Roku Ultra / Sonos 5.1 / Samsung plasma tv - Help!

  • 6 January 2018
  • 0 replies

Hi Friends,

I'm trying to get true 5.1 surround sound through a Roku Ultra, but I'm hitting a brick wall and neither Sonos' nor Roku's support team has been able to pinpoint the issue. My setup is as follows: I have a plasma Samsung F8500 tv - that tv has an HDMI port that supports ARC - I connect the HDMI cable from the tv to a (way too expensive) Octava-HD41-ARC switch that has been recommended in multiple Sonos forums as a workaround to get 5.1 surround on the Sonos Playbar / surrounds. From the switch, I connect an optical audio cable to the Sonos playbar. In one of HDMI inputs for the switch, I've plugged in the Roku Ultra. At the moment, while I troubleshoot, the Roku is the only device besides the tv plugged in to the switch. This configuration works perfectly for an Amazon Fire Tv, and I'd normally just continue using the Fire Tv, but Time Warner / Spectrum does not offer their streaming app on the Fire Tv (which this is a deal breaker for my fiancee). I've also tried connecting the tv directly to the Roku Ultra, but no luck on that end, and I'd prefer to use the switch if I can since 1. it was too expensive to just sit there like a brick 🙂 and 2. it SHOULD allow me to connect multiple devices long term.

The Roku support page states: "Note: The Roku Ultra* provides an additional option to transcode Dolby Digital Plus to Dolby Digital. This allows you to connect your Roku Ultra to an AVR, sound bar, or TV that supports Dolby Digital, but not Dolby Digital Plus, and still hear the audio in surround sound."

Sonos only supports Dolby Digital, but from the wording on the Roku site, it sounds like that shouldn't be an issue.

The Samsung manual for this television states in the licensing section that they have both DTS and Dolby Digital Plus licenses.

I contacted Octava (the maker of the switch) and with this exact same setting they were able to get 5.1 audio on their end. Anyone out there have a similar setup? Since I'm connecting the Roku directly to the switch, I thought this would bypass any issues with the Samsung tv if that was the root cause. Thoughts?

This is pretty frustrating to have to jump through so many hoops just to get surround sound, but the speakers were expensive, and I'd like to make this work if I can.

Also, Sonos team, when is Audible support coming back? (kicks hornets nest and runs away) - jk ;-)

Many thanks in advance for any help!

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