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tamanaco
Halo

A few questions & observations about the HW-Q70R Soundbar

I bought a Samsung HW-Q70R to pair with my Samsung Q80R QLED TV and have few questions and observations that need some clarification as neither the TV nor the Soundbar user manuals address any of these topics.

1. - The HW-Q70R was updated to firmware 1006.0 dated May 27, 2019 soon after I installed it. I read in a couple places that this firmware update added eARC support to the Soundbar. Can someone from Samsung support verify or deny that eARC support was added? - While connected to the Q80R via HDMI ARC the Soundbar LEDs displays "TV ARC", but the TV's Sound Output setting shows "[AV] Soundbar Q70R (HDMI)" . I expected to see something like "...(HDMI ARC)" and/if when the Q80R supports eARC via a firmware update, I would expect to see "...(HDMI eARC)".

2.- I noticed that while the Q70R is connected via HDMI ARC  that under Sound -> Expert Setting in the TV, the "Digital Output Audio Format" defaults to "Dolby Digital" - One can manually select the PCM option, but the Dolby + option is Greyed Out. Under which connection conditions is Dolby + available? I thought that this option would be available if the TV was connected to the Soundbar via HDMI ARC.


3. - I also noticed that by default the "Digital Output Audio Delay" in the TV is set to 300 by default. (Sync is set to 0 by default in the Soundbar). When this option is selected in the TV the panel to the right describes this setting as only being available when the connected device (Soundbar) is connected via SPDIF . Should I assume that this setting also works with devices connected via HDMI ARC? When I move the slider to adjust the delay it "appears" to adjust the HDMI audio delay a little bit. Am I seeing-hearing things? If this setting is only available for SPDIF attached devices why is it displayed when there's nothing connected to the SPDIF out of my TV? - Sometimes I have a slight audio sync delayed that is noticeable when you look closely at the lips of the speakers. I can sometimes fix it by turning the TV and Soundbar on/off.

4.- My "2019 QLED" TV is this year's model and so is the Soundbar. Still under input sources in the TV there is no option to add a "Soundbar". I had to select "Home Theater System" which I and many others my associate with an AV Receiver. This needs to be updated, given that Samsung has been making TVs and Soundbars for a while.

5.- SmartThings - I've looked around the Samsung support site, but I have been unable to find a User's Guide for the SmartThings App. - After connecting the Soundbar and TV to the network and adding them to SmartThings, I got 3 widgets on the SmartThings Home page. The TV widget, which allows me to remotely control the TV and perform other tasks, the Soundbar widget, which allow me to remotely control certain Soundbar functions and a Soundbar "Music Player " widget . What is this Music Player widget used for? It doesn't control the Music Services (TuneIn) and the USB port in the Soundbar is only supposed to be used for maintenance (Firmware updates). Can I add media files to a USB stick, connect them to the USB port and play them on the Soundbar using the "Music Player"? -  Under the SmartThing Soundbar widget there's a this "Music Services" selection which shows "TuneIn" as the only available service. I added my TuneIn account and I'm able play radio statations from the Soundbar. Can I add more "Music Services" manually and if so... how? Are these "Music Services" added by Samsung via firmware updates or some other cloud service? - In the Soundbar widget there's also a way to adjust the volume level for the Woofer, but there's no way to adjust the volume of my rear SWA-8500S BT speakers that are also paired to the Soundbar. Is volume adjustment for these rear (optional) speakers something that we can expect in future releases of SmartThings?

 

6.- TV Apps + online content to use for testing. - I don't have a Blu-Ray player, but I have a Nvidia Shield TV.  Is there any video content (file) available online that I can use either via the Shield TV or via one of the TV Apps (Youtube, Prime... etc) that will help me test the DTS:X and ATMOS capabilities of this Soundbar using the Q80R QLED TV? Samsung should add small one minute or so video to test the features and functions of their TVs and also for use in checking/testing  the Samsung accessories recommended for said TV. 

 

I'm sure I have other things that need clarifications, but these are the one that come to mind now. Hopefully, others will add their observations, questions and concerns about the Q70R Soundbar features and behavior to this thread. I certanly will if any others come to mind.

8 REPLIES 8
tamanaco
Halo

Re: A few questions & observations about the HW-Q70R Soundbar

UPDATE:

I just updated my Q80R QLED TV from firmware 1065.0 to firmware 1303.7.  I was hopping that this update would bring the functionality to allow the QLED TV to pair to the Q70R Soundbar using eARC instead of  just ARC, but I guess it was wishfull thinking. I still can't select Dolby Digital + while the Samsung QLED TV and Soundbar are connected via ARC (HDMI) as described in the info on right panel of that setting. I used the HDMI cable "included" with the Soundbar and other HDMI cables just in case, but still no dice. I can't find any "official" Samsung announcement that says that the Q70R Soundbar with  firmware 1006.0 supports eARC. Also, if "any" of the 2019 QLED TV series QxxR will support eARC with a future firmware updates. If somone has a pointer to such announcement, please post it here.  -  The release notes associated with each new firmware release are useless. 

 

6.-  For testing ATMOS using a USB Stick and the native TV media player,  I download a video file from The Digital Theater here  - I used the trailer called "Nature's Fury (Dolby Digital Plus ATMOS)" to test.

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usercYJeqjSSqF
Constellation

Re: A few questions & observations about the HW-Q70R Soundbar

I have the same configuration (Q80R TV, Q70 Soundbar, all sources go to TV, audio to Soundbar over HDMI ARC) and am having exactly the same issues regarding illogical gray-out of Dolby Digital+ and an annoying Lip Sync problem (video leading). When I use TV apps that support DD+ (eg Netflix), then all is cool and there is no lip sync issue. If I use any other external source (Xfinity 4K STB, Apple TV 4K, Panasonic BluRay), Lip Sync issue is constantly present. DD+ works in some cases (Netflix through Xfinity STB) but just cannot get it to work for any content from my Apple TV, including the exact same content from Netflix that does work when I access it through Xfinity STB.

I spent 5 frustrating hours with Samsung support last week (mostly on Chat), having to educate them on what their own documentation says should work after they argued constantly that I did not have a valid setup for what I was expecting to be supported, and then going through an exhaustive exercise of them asking me to tweak every concievable setting (including the SPDIF Digital Output Delay setting!).

The 7-year old Samsung ES7500 that I replaced with the Q80R did not have the lip sync issue when hooked-up to the Q70 Soundbar in exactly the same configuration. The issue looks like it is being introduced by audio processing delay through the Q80R and not a problem with the Q70 Soundbar. 

While I am kind of OK with the unexplainable inconsistency of DD+ support, I just cannot live with the lip sync issue and am getting ready to do a return to Amazon on the QLED Q80R. This TV model has obviously not been fully tested and is not ready for prime time. 

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userxX18YpQBUl
Constellation

Re: A few questions & observations about the HW-Q70R Soundbar

I'm having the same issue with my brand new Q90R tv and brand new Q80R soundbar, connected in the same configuration as you guys.  Please keep us posted on how things go for you on getting this resolved!

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userFAohAUCJXQ
Asteroid

Re: A few questions & observations about the HW-Q70R Soundbar

Same sync issue here with a QN65Q70 TV and Q80R soundbar.  Netflix is fine. Antana TV is fine. Watching anything through DirectTV though is is pretty much unwatchable, which leads me to think that could be the problem. Any ideas?

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userH3PaUAYdJQ
Constellation

Re: A few questions & observations about the HW-Q70R Soundbar

Exactly the same problem, brand new Q900 tv and brand new HW-Q80R soundbar connected via HDMI ARC.

 

Please keep us posted if you resolve this - the alternative of connecting directly to the soundbar sis sub-optimal. 

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JP11
Cosmic Ray

Re: A few questions & observations about the HW-Q70R Soundbar

I’ve been browsing these forums and have seen the the audio sync issue mentioned multiple times. I had the same issue myself. My set up is a 4K Sony tv connected by the HDMI ARC ports from tv to a Q80R soundbar. And therein lies the problem I believe. Prior to getting the Q80 my Sony was connected to a Samsung K550 by optical audio cable with no sync issues. From what I’ve seen if you have to keep your other devices, in my case a Fios 4K dvr and an Apple TV 4K,  connected to the tv instead of the soundbar there are 2 solutions. Either use an optical cable and/or choose the PCM output instead of Dolby Digital. Of course you then will lose some of the audio and video formats you purchased the devices for. 

 

What worked for me and the only thing I’ve seen posted that worked for others is to connect those devices to the soundbar and then only the ARC connection will go to the tv. That got rid of the audio sync issue for me although I still run into it when using the Amazon Video app on the Apple TV but only on some of the content, one specific series currently. I get the Dolby ATMOS format to appear on the soundbar when using the ATV which I believe would not occur if I connected it to the tv. 

 

My Q80 has 2 additional HDMI inputs plus the ARC one. The FIOS dvr and Apple TV are connected to those. There are 4K HDMI switches available if you need additional ports for more devices. The way mine are set up I only need to use the power button on the Fios remote to turn the dvr, tv, and soundbar on and off. 

 

This audio sync issue is apparently very common and not specific to Samsung, LG, Sony or Fios or Directv. I’ve seen posts involving all of them. And the only commonality is the use of the HDMI ARC connection. Hopefully the manufacturers will eventually come up with software that can deal with this but currently connecting to the soundbar directly seems to be the only sure resolution. And using the Sync functions on the soundbars only worsens the problem since it's the audio thats delayed. Oddly the sync issue I still see using the Amazon Video app on my ATV is the opposite, the audio leads the video. But so far it’s only one series, fairly minimal and varies episode to episode so I just ignore it. 

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user962cqchDGh
Constellation

Re: A few questions & observations about the HW-Q70R Soundbar

May be a stupid question, when you guys are saying connecting to the TV, is that virtually the same as connecting to the one connect box, which connects to the TV, with the "invisible" cable. Stupid name for a cable. It'll be invisible when it's wireless. Ridiculous this has to be routed through the sound bar for everything to work. 

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user9W4q27I9Jv
Constellation

Re: A few questions & observations about the HW-Q70R Soundbar

Me too same thing, brand new q90 QLED and q70 Soundbar, Lip Synch is ok when watching Netflix, Ok-ish on prime, terrible on any virgin media regular broadcast HD channel, strangely ok on non HD broadcast content.

 

Tried all sorts of configurations to no avail, am gonna try PCM output when I get home having read this, but at the expense of sacrificing some of what you buy it for.

 

I appreciate not everyone here is connecting Samsung device to Samsung device, but for those that are I think Samsung should get a patch out. £3k tv and 1k Soundbar should work a bit more seamlessly to be fair.

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