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  1. #1
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    Do Time Warner Cable HD DVRs record 5.1 sound?

    I have an HD DVR from my cable company Time Warner in LA for which I get basic HD channels plus HBO & Showtime in HD. If Showtime broadcasts a movie in 5.1 surround sound & I record this on my DVR, will it record and play back in 5.1 surround sound? My HD DVR (Which is also my cable box) is connected to my TV via component cables. The sound of my TV is connected however by an RCA cable from the monitor audio out (left & right) to my receivers TV in (left & right). I don't go from the DVR audio to the receivers TV in as the sound isn't as good. Anyway, will the DVR record 5.1 and will I be able to hear playback in 5.1 the way I have this set up. If not, what should I do. I have an optical digital input on my receiver. Likewise, if I'm watching the actual HD 5.1 broadcast as opposed to a DVR recording of it, will I hear it in 5.1 or do I need to set this up differently? Paul from LA mentioned something about a digital connection being needed.

    Appreciate your help. I tried calling Time Warner who's usually pretty good but I kept getting
    English as a second language women who obviously were not technicians even though I had a techncal problem and they were clueless.

  2. #2
    Forum Regular N. Abstentia's Avatar
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    No you can't get 5.1 the way you're connected. You can only get 2 channel stereo since you have the 2 channel analog connected.

    You need to run an optical cable straight from your cable box to the receiver. Throw away the RCA's connected to your TV...that's a bad thing.

  3. #3
    Feel the Tempo eisforelectronic's Avatar
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    Your HD-DVR has a digital output. Use it! It does record the DD 5.1, but again you need to use the digital connection in order to get the DD signal to your receiver.
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  4. #4
    Forum Regular paul_pci's Avatar
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    Yes, go with the digital cable, but unfortunately, I believe TIme-Warner still uses analog sound for non-digital broadcasts, so you need to maintain both connections with your receiver automatically detecting which type of sound—analog or digital—is coming through. The digital will give you native 5.1 sound as opposed to the Prologic which is what you're hearing now, meaning that with the optical cable, these broadcasts will sound more like a DVD.

  5. #5
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    Clarification & Is a $20 Radio Shack Optic Cable Sufficient?

    Once I connect the optic cable to my receiver from the DVR, do I still need to press the auxillary channel to hear this sound or will it override my RCA connection on my TV input (I think I'm going to prefer my analogue RCA sound for stereo broadcasts which is why I'm not disconnecting this)? Hopefully this makes sense. Paul mentioned something at one time about needing both connection.

    Also, and I appologize for repeating this ongoing topic, for strictly 5.1 TV sound, will a $20 fiber optics cable from Radio Shack (that's their highest grade model) be sufficient for excellent sound or am I better off getting a $40 plus cable from someplace else for better TV sound quality from my cable carrier?

    Thanks for your help.

  6. #6
    Forum Regular N. Abstentia's Avatar
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    You'll be just fine with a $12 WalMart cable. They are the same thing as Monster at 1/64th the price.

  7. #7
    Forum Regular paul_pci's Avatar
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    If you're receiver is smart, and I know we didn't look at this, it should automatically detect the nature of the signal, analog or digital, and select the appropriate one. This is why I like DirectTV, one digital cable fits all.



    Quote Originally Posted by hershon
    Once I connect the optic cable to my receiver from the DVR, do I still need to press the auxillary channel to hear this sound or will it override my RCA connection on my TV input (I think I'm going to prefer my analogue RCA sound for stereo broadcasts which is why I'm not disconnecting this)? Hopefully this makes sense. Paul mentioned something at one time about needing both connection.

    Also, and I appologize for repeating this ongoing topic, for strictly 5.1 TV sound, will a $20 fiber optics cable from Radio Shack (that's their highest grade model) be sufficient for excellent sound or am I better off getting a $40 plus cable from someplace else for better TV sound quality from my cable carrier?

    Thanks for your help.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by paul_pci
    Yes, go with the digital cable, but unfortunately, I believe TIme-Warner still uses analog sound for non-digital broadcasts, so you need to maintain both connections with your receiver automatically detecting which type of sound—analog or digital—is coming through.
    This is a strange truth...

    Some of the non-digital broadcast channels (FOX TV in my upstate NY area...) are output via the toslink output, but some are not...

    So it's not even that all analog sound comes out of the RCA jacks, it's just SOME of the analog stations....

    Looking forward to all digital local broadcasts in 2006 though...

  9. #9
    Forum Regular gonefishin's Avatar
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    Hi there


    Yes. it will record HD DD5.1 sound. But you'll need to use the optical hook-up. This let's your receiver do the decoding. Unless your HD cable box is different than the two high def boxes that I've had...all your need is one output to your receiver. This is what we have for digital channels, analog channels and high def channels. It doesn't matter if it's DD or mono. It's in digital form and will be decoded appropriately by your receiver no matter what the output. What we also did was to take some RCA analog outputs from the cable box directly to the Tv. This way if we're watching just some regular broadcast...we could simply turn our Tv on and get the picture and sound from the Tv. But if we choose that we want to go thru the HT system...we turn on the receiver and turn down the volume on the Tv.

    have fun!
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