Best Audio Settings for Sonos Arc (with Surrounds) > Xbox Series X > Samsung TU8000

  • 12 July 2022
  • 5 replies
  • 291 views

I recently upgraded my old Playbar to a Sonos Arc.  I encountered a few problems along the way setting up, but after hours of searching and browsing threads I think I have a decent understanding of what my issues where and the various options I have.  I’ll give a little summary and then I have some questions in Bold toward the end. 

 

Here is my setup.

Samsung TU800: 

  • eArc mode: Auto
  • Digitial output:  Pass-Through
  • Dolby Atmos compatibiltiy: on

Xbox:

  • HDMI plugged into HDMI 1 on TV
  • Speaker Audio:  Dolby Atmos
  • Allow Passthough (for Xbox Apps) on
  • Blu-ray:  Let my receiver decode audo on (like above but for Blu rays)

Sonos Arc:  Plugged into the eArc HDMI port on TV

 

At first I didn’t have the TV set to Pass-through it was on Auto, but everything else was the same.  This led to a problem where the audio would occasionally drop out when playing a UHD with an Atmos track.  Often after it came back it would sound worse, then drop out again.   Curious to what was happening here, but when I switched to the Pass-through setting on TV it fixed it.

 

So for Atmos from physical media played by the Xbox I think I’m good with this setting.

 

BIG HOWEVER:  I have lots of blu-rays with various other formats.  Obviously many DTS 5.1, some mono etc.   With the above setup none of these will play as is.  I now know that is because the Samsung does not allow pass through for MANY MANY formats.   It’s not just DTS, basically so far anything not Atmos on a blu-ray has failed with an error.

 

The workaround is to turn off “Let my receiver decode audio” on the blu-ray settings on the Xbox.  Then the Xbox just sends over whatever signal I have in it’s setting for Speaker Audio no matter what the audio track on the disc is.  If it’s set to Atmos it will show Atmos even on a mono track within the Sonos app.  

 

I must have never had the “decode auto” setting checked on my old playbar setup cause I never saw this error before and from memory I think I always saw Dolby Digital 5.1 in the Sonos app.

 

Anyway.  What I want to know is what are my best options for managing this.  I love physical media and want to get the best sound I can from each disc.  

 

The three options on the Xbox are Stereo Uncompressed, Dolby Digital, and Dolby Atmos for home theater.  

 

For say a DTS 5.1 track on a disc. Is it better to Set Xbox Speaker audio to Dolby Atmos or Dolby Digital?  I’m not sure which of these is better since the Xbox will have to convert the DTS signal.  I could see situations where it tries to create a fake Atmos from the track and does stuff to take it further away from what the actual track is so maybe I’d want to swap the setting to DD instead.

Probably less important for Stereo PCM or mono, but I guess same question.

I can also on the TV change the Pass-Through option to PCM ( I think this will only give me 2.0 )

 

I assume there is no benefit for the DTS blu-rays to run the optical converter into the TV as this would just be like my old set up and be doing Dolby Digital 5.1 anyway?

 

If I just keep the blu-ray setting for “let receiver decode audio” set to off, but am watching an disc with an Atmos track am I getting worse sound than if I have it on to pass through the TV?   I guess this depends on what the Xbox does when it is set to Dolby Atmos and receives an Atmos track, but I could see it doing some unnecessary stuff making the track less “pure”.   On one hand it would be nice to not have to keep toggling that setting on the Xbox, but if the track is much worse it’s not a huge hassle.

 

Finally for the future

Are there any options with my current TV where I could get the DTS to play from blu-rays through my Arc setup?  I saw stuff about switches, but I’m not sure if that would work or not.

 

Also next time I’m TV shopping, based on my reading if I can just get a TV with DTS passthrough I should be good to play these blu-rays?  I see from this article on rtings.com that there are still some TV’s (lots of Sony’s) that offer this, but I’d hate to buy a new TV and find out it didn’t help.

 

https://www.rtings.com/tv/tests/inputs/5-1-surround-audio-passthrough#:~:text=5.1%20audio%20passthrough%20allows%20you,to%20a%20receiver%20or%20soundbar.&text=We%20also%20test%20passthrough%20over,%3AX%20object-based%20formats

 

Long post to go along with my long time spent trying to figure all this stuff out yesterday. 

 

Thanks in advance!

 

 

 

 

 

 


5 replies

Userlevel 7
Badge +15

Maybe beneficial to purchase an Arcana, that will strip the Audio from the eArc connection before it hits the TV.

May be a pain if you have more than one source but I'm sure I saw a 4 HDMI port version.

The Arcana basically removes your TV from the equation.

Userlevel 7

On the Xbox under the HDMI Audio setting, do you see 5.1 uncompressed or 7.1 uncompressed as options?

On the Xbox under the HDMI Audio setting, do you see 5.1 uncompressed or 7.1 uncompressed as options?

No.  I assume this is because my TV downstream can't pass that through.  This is what the Xbox shows in audio details 

 

 

Userlevel 7

On the Xbox under the HDMI Audio setting, do you see 5.1 uncompressed or 7.1 uncompressed as options?

No.  I assume this is because my TV downstream can't pass that through.  This is what the Xbox shows in audio details 

I’m really surprised your TV doesn’t support it since it is equipped with HDMI eARC. If it did support it, you would set this setting to “5.1 uncompressed” when playing DTS-encoded discs and be able to get “Multichannel PCM” audio which sounds just as good as DTS-HD Master Audio.

Maybe beneficial to purchase an Arcana, that will strip the Audio from the eArc connection before it hits the TV.

May be a pain if you have more than one source but I'm sure I saw a 4 HDMI port version.

The Arcana basically removes your TV from the equation.

Looking further into this I think it might work.  From a hdfury website it says that it allows the TV to send sound back to the Sound bar for native smart TV apps like HBO etc (I prefer to run this over Xbox apps as some of the Xbox versions are not as good).  However the question is whether I can just be fine with whatever the best I can do with the DTS encoded blu-rays/UHD’s as is vs spending the what appears to now be $299 for an Arcana.   Kind of steep for just the one use case of playing blu-rays with DTS.

If I’m fine enough with whatever I can do now with Blu-rays (still just curious about what the best Settings should be) then maybe I can just hold for now and next time I’m shopping for a new TV make sure it’s one that can pass all the right stuff through the TV to the Sonos Arc. 

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