Connecting TV to AVR. No surround sound with TV


New member
Username: Spencerfrater1


Post Number: 1
Registered: Oct-06
I have a new Toshiba 37WLT66 LCD HD-ready TV, Toshiba DVD player, and Denon 1507 AVR. The AVR only has optical and coax inputs - the TV doesn't have these! TV has HDMI and Scart. Nevertheless I connected Audio out from TV to audio in on AVR (L and R). Also connected component video on TV to AVR. DVD is connected to AVR with coax and DVD surround works well. BUT I CANNOT GET SURROUND SOUND WITH THE TV! Is it because the TV doesn't have coax or optical (AVR doesn't have HDMI or Scart)? Should I have bought a different AVR? Why does TV and AVR video need to be connected anyway? Been busy for 2 full days with this - can anyone help please?

Gold Member
Username: John_s

Columbus, Ohio US

Post Number: 1138
Registered: Feb-04
First of all are you saying you have no audio at all, or are you hearing audio, but it is not in surround? Are you hearing sound from the TV's internal speakers? What is your signal source?

In order for your AVR to process true digital 5.1 or higher surround sound, a digital signal must be fed into it. Ordinary R/L red/white connectors cannot provide this type of signal. All it can be is analog stereo. Even if your TV had a digital output, the signal has to be generated in digital form from somewhere---the TV can't synthesize a digital surround signal from an analogue source.

The TV and AVR do not need to connected. The only reason it is recommended is for switching convenience. You could run component from the DVD player directly to the TV, while feeding the digital audio from the DVD to the AVR via coax (as you are already doing).

New member
Username: Spencerfrater1


Post Number: 2
Registered: Oct-06
Thank you for your reply John.
I have sound through the TV's internal speakers but not through the KEF speakers I bought for surround sound - nothing, not even analogue stereo, from a TV program (DVD's work fine). So this is the one issue, but the other question you are prompting is that if the TV receives a digital signal with true 5.1, (through its built-in freeview receiver) how will it get to my KEF speakers in 5.1 - will it need to travel through the DVD player I presume as this is the digital connection route you describe? Thanks. Jenny.

Silver Member
Username: Basicaudio

Chula vista, Ca US

Post Number: 114
Registered: Mar-06
YOU should have bought an HT receiver with HDMI input capability which most mid grade and higher receivers have such as sony, pioneer, yamaha and more expenisve denons, onkyo's etc.
If you're willing to buy new HDTV'S, you have to be willing to invest on HT receivers that are compatible.
I'm not sure whether there are ADAPTERS for coax/optical inputs and outputs for HDMI or DVI systems.
ALL HDMI AND DVI is an upgrade digital link for video in place of RCA, S VIDEO, COMPONENT hookups to your TV/DVD/VCR players
It also simplified the hookup for audio/video setups with a higher signal transfer.

If you want your TV to transmit it's signals to your AVR or receiver in 5.1, the TV has to have either an optical, coax(single RCA), or separate RCA "PREOUTS" for each 5.1 surround, LEFT FRONT, RIGHT FRONT, CENTER, RIGHT REAR, LEFT REAR, SUB for example, and you connect EACH rca cable to the
"INPUT" of the AVR that for each 5.1 surround channel. NOT ALL RECEIVERS have these, BUT MOST MIDGRADE AND HIGHER GRADE DO!
An example is pioneer vsx 912 to 816,1016 ETC. and many other brands such as sony, yamaha, marantz, kenwood including denon etc. with 5.1 OR 7.1 PREOUTS AND MULTI CHANNEL INPUTS.

I can be of better help if you can show me a picture diagram of your TV'S receiver's input and output terminals.
If all it has for audio besides HDMI/DVI preouts and preins, is TWO AUDIO INPUT LEFT AND RIGHT,and NO multi channel OUTPUT, all you are going to get is ANALOG. If the TV'S audio is only HDMI/DVI PREOUTS, and no OPTICAL(toslink),
or COAX(single RCA connector)then you're out of luck with your receiver. I'm not sure cause i haven't searched yet, if they have adapters for conversion for OPTICAL OR COAX TO HDMI/DVI, i'm sure they will make one if they don't have it yet, cause every other format prior to HDMI have conversion adapters for just about anything in the audio/video loop.

To answer your other question regarding the TV'S signal travelling to the DVD and then to the AVR or receiver, the DVD PLAYER has to have not just an OPTICAL OR COAXIAL OR HDMI "OUTPUT", it also has to have an Audio INPUT for digital sources such as OPTICAL, COAX, HDMI, DVI which i do not see in most regular DVD PLAYERS???

YOu see, your KEF SPEAKERS are connected, all 5.1 to your HT RECEIVER OR AVR, and the amplification for surround is being transmitted by that receiver, so in order for your TV'S amplifier to transmit it's DIGITAL SIGNALS(5.1 surround)to your KEF speakers, it has to GO thru the RECEIVER'S AUDIO "DIGITAL" input which is the optical or coaxial, since it DOESN'T have an HDMI/DVI input.
If you are going attempt to TRANSMIT the TV'S SIGNAL to the DVD player(even if the dvd player has HDMI outputs)and then to the RECEIVER to get 5.1 surround coming from the TV, the DVD PLAYER STILL HAS TO HAVE AN "OPTICAL, COAXIAL, HDMI OR DVI INPUT" which MOST average DVD players including HDMI players "DO NOT HAVE!"
all that they have is just an OUTPUT for DIGITAL and NO input...only on the ANALOG RCA side(stereo only).
THE ONLY WAY THIS CAN WORK based on the info you gave on what you have is for your TOSHIBA TV to have ANALOG 5.1 PREOUTS for each 5.1 surround on it's RECEIVER section for the audio and then you can connect that to Each 5.1 PRE IN...OR MULTI CHANNEL INPUT ON THE AVR OR RECEIVER'S 5.1 AUDIO INPUT. A LOT OF DVD PLAYERS HAVE RCA 5.1 PREOUTS BESIDES THE DIGITAL OPTICAL OR COAX OR HDMI/DVI PREOUTS.
You can only acheive STEREO from your TV to the AVR if you only have two RCA audio OUTPUT connected to the AUDIO INPUT of the RECEIVER, you can HOWEVER have MULTI CHANNEL FUNCTION ON ALL 5.1 SPEAKERS BY "CHANGING" THE MODE ON YOUR RECEIVER, INSTEAD OF SELECTING CINEMA/MOVIE for example, on the SOURCE mode, select the menu that indicates MULTI CHANNEL or 5 or 6 channel mode, and you will hear ALL SPEAKERS working, it just won't be SURROUND, bascially all the signals on all the speakers are equal to the FRONT speakers AND NOT separated as in a dolby or dts 5.1 digital processing. If you receiver has SIMULATED SURROUND, you can select that mode for your TV as well even if you only have TWO RCA LEFT AND RIGHT OUTPUT FROM THE TV connected to the RECEIVER OR AVR.
There are many ways of hooking up a system. I have been doing that for over 27 yrs prior to the advent of home theater surround when surround was only simulated thru psycho acoustic processors like carver holography, acoustic research tds, srslabs trusurround/w.o.w and the original OMNISONIC IMAGER from the now defunct omnisonix made in 1979...that was the original prior to the advent of DOLBY DIGITAL SURROUND.
I hope this helps a bit. if I can see what your system looks like in the back of the terminals, i can help you make adjustments to your connections or see what can be done to improve the setup even though you don't have matching AVR/TV setup regarding current technology!
ps, i'm a former high end home theater installer and trying to get back in the field.
I've done in-wall construction, to basic setups.
troubleshooting a setup was part of my forte.
Many in this site can also help, as some are actual audio engineers, repairmen, manufacturer,
salesmen and owners of fine audio stores etc.

Gold Member
Username: John_s

Columbus, Ohio US

Post Number: 1140
Registered: Feb-04
The issue here is why Jenny is not hearing audio from the TV's R/L line outputs into the AVR. There are two things that must be checked from the start:

1) What input on the Denon is the TV's output connected to, and is that input being selected on the AVR's input selector?

2) Is there a setup procedure on the TV required in order to activate the TV's R/L audio output? I have not been able to download the TV's owners manual in order to check it myself.

I have noted that only the most expensive separate freeview receivers have a coax or optical output and that most do not. I gather that only a limited number of channels on freeview have digital 5.1 surround signals and those I think are subscription only??

Bronze Member
Username: Drgroovee

Portland, OR USA

Post Number: 18
Registered: Sep-06
I've noticed that, with an overwhelming amount of these TV's, that the analog outputs are variable and not fixed. It is possible, Jenny, that you have connected the right cables to your receiver and that the receiver is tuned to the right input but, because your TV's output to the receiver is so low, you just don't hear it yet. Consider turning the TVs volume up considerably and then turn up your receiver. If you get sound, then we're looking at a weak, variable output from the TV itself.
Otherwise, John S has you going down the right road to getting this sorted. Cheers.

Caleb Denison
Aperion Audio
Home Theater Guru

New member
Username: Spencerfrater1


Post Number: 3
Registered: Oct-06
Hey guys - thank you all so much. I had the two RCA's connected to Audio out on the TV. I unplugged them and tried two others called fixed and variable. Voila! I think Caleb was close, but thanks especially to John and Jim for your help. TV sound is really good now, especially on the Pro Logic Jim! Wow. Thanks again. Jenny

Gold Member
Username: John_s

Columbus, Ohio US

Post Number: 1141
Registered: Feb-04
Good to hear you are in good shape!

Voila! I think Caleb was close

No, Caleb was right on. It has been years since I have dealt with dual fixed and variable audio
outputs on TVs. It is therefore sometimes easy to overlook the simple things sometimes.
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