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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-28-2004, 01:16 AM Thread Starter
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problem with faint voices in DVD movies

Recently i watched Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring (extended) for the first time, and i noticed i was having a hard time hearing the actors voices at the end of Disc 1 and all of disk 2. I have a 5.1 surround sound system, a bit long in the tooth but it gets me there, but it really bothered me how everything was really REALLY loud but the voices. During the Mines of Moria scene it was unhearable with the echo of the mines.


Any audio experts here? How can i fix this problem? I tried using the audio function of my DVD player, but i could only see a 3.1 audio track, and a dolby audio track, the DTS track (or D...something) would not play, and the rest were the commentary tracks.

This isnt the first time i have had this problem with DVDs either. Help !
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-28-2004, 01:29 AM
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you probably dont have a DTS receiver, so thats out.

dolby digital will be the way to go...
you should be able to turn up individual speaker level (usually from 0-10). turn the center up the highest and turn the fronts down a bit. 90% of voice is through the center channel so it will boost that part for you.
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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-28-2004, 02:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 32VfromHell
Recently i watched Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring (extended) for the first time, and i noticed i was having a hard time hearing the actors voices at the end of Disc 1 and all of disk 2. I have a 5.1 surround sound system, a bit long in the tooth but it gets me there, but it really bothered me how everything was really REALLY loud but the voices. During the Mines of Moria scene it was unhearable with the echo of the mines.


Any audio experts here? How can i fix this problem? I tried using the audio function of my DVD player, but i could only see a 3.1 audio track, and a dolby audio track, the DTS track (or D...something) would not play, and the rest were the commentary tracks.

This isnt the first time i have had this problem with DVDs either. Help !
I've noticed this issue from others. Rob bought the EuroTrip DVD and had the same problem. All other DVD's play fine, but this one has the exact same problem you describe. We think it may be due to poor production issues. Maybe the media that some of the companies are using is shotty or something.
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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-28-2004, 09:48 AM
 
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i agree with momo, if u have a stereo reciever thats even "a little long in the tooth" the newer dvd's are not gonna get you the sound quality you want. keep the speakers if they are working great for you and go to either circuit city or best buy and pick you up a decent 300-500 watt dts reciever. they shouldnt be too much and if you have a decent dvd player that has fiber output then your gonna rock. my preference is the onkyo recievers at circuit. you can get 1000 watt speaker/reciever system for about 500. well worth it.
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-28-2004, 02:33 PM
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If you have a Dolby Digital receiver, you should be fine in that regard. Of course a new receiver or separates never hurts but that all costs money.

Money well spent would be a calibration discs like AVIA and a sound pressure level (SPL) meter ($50 at Radio Shack). It is very important that all channels are calibrated. That most likely is the cause for your problems. Of course there might be some more complex problems but calibration would definately be the way to start.

Edit: you do have the DVD player connected with digital cable? Most DVD players have DTS decoder now so analog connections to external decoder inputs would also be an option.
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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-28-2004, 02:42 PM
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what is your speaker system btw? (receiver/speaker)

dolby digital 5.1 is pretty close to DTS in quality.
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-28-2004, 03:52 PM Thread Starter
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within the month my family is upgrading to new components , but now its a marantz sr870 reciever with dolby pro logic (not digital, it seems). speakers im not quite sure about, ill ask. They are hidden out of the way so its hard to get a good look at em.


Funny thing is, i had this problem on the tiny TV i had at my dorm in Texas Tech with some DVD movies.


Why did the first disc (for the most part) not have such overbearing music and sound effects and the 2nd disc be so radically different? It got to the point where i simply could not enjoy the movie and had to turn it off, as i could not hear what was being said worth a damn.
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-28-2004, 04:14 PM
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With that receiver I'm pretty sure you are better off running it in stereo and not surround. Dolby Digital is the minimum you need for good surround, DTS is just a bonus if the movie has a DTS track.

A new receiver or preprocessor with amplifiers are definately in order. What brand and model, that's up to your taste. Just make sure your family doesn't fall for Bose. (I'm sure they won't)

Different movies are mastered differently. LOTR has a lot of special effects. My old neighbour complained that HER house was shaking when I was playing LOTR:ROTK in the house I was renting at the time. Lots of deep bass on that movie. Dialogue can fade in the background if it is processed to DPL.
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-28-2004, 04:23 PM
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yea, the problem is the receiver is getting its input from the DVD with just a red and white audio cable i bet. so the receiver gets input from 2 channels and has to "guess" what goes to which of the 5 speakers, so its not nearly as good as a digital setup where there is no guessing..

if you have pro logic u might have what they call an AC-3 input, which is a single input for each channel (so 6 inputs). if you do and had an ac-3 receiver it would take the guess work out of the receiver. if you dont, its not worth buying.

if the speakers are good, u can just upgrade the receiver to a digital receiver and add a digital cable (fiber optic or digital coxial) and u will be a bit more content.

or see if what i said in the first post helps, cant hurt and its the free solution.
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-28-2004, 04:30 PM Thread Starter
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thanks for the tip, Momo, yeah, its kind of an ad-hoc setup now, as our first DVD player (sony) bit the dust so i have my own panasonic hooked up via the auxillary input in front with common A/V cables. Quite right how its having trouble getting the right sound from only 2 sources (left and right cables). Ill make sure our new system is digital and has a digital cable.
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post #11 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-29-2004, 09:59 AM
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Does the Marantz have external 5.1 inputs? If it does, hook up the DVD players 5.1 cables to it and you have both Dolby Digital and DTS.
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post #12 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-30-2004, 12:52 AM Thread Starter
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ill take a peek tomorrow to see. The system is about...8 years old, in case anyone is wondering about how old "long in the tooth" is. Thats pretty long in terms of A/V tech!

Its a pain in the ass to get to the back of the unit as its in a deep cabinet, but ill look into it. It might not be worth buying a 5.1 cable if we are getting entirely new stuff in a month, but i will need it for myself as this will be my "hand me down" system, i suppose.....
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post #13 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-30-2004, 08:43 AM
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Those cables are just ordinary analog cables, 3 pairs or 2 triples (R/L/Video). If that Marantz has external inputs then it's definately worth it. The system isn't old anywhere except in the processing department. If you need a cheap (but decent) 5.1 receiver with DD and DTS then Fry's sells one of the lower end Sherwoods for $80 every now and then.
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post #14 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-30-2004, 08:50 AM
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Good news, that Marantz has external 6 channel input. Now you just need a DVD player with outputs and you can use the decoder on a DVD player.

http://dvdownunder.com.au/news/ampforsale.htm

If it gets passed on to you and you decide you don't want to keep it, let me know. I might buy it from you or swap to some other audio stuff. I would need an extra receiver for my living room.
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