Originally Posted by legendlarry
I don't believe this player actually decodes DTS-HD Master Audio. Try it for yourself. You are supposed to set the BD Audio Setting to "Direct" when you want it to pass the track through bitstream to have it decoded at the receiver. This feature does work with the BDP-S550. However, you are supposed to set the BD Audio Setting to "Mix" when you want the player to decode the track, but when you do this, it passes through standard DTS (not Master Audio) to the player. The reason I know this is true is when you try to do this with Dolby TrueHD, you get Dolby TrueHD out on the other end regardless of whether the BD Audio Setting is set to "Direct" or "Mix".
My suspicions are further confirmed by the fact that their website doesn't actually say you can decode Master Audio (it says DTS-HD - not Master Audio) nor does the box mention Master Audio. I've also heard on other forums that Sony went back and forth on the specs on whether they were going to include native Master Audio decoding functionality - I guess they decided against it.
Page 66 of the manual suggests to me the player DOES decode DTS HD MA properly. The table suggests to me when you set the HDMI to PCM, you'll get 5.1 PCM output ("losslessly" decoded from DTS HD MA ????), but only DTS when setup to "AUTO" mode, which suggests to me they do not bitstream the DTS HD MA ???
I don't actually own the player, a friend brought one over temporarily to make sure the unit was working before it showed up underneath the Christmas tree. We tried the (alleged?) DTS HD MA audio tracks using the analog outputs (my preamp doesn't support HDMI) and it sounded pretty clean just as you'd expect from an uncompressed PCM track. But since I don't currently have a DTS HD MA-capable player, I'm mot sure what to expect.
We didn't spend the time to compare the alleged DTS HD MA track with "plain jane" DTS but given the uncertainty, we might have to try to put it through it's paces in an HDMI-capable setup.
The fact that the manual lists DTS HD master audio as a valid sound track is promising. or did they get the manual wrong ?