Observer

Cisco 8742HDC DVR mono audio

I asked a similar question more than a year ago, but I wasn't able to resolve this so I figured I'd give it one last shot.  I've had a Cisco 8742HDC for abput 18 mos., and I've been unable to get stereo audio from the DVR's analog RCA outputs when using component for video. The DVR outputs audio on the left and right channel, but there is no stereo separation, no directionality.  It sounds like 2.0 mono.  The previous DVR, I think an SA 8300, produced clear stereo using the same RCA audio connections on this TV.

 

The TV continues to produce clear stereo sound from other sources (DVD, Blu Ray, streaming video), just not from the  DVR. I've tried every combination of audio settings in the Devices menu, but nothing seems to correct this.  I can't find a "stereo" or "2 channel PCM" type of setting in the Device menu; just a setting that lets me choose "Dolby Digital" , "HDMI", or "Other" none of which produce stereo.

 

Even more bizarre, I seem to only get mono through the HDMI connection of the DVR.  (I get good stereo sound through other HDMI devices connected to the same TV.)  Maybe this unit is just horrible at downmixing to 2-channel, I don't know.  If anyone has any suggestions please post here.

 

3 REPLIES
Expert

Re: Cisco 8742HDC DVR mono audio

is there a wide/ narrow/ normal mode?

 

Observer

Re: Cisco 8742HDC DVR mono audio

Yes, for audio dynamic range there is a choice of normal/wide/narrow.  I've tried "wide" and "normal" and although that has some effect on the overall volume, it doesn't seem to help with this issue of stereo imaging.

 

Observer

Re: Cisco 8742HDC DVR mono audio

One last data point, in case this helps anyone else with a similar issue.  As an experiment I bought a digital>analog audio converter that takes the optical digital audio output of the DVR and converts it to 2 channel RCA analog stereo.  I connected this aftermarket DAC to the TV using the same RCA cables used before.  Boom: full stereo sound now works.  Note: I used a converter that supports downmixing Dolby  Digital 5.1 in addition to PCM; I don't know if it would have worked using one of the cheaper converters that only handle PCM.

 

Since "bypassing" the DVR's RCA outputs in this way "fixed" the issue, I can only conclude that, for whatever reason, the DAC in the DVR does not downmix audio to full stereo when using the RCA outputs on the DVR.   Or if so, it does so in a way that makes it practically mono.