Nerd stuff 09 Feb 2007 03:57 pm

Problem watching cricket on digital TV while listening to commentary on steam radio

I don’t think there’s any easy fix for this… but maybe somebody has an idea.

I love watching and listening to cricket. Channel 9 does a fabulous job of the pictures but, apart from the oft-lampooned Richie Benaud, their commentators are pretty dull. So, like many people, I like to listen to the ABC Radio commentary while watching the TV.

Here’s the problem: TV in our home comes via a digital set top box. The combined delay caused by the encoding into digital at Channel 9 and the associated decoding to analogue for display on the TV set is around four seconds. The effect is: the words come about four seconds before the pictures. It’s a bit annoying to have the commentators calling the delivery and shot before it comes up on the telly.

I guess I could get hold of some sort of digital delay line and a stand-alone radio tuner, and set the delay on the audio to match the pics. Probably a bit too nerdy, even for me.

Anyone have a better idea?

3 Responses to “Problem watching cricket on digital TV while listening to commentary on steam radio”

  1. on 09 Feb 2007 at 18:02 (Sydney) 1.NeilA said …

    Hey Richard,
    I think you are out of luck. Quite a few people have commented on this on ABC 702 this summer and no solution has been suggested. They even got a ‘geek’ to explain the problem… 🙁

  2. on 10 Feb 2007 at 11:48 (Sydney) 2.Simon said …

    Have you tried the ABC’s live streaming? Streamed radio usually is a little delayed from the live radio – maybe it’s close enough.

    A digital delay line device would obviously need to buffer 4 seconds… most delay devices would buffer much less than that.

    You would think that a simple PC application might exist to do what you want – it’s source could be the streamed radio (or even an analog radio through the sound card). A Google search revealed nothing, but not really sure what would be good search terms.

  3. on 10 Feb 2007 at 22:21 (Sydney) 3.Richard said …

    Hi, Simon,

    Congrats on making the first comment to this site (incorrectly) picked up by Akismet as spam! Mind, Akismet has detected and obliterated over 500 genuine spam comments (if that’s not an oxymoron).

    Good idea on the streamed signal – must give it a try. I could plug the laptop’s audio output into the front panel aux input on my amp.

    I reckon a home built delay line would work – memory is cheap these days. Let’s see: mono, (say) 8kHz bandwidth, 16bits per sample, 4 seconds (say) delay: would need 16,000 * 16 * 4 = 1Mbit RAM. One could probably find a simple one-chip solution if one really wanted to…

    Reckon I’ll try the streaming thing and not worry too much about it.