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HDMI Jitter

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  • HDMI Jitter

    From what I have learned over the years is that HDMI has the highest jitter of any Digital transfer. I'm not sure if thats exactly true or not but it's been said by many people in and out of the industry. So lets take that at face value and talk about it.

    HDMI does pass the best sounding home theater experience I have ever heard. True HD and Master Audio sound fantastic and much better then DD and DTS standard formats. These mostly where sent over SPDIF which used a Digital coax or a Optical cable.

    Now one could connect his / her Blu ray player up VIA analog and bypass the cleaner connection of a single HDMI. But the real question is does that sound better then using the HDMI?
    This is something I never really did a long intensive shootout and now plan on doing so. I'm gonna reconnect my Cambridge Audio BD650 Azur with analog out and HDMI on different inputs and compare for movies.

    Now lets talk about audio for music. You got SACD and DVD AUDIO which can't travel over SPDIF so using a optical or coax cable will not work. You either have to go HDMI or analog out. Ok fine , this can be compared once again. The one thing that doesn't make for a fair compare is the DAC. If one DAC is better then the other or you prefer one over the other even with jitter , I'm wondering if one will still sound better then the other? Deeper thinking will the internal DAC of the given player sound better as signal paths are shorter which could result in a jitter free environment . Much to think about when trying to get the best overall performance out of todays formats.

    All this thinking or revisiting of comparing is all due to the computer audio thing. From what I have read and learned , using HDMI is the worse possible connection. I would have thought it would have been the best but due to the lack of a single pin for error correction , many issues have been discovered using HDMI as your audio out.
    I'm also wondering how much it really effects the sound quality. I guess finding a Blu ray player and a AVR or Pre with the same exact DAC's might get you closer to discovering the true answers to these questions. So if we all have been listening to poor audio quality out of our HDMI outputs , imagine what it should sound like IF there was a way to get it right.

  • #2
    Personally I prefer to take analog out of the blu-ray player and feed it to a 6 channel preamp driving 2 stereo amps and a sub amp (5.1 setup).
    No overpriced AVR/Processor required, and best bang-for-buck.
    An Oppo BDP-95 makes an excellent BR source.

    Having said that, the latest generation DACs seem to be doing quite well with HDMI. Checkout the NAD M51 thread on


    • #3
      The Oppo BDP-95 would inevitably via it's analog out's sound better than the HDMI connection. It really all depends on how good the DAC's are...either at the source unit itself, or the amp at the end. I like to try both and evaluate over time which one is better and then stick to that method of playback.
      Dan Madden :T


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