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Old 02-02-2014, 07:41 PM   #1
mjgraves
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Mini has no Analog outputs?

Back in December we migrated from a pair of TivoHD to a Roamio+Mini. We also had Terk volume levelers installed, which required that we use analog component video and analog stereo audio. The Terk device has analog RCA I/O.

The new Mini lacks analog IO. This has me asking what other people do to overcome issues volume? We routinely find that when watching movies dialogue is too low, but the music & effects are much too loud.

It's not clear what we can do to overcome this trouble. In the case of the Roamio it was easy enough to put on of the Terk devices back into service.

Michael
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Old 02-02-2014, 08:49 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by mjgraves View Post
Back in December we migrated from a pair of TivoHD to a Roamio+Mini. We also had Terk volume levelers installed, which required that we use analog component video and analog stereo audio. The Terk device has analog RCA I/O.

The new Mini lacks analog IO. This has me asking what other people do to overcome issues volume? We routinely find that when watching movies dialogue is too low, but the music & effects are much too loud.

It's not clear what we can do to overcome this trouble. In the case of the Roamio it was easy enough to put on of the Terk devices back into service.

Michael
Next to the cable input there are two mini connector inputs, the first is for component the second is for composite which has the analog audio output. You'll need a mini 3.5mm to composite (RCA) cable like the one in the following link:

http://www.amazon.com/Cmple-3-5mm-Ca...m+to+composite
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Old 02-02-2014, 10:02 PM   #3
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The Mini has both analog outputs for ya, they just require special breakout cables. The below kit includes both.

https://tivo.com/shop/detail/av-cable

Last edited by BigJimOutlaw : 02-02-2014 at 10:08 PM.
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Old 02-03-2014, 05:17 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by mjgraves View Post
Back in December we migrated from a pair of TivoHD to a Roamio+Mini. We also had Terk volume levelers installed, which required that we use analog component video and analog stereo audio. The Terk device has analog RCA I/O.

The new Mini lacks analog IO. This has me asking what other people do to overcome issues volume? We routinely find that when watching movies dialogue is too low, but the music & effects are much too loud.

It's not clear what we can do to overcome this trouble. In the case of the Roamio it was easy enough to put on of the Terk devices back into service.

Michael
Those Terk things have terrible reviews on Amazon. Your best bet is to send everything through a proper HDMI capable receiver and at minimum a left/center/right speaker setup and mess with the center channel mix and volume to your liking.
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Old 02-03-2014, 10:15 AM   #5
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This has me asking what other people do to overcome issues volume?
Manually adjust when needed. It really isn't enough of an issue for us to seek out an auto-leveling solution.
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Old 02-03-2014, 12:18 PM   #6
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Manually adjust when needed. It really isn't enough of an issue for us to seek out an auto-leveling solution.
I must respectfully disagree. It is a problem for our household. It's a bit less of a problem since TV stations started to take the CALM act seriously, but it remains an issue.

It's terribly frustrating to constantly be adjusting the volume as you suggest.
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Old 02-03-2014, 12:21 PM   #7
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Those Terk things have terrible reviews on Amazon. Your best bet is to send everything through a proper HDMI capable receiver and at minimum a left/center/right speaker setup and mess with the center channel mix and volume to your liking.
We don't really want/need a surround sound setup. Would one of the L-C-R "speaker bars" that have become so popular be a solution that didn't also require a traditional surround receiver?
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Old 02-03-2014, 01:10 PM   #8
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Both my TV and my HTIB has sound leveling functions that work well. Its hidden in the TV menus, and not really an obvious feature.
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Old 02-03-2014, 01:59 PM   #9
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Both my TV and my HTIB has sound leveling functions that work well. Its hidden in the TV menus, and not really an obvious feature.
Thanks for noting that. We have two HDTVs, one a much older 42" Sharp Aquos, the other a 32" Samsung unit. I'll check both for such features.
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Old 02-03-2014, 03:13 PM   #10
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We don't really want/need a surround sound setup. Would one of the L-C-R "speaker bars" that have become so popular be a solution that didn't also require a traditional surround receiver?
Those can work great. Just make sure you get one with a volume leveling feature. I have a couple of Sony speaker bars. An old 3.1 speaker bar and a newer 2.1 speaker bar. They both take HDMI and work great with the Mini. Although my newer one can handle DD+ so there are no issues using Netflix on the Mini.
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Old 02-04-2014, 09:29 AM   #11
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Those can work great. Just make sure you get one with a volume leveling feature. I have a couple of Sony speaker bars. An old 3.1 speaker bar and a newer 2.1 speaker bar. They both take HDMI and work great with the Mini. Although my newer one can handle DD+ so there are no issues using Netflix on the Mini.
Thanks for this. It will help should I get as far as deciding to buy a sound bar.

Last evening I looked at the HDTV connected to the Mini. It's a Samsung LN32C530 that I bought back in 2010.

It does have some controls that relate to audio management. It has several audio modes;

"Standard: Selects the normal sound mode.
Music: Emphasizes music over voices.
Movie: Provides the best sound for movies.
Clear Voice: Emphasizes voices over other sounds.
Amplify: Increase the intensity of high-frequency sound to allow a better listening experience for the hearing impaired."

There is an additional "dialogue clarity" option.

"(standard sound mode only) Dialog Clarity emphasizes voice while maintaining the background sound level"

For the moment I've set it to "Standard" audio with dialogue clarity enabled. We'll wait a few days and see if that helps significantly.
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Old 02-04-2014, 07:05 PM   #12
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Those Terk things have terrible reviews on Amazon. Your best bet is to send everything through a proper HDMI capable receiver and at minimum a left/center/right speaker setup and mess with the center channel mix and volume to your liking.

There are actually some glowing reviews on Amazon for the VR1.

But they're from about a decade ago.

Apparently at one time those Terk things were decent pieces of gear, but they they kept the enclosure and model number the same and changed the insides to something cheap and nowhere near as good.

Probably happened when Audiovox bought out Terk.


One thing I've learned about the newer cheap version is that you need to feed it a fixed level, not too strong, signal, and then do your volume up and down downstream of it.
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Old 02-09-2014, 10:25 AM   #13
ort
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Never mind!

Last edited by ort : 02-09-2014 at 11:13 AM.
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Old 02-09-2014, 05:25 PM   #14
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Given other issues with the manner in which our HDTV and Mini work together I've just ordered the breakout cables. I want to try the pair without using HDMI at all.

Along the way I noticed that SESCOM makes a couple of devices that implement SRS TruVolume volume normalization. One is analog and the other sits in the HDMI chain.

http://www.sescom.com/product.asp?item=SES-NORMALIZE-IT

http://www.sescom.com/product.asp?item=SES-NORMAL-HDMI

After a couple of decades in the broadcasting business my impression is that SESCOM is a low-end maker of terminal gear; adapters, converters, level shifters, etc. I've not read anything good about the SRS features involved. And SRS was bought by DTS a while ago.

These devices run $130-180, so a little more than I would spend just to satisfy my curiosity. OTOH, I might buy one from a vendor that would ensure a liberal return policy.
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Old 02-10-2014, 08:53 PM   #15
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Volume normalizers? Soundbars? BLEH!

You should be feeding audio through, at minimum, a decent 5.1 setup, and with a good, strong center channel, you won't need to screw around with "normalizing" volume. The whole need to "normalize" volume comes from a lack of, or a poorly set up center channel. For many shows, like anything with commentators or dialog, the center channel does most of the heavy lifting for the rest of the system, giving you nice, loud, crisp, clear dialog.
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Old 02-13-2014, 12:22 PM   #16
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You should be feeding audio through, at minimum, a decent 5.1 setup, and with a good, strong center channel, you won't need to screw around with "normalizing" volume.
There are places where there simply isn't the space or requirement for a full surround setup.

Moreover, there are industry standards that are supposed to ensure that there's a sensible L/R feed for such situations. Unfortunately, adherence to such standards seems limited.
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Old 02-13-2014, 06:54 PM   #17
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There are places where there simply isn't the space or requirement for a full surround setup.

Moreover, there are industry standards that are supposed to ensure that there's a sensible L/R feed for such situations. Unfortunately, adherence to such standards seems limited.
If it's a setup big enough to have a bunch of extra equipment like a volume normalizer (bleh!) then it should have surround sound.
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Old 02-13-2014, 07:42 PM   #18
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If it's a setup big enough to have a bunch of extra equipment like a volume normalizer (bleh!) then it should have surround sound.
My mom doesn't have room for surround sound, but she finds plenty of room to complain about relative volume levels, so I got one of those Terk things (it's a little box, not a 7 U rackmount panel with lots of dials and meters) and it helps some, but I am going to experiment with a center channel speaker and turn on the subwoofer output without actually hooking one up to see if I can get some of the boom out and make voices stand out better.

It's disgraceful how most TV audio is mixed these days, Burn Notice being a shining exception.
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Old 02-14-2014, 05:08 PM   #19
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My mom doesn't have room for surround sound, but she finds plenty of room to complain about relative volume levels, so I got one of those Terk things (it's a little box, not a 7 U rackmount panel with lots of dials and meters) and it helps some, but I am going to experiment with a center channel speaker and turn on the subwoofer output without actually hooking one up to see if I can get some of the boom out and make voices stand out better.

It's disgraceful how most TV audio is mixed these days, Burn Notice being a shining exception.
My only complaint would be that a lot of feeds don't have surround sound, or have poor surround. If they are mixed well, they sound great on a 5.1 or 7.1 channel system.
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Old 02-24-2014, 11:56 AM   #20
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Next to the cable input there are two mini connector inputs, the first is for component the second is for composite which has the analog audio output. You'll need a mini 3.5mm to composite (RCA) cable like the one in the following link:

http://www.amazon.com/Cmple-3-5mm-Ca...m+to+composite
I thought I read that this cable will also work with component video. You just have to figure out which color goes to which color.

I thought it was in this thread, but I don't see it now.
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Old 02-24-2014, 04:34 PM   #21
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I thought I read that this cable will also work with component video. You just have to figure out which color goes to which color.

I thought it was in this thread, but I don't see it now.
Yeah, they are the same physical connection, an elongated 3.5mm jack like the iPhone uses with the headphones with built-in mic.
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