Solving the 5.1, DTS issues with the Playbar


This thread is specifically for those who are trying to understand the Playbars 5.1 and DTS issues.

As most of you know the Playbar does not convert DTS signal. It also will only convert 2.0 to SIMULATED PCM 5.1 signal. If you can live with the simulated signal, then you are ahead of the game. IF you want PURE unadulterated 5.1 from your DirecTV or Cable, you WILL most likely have to buy a switch like this one. http://www.monoprice.com/products/7974
Or a Bluray converter like this one.
http://www.oppodigital.com/blu-ray-bdp-103/

MOST tvs will not convert true 5.1. There are some on this thread that say they do, but most dont. I found this out the hard way by buying one of Samsungs highest end tv's, only to find out that 2.0 is all im ever gunna get.
A $75 switch is a bargain IMO to have such sound to the Playbar the way it is intended. IF you want 1080p up convert video and and 5.1 audio, then a simular Bluray like the Oppo is for you.

Concerning movies that are only on DTS:
Oppo can convert the DTS signal to PCM 5.1 as well. I do not know about the Switch, because I do not have one.

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I got a Sony UBP X800 BD player and can't get 5.1 from DTS tracks. I can get stereo when going through my TV which a Philips 55PUK7150/12. I tried a couple of those HDMI audio extractors without luck so far.
Very frustrating and such a waste of time, I wish we could get Sonos to eventually implement DTS support. It's obviously not a technical issue but a cost saving one as they spare themselves the DTS license. I would be happy to buy that license myself as an in-app purchase for instance.

https://en.community.sonos.com/home-theater-228993/have-sonos-add-dts-support-6826460
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DENON professional DN-500BD MKII

Thanks for the tip. Sadly it look like it does not do 4K and 3D BD.
June 2019. Just purchased a DENON professional DN-500BD MKII from B&H Photo in NY. I am playing as i write this a dvd- DTS 5.1 audio disc on my sony bravia/sonos soundbar with surround speakers (5.1) and it works. right outta the box. all i did was choose "5.x" in the audio settings menu.
Hi Racin,

great hint but unfortunately this is not a solution (Oppo player), but a very expensive work-around for Sonos' design flaw.

The only real solution can come from Sonos with new firmware and added DTS support.

Let's hope they will add it asap, although it will cost them some $ they thought was easily saved by their strange decision.

It's still hard to swallow for me. A high class, very expensive surround system that is indeed capable of great sound quality was deliberately declined to reduce some $ in production.

How expensive can a DTS licence be? Even my 90 Euro LG BD player has it! Amazon lists a 84 Euro Philips receiver with DTS Support, also a 100 Euro Sony receiver, capable of DTS support.

And our 700 Euro playbar can't do it? Come on, Sonos...

The only real solution is for Sonos to put HDMI into the play bar like everyone else has been doing for years.
It's mind boggling how many threads there are about 5.1 issues.
There are issues with my high end Samsung JS9000 too.
I ordered two Sonos Ones for the bedroom and would buy a full 5.1 set if Sonos wasn't so antiquated but they don't want my money. I probably should cancel the Sonos One orders in fact.
Sonos should be embarrased..
There is only one solution: Ditch the Sonos and buy a decent home cinema or bar like the Denos Heos Bar which supports all and has the same expansion options as Sonos. Really a big dissappointment Sonos your products are dated.
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Hi Guys,

My new setup banishes all the woes and frustration with the lack of DTS on the Soundbar:-

TV - Sony KD-55xd9305 4K TV - all inputs via HDMI, all Audio output via Optical to Soundbar
(Yes the Sony does pass DD 5.1 bitstream via optical)

Blu Ray Player - Samsung BD-J7500 (current cost around £100) Video & Audio output via HMDI, Audio settings - Convert ALL formats to DD 5.1 Bitstream.

Audio - Sonos Soundbar & Sub (Soon to be joined by a pair of Play 1's)

Outcome - Fan-bloody-tastic 5.1 sound to go along with a truly stunning picture !!

I know it's not a cheap solution but after reading all the threads on here regarding this issue it just made sense to make sure i brought compatible devices to make the most of the Sonos system which i already had and i was able to ditch my optical switch box and all the extra cables?

Obviously i would ideally prefer a DTS update for the Soundbar but until that time (if ever) then i'm one happy little chappy .

BTW - I also now play all MKV media files through the Samsung via 2TB USB 2.0 drive and 99.9% of them are upscaled to 3840 x 2160 and the audio output is DD 5.1 so same result as Blu Ray!

While i appreciate that there are more expansive Audio soundtracks available now (DTS-HD, DTS-TrueHD, DD Plus, ATMOS etc) I am more than happy with the sound i'm currently getting as is my whole family!!
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The Oppo BDP-103d does not give us a choice on bitstream to choose what type it puts out. It does a 'pass through' type of service so if the Blu-Ray disc only has DTS-HD we are screwed. Sonos really needs to get the DTS decoding in. I would pay for that firmware
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DarqMan, thank you for your comment even without the 5.1 dolby dropouts their are other issues at play here and many sound delay issues to be solved, possibly never happen though since it involves wi fi as most people know bluetooth also works except much shorter distance. Sonos not up for primetime even with only a playbar hooked directly to your 5.1 television unless you are satisfied with stereo. The music streams great I admit they just missed it when video is involved.
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I feel your pain. I've abandoned Sonos for home theater. The direction the company is focusing on now (voice control and streaming) just reinforces their original decision to not support HD audio formats. I thought that maybe after some time they'd realize how important this feature is to their customers and throw us a bone, but I don't see it happening now. Instead of staying mad at them, I'm moving on. I'm removing the PLAYBAR, SUB and PLAY 3's from my theater this weekend and replacing them with a Klipsch Reference system that arrived today. Super excited. Look at it on the bright side, it will be one less person complaining here.
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Does everybody on this forum understand that if you throw enough of your hard earned money at anything with your time you can probably get it to work its like an old car if you keep throwing money at it, it will keep going their comes a time when it is no longer feasible. I have 2200 dollars worth of sonos equipment. Great for music but thats it. Will not even play 5.1 out of sat box receivers without dropouts. Have purchased optical switch, new sony bravia4K tv have second new dish receiver coming but believe thats not the problem. Total failure for television unless your happy with pcm stereo. Maybe after 3500 to 4000 dollars invested and all your valuable time you will get it to work but still thats a big if. 15 year old bose system with 400 dollar 15 year old receiver does a better job, very disappointed in sonos.

Hi Beetle777,

It looks like you have a support ticket open with our technical team: 160318-000699. Please update this incident and let the technicians know your issues continue. The ticket is still open and will be escalated to higher tiers of support if your issue is not resolved.
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Does everybody on this forum understand that if you throw enough of your hard earned money at anything with your time you can probably get it to work its like an old car if you keep throwing money at it, it will keep going their comes a time when it is no longer feasible. I have 2200 dollars worth of sonos equipment. Great for music but thats it. Will not even play 5.1 out of sat box receivers without dropouts. Have purchased optical switch, new sony bravia4K tv have second new dish receiver coming but believe thats not the problem. Total failure for television unless your happy with pcm stereo. Maybe after 3500 to 4000 dollars invested and all your valuable time you will get it to work but still thats a big if. 15 year old bose system with 400 dollar 15 year old receiver does a better job, very disappointed in sonos.
Hello guys

I currently have a mac mini connected via HDMI to my TV and via optical to the Playbar. After reading multiple threads and not being able to feed the Playbar with 5.1 sound from a DTS movie using Plex I ended up this weekend with giving a try to Kodi (XBMC). It works marvelously, converting DTS to DD and feeding the Sonos with 5.1 so I have migrated to this software as it was impossible to get more than stereo beforehand.

Sharing as may be of interest to some users.
best
Gus
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Because Sonos is cutting back on staff and focusing on streaming services and voice control I seriously doubt we'll EVER see an upgrade to DTS for the Playbar. I don't know this for a fact, just an opinion. Klipsch just came out with an HD wireless option for their Reference series speakers albeit very expensive, about $5000 for 5.1 and even more for 7.1 or 7.2. I'm sure the price will come down eventually.

http://www.klipsch.com/products/reference-premiere-hd-wireless
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This kit is compatible with models from 2013 onwards (F series or H series) that are 4K and have a model number equal to or higher than 7000. 
This includes the 2013 4K F9000, the 2014 4K HU8500 uk model US HU9000 and the HU7500 uk and the US HU8550. There's is more too but don't know all the model numbers of the top of my head.
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Pretty good read, thanks. does the kit target specific models or manufacturing dates necessary for the upgrade?
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The sek-3500 for hu9000 (hu8500 in the uk) you get the features of the 2015 SUHD TVs have even HDR in fact it is the same OCB as the js9000/js9500. On avs one of the members (musician)made is to explain what you get
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Doesn't the evolution kit just enhance features like interface, voice commands, menu hubs etc? It just upgrades older model smart Tvs to smoother navigations options I thought....
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I've found love again with my sonos playbar 5.1 since upgrading My TVs evolution kit which passes through DD and since all my AV equipment will pass DD and bluray converts DTS to DD. Now I have no need to hack my tv to pass DD like before or constantly move the optical cable between sources. I can just set back and enjoy the incredibly sound from this system.
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It's incredibly frustrating that they don't support it. It's almost a $2000 system that is incredibly underwhelming. The music is on another level but I only have so many outlets.
Qudos to DTS support! I can cope with the lack of HDMI and 24 bit formats but DTS is almost required when most movies are decoded with it. However, Sonos is the best wireless audio system on the market when it comes to music (16/44.1), but that's it. When it comes to movie audio they are out of reach.
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If your APP settings suggest your outputting Dolby 5.1, thats what you want, no? Or is DTS superrior? I have my cable, ps4, and DVD hooked up to a toslink adapter then one output from there to my playbar.
Of course. But this is getting you nowhere. Keep on like this and you'll be your own worst enemy.

Turns out the fine line between enthusiastic movement leader and insufferable bore is not as fine as I thought. 😉
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I say what I want!
Of course. But this is getting you nowhere. Keep on like this and you'll be your own worst enemy.
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I say what I want! This is no nonsense its a serious problem for me and a lot of other Playbar users! Its time they update to DTS!

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