The PREFERRED AUDIO setting allows users to select an alternative audio track – either SECONDARY LANGUAGE or DESCRIBED VIDEO – for all live TV and recordings.
Any change in this setting requires you to perform and save a new channel scan to take effect. As a global setting, this will affect audio on all channels from your Tablo across all connected devices.
Preferred Audio Settings Options
There are three options in the PREFERRED AUDIO dropdown:
- DEFAULT - This automatically selects the primary audio track within the broadcast which is generally ENGLISH. This is the current default setting of all Tablo DVRs and should not be changed unless required.
- SECONDARY LANGUAGE - This automatically selects the second audio program (SAP) track within the broadcast (if available) for example SPANISH. This can be helpful in situations when a broadcast's primary language is not the primary language of the viewer, for example, English-language people viewing a soccer game broadcast in Spanish.
- DESCRIBED VIDEO - This automatically selects the described video track within the broadcast (if available) which provides narration of the action on the screen for the benefit of users who are blind or have low vision.
Whichever PREFERRED AUDIO setting you select for your Tablo will affect all live broadcasts across all channels as well as all recordings. While you can revert any changes to this setting for live TV (by re-selecting DEFAULT and running and saving a fresh channel scan), any recordings will retain the PREFERRED AUDIO setting in which they were made and cannot be changed at a later date.
A Warning About the Preferred Audio Setting
This setting assumes that the available audio tracks have been correctly labeled by the broadcaster as defined in the ATSC broadcast standard.
In some cases, audio tracks within broadcasts can be mislabeled which can result in the incorrect audio being selected by the Tablo. For example, when set to DEFAULT an NFL game is broadcast in Spanish or a reality TV program broadcast with described video.
When this happens, it usually affects a specific program versus an entire channel but the latter can also occur.
As the PREFERRED AUDIO setting on your Tablo will affect all broadcasts across all channels, it should only be changed if required and reverted (by re-selecting DEFAULT and running and saving a fresh channel scan) after an affected program has been watched live or recorded.
If not, all subsequent live streams and recordings will provide an incorrect audio track.
Preferred Audio FAQs
- Why isn't my new PREFERRED AUDIO setting being reflected during playback?
If you've selected a new PREFERRED AUDIO setting and it is not coming through as expected, one of these issues may be occurring. First, you must run and save a fresh channel scan for a new setting to take effect. The audio tracks must also be correctly labeled by the broadcaster. Finally, only recordings created AFTER the setting has been changed AND a fresh channel has been completed and saved will have the new audio track. Older recordings will not be affected.
- Why am I suddenly hearing a voice describing everything happening on screen? I haven't changed this setting.
If you're suddenly receiving described video across all channels, one of these issues may be occurring. First, if you've recently performed and saved a channel scan it's possible that the PREFERRED AUDIO setting was adjusted to DESCRIBED VIDEO at some previous time but not set by the action of completing a channel scan. You can reverse this by changing the PREFERRED AUDIO setting to DEFAULT and running and saving a new channel scan.
If you haven't run a channel scan recently, it could be that a similar setting was accidentally enabled on your streaming device or Smart TV. A check to see if other apps on your device are also providing described video can confirm this. If you're only experiencing this on one channel or one program via the Tablo app, it's likely the broadcaster has mislabeled the audio tracks.
- Why am I suddenly getting most programs in Spanish?
If you're suddenly receiving broadcasts in Spanish across all channels, one of these issues may be occurring. First, if you've recently performed and saved a channel scan it's possible that the PREFERRED AUDIO setting was adjusted to SECONDARY LANGUAGE at some previous time but not set by the action of completing a channel scan. You can reverse this by changing the PREFERRED AUDIO setting to DEFAULT and running and saving a new channel scan. If you're only experiencing this on one channel or one program, it's likely the broadcaster has mislabeled the audio tracks.
- How can I get the broadcaster to fix a program or channel that regularly provides an incorrect audio track?
Sometimes broadcasters are willing to fix a program or channel with incorrect audio when they are notified about the problem. You can find an email address or a contact form for your local channel on its website. Unfortunately, some broadcasters may not be willing to adjust the feed or are unable to adjust it if the incorrectly labeled audio is coming from the national or regional feed versus locally.
- Why I don't see the PREFERRED AUDIO setting on my Tablo?
If you don't see the PREFERRED AUDIO setting one of these issues may be occurring. First, this setting is only available for network-connected Tablo DVR models running firmware 2.2.42 and higher. If your Tablo has not yet updated to 2.2.42 or you have a TV-connected Tablo model (Tablo DUAL HDMI or Tablo QUAD HDMI) this setting will not be available. Additionally, this setting is only available in the web app at my.tablotv.com and therefore will not be visible in other Tablo apps.