Google TV + AirPods issue with Surround Sound

I've installed the Channels app on Google TV. I find that in order to hear sound through my AirPods I must turn off surround sound. The only other app that has this same issue is Disney+. All other apps work fine.

Any ideas?

Play around with turning off "surround sound" and also "tuner sharing(playback goes through the dvr rather than client)"

Well yeah that is what I'm saying. I must turn off "Surround Sound" to get it to work. Why would that be the case?

I thought the AirPods use 'spatial audio' to simulate surround sound which would mean they need a compatible iOS device to use that? Sounds like it's more Apple vs Android garbage at it's core. Fuel for the fight.

Do you have any Apple TVs that it works with without turning off surround sound?

The AirPods work fine with my AppleTV. Additionally, the AirPod's work fine on my Google TV when I use NetFlix, Plex, HBOMax, Prime Video. It is only Channels DVR that has this problem.

Channels DVR forces me to turn off "Surround Sound" in order to get sound to the AirPods. This really seems to be a problem with the Channels app so I needed to let the developers know.

First, you are using a Apple product, specifically designed to be used with Apple products....with a Google product....expect some issues and frustrations.

Do u mean you have a Chromecast with Google TV device?
Or a TV with Android/Google TV OS on it?

What sound source? There are many type of sound that can be sent via Channels.
Is it OTA or TVE source?
Or a local Library file.
What are the audio streams and codec? 2.0, 5.1, AC3 or AAC? etc

My understanding is that disabling surround sound forces local downmix or even software audio processing, whereas having it enabled would do a audio passthrough sending whatever audio stream type to the device directly.
The audio device has to support native decoding of the audio signal codec passed to it.
AirPods do not support native AC3 5.1 audio, that some OTA stations use.

Sounds like expected behavior to me.

Having the surround sound option enabled is sending a incompatible audio signal to your headphones, disabling that setting results in a compatible signal being sent.

Headphones are 2.0 Stereo and have no benefit of sending a multichannel audio signal to them.
So you would want to have Surround sound disabled for channels.
Search around the forms and you will see that many users random audio issues are solved by disabling Surround sound.
That is why the option exists.

As far as the other apps go, they most likely are doing local downmix to 2.0 stereo.

"Spatial Audio" has nothing to do the audio codec or stream. It is merely Apples version of simulation and tracking surround audio processing. Far as I see, it is only compatible and functions on Apple devices via Apple Music/iTunes/TV etc.

You can try submitting diagnostics from the client app when the issue occurs, but, far as I see it, there is nothing to "Fix".
Second of all, you already found the accepted solution for said audio issues with Channels app specifically, disable the Surround sound option. Not sure why you are so adamant about contacting the devs about it...there are far more important bugs and things they are working on.

So I got curious and paired my Jaybird Vistas with Nvidia Shield Pro 2019 and didn't have to disable the surround sound. Was it playing true 5.1, I have no clue. So it would seem this issue is with the AirPods, and not the channels app.

I own both AirPods and AirPods pro....and have tried pairing them to the Shield....they worked, but not well. Would cut out with the slightest touch of my finger to the bud.
The iPhone did not like me doing that, and kept trying to pair back the AirPods and went a bit nutty on me. Had to reset and re-pair the things to my iPhone.

I was also using the normal AirPods on a spare Android phone for quite some time, to use at work for podcasts etc, (before i got iPhone) and i had constant trouble with them staying connected, and responding to the tap commands.

I do have a Chomecast with Google TV dongle i have sitting arround, but only fire that up if i need to use my HDMI capture device to capture something.
I am assuming that by "Google TV" in the title, that is what the OP is using??

TLDR: Apple headphones most often do not play well with non Apple devices.

Your logic confuses me to be honest.

If the AirPods work fine with almost every app I try, but I'm forced to disable Surround Sound every time I use the Channels App, how is that an "issue with the AirPods"?

Many other apps seem to have it configured correctly.

And yes, I have an Nvidia Shield and the AirPods work perfectly on that.

Please submit diagnostics after the issue occurs.

My jaybirds worked fine. And I'm willing to bet all the other non-apple buds / earphones will also work and it's some special thing with the airpods since Apple has to be different.

I just changed the sound from our TV/receiver to my Air Pods w/o turning surround sound off. Then kicked the sound back to the TV/receiver. No problem

(The on-line suggestions that you can press-and-hold pause/play to select/de-select your Air Pods doesn't work for me, though. I have to press-and-hold the TV/Home button and click on the Air Drop icon to get to a menu to select them.)