Audio dropouts from my Dish Network VIP722 HD DVR

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mikekohut
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Audio dropouts from my Dish Network VIP722 HD DVR

Post by mikekohut » Sun Oct 26, 2008 9:57 am

I get audio dropouts with this DVR connected to my Cambridge Audio 540r receiver. I haven't yet conducted any tests because I don't have a second AV receiver, but anyone have similar problems with such a thing and find it was the set top receiver or the AV receiver.

I am running HDMI from the box to the TV, but optical from the box to the receiver. Perhaps I should try running coax instead of the optical?

Thoughts, anyone? Also, are we real strict around here regarding double-posts? Never had the desire to do so, but thinking I'd like to post in the Sunfire home theater forum and link, here - lemme know guys.

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Re: Audio dropouts from my Dish Network VIP722 HD DVR

Post by mikekohut » Sun Oct 26, 2008 10:07 am

oh, btw... if it makes any difference, the audio drops from the center channel and still remains faint in the mains and surrounds....
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Re: Audio dropouts from my Dish Network VIP722 HD DVR

Post by TNRabbit » Sun Oct 26, 2008 10:51 am

No need to double-post; it just convolutes everything.

I'm not sure what to tell you. I guess I'd do like you said & start with changing to the coax to see if that fixes it. If not, I'd suspect an issue with your DVR.

Someone with more information will come along soon....
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Re: Audio dropouts from my Dish Network VIP722 HD DVR

Post by BillD » Sun Oct 26, 2008 11:32 am

Are you watching live or from the disk? I originally had some problems with my DVR (Scientific Atlanta) when I added an eSATA disk. Had to give up on it and got another one (use the old eSATA on my computer).
It should sound like it isn't there!
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Re: Audio dropouts from my Dish Network VIP722 HD DVR

Post by mikekohut » Sun Oct 26, 2008 11:50 am

Thanks, TNRabbit and BillD.

I meant to say that it only occurs going from commercial to regular programming, but doesn't always drop - it is random. Pushing DVD source and returning to Vid 1 corrects the issue until the next problem commerical (probably 80% of 'em).

I thought about replacing the cables, but my one optical going from the box to the receiver means 5 pairs of coax!!! Maybe test a different optical first...?

I am going to get another receiver, for different reasons, as stated before so maybe this would factor well into the test if the optical cable replacement or coax don't reveal anything.

I thought maybe there was simply a signal strength issue with the optical feed. Maybe this is a DVR receiver issue on it's own, or perhaps escaping light from a loose optical cable? Thoughts?
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Re: Audio dropouts from my Dish Network VIP722 HD DVR

Post by garcianc » Sun Oct 26, 2008 1:59 pm

There shouldn't be a signal strength problem with your optical connection.

My guess is that the problem occurs at your processor, which might be having a tough time switching between surround/stereo modes which sometimes change from commercial to commercial. This is an issue that has plagued several processors in that generation. I used to own an Outlaw 970 which I decided to upgrade to the model 990 because of the audio dropout problem. Even earlier Sunfire TGP models exhibited some dropouts. This has been mostly written off by industry as a mystery. Some combination of components and processors work well together, while others sometimes work.
As quirky as this problem seems to be, I would say experimentation maybe the only option, other than replacement of components.

Now there are the occasional audio dropouts in the channel's transmission. I see them more on 1080i programming for over-the-air HD channels, but the sound always comes right back on its own when the signal recovers. If you are sure that your cable/antenna/satellite signal is already optimum, I would move on to looking at your components.

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Re: Audio dropouts from my Dish Network VIP722 HD DVR

Post by BillD » Sun Oct 26, 2008 2:01 pm

I'd try new optical. THIS is the stuff I use.

Do you have some auto gain control or something that could be bypassed. Maybe that's the problem (commercials are usually a lot louder).
It should sound like it isn't there!
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Re: Audio dropouts from my Dish Network VIP722 HD DVR

Post by rolereversal » Mon Oct 27, 2008 1:57 pm

garcianc wrote:There shouldn't be a signal strength problem with your optical connection.

My guess is that the problem occurs at your processor, which might be having a tough time switching between surround/stereo modes which sometimes change from commercial to commercial. This is an issue that has plagued several processors in that generation. I used to own an Outlaw 970 which I decided to upgrade to the model 990 because of the audio dropout problem. Even earlier Sunfire TGP models exhibited some dropouts. This has been mostly written off by industry as a mystery. Some combination of components and processors work well together, while others sometimes work.
As quirky as this problem seems to be, I would say experimentation maybe the only option, other than replacement of components.

Now there are the occasional audio dropouts in the channel's transmission. I see them more on 1080i programming for over-the-air HD channels, but the sound always comes right back on its own when the signal recovers. If you are sure that your cable/antenna/satellite signal is already optimum, I would move on to looking at your components.
I think this may be the problem as well? Maybe?? :lol: On my receiver I leave the digital input set to "auto" instead of a select 5.1 DTS or what have you. So it will select the type of format(either surround/stereo). If you have such a feature on your unit you could try it.

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Re: Audio dropouts from my Dish Network VIP722 HD DVR

Post by mikekohut » Mon Oct 27, 2008 2:13 pm

I think you guys are on to something. Last night I watched the Series on Fox (Cubs should be where the Phillies are, BTW... grrrrrrrrrrruph)... anyway, when not watching an HD channel there were no issues, at all - commercials never were a source of dropouts and audio signal held steady.

I will have to look at the manual - not sure exactly where to look, though, but I'll try....
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Re: Audio dropouts from my Dish Network VIP722 HD DVR

Post by PeteW » Tue Jan 20, 2009 6:13 pm

Did you ever figure this problem out?

I would call Cambridge because this was one of the reasons that they pushed out a new firmware (the operating software) for a few of their receivers. I cannot remember the models that were affected, but your dealer should be able to help out.
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Re: Audio dropouts from my Dish Network VIP722 HD DVR

Post by PeteW » Tue Jan 20, 2009 6:14 pm

Did you ever figure this problem out?

I would call Cambridge because this was one of the reasons that they pushed out a new firmware (the operating software) for a few of their receivers. I cannot remember the models that were affected, but your dealer should be able to help out.
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Re: Audio dropouts from my Dish Network VIP722 HD DVR

Post by mikekohut » Tue Jan 20, 2009 10:04 pm

I did get things figured out - I bought a Sunfire Ultimate Receiver II and have never looked back. I don't blame the Cambridge - fine, fine receiver for $800 (can be had used for $300 now), but it just wasn't compatible. The UR-II has no issues whatsover in the very same setup....
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Re: Audio dropouts from my Dish Network VIP722 HD DVR

Post by treitz3 » Tue Jan 20, 2009 11:58 pm

Not that it matters at this point, but I have not had a failure with any RCA connection with any piece of gear yet. At any time.
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Re: Audio dropouts from my Dish Network VIP722 HD DVR

Post by Dreamer » Wed Jan 21, 2009 1:15 am

I would agree with "garcianc", because I've had similar problems with my Scientific Atlanta 8300 DVR and my Sony receiver. You said you had your Cambridge receiver set to "auto-detect" the type of signal it was getting, right? The drops-outs are most likely cause by the fact that commercials are almost ALL in 2-channel stereo, whereas most HD programming is broadcast in either Dolby 5.1 or DTS 5.1. When the broadcast changes from stereo to 5.1, the processor has to figure out what type of processing to use, and if your signal from your dish isn't dead-on perfect, it might cause the receiver's surround processor to sort of stutter while it's trying to make up its mind.

Try this:

If you can set the digital sound output mode on your DVR (through it's setup menus), set it to just automatically default to send EVERYTHING as either Stereo or Dolby 5.1. Then, if you've picked "stereo" as the DVR's output type, set your receiver to some sort of "synthesize" 5.1 format, and let the receiver's processor create the missing channel info from the stereo signal. If you set the DVR to "Dolby 5.1", set your receiver to one of it's Dolby 5.1 settings. IF they are both the same, the audio dropouts should stop.

Some of the older receivers and Pre/pro units has slow processors, and they sometimes will take a while to determine the format of an incoming signal, and this "processor lag" sauses the receiver to automaticly dial back (or even shut off) output to your speakers until the processor gets a lock on the signal. The newer units seem to have utra-quick processors, and almost never display this phenomena...

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Re: Audio dropouts from my Dish Network VIP722 HD DVR

Post by mikekohut » Wed Jan 21, 2009 9:03 am

treitz3 wrote:Not that it matters at this point, but I have not had a failure with any RCA connection with any piece of gear yet. At any time.
Tom, it had nothing to do with RCA connections, as mentioned before it was likely a software issue.
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