Connecting PC to remote speakers

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chrisquinn

Guest
I would like to play audio output from my PC in another room. I've looked at wireless speakers but the lack of choice and doubt about final sound quality are worrying so it seems as if a cabled solution is needed. I don't want to disrupt the speaker set up currently connected to the PC so unless it's possible to split the audio output from the sound card I'll need to connect the remote speakers to the PC headphone socket. I've found a Y connector that converts a mini-jack to 2 audio plugs which seems a start and I've run 15 metres of speaker cable to the other room. Can I simply buy audio plugs to cramp onto the cable ends and thereby connect the Y connector to the remote speakers. Also what would be best in the other room, some active speakers or can I use a reasonably good spare Sony hi-fi that I happen to have. It has 2 pairs of audio input sockets in the back labelled VIDEO IN and MD IN. Could I use these. Any advice would be hugely appreciated.
 

bledd

Active Member
all you need is a stereo phono to phono lead from your adapter (back of pc) to the audio in on the Sony. If you want to use the speaker cable then you need min of 3 conductors, preferably 4, and would have to butcher a phono lead to get the ends in order to solder them on to your speaker wire. You will also have some degradation of quality going down this route.

Hope this helps
 

Knyght_byte

Well-known Member
it depends on the soundcard, but with most PCs if you connect to the headphone socket it overrides the normal outputs, so you wont get sound out of both....you can use either headphones or normal outputs (not sure if it affects digital outs, cant remember)....which means you need to unplug the one in the headphone socket if you want your usual speaker sound.

or you can use a Y-splitter.........you dont say how your current sound is setup through the computer, is it digital out or using teh analogues? if its the analogues then you would already be using a 3.5mm to stereo RCA Y splitter anyhow, if you then want to split this off again you need a singe RCA to twin RCA Y splitter, go to www.maplins.co.uk to find one....(or .com, cant remember now..lol).....unless your using a professional soundcard then your setup might be different....lol
 
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chrisquinn

Guest
bledd said:
all you need is a stereo phono to phono lead from your adapter (back of pc) to the audio in on the Sony. If you want to use the speaker cable then you need min of 3 conductors, preferably 4, and would have to butcher a phono lead to get the ends in order to solder them on to your speaker wire. You will also have some degradation of quality going down this route.

Hope this helps

Can I purchase such a thing as a 15m stereo phono to phono lead. Also, as I said I don't want to have to fiddle around at the the back of the tower every time I want to change the output from the speakers connected directly to the PC to the remote system, can I split the output from the soundcard (Creative Soundblaster Audigy II) with some sort of Y connection. If I can't surely I'm left with the headphone socket option.

As for the cabling, I used speaker cable in my ingnorance. I can replace it with phono cabling - I don't know what that is but as long as I can ask for it in Maplins and they know what it is then I can buy it. I'm still concerned as to how to terminate the cable. I assume that nobody is going to sell a made up 15 m lead so I'm going to have to buy the cable and terminate it myself.
 
C

chrisquinn

Guest
Knyght_byte said:
it depends on the soundcard, but with most PCs if you connect to the headphone socket it overrides the normal outputs, so you wont get sound out of both....you can use either headphones or normal outputs (not sure if it affects digital outs, cant remember)....which means you need to unplug the one in the headphone socket if you want your usual speaker sound.

or you can use a Y-splitter.........you dont say how your current sound is setup through the computer, is it digital out or using teh analogues? if its the analogues then you would already be using a 3.5mm to stereo RCA Y splitter anyhow, if you then want to split this off again you need a singe RCA to twin RCA Y splitter, go to www.maplins.co.uk to find one....(or .com, cant remember now..lol).....unless your using a professional soundcard then your setup might be different....lol
Thanks for replying.

The sound card is Creative Audigy 2, the set up is Dell 5 speaker and I bought the whole thing as a prebuilt system from Dell. The headphone socket does indeed over-ride the sound card output but I don't mind if I can't output to the speakers directly connected to the PC and the remote system simultaneously so may be the headphone socket option is the easiest. I already have great sound at the PC, I simply want to be able to play the PC audio output in another room with the best possible quality . The remote location, however, is 15m away. Assuming, correctly I think, that nobody will sell a made up cable of this length, I am going to have to terminate it myself. I therefore have 3 questions:-

What cable do I need?

Can I buy the plug connections and solder them on ?

How do I do this?
 

Knyght_byte

Well-known Member
assuming you do have an amplifier for the speakers in the second room, you need to do this......

get a '3.5mm to stereo RCA' cable (stereo RCA cables are often called phono cables btw), this will probably be around 1m length approx, then you buy a 'stereo RCA extension cable' (it must have stereo female sockets one end and stereo male plugs the other end) for the length you want, it may not be long enough itself, i've only seen 8m length myself, so buy two of them. You plug the 3.5mm jack in to your headphone output on the computer, then you plug the male RCA plugs on the other end of it in to the female RCA sockets on the extension cable, (then if its only 8m long you plug the male RCA sockets on the end of that extension cable in to the female RCA sockets on the 2nd extension cable, then using the male RCA plugs on the end of the 2nd extension cable follow the directions after i close the brackets.) plug the male RCA plugs in to the CD or Tape inputs on a stereo amplifier.....or if you want to a surround amplifier, not sure what you want, on a surround amp this will allow you to have Pro Logic from a stereo source or just plain stereo sound. Or you might have a set of active computer speakers, in which case make sure they have stereo RCA inputs (sometimes known as phono inputs btw), if they dont have stereo, only 3.5mm input socket, then you need to buy a 'female stereo RCA to 3.5mm jack' cable, similar to the first cable, except instead of having pins on the stereo end, it has sockets (what you plug pins in to)

just to confirm what actual cables you need i'll list them here....

3.5mm to stereo RCA male phono cable
female stereo RCA to stereo male RCA extension cable
if the extension cable is not available at 15m then get two or three.
and if speaker setup in 2nd room need 3.5mm input then buy a female stereo RCA to 3.5mm jack.

hope this helps...lol....

i know JVC do the first two cables through Dixons shops, but i dont think they do the last one, but hopefully you wont need that, or you should be able to get any of these from maplins....or a sony shop or similar...
 

Knyght_byte

Well-known Member
ok, u can get them from Dixons still...

this is the 3.5mm to stereo RCA lead
http://www.dixons.co.uk/martprd/store/[email protected]@@@[email protected]@@@&BV_EngineID=cceladdgeeimjffcflgceggdhhmdgmh.0&page=Product&fm=null&sm=null&tm=null&sku=756644&category_oid=

and this is the extension lead...
http://www.dixons.co.uk/martprd/store/[email protected]@@@[email protected]@@@&BV_EngineID=cceladdgeeimjffcflgceggdhhmdgmh.0&page=Product&fm=null&sm=null&tm=null&sku=698652&category_oid=
the extension lead is only 6m length so looks like you need 3 of them......bear in mind that over that kind of length a signal can degrade a little so you will lose some quality, if you want it for high quality speakers in the other room then you will have to go to a dedicated hifi shop and get custom length heavily screened cable.....15m is a long distance......however buying what i've shown you will only set you back about £25 or so and should be ok......

oh btw, if you really needed to plug in a 3.5mm jack in the other room, then you can go to maplins and buy 3.5mm to 3.5mm cable, they also have 3.5mm to 3.5mm extension cables to make it longer.....just look under cables for 3.5mm and it will show them...
 
C

chrisquinn

Guest
Knyght_byte said:
assuming you do have an amplifier for the speakers in the second room, you need to do this......

get a '3.5mm to stereo RCA' cable (stereo RCA cables are often called phono cables btw), this will probably be around 1m length approx, then you buy a 'stereo RCA extension cable' (it must have stereo female sockets one end and stereo male plugs the other end) for the length you want, it may not be long enough itself, i've only seen 8m length myself, so buy two of them. You plug the 3.5mm jack in to your headphone output on the computer, then you plug the male RCA plugs on the other end of it in to the female RCA sockets on the extension cable, (then if its only 8m long you plug the male RCA sockets on the end of that extension cable in to the female RCA sockets on the 2nd extension cable, then using the male RCA plugs on the end of the 2nd extension cable follow the directions after i close the brackets.) plug the male RCA plugs in to the CD or Tape inputs on a stereo amplifier.....or if you want to a surround amplifier, not sure what you want, on a surround amp this will allow you to have Pro Logic from a stereo source or just plain stereo sound. Or you might have a set of active computer speakers, in which case make sure they have stereo RCA inputs (sometimes known as phono inputs btw), if they dont have stereo, only 3.5mm input socket, then you need to buy a 'female stereo RCA to 3.5mm jack' cable, similar to the first cable, except instead of having pins on the stereo end, it has sockets (what you plug pins in to)

just to confirm what actual cables you need i'll list them here....

3.5mm to stereo RCA male phono cable
female stereo RCA to stereo male RCA extension cable
if the extension cable is not available at 15m then get two or three.
and if speaker setup in 2nd room need 3.5mm input then buy a female stereo RCA to 3.5mm jack.

hope this helps...lol....

i know JVC do the first two cables through Dixons shops, but i dont think they do the last one, but hopefully you wont need that, or you should be able to get any of these from maplins....or a sony shop or similar...
Thanks for explaining things so clearly - your instructions are immensely straightforward and helpful. One more thing though, the stereo unit I'm going to try to connect the PC to has 2 pairs of phono inputs - one labelled video in and one MD in. Does it matter which I use.
 

BenW

Active Member
And if you want pc speakers and other speakers plugged in at the same time then add a 3.5mm splitter to the list
 

Knyght_byte

Well-known Member
it shouldnt matter which you use, i'd probably say use the Video if its an audio input....

as Ben W says, you could also split the signal thats going from the soundcard itself to the computer speakers by the computer.......assuming they use the normal analogue outs, then it should work by buying a single female RCA to twin male RCA splitter...but not knowing exactly how your speakers are fed by the soundcard i'd be inclined to stick with using the headphone socket...lol

glad to be of help :)
 
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chrisquinn

Guest
I bought all the gear you suggested and it works perfectly as long as I use the video input. If I use the MD input - nothing for some reason. I did buy some wireless speakers from Maplins just to test the quality. As I feared it it was crap so I returned them and got a refund. Not sure whether is was the speaker quality or the degradation due to the wireless connection. Your arrangement, however, sounds as good as the output straight from the PC so I can get my money's worth from Napster.

Thanks again for the sound advice.
 
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