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I just bought a Sony DAV-TZ145 Home Theatre System (5.1). I didn't do proper research on it and got to know that it doesn't support FLAC format. Is it because of sampling rate limitations?

However, when I connected my laptop via HDMI to HDTV and connected the TV's audio out to HTS's audio in, and played FLAC in my laptop, I did get good sound quality from all 5 speakers.

However I am curious. Does this setup produce sound without any loss? Or is there any compromise somewhere?

closed as off-topic by Tetsujin, JSmith, audionuma, Rory Alsop Jul 25 '16 at 10:19

This question appears to be off-topic. The users who voted to close gave this specific reason:

  • "Questions that are related to consumer audio consumption (such as audiophile or home theater) are off-topic. For more information, see the meta post on Non-Production Questions." – Tetsujin, JSmith, audionuma, Rory Alsop
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  • What was the medium of the "TV's audio out to HTS's audio in"? optical? analog? coax? – Mark Jul 20 '16 at 5:08
  • The FLAC was decoded by your laptop, and was sent over HDMI as PCM to the TV. It was lossless up to that point. But you didn't say how it was sent to the HTS. – Mark Jul 20 '16 at 5:10
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Your Sony Home Theater System probably doesn't support FLAC because it doesn't have the codec to uncompress the FLAC audio files.

It kind of depends on the features of your hardware and the settings on whether you are getting the best audio output.

Most likely, this is what is happening:

  1. Your laptop is decoding the FLAC file to an uncompressed digital format.

  2. The digital audio is sent to the TV through the HDMI cable.

Depending on how you connected your TV to your Audio Receiver:

3(a). The TV converts the digital audio to an analog signal that is sent to your Audio Receiver via RCA connectors (the red and white cables)

OR

3(b). The TV passes the digital audio to the Audio Receiver via an optical cable, a digital cable, or another HDMI cable. Then the Audio Receiver converts the digital audio to an analog signal.

  1. The Audio Receiver amplifies the audio signal and sends it to your speakers.

Step 3(b) is probably better than 3(a) because the Audio Receiver will usually convert an analog input back to digital for Digital Signal Processing (DSP), then convert the digital signal back to analog for output to your speakers.

For stereo music stored in a FLAC file, I think you are getting great sound quality. If you are playing 5.1 audio from a DVD or BluRay, there could be some compromise on the audio quality. It's very possible that your laptop or your TV will only send a stereo (2.0) signal to your Audio Receiver. The reason why you are hearing sound from all your speakers is from the DSP that your Audio Receiver is applying to the audio signal.

  • TV to HTS connection is through RCA connectors. The HTS doesn't have a HDMI in sadly. I did doubt the I was getting quality 5.1 because the sound came from all 5 speakers. Thanks, this clears it up. – sudeepdino008 Jul 20 '16 at 7:58
  • Check if your TV has an optical or digital coaxial output. If the HTS has the corresponding input, you could improve the sound quality. – Carl Youngquist Jul 20 '16 at 15:19
  • I looked up your HTS. Looks like there is no optical or digital coax. You can hook up a device via USB though; give that a try. Have fun! – Carl Youngquist Jul 20 '16 at 20:07

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