run an app on the TV and have the sound passed to the AVR. It will require manually moving the cable going to the TV from its socket out the splitter to the HDMI1-out of the AVR, if I do actually want to use an app on the TV and get sound from the 2.0 speakers managed by the AVR.

Of course this isn't really any different than knowing I have to move that TV cable to the A16 if I want to use a TV app while also getting ARC/eARC sound back out of the A16 and headphones. So not so so terrible, just somewhat inconvenient. The function hasn't been entirely lost, just made more inconvenient.

I could live with that, but it's actually worse. The presence of the splitter also prevents HDMI-CEC from working. HDMI control facilitates many of the devices to all share controls and functionality through HDMI. HDMI-CEC alows buttons on each other's remotes to operate the other device, allows all the devices to power off with a single POWER button push, allows automatically changing the INPUT on the AVR when powering on another streaming device, etc.

In other words, HDMI Control is a nice convenience to have to lose it. Doesn't mean the devices can't all just be manually powered on and off, manually selected to the right input, manually controlled with their own remote, etc. But if that weren't necessary and if HDMI-CEC worked through the splitter that would have been great. Unfortunately it doesn't work. Again, doesn't mean I can's use all devices plus the AVR and get sound from all of them from the 2.0 speakers managed by the AVR. And if I power the AVR off then I can get sound from all of them out of the A16 and headphones (via HDMI Standby Through of the AVR). But I will be losing HDMI-CEC.

I did decide to try one more configuration, which is NO SPLITTER but instead use BOTH of the HDMI outputs of the AVR... one going to the TV and the other going to the A16. And I changed the HDMI output of the AVR to now say "HDMI 1+2" rather than just "HDMI 1" as I had things before. In other words use the AVR itself as if it were kind of a splitter. And with that TV's HDMI cable once again going directly to the AVR now HEMI-CEC returns. And now ARC/eARC also returns. So far so good. However when HDMI 1+2 is specified as AVR output, the output is duplicated to be that supported by the LESSER "TV" (because that's what the AVR thinks it is connected to, i.e. two TVs). And for some reason the A16 is not reporting that it can accept 4K Dolby Vision, but rather only 4K HDR. All of my devices now no longer report that the TV (on HDMI1-out) can accept Dolby Vision, because really it's the A16 (on HDMI2-out) that must be holding things back.

This last symptom is unexpected, since certainly when powered on in the old cabling scheme the same source devices went through the A16 and on to the AVR/TV, and the source devices were delivering Dolby Vision. But somehow, when connected directly to HDMI2-out of the AVR it appears to no longer indicated that it can receive Dolby Vision. Whatever the explanation clearly this drawback is a dealbreaker, so using both HDMI outputs of the AVR is definitely out since the AVR cannot simultaneously deliver two different video outputs to its two HDMI outputs.

So it's now a matter of deciding which is the appropriate compomise to go forward with, that covers most of the everyday situations I would operate in with no manual change to any cabling and with acceptable inconvenience (i.e. having to use multiple remotes to power on/off/select multiple devices rather than being able to use just one remote and have all the other devices follow automatically as they should). And of the various choices I would say using the splitter affords the most benefit of any other option, given its downsides.

No implementation is 100% perfect. All have drawbacks and inconveniences, if not outright loss of required functionality (i.e. any approach which loses Dolby Vision is simply unacceptable). I like the advantages of running everything through the AVR. And I like the advantages of being able to power the AVR off to use any source along with the A16 and headphones. And I like the advantages of being able to power the A16 off to use any source along with the AVR and speakers. All of these pros come from using the splitter approach.

So on balance I like the new advantages the splitter affords me. While the loss of HDMI-CEC is somewhat inconvenient I can certainly deal with using multiple remotes as if HDMI-CEC never existed. While the loss of ARC/eARC from TV back to the AVR and speakers without recabling is somewhat inconvenient it's no different than what I absolutely must to if I want ARC/eARC from TV back to the A16 and headphones. And honestly it is very rare that I want or need to use an app on the TV to demand ARC/eARC (since I can almost always get all audio/video quality that I demand from one or more of the streaming sources instead). But if I must (and again very very rare) then again I can temporarily recable and get what I want at that moment.

So, I will go ahead with the splitter-based architecture, and all that it provides automatically and with no recabling despite the loss of HDMI-CEC so that I have to use multiple remotes. And if/when I ever so rarely do require using an app on the TV and ARC/eARC audio, well I know how to move a cable as required.
 
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Jan 22, 2022 at 1:56 PM Post #12,980 of 14,324

Camano

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I did decide to try one more configuration, which is NO SPLITTER but instead use BOTH of the HDMI outputs of the AVR... one going to the TV and the other going to the A16. And I changed the HDMI output of the AVR to now say "HDMI 1+2" rather than just "HDMI 1" as I had things before. In other words use the AVR itself as if it were kind of a splitter. And with that TV's HDMI cable once again going directly to the AVR now HEMI-CEC returns. And now ARC/eARC also returns. So far so good. However when HDMI 1+2 is specified as AVR output, the output is duplicated to be that supported by the LESSER "TV" (because that's what the AVR thinks it is connected to, i.e. two TVs). And for some reason the A16 is not reporting that it can accept 4K Dolby Vision, but rather only 4K HDR. All of my devices now no longer report that the TV (on HDMI1-out) can accept Dolby Vision, because really it's the A16 (on HDMI2-out) that must be holding things back.

This last symptom is unexpected, since certainly when powered on in the old cabling scheme the same source devices went through the A16 and on to the AVR/TV, and the source devices were delivering Dolby Vision. But somehow, when connected directly to HDMI2-out of the AVR it appears to no longer indicated that it can receive Dolby Vision. Whatever the explanation clearly this drawback is a dealbreaker, so using both HDMI outputs of the AVR is definitely out since the AVR cannot simultaneously deliver two different video outputs to its two HDMI outputs.

In the HDMI 1+2 configuration, I take it the A16 HDMI output isn't connected to anything, so it's reporting some A16-defined default video capabilities in the EDID it's sending back to the receiver.

Since Dolby Vision worked back through the chain of TV->receiver->A16, plugging something Dolby Vision enabled into the A16's HDMI output might fix this - something like the HD Fury Dr HDMI 4K https://hdfury.com/product/dr-hdmi-4k/
 
Jan 22, 2022 at 4:44 PM Post #12,981 of 14,324

dsperber

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In the HDMI 1+2 configuration, I take it the A16 HDMI output isn't connected to anything, so it's reporting some A16-defined default video capabilities in the EDID it's sending back to the receiver.

Since Dolby Vision worked back through the chain of TV->receiver->A16, plugging something Dolby Vision enabled into the A16's HDMI output might fix this - something like the HD Fury Dr HDMI 4K https://hdfury.com/product/dr-hdmi-4k/
Excellent theory! As you've observed, in the previous pre-splitter topology HDMI handshaking from the source devices could "see through the A16" through its HDMI output connection to the AVR and its connected TV, which was able to signal "I can accept Dolby Vision" back to the source. Hence it all worked.

But now, with essentially the A16 as a "dead end" there is no EDID to provide the same go-ahead to the source. So both sides are stopped-down to HDR-only (might also have turned into 1080p as well I think as I investigated using the AVR's INFORMATION display about the A/V input).

This HD Fury Dr. HDMi device "EDID spoofer" could be exactly what could fix this! Hey, I've got so much money invested in this whole effort now what's another $119 to see if that will solve everything? Even if it doesn't work, it's just another data point whose results others could benefit from. But the potential benefits, i.e. (a) to bring back ARC/eARC to from TV to AVR and my speakers, and (b) to bring back HDMI-CEC which really does improve usability with many components, and still allowing the main benefit which is that either the AVR or the A16 can be powered off when their need is not required... certainly worth another $119 experiment.

No physical splitter, but use HDMI 1+2 (as a built-in conceptual splitter) out of the AVR to feed both TV and A16 in parallel. Depends on HDMI Standby Through feature being available in the AVR in order to pass-through both full multi-channel audio (to the A16) and DV video (to the TV) via HDMI 1+2 even when the AVR is in power-off standby state. Or to handle multi-channel audio to its own managed speakers (either my own 2.0 or real multi-speaker) when the A16 is powered off.

=> still required temporary re-plug of HDMI cable from TV into the A16's HDMI-output for ARC/eARC audio from A16 and headphones, as always was required.

I will order one. Thanks very much for this tip.

More to come on this story.
 
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Jan 22, 2022 at 7:26 PM Post #12,982 of 14,324

Camano

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This HD Fury Dr. HDMi device "EDID spoofer" could be exactly what could fix this!
I will order one. Thanks very much for this tip.
The first thing I would try with this is to connect it between the TV and Receiver, make sure everything is working, and then use the "copy EDID" function to record the TV's EDID to carry over to the A16. I was interested to see that some of the presets on the HDFury correspond to Sony, Samsung, and LG televisions.
 
Jan 22, 2022 at 8:58 PM Post #12,983 of 14,324

arnaud

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To support DolbyVision to the TV (LG C9 OLED), all my sources go to the AVR and then I take the output of the AVR and run it through a 4K splitter, with one output feeding the TV, and the other feeding the A16 with a 1080p down-res of the stream so it can perform audio processing via HDMI1.

Works great, no problems with DV, and I get Atmos via the AVR or the A16.

My AVR (Denon X3600H) has a feature whereby the last selected input is routed to the output when in standby, so using the A16 does not require the AVR to be on.

I did not realize the A16 passthrough doesn’t support dolby vision. What you found here is a way to keep hdr/dolby vision feed to the tv while passing the atmos/dt-x soundtrack to the a16 from a source with a single hdmi out, is that right?

I’m using a uhd player with 2 hdmi outs (to tv and to a16) so not facing issue with that but I can’t get atmos from apple tv app on the tv (no earc and such to output atmos back to a16), nor do I have an atv app available on the uhd player so I’ve been just giving up on apple tv uhd content really.

Now that I’ve ordered your splitter, I think it’d make sense to get an atk4 and use that for apple tv, netflix and other streaming content as I’m hoping I will then be able to make use of the hdmi splitter to realize the same functionality as the dual hdmi output of my uhd player!

cheers,
arnaud

I don't believe this is correct.

My current stable configuration is to pass all four of my sources through the A16, into HDMI1-4 and HDMI out to a single input on my AVR. Then the AVR feeds HDMI out to my TV. All sources are capable of delivering Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos, subject to the apps or devices completing the requisite HDMI handshakes satisfactorily. Otherwise I might see 5.1 instead of DA, or UHD instead of DV, etc. I do not. I see DV+DA whenever the source can deliver that option.

And the LG OLED TV "lights up " its "Dolby Vision" badge when receiving DV video, which is always.

I am 100% certain the A16 in ordinary mode passes received DV source video out its HDMI feed to the AVR, such that the TV fed from the AVR will receive DV video as well.

And of course at the same time, the input source with DA audio into the A16 is processed properly by the A16 to feed the headphones.

I don't think the splitter-based alternate cable topology being discussed (with splitter placed after the HDMI-output of the AVR, one 4K-side feeding the TV and the other 1080p-side feeding the A16) is due to DV/DA consideration. It's just that one split output only cares about audio, hence DA. And the other split output only cares about video, hence DV.

The splitter is not critical to delivering DV+DA from the HDMI output of the AVR, which is truly what it always is putting out because the source delivered it to the HDMI inputs of the AVR. And passing it through the A16 with a single un-split cable would also work perfectly, with DA seen and handled by the A16 and DV seen and handled by the TV (from the pass-through HDMI output of the A16). But the use of the splitter affords very convenient operational advantages over the single cable through-the-A16 design, allowing the A16 to be powered off (and NOT with its clumsy new "HDMI pass-through" enabled, because it is a "dead end" in the cabling) when you don't want to listen to headphones.

Turns out @JonFo was correct in his assessment of the repeater. Maybe this is another setting I missed but only way I could get atv4k to send dolby vision to the LG CX was to either a) connect it directly to TV directly (useless for me as I don't have earc enabled A16 and it does not seem eARC is working as seemlessly as we hope for high-bandwidth audio including atmos etc) or, b) use the splitter JonFo mentioned in the duplicate mode (passing Dolby Vision/Atmos on both outputs) .

On the other hand, going ATV4k > A16 > CX, I could never get atmos soundtrack on the realiser + best Atv could feed was 1080p (no HRD).

Once I put the splitter, everything went fine, I can use the ATV4k just like my sony UHD player (out1 with video to the TV, out2 with audio to the A16). On both A16 and TV, the UHD and atv are set to input 1 and 2 respectively so I don't get confused.

If A16 is turned, I can still use can both UHD and ATV4k with the TV built-in audio as they feed both audio and video to the TV.

Only last bizarre thing I had yesterday is that, when using the UHD player with the A16 (out2 = audio only) and TV (out1 = audio+video), I had to unplug the output of the realizer as it would just stay muted despite "locking" on the HDMI input signal as if the TV audio takes precedence then? It used to work fine before when I did not have the atv4k+repeater in HDMI2, I tried to change system settings in the A16 and could not fix it.

It's not a big deal as only time I'm using the output of A16 is for another DVD/BR player with different region lock for watching french movies (has only 1 output so player > A16 > TV is only route although I could try optical out to A16 I suppose).

Anyhow, thank you for the hint @JonFo !

Arnaud
 
Jan 22, 2022 at 11:09 PM Post #12,984 of 14,324

dsperber

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Turns out @JonFo was correct in his assessment of the repeater. Maybe this is another setting I missed but only way I could get atv4k to send dolby vision to the LG CX was to either a) connect it directly to TV directly (useless for me as I don't have earc enabled A16 and it does not seem eARC is working as seemlessly as we hope for high-bandwidth audio including atmos etc) or, b) use the splitter JonFo mentioned in the duplicate mode (passing Dolby Vision/Atmos on both outputs) .

I don't see any mention of an AVR in your above comments. Just mention of A16, CX for TV, UHD player and ATV4K streamer. Is that the case? No AVR?

And you do say that your own A16 is NOT eARC-enabled.

As I've stated, my story always involved an AVR (either old A860 or new A1080) feeding the TV (C9) via HDMI1-out. So ARC/eARC from TV back to AVR and its speakers was always facilitated for sound from apps on the TV. Never had a problem here.

The only wrinkle here was if I wanted sound via ARC/eARC from the A16 I'd have to temporarily move the AVR-end of the HDMI cable going to the TV from the AVR over to the A16's HDMI output instead, and also changing "HDMI audio source" for some preset on the A16 to be "eARC". This is still absolutely true, no matter what else we discuss regarding the splitter or any other technique. And then put everything back the way it was when this one-off special TV ARC/eARC audio circumstance ends.

There's no way to get around this. That is what ARC/eARC is, i.e. return audio FROM the TV to the normally OUTPUT port of the device normally sending audio/video to the TV, where that OUTPUT port has temporarily been reconfigugred to be an INPUT port to that device. On the A16 that happens when we temporarily set the "HDMI audio source" to be "eARC". On the AVR it's automatic through settings that enable support for it. And the TV initiates the action electronically and automatically when you play an app on it (but HDMI-CEC must be enabled on the TV as well, and LG calls it SIMPLINK). Initiated by the TV and HDMI-CEC the AVR automatically switches its input (to AV4 on my A860 and to AUDIO1 on my A1080), both of which are audio-only input sources to the AVR that are temporarily assigned for handling of the audio feed coming from the TV. On the A16 it just happens by virtue of setting the HDMI audio source to eARC.

With the TV set to (a) enable HDMI-ARC as its output (instead of internal speakers, (c) digital sound out set to "pass-through" instead of PCM, and (c) eARC enabled instead of just ARC, I have never had any problem with my C9 getting Atmos audio (or any other kind of audio for that matter) back to both (a) A16 for headphone listening, as well as (b) AVR for speaker listening. Note that have the AVR play in "2Ch Stereo" because i only have two speakers. So everything (including Atmos) always gets downmixed to 2.0 stereo no matter what it started as coming from the TV. Not my dream, of course, but that's why I have the A16.

So I believe there's really nothing more that can be said about ARC/eARC, how it must be used, and what its limitations are given that a single HDMI cable is involved. I have also now discovered that inserting the splitter into that single cable path breaks ARC/eARC as the splitter itself is not ARC-enabled. So forget about possibly being able to use the splitter in some way when ARC/eARC audio is the goal. Simply not possible.

With that said I think we can put ARC/eARC to rest. When using an AVR and TV that is ARC/eARC-capable, and the A16 which has been hardware HDMI upgraded to support eARC, I would say there are NO PROBLEMS with this whole ARC/eARC technology. You just have to deal with a single HDMI cable going to the right port on A16 or AVR, settings on all devices set properly, and no splitter. And it does all work as expected.

Next reply to address your other comments.
 
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Jan 22, 2022 at 11:43 PM Post #12,985 of 14,324

dsperber

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On the other hand, going ATV4k > A16 > CX, I could never get atmos soundtrack on the realiser + best Atv could feed was 1080p (no HRD).

Once I put the splitter, everything went fine, I can use the ATV4k just like my sony UHD player (out1 with video to the TV, out2 with audio to the A16). On both A16 and TV, the UHD and atv are set to input 1 and 2 respectively so I don't get confused.

If A16 is turned on, I can still use can both UHD and ATV4k with the TV built-in audio as they feed both audio and video to the TV.

Arnaud
I've never had any problem getting all three of my streamers (ATV4K, Shield Tube, and Roku) to deliver Dolby Vision and Dolby Atoms, with either my old or new configurations. Same with my Oppo 203 player.

(a) Old configuration used A860 AVR, with all four Atmos-capable DV-capable HDMI sources going into the four HDMI inputs of the A16. The HDMI output of the A16 went to one HDMI input on the AVR. One HDMI output from the AVR went to the C9.

The A16 was configured to NOT enable HDMI-standby (because of my numerous complaints about its implementation), so if I want to watch/listen to anything from any of these four sources (through headphones or AVR/speakers) the A16 must be powered on in order to either (a) feed headphones, or (b) pass-through A/V via HDMI to the AVR. And then again I can play sound from the AVR/speakers using "2Ch Stereo" just because that's all I have.

Again, this ALWAYS has delivered both Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos even when using ATV4K. The HDMI handshake from ATV4K saw the presence of the AVR (through the A16) which allowed DV+DA, not just from the ATV4K but from all sources.

(b) New configuration uses A1080 AVR, with all four HDMI sources now going into four HDMI inputs on the AVR. The HDMI1-out of the A16 goes to the splitter (with HDMI1-out set at 4K and HDMI2-out set at 1080p), and HDMI2-out of the A16 [currently] not used. AVR set to output "HDMI 1". "EDID copy from HDMI1" is set, which facilitates Dolby Vision on TV from any source.

HDMI1-out of the splitter goes to the TV. HDMI2-out of the splitter goes to the A16.

AVR "HDMI Standby Through" setting ENABLED. This passes through FULL audio/video from the last selected input when the AVR was placed in standby, to HDMI outputs (can be 1 or 2 or both, based on AVR setting).

So when wanting to watch/listen to any source through AVR/speakers (2Ch Stereo) I have the AVR powered on and the A16 powered off. Sound from speakers and picture on TV. When wanting to watch/listen through A16 I have the A16 powered on and the AVR powered off, having first pre-selected the desired input on the AVR before placing it in standby (although the AVR also keeps the INPUT button on the remote "hot and live" even when in standby thanks to "HDMI Standby Through" so the input can be changed via the remote without having to power the AVR back on first).

Again, this does seem to be working just fine. I've previously talked about the unexpected consequences of using the splitter (i.e. loss of HDMI-CEC, and also loss of ARC/eARC) so I have to use lots of remotes and push lots of buttons to get started and to shut down, but otherwise Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos still present as available from all sources.


Note that I have never not used an AVR.

So I've never gone from the source through A16 and then on to the C9. It's always been either (a) source through A16 and on to AVR and then on to TV (which provided both Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos from all sources), or (b) source through AVR and on to splitter feeding TV and A16 (dead end, for audio-only), again which provides both Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos from all sources.
 
Jan 23, 2022 at 12:18 AM Post #12,986 of 14,324

arnaud

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Maybe it's a setting in my A16 (the UI is so bad, I forget the meaning with source setting in the individual preset and main menu with the switch for each of these etc) or otherwise the fact you used an AVR in between the A16 and TV. In particular, I recall discussion from one of Smyth people saying that, fundamentally, the HDMI standard was never developed to be bi-directional (e.g. ARC and now eARC) and the audio processing unit is supposed to be last in the chain so, with A16 out being connected to the TV, which can also process audio, I suppose the decoding on A16 was then blocked.

All these issues stem from DRM in the end I imagine, we as consumers really suffer from the utter incompetence of either those defining these HDMI standards or companies developping products following these standards.

On my end, only difference from before getting the Atv4k+splitter may have been that the DVD/BR was set to A16 input 2, now to input 3, while ATV took its spot. Since I wanted the DVR/BR player to still function with the TV when the A16 was off, I may have changed a setting for it which I've now forgotten. Need to study the menus again...
 
Jan 23, 2022 at 1:56 AM Post #12,987 of 14,324

dsperber

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On a matter unrelated to the A16 but relevant for my AVR upgrade from Yamaha RX-A860 to RX-A1080 (both Aventage models, but different in age and approach and onscreen GUI)...

I was sure that I'd previously tested out "HDMI Standby Through" before yesterday when the A1080 got installed, when I was sitll using the A860. I remember marveling at how while the AVR was in standby the HDMI input keys on the remote were left still hot. So while the HDMI pass-through would ordinarly continue using the most recently selected HDMI input source just before the unit was powered off, you could still actually change HDMI inputs WHILE STILL IN STANDBY, without the unit powering on! In other words I didn't need the AVR to handle sound and speakers etc., I only needed to change HDMI inputs. So no need to power the unit on to accomplish my very limited objective. And Yamaha had implemented things to do just that. Perfect.

Well, with the A1080, I was surprised to discover that the new remote no longer has an HDMI SOURCE button. Instead, like with the A16 presets, it instead has 8 "SCENE" buttons (think of them as user-defined presets). Each scene can be configured to connect selected audio and video source, whether HDMI-CEC is on or off, what playback program mode is desired (e.g. "2CH stereo"), what preset name appears on the display panel, etc. So while these 8 scent buttons will very likely be tied to unique HDMI inputs, they also can simply be user-defined "presets" that configure a particular viewing/listening situtaton. And as such audio and/or video inputs can be shared among multiple scenes, which have other factors to distinguish one scene setup from another.

Anyway, the net effect here is that the new Yamaha AVR remote does NOT have simply a set of 8 SOURCE buttons. It only has these 8 scene buttons. But what makes it really different is that while the old remote SOURCE buttons were operational even while the AVR was in standby and could be used to change HDMI inputs without powering the AVR back on, unfortunately the new scene button functionality causes the AVR to power back on out of standby at the same time all effects of the newly selected scene (i.e. preset) are put into action. This may or may not be desired.

In my case it is NOT desired. I am watching a source on the TV (which is already powered on) and listening through the A16 (which is powered on) and headphones. The AVR is currently powered off with HDMI pass-through active, to feed full audio from the currently selected source (i.e. via the configuration of last selected "scene" before going into standby) through the AVR to the A16. and full video is also going from selected source through the AVR and out to the TV. All I want to do is switch inputs for the source getting handled by the full audio/video HDMI pass-through. No other feature of the AVR is needed, so there's really no need to power it on for my situation.

Yamaha has thought differently. And their design of the new remote, and how pressing the new scene buttons work, has changed. The AVR powers on whenever it is in standby and you press a scene button, whether you like it or not.

Fortunately I still have the OLD REMOTE, from my A860. And the new A1080 actually DOES STILL HONOR THE HDMI SOURCE BUTTONS on the old remote for the A860! Those buttons aren't on the new remote, but the A1080 AVR itself still recognizes those IR codes.

So at the cost of having YET ONE MORE REMOTE AROUND for just such an occasion, I can at least still opt to just change HDMI inputs to another source (going through the AVR) while operating in AVR HDMI pass-through mode for watching/listening only through the A16 and TV, without annoyingly powering the AVR on just to have to power it off right away. Turns out the old remote has 4 "scene buttons" (which I never used) not 8 like the new remote has, and they can be used to select the first 4 of the 6 scenes I've actually configured on the A1080.

But I don't really have a desire to use the old remote. The new one is much more ergonomically comfortable, as well as having larger and fewer buttons on it, as well as being BACKLIT which really improves is usability. The old remote was nearly worthless in a dark room, both visually and for touch (as it was just countless rows and columns of identical buttons).

Grumble, grumble. Anyway, another something I learned today.
 
Jan 23, 2022 at 4:43 PM Post #12,988 of 14,324

sander99

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But I don't really have a desire to use the old remote. The new one is much more ergonomically comfortable, as well as having larger and fewer buttons on it, as well as being BACKLIT which really improves is usability. The old remote was nearly worthless in a dark room, both visually and for touch (as it was just countless rows and columns of identical buttons).
Probably your new AVR remote is also a universal remote with programming/learning functions. (Most of my Yamaha AVR remotes are, except the oldest, an ancient prologic model). If so you could learn it the HDMI selection codes from your older AVR remote.
 
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Jan 23, 2022 at 7:19 PM Post #12,989 of 14,324

dsperber

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Probably your new AVR remote is also a universal remote with programming/learning functions. (Most of my Yamaha AVR remotes are, except the oldest, an ancient prologic model). If so you could learn it the HDMI selection codes from your older AVR remote.
Turns out I may have been a bit too gullible when reading information on the interweb, that the old "HDMI Source" buttons on the Yamaha "silver" remote for my A860 (RAV540 / ZP60150) would be able to change just the HDMI inputs on my new A1080 which has an all-new "black" backlit remote (RAV572 / ZZ47580). I tried to do just that today and it totally failed. The HDMI source buttons on the old remote are functionless with the new A1080 AVR. The interweb info that the AVR would still honor these old IR codes even though the new remote didn't have HDMI source buttons any longer turns out to be untrue. at least for my specific old A860 remote and my new A1080 AVR.

On the other hand, the four SCENE buttons that are on the old remote DO WORK on the new AVR, but of course only to select scenes 1-4. The new AVR and new remote support 8 scenes. But then they also will power on the A1080 out from its standby state when the scene button is pressed, identical to what happens when any of the 8 scene buttons also do using the new remote. So there's no way to avoid this, it appears. A nuisance, but no real harm. And then the AVR can simply be powered off again right away.

==> forget about using your old remote to simply switch HDMI source inputs without powering on the new AVR. Doesn't work. You have to use a scene button, on either old or new remote, to accomplish the corresponding change in HDMI input with the new AVR. And when you press any scene button on the new/old remote if it is currently in standby mode the AVR will power back on as well as moving to the newly selected scene.

I can't test it anymore because I've packed up the old A860, but I suspect it worked the same way as is now clear with the new A1080. Yes, HDMI source buttons with the old A860 remote would work separately to change A860 inputs without powering on the A860 AVR (if it was in standby mode) because that functionality was present on the A860, but which has been removed from the A1080 (and also from its new remote). But probably pressing any of the four scene buttons on the old remote for the A860 would also have powered that AVR back on as well, same as happens with the new A1080.

So I've once again removed the batteries from the old remote and packed it away. I'll just have to live with how the new remote and AVR work.
 
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Jan 24, 2022 at 3:57 AM Post #12,990 of 14,324

dsperber

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To support DolbyVision to the TV (LG C9 OLED), all my sources go to the AVR and then I take the output of the AVR and run it through a 4K splitter, with one output feeding the TV, and the other feeding the A16 with a 1080p down-res of the stream so it can perform audio processing via HDMI1.

Works great, no problems with DV, and I get Atmos via the AVR or the A16.

My AVR (Denon X3600H) has a feature whereby the last selected input is routed to the output when in standby, so using the A16 does not require the AVR to be on.
Just wanted to confirm my experience with my new Yamaha RX-A1080 AVR against your own Denon AVR experience. the A1080 is working the same way all Yamaha AVRs I've ever had work, so I don't think this is a malfunction.

The behavior is that with the AVR powered on, audio optionally sent out over HDMI (along with video for the TV, of course) is only 2-channel stereo! It is NOT multi-channel original audio from the source. It is down-mixed 2-channel stereo because the expected other end of this HDMI cable is supposed to be a TV, with only two speakers.

When powered on the AVR is thinking it is in charge of speakers and sound, if you want multi-channel support. There doesn't need to be any audio at all going out to the TV.

But if you want to use the TV's speakers for sound then you enable the HDMI Audio Out option, but now you'll only get downmixed 2-channel stereo.

Now if you REALLY DO want to pass on the original multi-channel digital audio from sources, THROUGH the AVR and on out its HDMI outputs to a downstreadm A/V system (e.g. the A16 or another AVR) then you have to (1) ENABLE the "HDMI Standby Through" option, and (b) BPOWER OFF THE A1080. Now and only now with the AVR is powered off will you actually see multi-channel output via HDMI.

So when you say "using the A16 does not require the AVR to be on", I'd like to expand upon this. In fact IT IS MANDATORY THAT THE AVR NOT BE ON, in order to get multi-channel HDMI audio fed to the A16 (either using the splitter or not). With the splitter in use the passed-through video goes from HDMI-out of the AVR through the HDMI1-out of the splitter and on to the TV, and passed-through multi-channel audio goes from HDMI-out of the AVR through HDMI2-out of the splitter and on to the A16. In fact if you left the AVR on you would not get multi-channel source audio to the A16, but rather only 2-channel stereo.

Same story even without a splitter, but just passing HDMI out of the AVR and into the A16 and then out to the TV. The point is that HDMi audio out of the AVR is only 2.0 stereo as long as the AVR is powered on. You must power it off and also have HDMI Standby Through enabled, in order to then get multi-channel source audio out of HDMI but only when you power the AVR off.

Correct? That certainly is how it works with a Yamaha AVR. The AVR MUST BE OFF when the A16 is on if you do want multi-channel audio into the A16.
 
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