This is exactly what I have found. Before the update, I couldn't get 5.1 working over wi-fi. Since the latest update, I am able to play some films with 5.1 over Wi-Fi, but not all. This is with the sound bar at 0, and the R1's at full volume. Even then, it could do with a little bit more volume at times.
The film I am playing is 'Central Intelligence'. The beginning soundtrack is very good for the surround effect (the actual film isn't too great though).
Really good to have somebody with your knowledge and experience on the forum. Hopefully Samsung might start to listen to what everyone has been telling them...
OK - the plot thickens...
With the latest update to the soundbar under certain circumstances I am now getting 5.1 over WiFi.
I have just played a Dolby test file which works correctly in 5.1. This is an H264 MP4 file with Dolby AC3 5.1 surround and with the rear speakers at max and the sound bar at minimum it plays with pretty balanced surround.
You can download the file here: https://thedigitaltheater.com/index.php/dolby-trailers/ - it is the top one in the list - load onto a mempry stick and play via the USB on the TV.
This is exactly the sort of file engineers use to test setups are working correctly...
However other sources are not decoding in surround with the correct rear level...
Interested to know if others are seeing / hearing the same...?
Testing done....... Pretty much came up with same results as everyone else so won't repeat too much.
Summary is wifi and hdmi give same results with next to no volume on rears, and definatly no audible sense of surround regardless of the source.
Various test files used with varying results and only one constant in that the optical/D.in connection is the only set up to give good volume from rears and full surround sound.
I will email samsung now regarding the visit and at least I can replicate the issues most are repprting; my fear in a way was it would actually work! And I will ask if the engineer is in fact a direct employee and not a "partnered" repair centre.
I will also enquire as to what the latest soundbar update was for; it maybe something completely unrelated as they point Blankly stated there would be no more updates to firmware for the rear volume issues.
Email sent........ Will let you know once they have responded tomorrow.
BTW some Very interesting posts on the complexity of Dolby 5.1 and great to see new input and more people joining the cause.........it's giving me some new energy to keep going with Samsung
Still strange to me that even with all this complexity it works fine for me on optical, but not on hdmi. I could understand if it was just a wifi issue and hdmi worked as optical does.
Surely the actual decoding is the same for all output methods :/
Yes and no...
The optical connection - TosLink doesnt support as many formats and bit rates as HDMI as it doesnt have the same bandwidth. It can carry PCM stereo, and Dolby Digital 5.1 / 7.1 and DTS equivalents but not the True HD versions or more than 2 channels of PCM
HDMI 1.3 and later can carry up to 8 channels of PCM (lossless) audio up to 24bit 192kHz and Dolby True HD / DTS-HD streams. HDMI also supports ARC - where the audio and video travel in opposite directions to one another.
Because of the above and the fact that most devices have multiple HDMI inputs and only one optical input it is quite possible they have separate decoding paths running separate firmware.
The WiFi system will be quite different because it is effectively having to piggyback on another system with knowing how resilient or fast it is. With any IP based audio system the key is minimising the amount of data sent and adding lots of redundancy to ensure that the receiver can "keep up".
My suspician is that some piece of code in the soundbar, shared by the HDMI and WiFi codecs but not the optical path, is failing to honour the Dolby protocol properly and is reporting incorrect dialnorm level information in the surround signals. (Dialnorm is defined when you author in surround and says what level the mix was done to). What I am going to attempt to do is author some test files Adobe Media Encoder and try and find out where it breaks down - for example does DTS work but not Dolby - or is it related to the bitrate or the DialNorm setting...
This sort of problem is more common than you think - the simplest things can get missed... When Philips launched the first CD player with both analogue and digital outputs nobody noticed that the digital out had the left and right channels reversed - very embarassing and before the days of a "firmware fix"...!
I see expertise knowledge here so maybe it will not be too much if I ask you guys to not focus only on the sound level in rear speakers but also on the Digital Dolby & DTS decoding and surround sound it self which is produced by this setup.
I tried several sources recorded in DD 5.1 and at least for me this is not a real DD 5.1 but something which only sound like a surround sound ie in one of my sources speaker says "this is the right side" and I hear sound from right side of soundbar but also from right rear speaker.
A moment later speaker says "this is right surround side" and the same as previously I hear sound from rigth side of soundbar and rihgt rear speaker as well. Only level of the voice is different and in second situation a little bit louder in rear. IMHO this should not work like that. On my "proper" old audio system the same test was played properly and when speaker said "right side" I heard only right front, when said "right rear" I heard only rear speaker ... unfortuantely can not back to old system anymore :(
Can anyone make similar tests ? Maybe my sound sources are not correct or I made some other mistake in my setup
In TV -> Sound settings -> Expert settings -> Sound Format ... i tried both options: PCM and Dolby Digital ... same also combination with HDMI sound format "PCM & Bitstream" ... all combinations gave me the same results.
Great explanation thanks.
Good to have you on board and will certainly show this to the engineer when he/she arrives........ May roll out some red carpet and put a banner up............ Oh and lock the door behind him hehe