What are ARC and eARC and why do they matter?
ARC, Audio Return Channel, is a feature of HDMI that has been around since 2009 and chances are highly likely that your new display or soundbar already has it built in.
With ARC, you'll maximize your audio signal while simultaneously opening the door for easier control of your home theater system. The TV and soundbar talk to each other through the HDMI connection. This allows for a single remote to control both devices for power and volume. Another great benefit is that it eliminates lip-syncing errors. The performer's lips on TV will match the audio, which is a common issue when using an optical cable.
Sounds great, right?
Well, hold on. First, you have to set up ARC.
To set up ARC you must go into your display's menu settings and enable the function.
This sets the stage for eARC, Enhanced Audio Return Channel. The first enhancement is - it just works. No menu, no setup. Just plug in the HDMI cable and voila, you're up and running.
It also allows for better sound quality. You may see terms like Dolby Atmos, DTS HD, or Dolby TrueHD on your new equipment. These are some of the latest and greatest in audio quality that eARC enables. Use the eARC connection on your display and sound bar, and you're good to go.
Now you may be wondering which HDMI cable to use.
Now enjoy your beautiful new home theater experience.