2021 new gen Apple tv 4k Dolby Atmos Problems

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Robert D

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They're doing the remote because I also mentioned my problem with the volume jumping 3dB at a time (instead of 0.5 increments) in the event it was relevant to their troubleshooting process. Which, interestingly, is also an intermittent problem like the Atmos popping; though, could be totally unrelated. But, when encountering this issue, my other remotes (TV and AVR) control the volume just fine; it's only the Siri remote that acts up. And, it's not like a delay where I press the button a few times and then it finally catches up; I press Vol Up/Down, it lags a sec and finally changes the volume in a 0.5 dB increment, then I press it one additional time, and it jumps like 3 or 3.5dB (I'm using the decibel volume display on my AVR where they show as negative, and move towards 0 as you increase the volume).

Purchase date was 2021-09-16, although I bought from Amazon so I guess it could have been sitting around the warehouse for a bit. It had a pretty bad mildew smell when I opened it, enough so that it kind of hit me in the face upon unpacking. Didn't think much of it at the time since there were no visible signs of damage to the box or unit. Also probably unrelated, but who knows.

Glad to hear you've been having a problem-free experience since then. I'm going to reconnect mine to use until the replacement comes. I'm going to try disabling the "Match Frame Rate" and "Match Content" settings in the meantime to see if it helps at all; I was reading some posts on various audio issues, so figured it's worth a shot. Maybe that will help someone else, too, if they ever have trouble and stumble onto this thread looking for answers. I'll report back to this thread should I find out anything more.
Great. I think it is important that the public create and maintain threads like this for others seeking help. I spent many hours on the net looking and did not find much. This should make a good reference for others.
 
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Great. I think it is important that the public create and maintain threads like this for others seeking help. I spent many hours on the net looking and did not find much. This should make a good reference for others.
So, I played with several options, but nothing helped. It seems to happen with regular frequency. I did, however, capture a couple video clips that show both the skipping/popping sounds, and also an instance of a few seconds of muting (you can see the AVR display changing decoder modes when it happens). I’ll get these uploaded someplace that will accept the file size and will update my post with links.

edit:

I took these with an iPhone in DV/HDR so you probably need a proper codec, or be on an Apple device, to view.
 
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So, I played with several options, but nothing helped. It seems to happen with regular frequency. I did, however, capture a couple video clips that show both the skipping/popping sounds, and also an instance of a few seconds of muting (you can see the AVR display changing decoder modes when it happens). I’ll get these uploaded someplace that will accept the file size and will update my post with links.

edit:

I took these with an iPhone in DV/HDR so you probably need a proper codec, or be on an Apple device, to view.
I just watched these on my PC and how the uploads did the compression, it's not even that clear to hear the popping sounds (though it's obvious on the one where the sounds just cuts out). I do have the full quality videos to send to Apple, but I just realized nothing in any of my cases or work orders for the replacement unit have any method for contacting Apple. Come on, Apple, help me help you. How frustrating.
 

JLasher22443

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So, I played with several options, but nothing helped. It seems to happen with regular frequency. I did, however, capture a couple video clips that show both the skipping/popping sounds, and also an instance of a few seconds of muting (you can see the AVR display changing decoder modes when it happens). I’ll get these uploaded someplace that will accept the file size and will update my post with links.

edit:

I took these with an iPhone in DV/HDR so you probably need a proper codec, or be on an Apple device, to view.
Yah that's exactly what mine is doing.Thanks for posting.
 

barjohn

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Mine does that too and I wasn't sure if it was because I am on a wireless setup using WISA receivers with amplifiers (wide range I am testing) or the AppleTV4K. Pops & clicks are before start of play and after play stops while drop outs occur during playback. Noticeable on browsing entries too such as browsing Netflix or Apple Music. It is significantly worse on Atmos or Spatial Audio. I just purchased a Blue-ray player to compare and see if it is AppleTV4K or my WISA environment experiencing interference. I also have Roku and FireTV so I will have to test all three. Unfortunately, AppleTV4K is the only way to test Spatial Audio.
 

Robert D

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Have any of you still experiencing the problem received a new apple tv box like me?

Since my new box solved my issue, I'm assuming my problem was a hardware malfunction in my box. Bad right out of the box brand new.

My sound problem was like all of your's, but only happened on Dolby Atmos. It also never happened for some reason on HBOMAX. It happened on Apple tv service and Net Flix.

I must admit that lately I've not been watching a lot of Atmos material, but have some. I'm still symptom free and it's been about 4 or 5 months of daily use.
 

Robert D

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Mine was flawless until the OS release in late September. I've been waiting for an update to fix it...
Mine is still ok. Maybe its a compatibility issue with certain equipment. What receiver is your's hooked up to? Mine is a Marantz. Its a SR8012.
 

msimanyi

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It's also a Marantz - I believe it's an SR6014, though I could be mistaken. In any case, I'm replacing that with an Emotiva RMC-1 either tonight or tomorrow, and I'll see if the audio drops remain.
 

Robert D

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Experienced it again last night My Processor is the Marantz AV7703 and I got the AppleTV on September 26, 2021.
Ok. Seems Marantz might be an issue. I told the people at Apple about it and she recorded it. Not sure if engineers were informed about the Marantz issue.

My Apple tv was purchased April 30th. So if it's a hardware issue, they hadn't fixed it yet as of September.
 

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Just adding this little tidbit in case it helps anyone.

TL;DR Boot order of the gear matters.

In my HT, my PJ is still a 1080p with FauxK (JVC 4810), so I need to fool the ATV4K that my rig supports 4K, or else Netflix and others do not offer Atmos soundtracks.

To achieve that, I use an adapter (https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07VP37KMB/) that does EDID spoofing to fool the source into thinking it sees a 4K device.
It also is a splitter, but not used as such in the HT, strictly used to convince the ATV4K that I have 4K support, and thus gain Atmos.

But, when I fully power down (zero AC available) and back up, this adapter boots faster than my Marantz preamp, so it does not cache the EDID from the Marantz that it does indeed support Atmos. Thus the ATV4K refuses to offer up any Atmos content.

To fix, I just pull the power from the EZCOO adapter, and when it comes back up, it is able to pull the EDID from the Marantz and then on the handshake with the ATV4K, it is told we are a 4K device that supports Atmos audio.

Usually, none of the above is an issue because I put the system into standby (for the sources, amps are fully powered down). But every month or two, for one reason or another, a total power loss happens, and I have to reboot the adapter.
 

JonFo

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Good point, and I do have a nearby UPS for the home automation system, just need an extension to reach.
But regardless, at some point, it will lose power and issues like the above can happen.
 
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Just to report some more data points while I await my ATV replacement:

I’ve been testing with S1E3 of Lost In Space on Netflix which has both Dolby Atmos and Vision. It will consistently give me the popping/skipping or the muting issue (followed by the popping) during the opening credits.

I played this same content via my TV’s (TCL 75R635) internal Netflix app (supports both DV and Atmos) and cannot reproduce the problem (this uses eArc back to Marantz).

Back to the AppleTV (ATV -> Marantz-> TV) and it predictably returns. However, I did try disabling Dolby Vision in the ATV settings (set to 4k 60Hz SDR) and the problem doesn’t occur (so far). While not an acceptable workaround, it does suggest the problem may be with combined Atmos and Vision. Wondering if this holds true for others.

Also, the post above stating it started after a TvOS update: I’ve read this elsewhere, too, and seems to correlate my experience (albeit I can’t be certain). Which again leads me back to Apple being at fault (or, perhaps the update adheres more strictly to a Dolby spec that other device manufacturers, eg Marantz, might not be, and the update is just causing this to now surface). However, not being able to get any other devices to exhibit this behavior seems to place this on Apple, IMO

I have a gen 1 AppleTV 4k in another room (no DV on that tv) that I’m going to experiment with today in this system. That could possibly rule out a hardware issue vs software/OS update. Will post results.
 
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Okay, so some interesting findings.

I could not duplicate the problem on the 1st gen AppleTV 4k connected to my Marantz. Did a straight swap so I was using the same inputs to the AVR, etc.

However, I did notice my lip sync issue returned. When I was using the 1st gen ATV before getting the new gen 2 unit, lip sync on Dolby Vision always gave me an issue, even when setting 'Auto Lip Sync' in the Marantz; I always found manually setting the delay to 211ms dialed it in pretty well, and while annoying, I just lived with it. Didn't pay much attention to this setting when connecting the new 2nd gen ATV, other than disabling/reenabling it when troubleshooting this popping/skipping issue.

Reconnected the 2nd gen ATV back to the Marantz and it took a couple tries, but the popping/skipping issue returned. However, no lip sync issues at all. No need for me to manually set the delay to 211ms. It's almost like they fixed the lip sync issue I was experiencing, but broke something else with the audio. This is just speculation, of course.

What I have settled on, is that it is probably not the OS itself, but perhaps faulty hardware, or a combination of something in the OS update affecting components existing only in the 2nd gen units. Wondering if this problem is occurring for anyone with gen 1 units.

Anyway, I just got an email from Apple saying my replacement unit is in. Not sure I'm willing to brave the mall on Black Friday, so might put off the pickup until Monday. Will keep this thread updated with any new info.
 

Robert D

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Just to report some more data points while I await my ATV replacement:

I’ve been testing with S1E3 of Lost In Space on Netflix which has both Dolby Atmos and Vision. It will consistently give me the popping/skipping or the muting issue (followed by the popping) during the opening credits.

I played this same content via my TV’s (TCL 75R635) internal Netflix app (supports both DV and Atmos) and cannot reproduce the problem (this uses eArc back to Marantz).

Back to the AppleTV (ATV -> Marantz-> TV) and it predictably returns. However, I did try disabling Dolby Vision in the ATV settings (set to 4k 60Hz SDR) and the problem doesn’t occur (so far). While not an acceptable workaround, it does suggest the problem may be with combined Atmos and Vision. Wondering if this holds true for others.

Also, the post above stating it started after a TvOS update: I’ve read this elsewhere, too, and seems to correlate my experience (albeit I can’t be certain). Which again leads me back to Apple being at fault (or, perhaps the update adheres more strictly to a Dolby spec that other device manufacturers, eg Marantz, might not be, and the update is just causing this to now surface). However, not being able to get any other devices to exhibit this behavior seems to place this on Apple, IMO

I have a gen 1 AppleTV 4k in another room (no DV on that tv) that I’m going to experiment with today in this system. That could possibly rule out a hardware issue vs software/OS update. Will post results.
As a note, my new gen atv 4k doesn't have the sound problem even though I have the latest OS update. I'm streaming from the atv directly to my Marantz receiver too. This is my new replacement Apple tv 4k that was provided to me by Apple.
 

JLasher22443

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As a note, my new gen atv 4k doesn't have the sound problem even though I have the latest OS update. I'm streaming from the atv directly to my Marantz receiver too. This is my new replacement Apple tv 4k that was provided to me by Apple.
Robert when did you purchase the ATV4K that had the issues? And who did you purchase it from? I'm just curious how a swap from new to newer is fixing the issue? Does Apple know that certain sets of manufactured ATV4K units were defective but sold them anyways? So basically we got recall units like cars? LOL Just curious because I've had mine for only 2 months.
 

Robert D

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Robert when did you purchase the ATV4K that had the issues? And who did you purchase it from? I'm just curious how a swap from new to newer is fixing the issue? Does Apple know that certain sets of manufactured ATV4K units were defective but sold them anyways? So basically we got recall units like cars? LOL Just curious because I've had mine for only 2 months.
I got mine when it first came out, on day 1. March I think. I pre-ordered direct from Apple on their site.

I'm hoping my replacement fixed the issue. So far so good. Replaced it back in June.

Apple is aware of the issue because I at least informed them of all the details and the tech on the phone had heard other reports. The guy at the store knew nothing about it. He went to a higher up there in the store and they approved the replacement.
 
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