It's that time honored geek tradition: when you go home for the holidays, you fix and maintain your parents tech. This morning at my dads place I couldn't take the discombobulated TV setup so I decided to take action.
First things first. Assess the situation. I noticed that his ancient sound system (receiver from when I was a kid) would spit out sound for cable programming and DVDs but not Apple TV which they watch movies on most. Additionally, the cable box was connected to the TV two ways: via HDMI and component. I disconnected the component and tossed it aside.
Next I disconnected the optical audio cables connecting the cable box and the blu ray player to the receiver. I had a hunch the TV could handle all audio output via one optical cable connected to the receiver.
It also bothered me that the TV HDMI inputs were all mislabeled and out of order. Someone connected the cable box to the "side HDMI" input since apparently it was the easiest to reach. I decided HDMI 1 should be Cable, 2 should be Apple TV and 3 should be blu ray. I left the side HDMI open for connecting stuff like Chromecast for when I visit.
Next I went into the Vizio TV settings menu and renamed all of the HDMI inputs to reflect their proper devices: cable, apple tv and blu ray. Makes for easier input switching when I leave.
I then connected one optical audio cable out from the TV to the receiver and as I suspected, when you switched HDMI inputs on the TV it would send the proper audio to the receiver. This solves the issue of only certain device audio output to the speakers and it's once less thing to have to fiddle with. Now the receiver can stay on video 1 24/7.
Finally, my dad was frustrated that Apple TV would ask for his password every time he rented a movie. I tested a rental and confirmed it did this. So I went into the settings, signed him out and signed him back in. As I imagined, it is here where you get the dialog asking if you would like to save your password for purchases. Yes and done. My dad will be spending a lot more on iTunes rentals. I also went into settings and hid unnecessary video services like Crunchy roll and put new CR 2032 battery in his Apple TV remote.
Before I leave I'll be sure to reprogram his cable provider-supplied universal remote to control the receiver volume and blu ray player.
My work here is done for now. I feel much better. It's just my duty as a geek at home for the holidays.