Getting Linear PCM 5.1 on Nintendo Switch with Older Yamaha Receiver


I have an older Yamaha HTR-5740 which doesn't have any HDMI ports. For all my other consoles including PS5, it's been fine to just plug them into my TV's HDMI ports and send the audio from the TV to the Yamaha using an optical cable. But because Nintendo only uses Linear PCM 5.1, I can only get stereo.

My Yamaha does have a multi channel input for 5.1, and was wondering if a decoder would be my most affordable solution? Would something like this work:

4K Audio Extractor HDMI by OREI

Not sure if Linear PCM 5.1 could be sent through optical. Or would something like this be better:

HDMI LPCM 5.1 7.1 To Analog Surround Decoder

Or should I just buy a used Yamaha receiver on eBay that supports 4k HDMI and Linear PCM? I'm not super knowledgeable about audio. Any other solutions would be greatly appreciated.



Distinguished Member
S/PDIF optica; or coax is limited to no more than 2 channels of PCM data. You'd need to use HDMI if wanting to digitally convey multichannel PCM or have a TV and an AV receiver that are eARC enabled.

Your AV receiver can accept and decode 5.1 Dolby Digital or DTS via optical, but has no means by which to access multichannel PCM. It would be limited to just 2 channels of PCM via its S/PDIF inputs.

The second option is basically the one option you list that would be of any use in this situation. You'd ouput the 5.1 LPCM audio to that decoder/DAC and let it convert the signal to multichannel analogue. You'd then use the RCA multichannel inputs on your AV receiver to connect the decoder to it so that it can then convey the analogue audio to your AVR.

Life would be a lot simpler for you if you'd an AV receiver equipped with HDMI, but only if your TV also includes an HDMI input?
Thanks for the info. My 4K tv has 3 HDMI inputs, with one being eARC. I'm gonna go with option 2 for now. I just purchased the decoder and three 3.5mm to 2RCA cables. I'll report back if it works.

If it doesn't I'm just going to have to spend the money to upgrade my receiver to preferably a 4K one. Would any used Yamaha receiver with an HDMI port support Linear PCM? Or is there a certain year range of these receivers I would need to look for?

Thanks again.


Distinguished Member
All Yamaha AV receivers inclusive of HDMI inputs would support multichannel PCM. You'd have to be buying an AV receiver over ten years old to find one that doesn't support audio via their HDMI inputs. Any AV receiver that includes the ability to access audio via HDMI will be inclusive of support for multichannel LPCM via HDMI.
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Okay, weird update. I connected this 7.1 HDMI Audio Extractor to my multi channel input today and set it to LPCM 7.1. When I did the Nintendo Switch surround sound test, I can hear all 5 channels perfectly through my speakers, including the subwoofer. HOWEVER, while in-game, the subwoofer does not come on, making the bass extremely low compared to when I just use stereo. The only way I was able to get the subwoofer to come on during gameplay was when I loaded a cutscene video in Zelda Breath of the Wild. The subwoofer came on for a few seconds at a specific part of the video when they probably programmed it to (the center speaker also worked perfectly throughout the cutscene). It's almost as if low frequencies are not easily picked up by the subwoofer when I select the MULTI CH INPUT on my Yamaha.

I shouldn't have to choose between surround sound and bass. Is this a problem with Nintendo, or with my Yamaha Receiver? Is there a setting I need to change somewhere? On PDF page 19 of my Owners Manual, they mention the MULTI CH INPUT. There they say:

"When you select MULTI CH INPUT as the input source, this unit automatically turns off the digital sound field processor, and you cannot select sound field programs."

Is this why my speakers aren't easily picking up the low frequency? It's weird that the sound test worked perfectly fine, but won't have bass in a 5.1 game like Zelda. I really don't know what to do, so any help would be greatly appreciated.
Since using a HDMI Audio Extractor was a nightmare, I ended up snagging a $90 Yamaha RX-V573 on eBay. I hooked up my Nintendo Switch and BOOM! It worked like a charm! I can finally hear everything around me in Breath of the Wild, and opponents/blue shell behind me in Mario Kart. It's sooooo much more immersive now!

I'll be returning the audio extractor because it has major issues with outputting bass. For those it may help, I HIGHLY recommend upgrading your receiver to one that supports at least 6 channel Linear PCM, and NOT trying to use an HDMI audio extractor. Before purchasing a used receiver, make sure you Google the PDF instructions manual. I did this for my RX-V573 to verify it supported 8 channel Linear PCM (since it's a 7.1 receiver).

Since connecting my Switch and Wii U, Nintendo games has never sounded so good! It was totally worth the $90 upgrade. Now I'll be ready for the ridiculous lineup of games set to release this year!

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