A Sound(bar) Annoyance

This post is about fixing a nagging issue with audio on a Vizio sound bar. The problem: during periods of silence in videos, the audio would cut out compeltely and turn back on with a significant delay.

To illustrate:

This YouTube video has you guess the Disney theme. The theme you guess starts playing when a 15 second timer counts down. There’s a brief silence pause after each entry.

Except, in the bad default configuration, all audio would cut out until the timer reached 12-10 seconds. Grrr.

After some digging, reddit came to the rescue: Disable the VZtv Rmt setting. I also took the opportunity to disable the EcoPower setting.

These settings reset to its default ON across sound bar device firmware upgrades.

About the setup, all devices on latest firmware/OS:

  • LG 55” OLED TV
  • Vizio SB4051-C0 Sound Bar
  • Apple TV 4K
  • Nintendo Switch

There’s nothing exotic about the configuration. The sound bar is connected to TV’s HDMI ARC and the Apple TV via two Belkin UltraHD High Speed 4K HDMI Cables. The Nintendo Switch is connected directly to the TV via the HDMI cable that came with the Switch.

I hope this post helps others who are encountering this frustrating problem.

UPDATE (2022-04-02): Don’t do this kind of setup. I reconnected the Apple TV directly to the TV and the sound bar directly to the TV. This fixed all of the problems.