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Samsung QLED TV with HW-R530 Soundbar massive volume fluctuations

JamesDavison

Active Member
I have Samsung QLED 2019 TV with a Samsung HW-R530 Soundbar connected by HDMI ARC.

It works fine, apart from the MASSIVE volume fluctuations depending what I'm watching!

For example, when I watch Youtube, i have to turn the sound level to around 15, but when I watch a movie I can't hear the speech and sometimes action very well so have to turn it up to 35-40! Massive difference. It also has the problem that explosions are REALLY loud but speaking quiet (with some movies)!

I tried changing the output setting to PCM on the TV for everything, so it doesn't switch to Dolby Digital when it can, and thats helped a bit but can be a bit quiet - expect when I switch to Freeview or Youtube and i get blown away its sooo loud! It does seem a bit random whats loud and whats not.

Is this just because it's an older entry level soundbar? or because I'm trying to cram 5.1 sound through 2.1 speakers?

I am using an older HDMI cable for the ARC connection from TV to soundbar but would changing that actually make any difference as it's working at the moment?

Any ideas or suggestions appreciated.

Thanks
 

Jase

Distinguished Member
Sources do vary so it's usually a case of having to live with it and just remembering what volume settings work best for each source.

On my Samsung HW-MS650 I don't need much higher than 10 for TV. Blu rays etc tend to be anywhere between 15 and 25 but it also depends which mode the Soundbar is in. Smart Mode for example is way louder than the others. I tend to just stick with Surround for films.

Movies have greater dynamic range so you will get swings from quiet to loud. There may be a setting as Night Mode or DRC (Dynamic Range Compression) you can use or even a Dialogue Enhancer option. The Soundbar may have these or some Blu ray players have them depending on the audio format they're outputting.

With TV and the differences between Dolby Digital and PCM and Freesat vs Freeview. My Panasonic TV has a setting in the sound menu to offset the PCM level for the Optical and HDMI ARC outputs. I knocked this down to -7db so there's now no difference between Dolby Digital and PCM. Adverts still get blasted out louder than programmes but that seems more to do with broadcast levels. Might be worth checking to see if your TV has something similar.

I doubt a newer cable will do anything if yours is already working now.
 
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JamesDavison

Active Member
Thanks for the reply.

So yours is an all in one? Is bass ok not having a separate woofer?

I've noticed the slightly higher model soundbar from mine, the HW-R550 has a feature called Auto Sound Mode which mine doesn't have.... hope someone with a soundbar that has that says it fixes it!
 

Jase

Distinguished Member
Thanks for the reply.

So yours is an all in one? Is bass ok not having a separate woofer?

I've noticed the slightly higher model soundbar from mine, the HW-R550 has a feature called Auto Sound Mode which mine doesn't have.... hope someone with a soundbar that has that says it fixes it!
Yes, it's an all-in-one. I didn't want a separate subwoofer as it's not my main system. The bass is very tight and punchy.

I suspect the Auto Sound Mode is probably the equivalent of Smart Mode on mine. It won't help with volume fluctuations if that's the case. It just decides what's best for whatever source you're playing at the time. Works quite well if you don't want to be switching between modes like Cinema, Music etc.
 
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Jase

Distinguished Member
Just had a look in the manual for your Soundbar and it has DRC.

DRC (Dynamic Range Control)

Lets you apply dynamic range control to Dolby Digital tracks. Press and hold the SOUND MODE button while the Soundbar is powered off to turn DRC (Dynamic Range Control) on or off. With the DRC turned on, loud sound is reduced. (The sound may be distorted.)

Bear in mind it's only for Dolby Digital.
 
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Jase

Distinguished Member
Ah i think i tried that, but nothing seemed to happen
On mine it reduced the volume swings a bit when I tried it. I usually leave it off though.

Have a look in your TV's sound menu to see if there are any options in there that might help. Mine has a few others but they only affect the TV's internal speakers.
 
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