Lip Sync Issues with Magnifi Max Sr

So i know this question has been asked alot regarding the Mini and other soundbars, but i am having a problem with my brand new Magnifi Max Soundbar. I recently purchased a Sony x900e 55"4k tv. When i first got it home i was using the Definitive technology W studio sound bar and sub as my audio equipment. My set up was as follows:

Xbox one S ->HDMI-> Sony Tv
PS4 ->HDMI-> to DT Soundbar->HDMI to TV
Cablebox ->HDMI-> to DT Soundbar->HDMI to TV

Everything worked in this setup. I had no lipsync issues. The only issue i did have was dialogue/voice level. Also, the DT W studio soundbar doesn't support ARC or 4k/HDMI 2.2 pass through and i wanted to use it as a switch potentially. So i went out and got the new Polk bar. It has the voice adjust technology, which thus far, has been wonderful. I can hear dialogues audio clearly in loud scenes and in quiet scenes with no volume adjustment needed. My current set up is everything into the TV via HDMI and TV out to Polk soundbar via optical. I am getting major lip sync issues. I tried to run everything to my TV via HDMI and then the TV to the soundbar using HDMI ARC and still have the same issue. The xbox one s seems to be the worse. Cable is hardly noticeable if at all and the PS4 is a slight noticeable delay, but if you drink enough or close your eyes you will never know the difference.

I have not tried plugging everything directly into the soundbar and then running back out to the TV from the soundbar via HDMI because i was concerned about losing picture quality for 4K and HDR content. The Polk bar says it supports 4k pass through, but i've always been told the less things you pass through the better your picture quality. So i am hesitant to run anything directly to it for that reason. Does anyone know if i will lose pic quality by doing so?

If it is true, that i will lose picture quality by running directly to the soundbar, then does anyone have a solution to this lip sync issue? My sony TV does not appear to have a setting for adjusting the A/V delay, and there is no menu to pull up on the soundbar. Short of adjusting tons of settings for Audio out on each system (Xbox and PS4), which i have tried, i am not sure what else i can do. It's very frustrating because like i said i was not having this issue prior to the Polk audio equipment being introduced. I was having separate issues, mainly volume level and dialogue volume, but no A/V sync up issues.

As a reference i have another Xbox one S in my room hooked directly up to my 4K LG TV and then the LG tv hooked to my DT W studio soundbar via optical and have zero issues, outside the same dialogue volume issue. I can live with that in my room though because the acoustics are naturally better and i don't watch a ton of stuff other than TV before going to sleep in my room.


  • cstew03cstew03 Posts: 3
    correction it is just the ManiFi Max that I have. Not the Magnifi Max SR.
  • NickJNickJ Posts: 2
    Taking HDMI to your soundbar as you did before may be the difference if the problem you are experiencing is "too much" audio delay as I suspect.

    Sony (as well as Panasonic, Toshiba and some others unfortunately) adds audio delay to its internal speakers AS WELL AS its s/pdif (optical) audio output equal to its video delay and gives the user no way to adjust it or turn OFF the delay. Some TV manufacturers (Samsung, Vizio, etc.) allow the user to adjust their delay and set it to zero. I don't know about your LG.

    So, the way you have it connected (going to the TV first and taking optical audio from the Sony to your Polk soundbar) is allowing the Sony to add audio delay. Probably at least 60 ms if not more. Since it is 4K probably more.

    I work for a company that makes lip-sync correction devices for home cinema and we run into this problem all the time. Particularly with Sonos users since their speakers add over 30 ms additional audio delay which on top of the Sony audio delay is almost always a problem. We recommend connecting audio sources directly to Av receivers or soundbars bypassing the TV to avoid the audio delay a TV might add.

    That connection (if truly HDMI into the sound system and NOT ARC from the TV) not only eliminates the delay the TV will add but also insures you can get surround sound. That isn't a problem on your Sony or TV's that support Dolby "passthrough" but oddly many TV's don't (like most Samsungs) and therefore any source that goes to the TV via HDMI will get a "stereo" only EDID request from the TV and stereo is all you can get out of the TV's optical port.

    What confuses users is that even those TV's without Dolby passthrough will have Dolby 5.1 advertising plastered all over their cartons but that claim only applies to sources "internal" to the TV (like its tuner and streaming capability) and NOT from its HDMI INPUTS.

    So, try connecting directly to your Polk soundbar. It should not diminish your video quality. Keep in mind HDMI video is DIGITAL not analog so there is no way to 'marginally" degrade the video quality. Being digital it is either there or it's not and if not you can't overlook it.

    ARC confuses things. Basically ARC is s/pdif out of the TV carried on wires they added to the HDMI cables so just because you plug up to a soundbar via an HDMI cable does NOT guarantee the soundbar is actually receiving HDMI audio. If the soundbar claims to handle the new Dolby True HD 192Khz formats or DTS Master Audio it must receive them via HDMI as they cannot be carried by ARC. If it makes no such claim it MIGHT be getting all its audio via ARC in which case the TV will be in contol of whether that audio is delayed or not.

    Now, that said, be aware that the excess audio delay you have experienced may have broken your natural defense mechanism of looking away from the faces and lips to avoid the impossibility you are experiencing (lip-sync error is impossible in the real world as sound always travels about a foot (13 inches actually) every milli second so when we encounter AV asynchrony the only way our brains can process the contradiction of nature is to avoid it by subconsciously looking askance. The operative word is "subconsciously".

    Once it exceeds our ability to mask it by avoiding focusing on the faces and lip movement and we "consciously" notice it we start "looking" at the faces and we can see much smaller lip-sync error than ever before. So, even if you connect via HDMI to the Polk soundbar and eliminate the audio delay the Sony is adding its quite possible you will still see lip-sync error even though it won't be any higher than it was back when your defense mechanism was intact keeping you from consciously noticing it.

    Lip-sync error is an insidious problem masking itself much of the time due to our looking away from the faces and lip-movement to avoid something that can't be reconciled. It defies the physical laws of nature - especially when the sound comes "before" the event that creates the sound but even when it occurs "after" the movement is seen if the delay is excessive which implies a MUCH greater distance.

    If this area interests you Google "Reeves and Voelker Audio Asynchrony" and you will find many links to an often quoted study conducted at Stanford over 20 years ago which statistically documented the negative impact on viewer perception caused by lip-sync error.

    Ironically we viewers get the impression the characters are not making eye contact with us causing us to feel they are more agitated, less truthful, less successful, etc. when in fact "we" are the ones looking away.

    On forums like this you can't rely on one member's assessment of lip-sync error or even your own assessment prior to your own defense mechanism being broken.

    I was initially avoiding noticing 64 ms error but once I started noticing it and focused on it I could see a few ms error. I now adjust down to a single ms. The point where I toggle back and forth and a single ms either direction looks slightly off.

    The device I use can adjust in 1/3 ms increments but I never use that fine mode adjustment.

  • cstew03cstew03 Posts: 3
    Thanks for the great info! Yes I hate that Sony does not give you away to adjust the audio delay it does. For a great TV with a great picture this is really disappointing.

    I tried running everything directly to my soundar via HDMI and then out to the TV with HDMI. This completely alleviated the issue. Minus exactly what you mention. My defenses have been broken so now I notice just the natural minor issues. Ones I would most likely never have noticed before. That being said, while this setup did fix the issue it created another. With my Xbox One S by running everything to the soundbar first i've messed up the 4k pass through. Everything passes through and I get 4K/HDR down to the tv with the exception of 24fps at 1Obits. When I have my Xbox hooked directly to the TV it says my TV is capable of 24fps at 10bits, but when I go through the Soundbar first it says the TV is not capable of 24fps at 10bits. So the Soundbar is not able to do that i guess?

    I don't know enough about picture to know what I am missing in quality when losing out on that option so I moved all inputs back to the old way. Everything going to the TV first and then out via HDMI ARC to the sounbar. After tinkering with all of the settings I have found a solution. I changed my audio output to Bitstream and DTS on the Xbox One S. I had tried all of this before, but can't remember switching to DTS because I was always under the impression Dolby was better. After researching I found most people think DTS is a fuller sound so I am happy with DTS coming out. Switcing to DTS has alleviated the lipsync issues via the Xbox One S for now. Ps4 i switched from PCM to bitstream and it corrected as well. Cable is fine.

    I'd be happy to run everything through the soundbar first if I could figure out how to do the 24FPS at 10bits pass through because I am sure I would get much better sound that way, but until then I am satisfied enough in my solution. I do notice lip sync issues from time to time, but again I think that is what you were referring to above.
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