Amazon Prime Video app 5.1 on 7.1 speakers problem

djoye

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Recently I've noticed an issue with Prime video where the 5.1 audio is forcefully upmixed to 7.1 and the side surround audio is sent to the rear surround speakers with nothing coming from the side surrounds. I've noticed this when running the Prime video app directly from the TV (LG G2) and from an Nvidia Shield, so it seems to be a problem with how the apps is rendering Dolby 5.1. The AVR is an Onkyo TX-RZ50 with a 7.1.2 configuration and I'm not yet convinced that the issue is on the AVR because 5.1 playback works properly from broadcast TV, Nintendo Switch, and ripped movies playing from Kodi on the Shield. Only the Prime video app is exhibiting the issue even when telling the AVR to playback audio in Direct mode.

Can anyone else with a 7.1 speaker layout reproduce this with the Prime video app? Windows version doesn't support surround sound.
 
I'm currently on an 5.2.4 setup, but plan to add 2 channels for 7.2.4 as soon as my Emotiva BasX 3 amp arrives which will hopefully ship out sometime this coming week. I'll be sure to test this as soon as it comes in.

Do you have Dolby Surround or DTS-X Nerual upmixing turned on, on your reciever? When this is happening which channels does your receiver show as active?
 
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I'm currently on an 5.2.4 setup, but plan to add 2 channels for 7.2.4 as soon as my Emotiva BasX 3 amp arrives which will hopefully ship out sometime this coming week. I'll be sure to test this as soon as it comes in.

Do you have Dolby Surround or DTS-X Nerual upmixing turned on, on your reciever? When this is happening which channels does your receiver show as active?
I flipped through all the playback options (Direct, Dolby Surround, DTS Neural, etc.) to see if the behavior changed and it doesn't. If I play a ripped 5.1 movie from Kodi on the Shield and I use "Direct" mode, the AVR shows that 5.1 channels are active. If I playback a Prime video in Direct mode, it shows that it's receiving 5.1 but that 7.1 speakers are active and it shows that it's receiving DD+ (Dolby Digital Plus) from the stream.

DD+ can contain 5.1 or 7.1 content, so I think that either Prime is incorrectly presenting the 5.1 stream as a 7.1 stream or that my AVR is assuming something about the stream, forcefully activating the rear surrounds and misplacing the audio.
 
I flipped through all the playback options (Direct, Dolby Surround, DTS Neural, etc.) to see if the behavior changed and it doesn't. If I play a ripped 5.1 movie from Kodi on the Shield and I use "Direct" mode, the AVR shows that 5.1 channels are active. If I playback a Prime video in Direct mode, it shows that it's receiving 5.1 but that 7.1 speakers are active and it shows that it's receiving DD+ (Dolby Digital Plus) from the stream.

DD+ can contain 5.1 or 7.1 content, so I think that either Prime is incorrectly presenting the 5.1 stream as a 7.1 stream or that my AVR is assuming something about the stream, forcefully activating the rear surrounds and misplacing the audio.
I have a similar setup to yours, so I'll drop my rear height channels so I can add the rear surround channels. Is there a specific show or movie on prime I should try or does this happen with everything?

My AVR is a Denon X3700h and I also use the Nvidia Shield (2017 pro). LG C2 as well.
 
I have a similar setup to yours, so I'll drop my rear height channels so I can add the rear surround channels. Is there a specific show or movie on prime I should try or does this happen with everything?

My AVR is a Denon X3700h and I also use the Nvidia Shield (2017 pro). LG C2 as well.
I'd certainly like to know how the Denon behaves. I found out that this behavior is that of the Onkyo AVR. Any Dolby 5.1 signal it receives, it outputs as 7.1 and sends the surround to the rear speakers, which is absolutely wrong in my opinion. It doesn't do this to DTS 5.1. I confirmed this behavior by playing a ripped Dolby TrueHD 5.1 movie... the AVR forced 7.1 output and put the surround audio in the rear speakers.

From the Onkyo TX-RZ50 manual:
ddWRONG02-p183.png

ddWRONG03-p185.png
 
I'd certainly like to know how the Denon behaves. I found out that this behavior is that of the Onkyo AVR. Any Dolby 5.1 signal it receives, it outputs as 7.1 and sends the surround to the rear speakers, which is absolutely wrong in my opinion. It doesn't do this to DTS 5.1. I confirmed this behavior by playing a ripped Dolby TrueHD 5.1 movie... the AVR forced 7.1 output and put the surround audio in the rear speakers.

From the Onkyo TX-RZ50 manual:
View attachment 541998
View attachment 541999
I can confirm this does not happen on the Denon. I mainly tested with The Rig tv series as that was the first DD+ show on prime that came to mind. With native and direct mode it plays as 5.1 with LCR and Surround right and left as expected. With DD+ Dolby Surround upmix(my preferred config)I get output on all 7 channels.

I'm glad you brought this to my attention as I was considering upgrading to the TX-RZ50 as it appears to be the most affordable AVR with DIRAC support and also well reviewed. All that said, I also have an Apple TV 4K and I can tell you it sends anything thats DD+ as multichannel PCM. This could possibly be a workaround for you. On the Shield my AVR detects DD+ as DD+, but the same content is detected as Multichannel In on Apple TV which may get you the correct channel assignment from your AVR with DD+ audio.

I don't have your issue but I typically use the Apple TV for streaming and the Shield for Kodi/Plex client. Apple TV works great for matching framerate on apps like Netflix, Prime, Disney etc. The Shield matches content great in Kodi but pretty much sucks at It in other apps.
 
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I can confirm this does not happen on the Denon. I mainly tested with The Rig tv series as that was the first DD+ show on prime that came to mind. With native and direct mode it plays as 5.1 with LCR and Surround right and left as expected. With DD+ Dolby Surround upmix(my preferred config)I get output on all 7 channels.

I'm glad you brought this to my attention as I was considering upgrading to the TX-RZ50 as it appears to be the most affordable AVR with DIRAC support and also well reviewed. All that said, I also have an Apple TV 4K and I can tell you it sends anything thats DD+ as multichannel PCM. This could possibly be a workaround for you. On the Shield my AVR detects DD+ as DD+, but the same content is detected as Multichannel In on Apple TV which may get you the correct channel assignment from your AVR with DD+ audio.

I don't have your issue but I typically use the Apple TV for streaming and the Shield for Kodi/Plex client. Apple TV works great for matching framerate on apps like Netflix, Prime, Disney etc. The Shield matches content great in Kodi but pretty much sucks at It in other apps.
I really wanted something from Denon or Marantz because my Denon AVRs have been awesome, but they didn't have anything for proper HDMI 2.1 gaming back when I settled for this Onkyo.

This is my Onkyo ownership list of fails:
TX-SR605 - HDCP handshake issues
TX-SR608 - Cold solder developed somewhere in the center speaker connection
TX-RZ50 - Stupid Dolby 5.1 surround placement

Examples of "Direct" mode for Dolby 5.1:

ddWRONG01.jpg

ddWRONG04.jpg
 
I really wanted something from Denon or Marantz because my Denon AVRs have been awesome, but they didn't have anything for proper HDMI 2.1 gaming back when I settled for this Onkyo.

This is my Onkyo ownership list of fails:
TX-SR605 - HDCP handshake issues
TX-SR608 - Cold solder developed somewhere in the center speaker connection
TX-RZ50 - Stupid Dolby 5.1 surround placement

Examples of "Direct" mode for Dolby 5.1:

View attachment 542492
View attachment 542493
The x3700h has been solid for me and I got a great open box deal at https://www.safeandsoundhq.com/
 
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