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newbie DVD question

Old 11-14-02, 05:04 PM
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newbie DVD question

Wow, I'm in awe at what some of you guys discuss- have mercy on a poor college student I just got my first DVD player (a low-end RCA) My TV is ancient however, so I also got an RF modulator. Anyway, I bought "The Patriot" on DVD, got back and hooked everything up, and was highly disappointed to find out that the sound doesn't work properly. There was no speech or sounds, only the background music, like it was only playing the audio from rear speakers.

I've figured out that it's something to do with the 5.1 Dolby Digital audio track, since I also bought "We Were Soldiers," and I could hear the 2-channel Dolby Surround fine. I thought the DVD player was supposed to downmix 5.1 to two-channel, or something like that? (At least, that's what the specs say) I don't want to get any other DVD's if they're going to have the same problem.

Do I have to get a A/V receiver, a new TV, or am I just setting something up wrong? As I mentioned before, I'm a poor college student, so low-cost solutions would be higlhy appreciated.

Oh yeah, everything I've read says not to run the signal through your VCR, but I tried it, and it works fine- looks exactly the same as with the modulator. Haven't tried to record, nor am I particularly interested in recording DVD's, but I'm probably going to take the modulator back since it works fine. Any thoughts?

Chase
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Old 11-14-02, 10:08 PM
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Going thru the VCR might work on some discs but not all so keep the modulator until you can upgrade the tv to one with at least svideo.

As for the sound problem you say it only plays from the rear speakers but you don't say what kind of set up you have for sound. If you only have a pro logic receiver then you should have the two RCA audio cables going from the DVD player to the stereo and the player set to bitstream off and PCM on in the settings menu. Now make sure that you choose dolby surround in the menu for the disc you're playing since some default to DD and not Dolby ProLogic surround. The sound will get down mixed only if you have it set up in the DVD player's sound setting menus to do so. Also double check your cables since maybe the fronts came loose.
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Old 11-15-02, 05:24 AM
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Re: newbie DVD question

You're right, the player should downconvert the audio signal. Have you checked the audio out settings on the DVD player's setup screens? They should be set for analog outs. If they say bitstream or PCM, try changing them to analog.

Also, you might want to check the disc on another system if you can. One that's also only using the 2 ch. analog outputs.
Originally posted by chasehas
Oh yeah, everything I've read says not to run the signal through your VCR, but I tried it, and it works fine- looks exactly the same as with the modulator. Haven't tried to record, nor am I particularly interested in recording DVD's, but I'm probably going to take the modulator back since it works fine. Any thoughts?

Chase
Most VCRs have macrovision enabled, but a few (usually older) VCRs don't. If We Were Soldiers and the Patriot looked ok, then you shouldn't need the modulator. These are two pretty big titles and I would be surprised if they didn't have macrovision copy protection on them. If you've only played these two DVDs using your current connections, then you might want to try a few more mainstream titles from different studios to make sure everything's ok before returning the decoder.

Good luck.
-David
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Old 11-17-02, 10:52 AM
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A lot of vcrs now will allow you to play a dvd thru them w/o enabling the macrovision. however, if you hit record, the macrovision starts. my panasonic vcr does that. thank god for the apex player.

SPY
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Old 11-18-02, 07:22 AM
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Problem solved guys- thanks for the help. Apparently, it WAS the disc. (Bought new, what are the odds) When I popped in another copy, it worked just fine Oh well.

Thanks for the info, though- I'll come back if I need more help

Chase
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