Sound controls

YouTube TV surround sound is coming to Android/Google TV

Google’s cord-cutting service currently only offers 5.1 audio on two device classes. YouTube TV today gave an update on bringing 5.1 surround sound to more users.

Recognizing that “5.1 audio is important to many of you”, YouTube TV today announced that it is “currently testing it” on Google TV, Android TV and Roku. This hopefully includes the Chromecast with Google TV.

… if all goes well, we can expect 5.1 audio to launch on these devices next.

That said, no specific timeline was provided or any information on whether Google is referring to public A/B testing or something more limited. Meanwhile, YouTube TV wants to bring surround sound to Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV and game consoles, but it’s still “working internally and with partners” on this.

As of last June, the only supported 5.1 devices are “Samsung + LG + Vizio devices with Cobalt 20 or higher” and Cast-based Chromecasts. A compatible speaker system is also of course required, with YouTube TV playing “5.1 audio whenever it’s available for the program you’re watching”.

That said, you can manually check under “Stats for nerds”:

1. Open the YouTube TV app on your TV and play a video.

2. Access player controls, then select More.

3. Select the bug.

4. Nerd stats will be displayed at the top of the video while the video is playing.

If surround sound is available for the program you’re watching, you’ll see ac-3 (381) listed under the Codecs section.

Today’s tweet update follows comments last month about expanding surround sound support.

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