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Nearly there....

Discussion in 'Desktop & Laptop Computers Forum' started by Placebo2, Jul 20, 2003.

  1. Placebo2

    Placebo2
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    Hi all,

    Finally got round to buying a graphics card with DVI output to hook up to my Pioneer MXE plasma. Picture is fantastic! Using Theatertek software and it rocks!
    Now to the sound.
    Since I've already got a Denon 3801 amp, would I be right in thinking I just need a new soundcard with a opitcal or coax output to the amp? Is it this easy just to carry on recieveing all the flavours of Dolby digital and DTS?
    Or do I need to buy a card that decodes and not just passes through these signals?
    Slightly confused.... :confused:

    Cheers,
    John
     
  2. Gary Lightfoot

    Gary Lightfoot
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    You can use something like the Soundblaster 4.1 or 5.1 card if you'r happy to use just the spdif out (that's what I do anyway).

    You need to get a mono 3.5mm jack to phono adapter from Maplins or similar (around £1.50), and enable the spdiff output from the device manager (IIRC) and you're there.

    I'm using the 4.1 with my Denon 3802 and it doeas a pretty good job of passing DD/DTS and ES/EX variants. :)

    Gary.
     
  3. Placebo2

    Placebo2
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    Nice one Gary,

    Just what I wanted to hear.
    No draw backs at all to just using the 4.1 or 5.1 card?

    Cheers,
    John
     
  4. Gary Lightfoot

    Gary Lightfoot
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    None that I've found so far.

    It was all pretty straight forward, but you do need to use the drivers on the cd that come with it for spdif because the Windows generic ones don't seem to allow for spdif output.

    You can get the oem 4.1 for around £12 from places like ebuyer.com (when they have them), so it might be worth looking round for one on the net or trying a computer fair.

    HTH

    Gary.
     
  5. Placebo2

    Placebo2
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    Thanks again Gary,

    On my way to Home cinema heaven.
    Never knew DVDs' could look so good on a plasma.
    I'll probably have a Arcam DV88+ for sale soon!

    Cheers,
    John
     
  6. Gary Lightfoot

    Gary Lightfoot
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    Here's the link to ebuyer's SB 4.1 oem:

    http://www.ebuyer.com/customer/prod...2hvd19wcm9kdWN0X292ZXJ2aWV3&product_uid=43053

    HTPC is definately the way to go if you want highest quality/flexibility etc, and it's also cheap. :)

    You can play an intro sound, followed by a trailer in Windows too - just replace the Windows startup sound with a cinema one of your choice (20th Century Fox for instance) then place a THX or Dolby 5.1 surround vob in the startup, and away you go!

    If TT is like Zoomplayer, you can make it play a choice of random intro's and trailers before playing the DVD. Imagine a THX intro, followed by a randome film trailer or two, then the movie.. :O)

    I download the movie trailers from www.apple.com/trailers and convert them to mpg2 using TMPGenc. Makes it a little more theater like..

    Have you thought about trying a remote interface to use with a standard DVD player remote control? I'm curently using my old Samsung 709 remote to control PowerDVD and the mouse. It works quite well too, and is very convenient if it's not easy to have a kb and mouse near where you sit.

    HTH

    gary.
     
  7. Placebo2

    Placebo2
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    You the man Gary :smashin:
    Just ordered a 4.1 card.
    Will look into the other things you've mentioned.

    Thanks again mate!

    John
     
  8. tvr

    tvr
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    I can vouch for the 4.1 card which I installed the other day.
    Made up my own lead (75ohm video cable) with a 3.5mm mono jack (plugs into the green socket on the 4.1 card) to a phono at the other end (plugs into digital coaxial input of decoder/processor)
    Passes through the DD/DTS etc.
    Works very well, and was very cheap!
    Highly recommend it.
     
  9. Placebo2

    Placebo2
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    Hi guys!

    Got my 4.1 card today, super speedy service from ebuyer.com:smashin:
    I recall Gary saying something about enabling the spdif output of the card, but can't see the option too anywhere. Where am I going wrong guys?

    Cheers,
    John
     
  10. Gary Lightfoot

    Gary Lightfoot
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    IIRC, you have to go into device manager, and look at the properties of the card. You have to select digital and not analogue.

    It was a while ago since I did this, but if you don't get a definitive answer, I'll fire the machine up and have a look for you.

    Gary.
     
  11. Placebo2

    Placebo2
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    Hi Gary,

    Just checked through Device manager and there wasn't an option for switching on digital. Worried I've now been sent the wrong card! It says SB PCI (WDM) in the Device manager listing.
    I downloaded the drivers from the supplied CD-ROM.
    Any thoughts.

    Cheers,
    John
     
  12. Gary Lightfoot

    Gary Lightfoot
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    I think that sounds right. I'll have to have a look for you when I get in later...

    Gary.
     
  13. tvr

    tvr
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    In device manager, you should highlight SB PCI(WDM) and then right click on it and select properties.
    This brings up a window with 5 tabs.
    Select the settings tab, and in there is a selection for Output Mode.
    This I set to digital, as I always output through the SPDIF.

    Hope this helps!
     
  14. Placebo2

    Placebo2
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    Hi!

    The penny drops, it all makes sense :blush:
    Thanks for your help, both of you!

    Cheers,
    John
     

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