Playbar audio drops out


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I experience intermittent audio dropouts with the Playbar on Dolby Digital 5.1 broadcasts. I do also have the Sub and two Play 1 speakers setup as surrounds. I have an LG 55LA7400 connected via an optical cable to the Playbar. The dropouts occur sporadically and last 1-2 seconds. You can watch a TV show for a 30 minutes or more with no dropouts and then randomly hear a few at random times for the rest of the show. Now, when I check the Sonos app using my iPad, iPhone, laptop etc., it does say that it's receiving DD 5.1 audio. Also, if I change the audio to stereo then I don't have this issue. I really love the TV and the soundbar so I'd like to get this resolved if possible.

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I'll try to call the next time it happens. If the first log (#8117374) isn't giving you enough information then I'm not sure what else can be done...I captured that log when the issue was happening.

I mentioned that I'd call but it's late here, it happened again, I now have a work around, but I think I can help you reproduce the problem as I believe I understand what's happening now. I'm also posting this for the community in case they run into the issue.

Diagnostic #8142510 - taken just after the problem happened, You'll likely see the DD 5.1 stream switch to a DD 2.0 stream. The issue is that the PLAYBAR gets stuck in that mode, except that it's not really a DD 2.0 stream and even worse, the center channel disapears and the back channels are somewhat muffled as I reported earlier.

Diagnostic #8142511 - taken just after the PLAYBAR finally recovers.

Reproducible Scenario
My Tivo Roamio was recording a show. I started watching the show prior to the recording finishing. At the end of the show, Tivo does something to add in the commercial skip functionality to the show. My guess is that whatever they do messes up the PLAYBAR.

Once this happened I tried to unplug the HDMI cable between the TV and the Roamio to no avail. I power cycled the Tivo to no avail. I changed OTA TV channels to well known DD 5.1 channels.... during this the Sonos App still showed DD 2.0.... except when I power cycled the Tivo..the Sonos App showed "silent" at that point. One of two steps will fix the problem: (1) power cycle the PLAYBAR or (2) wait it out for approximately 5 -15 minutes and the PLAYBAR usually recovers by itself and flips back to DD 5.1 and all is well.

My Equipment
1. Tivo Roamio running TiVo Series5 20.7.4.RC2-846-6-846 (latest bits)
2. LG OLED65C7P (2017 Model) - running software version 04.70.07 (latest bits)
3. PLAYBAR, Sub, two Play 1's for surrounds all running 8.2.1 Build: 39247170 (latest bits)
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Yesterday I added 2 x play3s to my playbar as surround. Today I’m getting drop outs. Any help would be appreciated.
8130724
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I'll try to call the next time it happens. If the first log (#8117374) isn't giving you enough information then I'm not sure what else can be done...I captured that log when the issue was happening.
Userlevel 7
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ronj: At this point, I'd recommend giving our support technicians a call to troubleshoot this with you in real time. We can get to the bottom of what is happening with the signal coming to the PLAYBAR and get this sorted. Our contact information can be found here.
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BTW, I just checked that recording and it's definitely a DD 5.1 stream. I used the Sonos app's Settings -> About My Sonos System and it indicates a DD 5.1 stream. So, I'm not sure why the log would show a DD 2.0 stream?
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Sorry, forgot to mention that the TiVo Roamio source device is setup with the “Use Dolby Audio” option. There’s no option to set things up to use only DD 5.1 specifically, all of my equipment settings only allow for using Dolby Digital.
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I checked and my LG OLED65C7P (2017 Model) is setup to pass what it receives via HDMI directly through the optical output [Digital Sound Out = Automatic and SIMPLINK HDMI-CEC = on ].

Honestly, if I knew that the PLAYBAR doesn’t support Dolby Digital I wouldn’t have purchased it. The article you referenced is not clear that the PLAYBAR does not support Dolby Digital 2.0. Which I’m learning is a common format for some non-prime time TV shows that are broadcast OTA. It’s interesting that the PLAYBAR works well 90+% of the time with a DD 2.0 stream. Is there any way you can add support for DD 2.0 formally?
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Correct. According to the last diagnostic, the PLAYBAR is receiving a Dolby Digital 2.0 signal. Outside of what is actually being broadcast, your TV can then give a different signal through its output (PCM, Dolby Digital, etc.). I would recommend double-checking the audio output settings on your TV. The PLAYBAR is tested to work properly with only PCM and Dolby 5.1 as noted here.

Additionally, should you run into another audio dropout, I would recommend running another diagnostic report and replying with the confirmation number it gives you at the end. This will help us to determine what happened right then and there.

Thanks!
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BTW, I was watching the ABC nightly news with David Muir at the time that the audio dropped from the PlayBar for about 15 minutes. It was recorded on my DVR. After the audio comes back to the Playbar, I rewind and watch the segment again and it works just fine. I'd say this has to be a bug in the Sonos code.
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I assume that the broadcast that was being received at the time must have been a DD 2.0 signal? That seems strange as it's an HD OTA DTV signal from a major channel, but I guess that can happen. Everything is setup to simply pass through the received signal, so no there's no option to change it. Are you saying that the PLAYBAR doesn't handle DD 2.0 signals properly?
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Hello there, ronj. Thanks for the diagnostic report. I noticed your PLAYBAR is receiving a Dolby Digital 2.0 signal. Is it possible to change this to either to just Dolby Digital or Dolby Digital 5.1? Please let us know if this change makes anything better or if the issue persists. Additionally. if the issue persists, please submit another diagnostic while the audio is playing to the PLAYBAR.

Thanks in advance.
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Uggh, I've been experiencing the same issue. Playbar audio dropouts...it actually sounds like just the main center channel drops and the left/right/rear channels seem muted. This has been an ongoing issue throughout the last 4 updates and it's really frustrating that it continues. I'm using an OTA DTV signal through a Tivo Roamio connected to an LG C7 TV and a Sonos Playbar, Sub, and Play 1's setup. Diagnostic #8117374.
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Hi there, allancain. Mind submitting a diagnostic report of this happening so we can take a look? We've had a few updates recently and would love to take a closer look at what is going on. Try to send DD5.1 audio to the PLAYBAR (giving dropouts) and then submit.

Be sure to reply with the seven-digit confirmation number it gives at the end. Much appreciated.
Seem to be having the same problem, if set to dd5.1 I get drop out but fine in stereo. Are we any further forward with this ?
I currently have the same issue and have posted other threads regarding the loss of audio.

But I must be honest as I'm really becoming discouraged with my experience on the Playbar. When it's working, It's great. But the dropping of sound, or the intermittent pulsating distortion is starting to get really old.

I love all my Sonos products as I've had them for years before purchasing the Playbar and have been a huge fan.

Support is working with me but at this point and seeing this issue reported by others concerns me very much. I will not purchase the sub as I was planning to until this issue is resolved.
Hi Everybody,

We are almost three years into this now, isn't it time to be honest about this is not going to be solved in my opinion so I'm letting it go and selling my gear, going back to some traditional high end audio very disappointing I have to say.
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Hi Joe F,

Thanks for letting me know. It seems that the PLAYBAR is not receiving a consistent audio stream when the TV is set to Dolby Digital. We are currently working to improve our software so that you can get consistent audio feeds in Dolby Digital. For the time being, I would recommend leaving your TV set to Stereo (PCM).
Hi Joe F,

First, make sure that there are no firmware updates available on your TV.

It seems that the PLAYBAR is not receiving a consistent stream of audio through the optical cable. If you switch the TV to Stereo (PCM) does the issue still happen?


Hello Omar, just bought Playbar and subwoofer... sound dropping the same for me with my Samsung TV, been reading years worth of the same issue so not optimistic here. The only fix I have found was switching to PCM as you described, but getting lower quality movie audio.

What can be done here?
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Hi Joe F,

First, make sure that there are no firmware updates available on your TV.

It seems that the PLAYBAR is not receiving a consistent stream of audio through the optical cable. If you switch the TV to Stereo (PCM) does the issue still happen?
Cable looks fine. Here's a diagnostic with the sound on while watching Netflix (sound was working fine at the time). 7433878
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Could you check the optical cable for and significant bends or damage? At the time we sent the diagnostic was audio playing through the app on the TV? If not, let's recreate the issue and run a diagnostic immediately after. Based on this diagnostic, it seems to not be receiving a signal at all from the TV.
From an app on the TV. It is a Samsung if that helps.
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I too have the same issues. I have the Playbar connected to my Samsung KS8000. I have everything switched to PCM/Stereo, but still get a half second sound drop.

Hello dresalonga. What is the source of the audio?

I'm having same issue. Only happens when watching Netflix -- sound cuts out intermittently usually for a few seconds. Diagnostic # is 7430589. Can someone please help?

Hi Joe. Is Netflix coming from an app in your TV or from another device?
I'm having same issue. Only happens when watching Netflix -- sound cuts out intermittently usually for a few seconds. Diagnostic # is 7430589. Can someone please help?
Or would a splitter such as this fix the sound drop?

https://www.amazon.com/Portta-Toslink-Digital-Switcher-Dolby-AC3/dp/B00U3RJT7U/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&qid=1493787602&sr=8-4&keywords=portta%2Btoslink&th=1