Questions on Uniti Atom HDMI with a TV

I have large Samsung TV in our den. Not sure of the exact size but its over 75”. At present the sound plays through a Samsung sound bar and subwoofer. However I have a pair of Spendor A7 speakers that I’m going to pair with a Naim Uniti Atom and this will sit near the TV. I’m thinking of connecting an HDMI cable from the TV to the Atom. But I have a few questions:

  1. Will this significantly improve the sound?
  2. Is there a way to also connect the subwoofer to the Uniti Atom? I don’t see where it would connect.
  3. Is there a way to connect a Blue-ray drive to the Atom and have it show up on the TV? At present I stream everything to the TV through an Apple TV device, though I could also do it through the Samsung TV without a physical Apple TV.

Any advise appreciated.

Note, you need to select (one of) the HDMI-ARC sockets from the TV. (I think usually only 1-2 of all HDMI ports support ARC.)

Let‘s see:

  1. No clue. I have my old (2011) LG TV connected to first my Atom, then my Nova, and it sounds very well for me. (I like stereo image and clarity, so to say.) But no clue, how your soundbar works and which „special tricks“ it has, which a pure stereo system does not. (Center or virtual surround speakers, any kind of digital processing, dynamic „night mode“ with compressed loudness, …)
    So, the answer might be „yes and no“ depending on quality of the sound bar, and what you prefer or watch. (Action movie versus a concert transmission.)
    If you anyway get the Atom: try it out (with different content), and decide for either/or or maybe even have both connected and use the one suiting the situation.
  2. If it’s an active sub, which has an analogue-line-level-in, you can connect it to the Atom pre-out. Usual active subs have that; if it is a very special „build for a system“ sub, it might not have this. (E.g. a completely wireless-only sub won’t work.)
    Note, that this will give you the sub for the stereo-out of the TV, not the dedicated LFE-channel in a X.1 surround setup. (Which action movies might benefit from most.)
  3. I‘m not 100% sure what you want, but the Atom cannot process other (non-ARC) HDMI signals or handle any kind of surround or even video signal. (It’s not a home theater receiver, which can handle and forward multiple video sources towards the TV.)
    However, you can connect multiple sources to the separate HDMI inputs of the TV (say: Apple TV, and blueray player, gaming console) and TV sends the respective incoming audio signal (PCM stereo only…) via ARC to the Atom.
  1. Most certainly, use optical output from TV to Atom, set TV sound output to OCM.
  2. As above, RCA connection from the Atom pre-out.
  3. Connect the Blu-ray to the TV, then either sound out from TV as 1. above, or use an audio output from the Blu-ray to the Atom (which I do on my Nova and NDX2).

How do you get the signal to your TV ?

Do you use a satellite dish ? If so I would cut the sound from the equation (where the TV is concerned) and feed the signal direct into the Atom from the satellite dish using optical etc i.e cutting out HDMI

My guess is that it will improve the sound where vocals and music is concerned , given the relative costs of a sound bar/ sub woofer V Atom & Spendor A7.

I have been feeding mu audio system with the sounds from my TV since the 1980s when I had cable / VHS and a Play Station .

I must admit Lara Croft’s Uzis sounded very good when fed through a Nait and my Ruarks

1 Like

A visual and audio delight, I’m sure :sunglasses:

1 Like

It was indeed :crazy_face: :crazy_face: :crazy_face: :crazy_face: :crazy_face:

1 Like

Thank you, this helps a lot.

  1. I don’t watch a lot of heavy action movies and although the sounder seems to have some capability that sometimes seems to ‘throw’ to the rear (by reflecting off the ceiling I guess), but this is not a major attraction for me. SO it sounds like having sound routed through the Atom may work well for me.
  2. It’s a wireless only sub I think so it looks like this won’t help.
  3. I kind of expected what you say but thought it’s worth asking :-).

Thanks again.

1 Like

Thank you Mike.

Thank you Ian. I get the signal coming to the house via an optical cable and then WiFi through the house. The router and TV are both on the same floor so the signal is fairly good.

@VikasMG I have a Uniti Star connected to my TV thru a HDMI cable. I used to use an Optical before that. What I find is that, the sound quality is definitely a step-up in every angle. Get a decent HDMI cable - I didn’t spend too much and got a Kabeldirect HDMI 2.1 cable from Amazon.

I came across this brand as I bought an interim LAN cable whilst I was waiting for Chord streaming cables etc. Out of curiosity, I did an A/B test when they arrived and was taken aback with the performance. Really good cables.

1 Like

Thank you for that. Good to know. When my TV was installed at the location there was a pipe concealed in the wall leading from the level where the TV covers it to a point lower down where other equipment would be. I only have an Apple TV plugged in at present but the dealer/installer ran a couple of extra HDMI cables for me ‘just in case I ever need them’. He said they were very good quality cables, an I hope that’s the case :slight_smile:

On another thread there was some discussion about problems with Atom’s HDMI that someone had been experiencing - back in May 2021. Last I checked there was no resolution to it. You haven’t had any such issues I take it?

Not at all, no issues on mine. I think it’s also manufacturer specific. I read somewhere some Samsung TVs had issues. I’m using a new Sony one.

1 Like

HDMI-ARC seems to be „loosely“ specified and/or subject to interpretation.

There’s cases, where it working fine and robust across firmware updates (on both Uniti and TV side), some cases, where it seems a real issue, and anything in between.
I don’t have statistics about vendors or firmware versions… Naim works on fixing issues reported (likely with reverse engineering and vendor/model specific code/settings), but there’s months in between the Naim releases and no alignment (obviously) with TV vendor releases… :man_shrugging:t2:

Maybe we should have a vote thread on this topic? :thinking:

If you like, you can test with your Nova; it should behave the same as the Atom, as much as I understand.

1 Like

That might be an idea (to test with the Nova). It will at least tell me if the current firmware versions are talking to each other. But what happens when the next firmware comes down :grinning:?

From what you say other options probably have the same problems. I was wondering if I should go with an Evo 150 instead - just for a change, though it may not solve the problem. I’ve used nothing but Naim for so many years now and most of my serious music listening tends to be on the Nova.

I have my Nova connected via HDMI to a Panasonic tv and with the release software v3.6. I found no problems at all.

1 Like

This may not give well-synced sound/vision. I have found it’s better to take the digital feed from the TV rather than the Sky box, which gives rise to no sync issues.



I never think of that option as my 24 inch TV doesn’t have that feature, but it’s full HD , fits in snugly and I am loathe to consider thinking of changing it,

I guess when it’s day comes having Apple TV, a cracking Blu ray player and Sky Q , I may get a had monitor instead

Had some issues with Atom and Samsung TV, but after updates of both and changing the sound output setting on a TV works as a charm

1 Like

Thank you, good to know!

Don’t have an Atom, but I did have some problems connecting my Sony TV to a just-purchased Muso 2. Ultimately I had to do a factory reset of the TV. Since then all is well.

1 Like