Dolby Digital 5.1 surround sound is a bit of a rarity, it occurs on the odd BBC nature program and not much else.
Channel 4, according to the youview program guide, is nearly always transmitted in surround sound, which is designated (SS).
I don't think this is true because, all of my channel 4 recordings are at best stereo and never full surround sound, is the guide wrong or is my surround sound amp faulty(unlikely, it decodes 5.1 DVDs & the odd 5.1 BBC program without any problems).
Channel 4 HD used to do a lot of films in 5.1 and 'the simpsons' always used to be in 5.1. Maybe try checking on an episode of 'the simpsons' and see if that shows as 5.1
The ss moniker seems to be a bit badly used...
EDIT - CH4 HD shows 'The Simpsons' @ 6pm as [ss] I have set it to record and will check if my amp picks it up as 5.1
Just out of interest I am connected to my amp via HDMI.
Just to add a bit more detail, my connection is via a HDMI lead to the surround sound amplifier and then HDMI to the TV.
The audio settings on the youview box are set to "surround"
To be specific about a channel 4 program, I record "Countdown" in HD, it is listed in the youview guide as SS which should mean surround sound but the surround sound amp displays "Dolby-D 2.0".
I suspect this to be the case in most of the channel 4 listings, I have done a quick check on the odd program that has the SS designation and found them all to be 2.0.
I have previously recorded BBC programs that were surround sound and correctly marked SS and my system , correctly displayed them as being Dolby-D 5.1 and the sound did come, correctly, out of all 6 speakers.
As previously suggested I will record "The Simpsons" tonight and if it is "Dolby_D 5.1" it will confirm that my setup is correct and "Countdown" and the others I have checked have been wrongly designated as SS.
I recorded five Ch 4 progs last night, all only displayed Dolby_d 2.0 with the exception of "The Simpsons" which was recorded in Dolby-D 5.1.(thanks to scointer for that nugget).
It is misleading/unfortunate for Channel 4/youview to display the information about surround sound incorrectly when all of the other major channels manage to display it correctly.
I do use the guide to make choices about viewing/recording and this may include the type of audio, these errors do not make it very easy and I think I will press this matter further with youview/Channel 4/Ofcomm.
Channel 4 did show most of their programmes in 5.1 but in recent months i've noticed that this has reduced, whether it be a technical or commercial issue, who knows.