I would like to voice my support for the need for DTS:X support on the Samsung K950 soundbar, as well as LPCM 5.1 support.
I recently purchased the K950 Soundbar, after what I thought was extensive research, and initially I was thrilled with the performance of the soundbar. With Dolby Atmos input the sound is SPECTACULAR, it has 4k passthrough, it significantly simplifies my home theater setup withhout sacrificing performance (for CERTAIN audio inputs - more on that) and I have the option to expand it for multi-room sound.
However, as I dug into it, I found that the performance of the soundbar is actually woefully limited, especially for such an expensive, high-end device (we paid $1500!)
First, the bar still cannot handle DTS:X sound, which is incredibly unfortunate as there are many, many movies on disc that use this format, not only on Blu-ray but also UHD. So the fact that this bar cannot handle this format means I a unable to get the most out of many of the films in my collection (The Sound of Music, Rocky Horror Picture Show, The Martian, for just a few examples).
The Sony HT-ST5000, a direct competitor to this soundbar, updated their firmware to support the DTS:X format in October 2017. I personally believe that the K950 is superior in make to the Sony, not least of all because it includes dedicated surrounds, but with a large portion of my content now not fully supported by the K950, I am very seriously considering returning my K950 for an alternative option, like the Sony, to ensure I have full support. And clearly Sony recognizes the need for this support on their flagship soundbar, which is a good sign on their part.
Second, I was very disappointed to find that the K950 cannot handle LPCM 5.1 sound, as became clear when using with Nintendo systems (the Switch and the Wii U). I see now that this is clearly indicated in manuals and elsewhere, and so I admit that I made an assumption that this soundbar would support this, as my previous Samsung HTIB system (which this soundbar replaced) did support it, and it is a very standard audio format.
The Nintendo Switch sold 10 million units globally just this year (http://variety.com/2017/digital/games/nintendo-switch-10-million-console-sales-1202636150/) and they are projected to ship 14 million units in 2018. That the K950 is unable to support LCPM 5.1 sound, which Nintendo uses for all of its systems, means it is unable to truly support what is currently and will continue to be one of the most popular gaming systems globally.
I truly believe the K950 is a stunning product, when used with Dolby Atmos or TrueHD content, and outside of that support it has an excellent set of features to set it up to be a fantastic center of a home theater system.
However, having now used it for a few days and experiencing its limitations in supporting common home theater content, as laid out above, I must admit that I can't really recommend it as a quality high-end sound system. The fact that it is wireless and compact is compelling, and the sound is indeed STELLAR with Atmos content, but Atmos content is still very limited and the most common formats are still the above, and of course others that the bar does support. SO until it is able to support the above audio formats, it is not truly a replacement for a dedicated receiver and separate speaker setup.
In the end, the most important quality for a high-end home theater setup is that it can handle the audio and video formats that are commonly found in home content (games, blurays, etc). The K950 has the potential to be INCREDIBLE and truly a game changer in the home theater setup, but until it can handle all common audio formats, it is just too limited to be recommended as a proper home theater system.
The DTS 5.1 update over the summer helped immensely, and truly I am loathe to even consider returning this unit. But unless it is updated to support even one of the formats outlined above, I most likely will have no choice but to return and go with a competitor product.
I hope you are able to make these updates, and keep this otherwise great soundbar truly competitive!
DTS-X support is badly needed for this soundbar. I purchased the latest 4k releases of the new Harry Potter movies and with the exception of the Warner brothers opening music (which is in dolby atmos for some reason) the audio output from all of these films on this device is highly disappointing. Please Samsung, give us this much needed update.
Agree! Support for DTS-X and LPCM 5.1 are much needed and will make the product way better. And reach more potential buyers... I got this reponse from Customer Support via email:
"We greatly appreciate your helpful feedback regarding LPCM 5.1. We will certainly consider this as your feedback since Samsung strives to help its customers and serve you better in future."
Samsung can you please confirm that a future firmware update is coming?
I can't understand why Samsung deliberately made the choice not to support DTS:X and LPCM 5.1.
Together with eight other serious flaws (that I have counted to just by reading this forum) with HW-K950, I really don't see how anyone can recommend this soundbar. Ever.
Yes, it works well with Dolby-formats. But waiting MONTHS to get surround sound with DTS is just a big nuttkicker for many. And it's not even DTS-HD or HD MA. It's just the core DTS 5.1.
Tell me why I should keep my HW-K950 and not return it to the store.
Tell me that you are not releasing a new, improved version in 2018 and just leave the HW-K950 in its miserable state.
Tell me that you are actually willing to do further improvements to the crackling noise from back speakers, the regular disconnects, muffled sound and bad support for DTS-formats.
Like many here, I too recently laid down 1500 for a sound bar I felt (on paper) was superior to the LG’s and Sony’s -and I admit I was bit by the ATMOS bug... I ditched my trusted Onkyo 7.1 beast for this bar.
Reading the threads opened my eyes to the lack of other standards used by various media and devices -so much for my research.
Agreed .. do I return this bar (still in my return window) and just wait it out for something better, or can a firmware update move the bar to the next level with out he need of new decoding circuitry?
The marketing slick praises the Samsung sound team ... well? -what day you Samsung?
I concur with the request for expanded dts support and support for lpcm 5.1 for the Hw k950. As it stands it is a good soundbar when used with the limited selection of atmos content available in the marketplace. However adding the aforementioned software upgrades would push this product to the next level. I hope samsung seriously considers upgrading the software of the HW-K950 and k850.
Imagine the relief of a simple reply from Samsung aknowledging this and confirm the existence of a feature roadmap. If DTS-X and LPCM 5.1 is not going to happen well be honest about it then!
Unfortunately it's common that support lacks the authority to confirm anything at all.
Or even comment on requests and speculations. I can see a fair point in many cases, but when there are so many asking for things like DTS:X, DTS-HD MA and LPCM 5.1 a copy-paste-answer won't be appreciated by the users.
Also, copy-paste only keeps degrading support in the eyes of all forum users. There are many very good people working with support, knowing things they are not allowed to tell that perhaps could ease our minds, or make us return our products for that matter.
Why not at least address the bigger issues in a general, perhaps non-confirming way that at least tell us they are looking into it things being reported.