8.22.2011

No 5.1 from Blu Ray on PS3?

There's a bunch of stuff to know here.  I'm no expert but here's what I've learned.   Chances are you're trying to watch a DTS-HD sound track Blu Ray on equipment that only support Dolby Digital or you don't have the settings set correctly on the PS3.

It looks like there's 2 basic camps.  Dolby Digital (DD) and DTS.   These come in a number of flavors

DD is the oldest and was one of 2 required audio formats on DVD.   So a lot of equipment will decode DD.

DTS is a little newer and is also sometimes available on DVDs.

The kicker appears that Blu Ray disks don't always have both DD and DTS but have one or the other.  Even disks labeled Dolby Digital may only have certain tracks  (like french) available as DD.  Go to a website like Bluray.com to check what audio tracks are available.

Both DD and DTS are lossy.  There are newer formats that technically better because they are lossless and they should degrade gracefully to their older formats.

To add to the twist there's PCM.  PCM is not compress and requires HDMI cables.  If you're using Optical, then the PS3 will down grade a 5.1 signal to stereo (I think).

Then there is the PS3 and it's settings.   I'm not sure that older PS3's support all formats.  The PS3 slim covers most if not all but there are some settings you need to get straight.

There's the Settings > Output which controls which cable the PS3 will use.  Use the HDMI if you can, Optical next.   When Using HDMI whatever is connected will talk with the PS3 and will automatically set it up.   But at a minimum you probably want Dolby Digital and DTS checked.

Then there's Settings > Video Settings > BD/DVD Audio Output (HDMI and  Optical).  Try setting these to bitstream.  If using Optical you might also want to try Bitsream Mixed if Bitsream doesn't work.

These settings aren't the "best" settings, these are just the most likely settings.

I run HDMI to my TV and optical from the TV to the audio system.    The TV complains when receiving DTS signals because it doesn't support it.  But I'm not using my TV's speakers so it doesn't matter.  I'm not even sure why it complains since I have the speakers shut off in the menu but I suppose it could hurt the speakers or something so they warn me.

In the end,  using bitstream you need to have something capable of decoding the audio track.  Check your surround sound system to see what it supports.  Check your source to make sure you know what your sending.   And check your PS3 settings to make sure they all line up.  Simple.

http://www.ecoustics.com/electronics/products/articles/464956.html

http://hd.engadget.com/2009/04/21/hd-101-how-to-use-dolby-truehd-and-dts-hd-with-your-ps3/

http://www.highdefdigest.com/news/show/1064

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