After escalating the lack of DTS-HD support on this NUC to engineering, who in turn talked to the processor guys, who in turn talked to the graphics guys, who in turn talked to... well you know how it is.
Turns out, this processor never supported DTS-HD, so the NUC's specification document is wrong. That will be updated to reflect the change.
Sorry I don't have better news.
How do you explain DTS-HD working just fine in Linux if the processor does not support it? Perhaps it's the Protected Audio Path (PAP) copy protection it does not support as this is required by Windows for DTS-HD (Linux does not require PAP which would explain it working there), and as PAP is usually implemented via the Intel Management Engine Interface driver that would explain the lack of this driver for this version of the NUC.
So what exactly does this mean for those of us who purchased the NUC because of DTS-HD support which is clearly listed on the specs on page 22 of the TechProdSpec03.pdf? When shall we receive a free upgrade to the next model up of NUC that supports DTS-HD?
This has class action lawsuit written all over it
There is a workaround to allow you to output HD audio from Win7/Win8 as LPCM to your receiver.
You must meet the following criteria:
- be using XBMC
- be connected to your A/V receiver via HDMI (not optical)
The workaround, which I have posted about in the J1900 thread, relies on getting XBMC to software decode the compressed DTS-HD or Dolby TrueHD audio to uncompressed LPCM and then outputting it over the HDMI to your receiver. The downside is that your CPU workload will increase to perform the decode, but this hasn't resulted in any impact on smooth video playback for me on a J1900 board and I'd expect the N2820 should probably be OK too.
To implement the workaround:
- In XBMC go to System > Settings > System > Set "Settings level" to "Expert"
- Now go to System > Settings > System > Audio Output
- Set "number of channels" to your correct surround sound setup - in my case "5.1" - this informs XBMC how many channels you want it to decode to
- Set "Enable passthrough" to unchecked/disabled. This will cause XBMC to decode audio itself.
XBMC will now software decode all audio and send it to your receiver uncompressed. Yes, it feels kind of wasteful making your CPU do this decode instead of your dedicated receiver, but this is the position Intel (and Microsoft, by making this stupid HDCP DRM mandatory) has forced us into. Note that if you are outputting audio via optical and not HDMI, it does not have enough bandwidth for six channels of uncompressed audio so you will not get full surround.
Stuff I'm not sure about that it would be good if people could test
- CPU load impact of decoding audio on an N2820 - like I say, it's fine on a J1900 so fingers crossed.
- Ability to output more than 5.1 LPCM over HDMI (according to this article, 8-channel 7.1 should be OK but I don't have that setup to test)
- Whether media frontends other than XBMC can perform the above - sorry you're on your own!
I hope this helps some people out, spread the word if so. The other workaround, of course, is running Openelec but I like keeping Windows compatibility with this method
Thanks for the temporary workaround gor_gor.
Intel really needs to address this issue. I know the admins are just delivering the message and I'm grateful that they provided the information to us, but Intel can't just say "sorry" and update the documentation on the website and walk away leaving the rest of us screwed.
I sincerely apologize for the misinformation that was contained in the spec for this NUC. If anyone purchased this NUC based on thinking you would have DTS-HD, then you can submit a web ticket to request a refund - https://servicerequestmgmt.intel.com/webticketui/emailpage.aspx?lang=en-us.
Have you try it?
I. INSTALLATION INFORMATION
Supports Intel(R) Iris(TM) graphics, Intel(R) Iris(TM) Pro graphics, and Intel(R) HD graphics on:
4th Generation Intel(R) Core(TM) Processor Platform
4th Generation Intel(R) Core(TM) Processor U Series-based Platform
4th Generation Intel(R) Core(TM) Processor Y Series-based Platform
3rd Generation Intel(R) Core(TM) Processor Platform
3rd Generation Intel(R) Core(TM) Processor U Series-based Platform
3rd Generation Intel(R) Core(TM) Processor Y Series-based Platform
Intel(R) Pentium(TM) Processor 2000/A1000/G2000/G2100 Series
Intel(R) Celeron(TM) Processor 900/1000/G1000 Series
Intel(R) Pentium(R) N3510/ 3520 Processor
Intel(R) Celeron(R) N2810/ 2820 Processor
Intel(R) Celeron(R) N2910/ 2920 Processor
Intel(R) Celeron(R) N2805/ N2806 Processor
Intel(R) Pentium(R) J2850/ J2900 Processor
Intel(R) Celeron(R) J1850/ J1900 Processor
Intel(R) Celeron(R) J1750/ J1800 Processor
Intel(R) Celeron(R) N2808 Processor
Intel(R) Celeron(R) N2815 Processor
Intel(R) Celeron(R) N2840 Processor
Intel(R) Celeron(R) N2940 Processor
Intel(R) Pentium(R)N3540 Processor