Question

APPLE TV 4k with playbase


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Here is the issue in point wise manner:

1:I recently bought sonos playbase, which have only optical audio input.

2: But my TV has regular 02 HDMI and 01 HDMI ARC ports (I don’t want other audio outputs to use be cause of poor audio output quality) and TV has no optical output.

3: I watch content on my TV using Apple TV 4K , which has only single HDMI port as output.

NOTE: I don’t want to use AIR PLAY for SONOS due to audio lag issues.

MY CONCERNS:

1: If I choose a HDMI audio video splitter will it affect my Apple TV video quality.

2: If I choose the splitter should I use it take input from apple TV and then put HDMI output from Splitter to TV and Optical out put to SONOS playbase.

OR

3: I should use Splitter at HDMI ARC as input to splitter and optical out put from splitter to SONOS playbase.

What difference will it make between choosing Option 2 and 3 (of My concerns). Please suggest some good quality splitter also.

SPECIAL MENTION:
I learned that SONOS beam comes with “Sonos Optical Audio Adapter”
to take optical in from TV and provide HDMI ARC at other end to connect to SONOS beam.
I want to ask that if I can use this cable for reverse use like taking HDMI ARC input at one end of this “Sonos Optical Audio Adapter” and plugging other end to SONOS play base.


Regards
Pankaj Kumar

22 replies

Concerns:

1) No, it's a digital signal, there's no degradation.
2) Sure, you can do this.
3) HDMI-ARC splitters are more expensive. Since the optical and the HDMI-ARC signals are both exactly the same, there's really no reason to go with HDMI-ARC, unless you have money to waste.

Special mention:

No, it's a one way converter.
Userlevel 7
Badge +22
Hi Pankaj Kumar

What is the brand/model of your TV? I find it odd that it would have HDMI-ARC technology and no type of digital out-put. Could there be a coaxial out-put for audio in the absence of an optical out-put? A picture of the connection panel would also be helpful if you can manage it.

Cheers!
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Concerns:

1) No, it's a digital signal, there's no degradation.
2) Sure, you can do this.
3) HDMI-ARC splitters are more expensive. Since the optical and the HDMI-ARC signals are both exactly the same, there's really no reason to go with HDMI-ARC, unless you have money to waste.

Special mention:

No, it's a one way converter.


Thanks dear for ur prompt support on the issue. after reading ur suggestion i am confused regarding---

" 2: If I choose the splitter should I use it take input from apple TV and then put HDMI output from Splitter to TV and Optical out put to SONOS playbase.

OR

3: I should use Splitter at HDMI ARC as input to splitter and optical out put from splitter to SONOS playbase. "

are these option thought by me different or i need same splitter/convertors for both these options.

again can u suggest some good splitters/convertors.

my tv modal is: Mi LED TV 4 PRO 55

Socket

USB:2.0 x 2
HDMI:3(1 contain ARC)
AV:1
Ethernet:1
S/PDIF out:1
WIFI: 2.4GHz/5GHz, 802.11 a/b/g/n
Bluetooth:BT 4.2

Decoder
Video decoder
MPEG1/2/4,REAL,H.264
Audio decoder
DOLBY AUDIO, DTS
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Hi Pankaj Kumar

What is the brand/model of your TV? I find it odd that it would have HDMI-ARC technology and no type of digital out-put. Could there be a coaxial out-put for audio in the absence of an optical out-put? A picture of the connection panel would also be helpful if you can manage it.

Cheers!


Thanks dear for ur prompt support..

TV Details-https://www.mi.com/in/mi-led-smart-tv-4-pro-55/specs/

my tv modal is: Mi LED TV 4 PRO 55

Socket

USB:2.0 x 2
HDMI:3(1 contain ARC)
AV:1
Ethernet:1
S/PDIF out:1
WIFI: 2.4GHz/5GHz, 802.11 a/b/g/n
Bluetooth:BT 4.2

Decoder
Video decoder
MPEG1/2/4,REAL,H.264
Audio decoder
DOLBY AUDIO, DTS
Userlevel 6
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Isn’t the S/PDIF output optical?
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Isn’t the S/PDIF output optical?

Yes, but it gives stereo output only.
Userlevel 6
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I can’t see where the spec says this is a stereo only channel. It should be capable of outputting 5.1. Are you feeding the Playbase a 5.1 Dolby Digital signal?
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I can’t see where the spec says this is a stereo only channel. It should be capable of outputting 5.1. Are you feeding the Playbase a 5.1 Dolby Digital signal?

So u are saying SPDIF and Optical cable are interchangeable for playbase ? and please read this:

"They are both digital connections. Optical usually refers to the ADAT protocol over a fiber optic cable (TOSLINK), while SPDIF is usually transmitted over a coaxial "RCA" cable.
"Usually", optical can carry 8 channels at 44.1/48KHz (or 4 at 88.2/96KHz in certain situations) while SPDIF is stereo (two channels).
However, optical can also be only stereo because optical can also just carry an SPDIF signal (optical refers to the physical interface, while SPDIF refers to a communication protocol, you need "ADAT" protocol to carry 8 channels over optical)
It's great to have both: most multi-channel preamp boxes (e.g. Behringer ADA8200, Audient ASP800, Focusrite Octopre, etc) will output 8-channels through ADAT. These are great to quickly add a bunch of channels for drum or full-band tracking (or live recording), while some single or dual channel preamps with digital output will usually output a SPDIF signal over RCA cable."
Userlevel 6
Badge +14
Dolby Digital is a compressed data stream, and the optical S/PDIF interface can carry the compressed 5.1 signal. I think you should have received an optical cable with the Playbase in the box the base came in.

You may need to set the TV to output DD rather than DTS. The Playbase will not do any conversion: it ONLY accepts a DD input (or stereo/PCM).

When a DD signal is being sent to the Playbase, fire up your app and go to Settings, About my Sonos System

There, you'll see info about your system, and in the Playbase section it will include "Audio In: xxxx" If a DD 5.1 signal is being sent to the Playbase, this will confirm it. Or it'll say a stereo, or whatever, signal is being received.
pankaj100887,

Just to add to nik9669a's correct comments, that you need to select just “Dolby Digital” output for the TV's S/PDIF's optical port and not “Dolby Digital Plus”, which the TV also supports, I believe.

Just thought it worth clarifying that matter as the DD Plus codec is not currently supported by Sonos.
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Dolby Digital is a compressed data stream, and the optical S/PDIF interface can carry the compressed 5.1 signal. I think you should have received an optical cable with the Playbase in the box the base came in.

You may need to set the TV to output DD rather than DTS. The Playbase will not do any conversion: it ONLY accepts a DD input (or stereo/PCM).

When a DD signal is being sent to the Playbase, fire up your app and go to Settings, About my Sonos System

There, you'll see info about your system, and in the Playbase section it will include "Audio In: xxxx" If a DD 5.1 signal is being sent to the Playbase, this will confirm it. Or it'll say a stereo, or whatever, signal is being received.



my tv modal is: Mi LED TV 4 PRO 55

Socket

USB:2.0 x 2
HDMI:3(1 contain ARC)
AV:1
Ethernet:1
S/PDIF out:1
WIFI: 2.4GHz/5GHz, 802.11 a/b/g/n
Bluetooth:BT 4.2

Decoder
Video decoder
MPEG1/2/4,REAL,H.264
Audio decoder
DOLBY AUDIO, DTS
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pankaj100887,

Just to add to nik9669a's correct comments, that you need to select just “Dolby Digital” output for the TV's S/PDIF's optical port and not “Dolby Digital Plus”, which the TV also supports, I believe.

Just thought it worth clarifying that matter as the DD Plus codec is not currently supported by Sonos.


my tv modal is: Mi LED TV 4 PRO 55

Socket

USB:2.0 x 2
HDMI:3(1 contain ARC)
AV:1
Ethernet:1
S/PDIF out:1
WIFI: 2.4GHz/5GHz, 802.11 a/b/g/n
Bluetooth:BT 4.2

Decoder
Video decoder
MPEG1/2/4,REAL,H.264
Audio decoder
DOLBY AUDIO, DTS
Userlevel 6
Badge +14
I'm not sure why you keep giving us that information.

It says the TV has an S/PDIF output, and it says it supports DOLBY AUDIO, which comes in several varieties.

You need to set the TV so it outputs a DD signal on the S/PDIF channel, and link the S/PDIF optical output of the TV to the optical input of the Playbase using an optical cable.

Then get a DD signal playing out of the TV (from a DVD player, perhaps, or a High Definition DD TV channel?) and check the correct signal reaches the Playbase.
Userlevel 7
Badge +22
Hi pankaj100887

Thanks for sending the link to your TV specs. I see that you do not have an optical out on your TV in the conventional sense. However, you can send a signal via S/PDIF to the Playbase with the correct interface.

Userlevel 6
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If so, why did the OP say it was optical when asked?

But if not, thanks!
Userlevel 7
Badge +22
If so, why did the OP say it was optical when asked?

But if not, thanks!

I believe the OP may have not realized the subtle difference. In fact s/he was not entirely off base. Just took a little digging to determine what was actually available as a connection point. Asking the right question is 99% of what is required in most instances. There’s always the possibility that I may still be wrong in my assumption. 🤔

Cheers!
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If so, why did the OP say it was optical when asked?

But if not, thanks!
I believe the OP may have not realized the subtle difference. In fact s/he was not entirely off base. Just took a little digging to determine what was actually available as a connection point. Asking the right question is 99% of what is required in most instances. There’s always the possibility that I may still be wrong in my assumption. 🤔

Cheers!


sorry to bother u guys , i appreciate ur support.... i understand how sometime missing information can lead to confusion...hence i am attaching the actual pic of my TV audio outputs along with sonos supplied Optical cable. hope this will clear all doubts.


just look at it ,is it Mini-TosLink or Coaxial.
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I'm not sure why you keep giving us that information.

It says the TV has an S/PDIF output, and it says it supports DOLBY AUDIO, which comes in several varieties.

You need to set the TV so it outputs a DD signal on the S/PDIF channel, and link the S/PDIF optical output of the TV to the optical input of the Playbase using an optical cable.

Then get a DD signal playing out of the TV (from a DVD player, perhaps, or a High Definition DD TV channel?) and check the correct signal reaches the Playbase.




sorry to bother u guys , i appreciate ur support.... i understand how sometime missing information can lead to confusion...hence i am attaching the actual pic of my TV audio outputs along with sonos supplied Optical cable. hope this will clear all doubts.
[img]https://uploads-eu-west-1.insided.com/sonos-en/attachment/bb0b6efd-6cce-43b9-aa22-affb8a0a633e.jpg[/img]

just look at it ,is it Mini-TosLink or Coaxial.
That's a coax output. You'd need to get an adapter to change from electrical output to optical. I'd think perhaps one may have come with the TV, otherwise you can probably pick up one from Amazon.

Something along these lines:

https://www.amazon.com/C2G-40018-Coaxial-Converter-Compliant/dp/B0002J2MV4

Note that this was a 3 second search, I'm not recommending this device, it's just an example. You'd need to figure out which one serves your budget best, and from a location that suits you, if Amazon isn't it.

I believe that Flexson makes one of these as well, and they appear to be Sonos oriented. I've got several of their speaker stands, and while they're not electronic devices, I've been pleased with the engineering standards of the company.
Userlevel 7
Badge +22
No need
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Hello

It seems we have a debate as to whether or not your port is Coaxial or Tos-Link. It's been my experience (and I'm not above being wrong) that labeling for a digital output that is similar to RCA ports has been as follows:

If Light is involved direct from the source the labeling has been S/PDIF
If it is Electrical (for lack of a better term) it is labeled Coaxial

With that said I'd try still try the cable I suggested to see if that works without a converter ($7.99-USD). If not go with Airgetlam's suggestion ($22-USD plus cost applicable cable between it and the TV ).

Ain't options great! 😎

Cheers!


THANKS dear i think, i got the solution, all i need to try these two options ...hope everything works fine. will revert soon.
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hi all,
sorry for delayed response ... after ordering a digital SPDIF coaxial to digital optical converter i am getting the sound form my playbase...thanks for resolving the issue.

Though i have lost control over volume levels and i am not able to control volume either through Apple TV4K remote or sing my tv remote , they both are showing tv's inbuilt sound control. however i am controlling the volume from My Play-1s (02 No.) those i have paired as surround speaker to my playbase.

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