I never thought I'd be complaining because I couldn't hear the commercials, but here I am.
January 31, 2012 5:06 PM   Subscribe

Why does my television's sound intermittently cut out?

I've got a Vizio Jive 50" plasma television that's four years old or so. Just recently (~5 weeks) the sets sound has been acting funky. Often, when I turn on the set, I seem to be getting only the music from a commercial, for example. I can hear the background music, and I can see the actors' lips moving, but can hear no dialog. It's more common on commercials, but it also happens during the actual shows. Restarting the tv ALWAYS fixes the problem, but it's inconvenient, and I'm concerned about prematurely wearing out the set.

I should also mention that one of the sets' three HDMI ports produces no sound, either.

So, any ideas?
posted by unclejeffy to Technology (4 answers total)
I did a little google and quite a few people are reporting odd audio problems, and quite a few other people are saying it's the AV/audio/SSB board that needs replacing, at a cost of between $100 and $200.

But it might be something has been accidentally bumped in settings, because somebody also says: "I solved the problem by going into settings. Then audio. I had one of the audio settings turned off".
posted by tumid dahlia at 5:30 PM on January 31, 2012

This happened to us a while back and it turns out a fuse was about to blow. When it finally did, we heard a really, really loud POP and then the TV didn't work again. We had the fuse replaced (a TV repairman came to the house, took the TV apart and put in a fuse, for like $70) and all has been well for at least a year now.
posted by cooker girl at 6:02 PM on January 31, 2012

It sounds like a chip is on the edge of failure. Is the TV near a heat source -- like a heating vent or radiator, or in direct sunlight? Does it fail more often at certain times of the day? Does it ever fail after you have successfully turned it on for a while -- or does it only fail when you turn it on? If you turn the sound way up when it's working fine, is it distortion free ?
posted by Land Ho at 6:57 PM on January 31, 2012

If you are using digital connections to a digital source, video interference is apparent via pixelation. When a digital audio source dies, or fails to decode properly - you get silence. It could be your TV, it could be your source, it could be the signal. Don't rule out those possibilities and immediately jump to replace your TV. The problem could persist.

And yes, despite the TV reset fixing the problem - that doesn't mean that it isn't caused by a handshake signal from the source failing to be sent properly (thus perpetually leaving the TV to wait for a response). Does this happen on multiple sources (cable box, video game console, etc?). Does this happen with your primary source and a different TV? There are enough points of failure in a digital signal environment where a reboot of the TV solving the problem still doesn't guarantee that the TV is the culprit.

Digital satellite is also very different than digital cable in this realm. If you have satellite, I might be talking about recent sunspot activity as well... seriously, Science Friday had a great piece on some current storms last week. Once again, I'm not saying that there's nothing wrong with your TV - just that there is too little information provided to be able to give you a definitive answer,
posted by Nanukthedog at 9:10 PM on January 31, 2012

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