Using both audio outputs at the same time on WDTV Live

My A/V receiver has a Zone 2 option that I have outdoor speakers hooked up to. The Zone 2 option only works on RCA composite inputs. I have my WD LIve connected with the Toslink optical connection. To run the Zone 2 I would need to connect to the RCA outputs on the WD Live. Does anyone know (before I attempt to set this up) if the audio signal is fed simultaneaously through both outputs on the WD Live? I would love to be able run Pandora inside the house and out on the patio!

My (very limited) experience with this is that it’s possible but has problems.

With an HDMI connection to the TV display and the stereo audio connected to an amplifier I found that there was a significant delay between the two audio ouputs resulting in the audio being too distracting to listen to.

My approach was to make the HDMI connection to the TV, then use the TV’s digital audio output to supply the receiver which results in synced audio signals.  You could do the same with analog audio out, but the digital supplies 5.1 which I assume the WD unit supports.

Hope that this information is of value.

Beverly Howard

Funny that this would come up. I just finished the setup using  the Composite output (minus the video) to an x10 transmitter in order to push Pandora radio from the WD to a remote amplified set of speakers. The Optical output is going to my Receiver. I notice no real lag in the signals when both are on. This would not normally be the case. One would be on at a time. I was pleased to see that the WD push audio through both outputs. Great machine… cj

You won’t notice the same lag with TOSLINK… it doesn’t have the delay information built into the signal like HDMI does.  The receiver is supposed to handle delaying the TOSLINK audio so that it syncs up with the video, since the TOSLINK signal contains no delay information.

Geek notes:

Once the video part has been sent over HDMI (or component), it takes time to process the signal and then draw the frame – especially for 1080p.  So, ultimately, the HDMI (or component) video ends up not being displayed in sync with the composite video, which has practically no delay, despite the fact that both signals are being generated and sent at the exact same time – it all comes down to how much processing is necessary for the video stream.

The TOSLINK (optical) specs had no provision to account for this delay (and there is no room in the data stream to add it), so A/V receivers had to add the delay themselves to the audio, so that it syncs up with the delayed video.

The HDMI signal includes audio delay information, so that the audio and video remain in sync.  That’s why the HDMI and the RCA stereo audio signals are not in sync with each other, and why the TOSLINK and RCA stereo audio signals are in sync with each other.

I have done exactly what the OP asked about. I also use the RCA output to pipe Live+ Pandora or local Music or even TV audio out to the backyard speakers. I believe I always had a delay/echo problem that can vary in delay time based on unknown factors. It can start with a very slight echo, and one hour later becomes much more pronounced. I have compared this delay to HDMI audio and to Optical audio… but I am now uncertain if the delay problem is only associated to HDMI and if the delay may not be a problem at all if using only optical (in living room) and RCA (in backyard). I will post back if I find out there is NO echo while using optical and RCA.

In order to stop the **bleep** echo, a few times I have broken down and just used the RCA output in both zones. This however does not sound as good in the living room.

Your success of “echo or no echo” will likely result from your AVR’s capabilities, mood or the weather outside.