Turning off Descriptive Video Service turns off all Audio

I am using getchannels on an Apple TV (tvOS version 13.4).

Descriptive Video Service has recently started playing for some programs.

If I try to turn off Descriptive Video Service under the "Language" -> "Audio Language" setting when watching a program it turns off all audio ( both the regular audio track as well as the descriptive video ).

Is there a second entry in Audio Language to select?

There was no second entry available. Next time I watch a program with audio descriptions I will take a photo.

Please also click Submit Diagnostics at the bottom of Settings next time

Not sure if this applies, but sounds like it can be defaulted in Accessibilty Settings.
If you want videos to use audio descriptions by default https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT205799

I've sent diagnostics.

Here are some photos of the screen.

When I untick "Descriptive Video Service" I get no sound whatsover. Both the regular audio and the descriptive video stops.

What is your location and what kind of hdhomerun? What channel(s) is this issue occurring on?

Can you make a recording from that channel and email the mpg file to [email protected]

@tmm1 I’m seeing same problem, exactly as described by @Maximus.

I’m in Sydney Australia and so far I’ve seen the issue on a couple of programs on our two public broadcasters, that is ABC and SBS. It’s a little elusive as not all shows have AD (Audio Description) broadcast, only certain shows and usually during prime evening hours (or repeats).

Last night I saw it again on a show called “Backroads” on ABC at 2000-2030 for example.

I’m a longtime Channels user on ATV and this problem only started in a fairly recent update to Channels I think, as I mainly watch ABC and SBS and it was not an issue over last couple of years. I’m mainly using an HDHomerun Quatro (DVB-T) on my ATV 4K, but I also have a couple of legacy HDHR3’s (DVB-T) that I quickly enabled on Channels last night and pretty sure issue is apparent on those as well?

I can confirm the only Audio track shown in pull-down Settings during these broadcasts is the AD one, and thus if you turn it off you get NO Audio at all ...

Please advise how I can capture what you need to trouble-shoot? No Channels DVR here obviously, only live TV.


Thanks @tmm1, will get you a capture when I can. Does it need to be a show with Audio Description or will any show do?

Just realised this is a Channels DVR thread whereas I’m seeing issue on “plain old” Channels but guess that confirms it’s a common issue across the code?

Also confirmed Audio Descriptions is turned OFF in Accessibility settings.

Another clue may be that I see similar issues on my Channels app on iPad - for ABC and SBS the only audio track available now is “English (visual impaired)” which can’t be deselected. Other broadcaster’s channels show “English” as normal.

Thanks for your help!

I need a sample from the time and channel where the issue is present in the player.

@tmm1 Thanks Aman, will do when I can correlate what shows have Audio Description embedded and capture. I have a feeling this may have coincided with update to 3.2.43 a couple of weeks ago perhaps?

I'm in Australia. The channel is ABC in Sydney but also affects SBS from memory.

I'll attempt a recording tonight.

The version info for my HDHomeRuns

Model: HDHR3-DT
Device ID: 11109EFD
Firmware: 20170930

@Maximus thanks, that confirms my observations that it’s ABC and SBS Australia, and that it affects legacy HDHomeruns as well. I do notice your firmware is very old (my HDHR3-DT’s are on 20200225) so you could maybe consider an upgrade, but regardless that is not the issue.

@tmm1, @Maximus found these links to the Audio Description service for ABC and SBS.
Looks like they are both testing with launch imminent ...

@maximus, list of upcoming ABC programs with AD here:-

Hopefully that will help us both capture some clips for Aman.

1 Like

Aussie AD is the same thing as American DVS https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Audio_description#Descriptive_Video_Service
In Australia and the US it's usually broadcast as the secondary audio track.
Unfortunately in the US it's not always correctly identified in the guide information or the audio stream.

I have heard the DVS track in the US on some programs, but the audio track is identified as Stereo-Spanish, when it's actually DVS/AD.

You can view the audio tracks on a Channels DVR recording in the web UI under recordings. Pick a recording and click the gear dropdown item view details.
Screenshot_2020-06-15 Channels DVR

Slack of me not to add, but if you don't have Channels DVR, you can also get the same information from a recording you capture from your HDHR using this post Turning off Descriptive Video Service turns off all Audio, by using the free tool MediaInfo which I think is what Channels DVR uses where 2400 is the fileID of the recording.

Actually, I think they're using the data from ffprobe, which is part of Ffmpeg. (Also, Channels distributes a statically-linked copy of ffprobe with the DVR server; you can find it in the same directory as the DVR server binary and Channels' copy of comskip and ffmpeg.)

Will also try to get some samples tonight.


ABC HD is transmitting Audio Description tests from 8:00 PM - 9:30 PM approximately this evening.
"Foreign Correspondent" followed by "Australia's Ocean Odyssey"

SBS HD is transmitting Audio Description tests from 7:30 PM - 8:30 PM approximately this evening.
"Who Do You Think You Are"

Not sure if I'll be able to grab stuff tonight due to family commitments but you may be able to?