What to do about a 'broken' HDMI IN port on soundbar?

Avatar image for ntm
NTM

12065

Forum Posts

38

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

It's really unfortunate. I don't like to use the word lightly, and I know 'first world problems' and all that, but I was depressed for a few days a while back because I bought the Vizio 46-Inch 5.1.4 soundbar on Amazon just in March, which for me was quite an investment, and then all of a sudden the HDMI IN port on it stopped working at the end of last month. That means I am getting the same audio that I was getting from my previous soundbar (DTS Digital Surround/Dolby Digital). The difference now is that I get to use HDMI pass through as opposed to optical. I don't know if DTS sounds different when comparing HDMI and optical. I got a new soundbar so I could get Atmos/Dolby TrueHD or lossless audio quality, but that's not possible now.

It hurt especially because due to COVID still going on, I am still not working which means I cannot recoup that money so easily. I've talked to Vizio on Facebook, but it seems they've stopped replying to me for some reason (I was not being an asshole; maybe there just was no solution to the problem and they didn't want to help anymore...) Does anyone have any solutions? I've tried so many different things, and I think that the input is just broken. I do have to unplug and replug different sources (Xbox One X, PS4 Pro, PC, Nintendo Switch), and I am careful with everything I buy because I don't want them to break, so it comes as a surprise that this happened so soon. It's not the reason why I had asked a while back, but a solution would have been the HDMI switch, which I hadn't gotten. It was having issues before it 'broke', where the soundbar would turn itself off and I'd have to turn it back on, but I chalked that up to handshaking issues.

I can no longer return it to Amazon.

Avatar image for north6
north6

1539

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 1

#2  Edited By north6

1. Since you said you've tried everything, I'm sure you've tried swapping hdmi cables, but if you're over (or close to) 15 feet, you can run into signal issues depending on what you're trying to push over it, assuming you're using a passive cable.

2. If you haven't already, try a non ARC port on your tv.

3. Sounds like you're routing audio from the console > soundbar > tv. Have you tried using your TV as the switching device? Your tv might not be able to send your desired audio back to the sound bar (atmos), but it would be interesting to know if that at least works, it would tell you if your port is bad or not (this, along with #1 should tell you that, anyway.)

4. Finally - There are firmware updates for your soundbar, have you tried this? Looks like around 7 months ago there was one specific to how hdr was handled, but seemed stuck in limbo due to cec / arc issues that were reported.

Avatar image for ntm
NTM

12065

Forum Posts

38

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

@north6: Thanks for the response. Unfortunately, all of those issues are taken care of if you will. I had to upgrade the soundbar manually when I got it as Smartcast (the app you put on your phone) was not doing it automatically. All the cables I have are all about 6ft or so. They're the ones that came with each respective system, and all are 2.0. (I think 2.0b, though I don't know exactly). I am currently using the passthrough with ARC, where my TV is the media HUB. My TCL R617 can output lossy Dolby Atmos by Dolby Digital Plus, but that's only useful for streaming service apps on Roku, so it's not so useful for consoles. It can't be the ARC port in and of itself on my TV as far as I know as when it happened I had tried plugging my consoles into the port, and it worked. It just doesn't work when ARC from soundbar by HDMI goes to ARC on TV while consoles plug directly into the HDMI IN port on the soundbar. As you've said, I have to now plug consoles directly into the ports on my TV and get lossy audio, and for consoles like PS4 and Xbox, that just means DTS or Dolby Digital.

Avatar image for ruqayya
Ruqayya

1

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

#4  Edited By Ruqayya

When the Control for HDMI function is turned off, sound may not be output from the Sound Bar depending on your TV model. If no sound is output, turn on the Control for HDMI function with the following procedure: press and hold the VOICE button of the remote control for five seconds https://www.myprepaidcenter.page/

Avatar image for isomeri
isomeri

3216

Forum Posts

296

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 20

I assume you're writing from the USA and I'm not sure how customer protection things are handled out there. I'd assume however that the soundbar would be under some sort of manufacturer warranty if you've had it for less than 6 months.

Avatar image for oursin_360
OurSin_360

6386

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

No warranty? You should have at least a year from the manufacturer atleast. And I always buy the protection plan for electronics.

Avatar image for ntm
NTM

12065

Forum Posts

38

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

#7  Edited By NTM

It might be an HDCP issue rather than the port itself. Everything has to work together, and it's just not. I've gotten it to, with trial and error, work with at least the Xbox One X. I haven't tried the PS4 Pro as much, but any of the times I tried recently it wouldn't give me anything. On the X now, it'll either be a 'no signal', but more likely show me an image but at a resolution of 640 x 480 with no sound, and no HDR or anything that my TV and soundbar should be able to output. The best chance I have at retrieving 4k picture with HDR and Atmos again is to turn everything off, unplug everything, wait a minute, and then turn it all back on. Sometimes taking HDMI's out and plugging those back in too. I've been having some luck with that, but it doesn't always fix it on the first attempt.

Avatar image for ntm
NTM

12065

Forum Posts

38

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

@oursin_360: @isomeri: Good questions... I don't know. I got it on Amazon. I've never actually had to return anything to a company before and buying it off Amazon, I assumed it was merely on them. That said, currently, I am thinking it's an HDCP handshaking issue because I can now get the Xbox One X to work (albeit with trial and error). I've also read that some had issues with other Vizio soundbars and returned theirs only to get another one that had the same issue. It sucks, but honestly, I think I made a mistake in not waiting for the widespread use of e-ARC, which may alleviate these issues. I am still confused as to why/how it's happening, and where it stems from exactly.

Avatar image for north6
north6

1539

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 1

You should for sure be able to start a warranty claim with Visio, at this point I'd recommend that before it's out of warranty.

I had the hdcp issues you describe on a dying out of warranty denon receiver (defaulting to that crappy 640 res, toggling back and forth between inputs would sometimes temporarily get it working), and it just got worse. Fortunately it was several years into it's life, but I got another denon and it was fine. I don't think these issues are as widespread as it may seem.

Avatar image for ntm
NTM

12065

Forum Posts

38

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

Alright, so yesterday I tested out the PS4 Pro, and now it's working! I've been playing the system on and off three times since and it's worked without issue. I am cautiously optimistic that it's working again. I do think it was/is an HDCP issue. Something that I did, and am doing is turning the consoles on at the same time as the TV (and therefore, soundbar) and it's been working. Hopefully, by typing this up I don't jinx it.

Avatar image for oursin_360
OurSin_360

6386

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

@ntm said:

Alright, so yesterday I tested out the PS4 Pro, and now it's working! I've been playing the system on and off three times since and it's worked without issue. I am cautiously optimistic that it's working again. I do think it was/is an HDCP issue. Something that I did, and am doing is turning the consoles on at the same time as the TV (and therefore, soundbar) and it's been working. Hopefully, by typing this up I don't jinx it.

You may need to try some new HDMI cables, I have had some cheap ones do that because of HDCP and it required me to completely restart the tv's etc. If it's a continued issue and seems random, you may want to try some higher rated cables.