SOUND OFF: Have audio skips and drops returned to your Genie client?

I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but it seems there’s a problem with some Genie clients. I’ve seen it before but I’d hoped it was gone forever. And, I’m wondering if I’m the only one.

Audio skips on live TV

What I’m talking about is, when you’re watching live TV, and the audio drops out once every few seconds in a predictable pattern. This is something that was seen on early Genie systems in 2011 and 2012. I hadn’t seen it again until recently.

The fix is easy actually. Just press the REPLAY button or back up a second or two using fast forward. This particular problem only happens with truly live TV so being behind even a fraction of a second fixes it.

Audio drops

The other issue which is still plaguing some users is audio drops. I’m talking about long silences when changing channels or when coming out of pause, rewind, or fast forward. This is often caused by an audio/video receiver which isn’t fast enough to negotiate between content-protected and unprotected streams. DIRECTV receivers and clients drop content protection when you pause, rewind or fast forward. They also drop it when you go into a menu. So, an older or slower receiver will take a second to pick that audio back up.

Audio drops are hard to get rid of unless you are willing to use a non-HDMI audio source. Using the digital audio out from your receiver will get rid of most (not all) audio drops. It’s just not as slick as using HDMI for all your connections.

Is there hope for fixing these issues?

I am confident that a fix is coming, and that we’ll see it in the next couple of months. It seems like AT&T is committed to making its Genies bulletproof, although it’s hard with so many different types of setups out there. So for now it’s just a waiting game and that’s frustrating.

Have you seen audio skips or drops with your DIRECTV Genie clients? Leave a comment below and tell us all about the experience, and if the comments are good I’ll let some of my friends over at AT&T know about what you’re saying.

About the Author

Stuart Sweet
Stuart Sweet is the editor-in-chief of The Solid Signal Blog and a "master plumber" at Signal Group, LLC. He is the author of over 9,000 articles and longform tutorials including many posted here. Reach him by clicking on "Contact the Editor" at the bottom of this page.