CoreELEC Only Passthrough's DTS-HD MA Randomly

Good day everyone!

I have a bit of an issue that’s been persistent since I’ve purchased an ODROID N2+.

My setup consists of this box, connected via HDMI to a Harman Kardon AVR 158 and configured to passthrough all bitstream codecs, but otherwise output 5.1 LPCM, and for the most part, everything works fantastically. The issue only occurs with movies and files making use of DTS-HD MA (Hi-Res and regular DTS have no issues so far).
I’ve also noticed similar issues in this topic header regarding DTS-HD here: DTS HD MA not passing through but TrueHD fine

The main issue is that these files, seemingly at random, decides to kick my AVR to properly understand and decode this codec, and when it does, there is thankfully no issue as well. The rate seems to average at about 5-8 replays (when there is no sound, the AVR remains at 2.0 PCM as like in the menus) but sometimes it plays perfectly fine on first try, while other attempts can take up to 20 tries. There is also no meaningful favouring of file types or lengths.

Contrasted to Kodi on a regular Linux (ALSA) or Windows (WASAPI) desktop, there are no faults whatsoever (even in mpv, MPC-HC and VLC) and DTS-HD MA passthrough’s everytime on the beat, so I can rule out cabling and most hardware issues (as I don’t know if this might be an ODROID or CoreELEC issue and testing is limited in this capacity.)

I’ve attached a log here:

A few things to note:

  • 5 Devices show up when listing via ALSA, the UI and LPCM is handled with No. 3 “surround71:CARD=AMLAUGESOUND,DEV=0”
    and passthrough is handled via No. 5 “hdmi:CARD=AMLAUGESOUND,DEV=0” –
    all codecs are presented as compatible here.

  • I’ve made use of the file “hd_dts_hd_master_audio_sound_check_5_1_lossless.mpeg” for testing, which can be found on various demo disc sites, but any file is applicable here.

  • I’ve opened this file 5 times, and only in the last attempt did the sound play successfully. I cannot seem to notice anything different here from the other attempts however.

  • Sometimes, though very rarely, sound DOES eventually play in a longer video if I leave it running for a while, which might suspect it to be signal related, but in the same vein, if I scrub around a video I can also lose the audio.

I would be ecstatic if anything can be done to help with this oddity. It’s not the most massive issue but it is very annoying to start these videos repeatedly and not being able to rewind / fast-forward in the event of the chance to lose sound.
Please also let me know if there’s anything else you might need from me.

Thank you!


Some observations since:

  • I’ve found that 9/10 times, completely stopping, then resuming a video in the middle of a scene where audio is actively present (i.e. no silence) will make the codec kick in and work without fault. Pausing and resuming however still seems random, as there are instances where resuming from a quick pause makes the audio return and others where prolonged pauses fails to play the audio again, sometimes.
    This leads me to believe that DTS-HD MA works in the presence of a ‘strong signal’ in my AVR as opposed to all other formats picking up the bitstream immediately regardless of volume, but again, since seeking and pausing breaks the audio as well, I can’t lean on this assumption. I only think this way because this AVR suffers from a PCM lock issue and exhibits similiar problems with silent gaps in 2.0 audio and might just be finicky with these things.
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