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SPDIF out problem

Discussion in 'Desktop & Laptop Computers Forum' started by jpfrost, May 3, 2005.

  1. jpfrost

    jpfrost
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    My motherboard is supposed to allow SPDIF out via the Line out or front speaker out socket. However, I have tried all sorts of things and cannot get it to work. I have used a mono 3.5mm jack (one black bar) to phono adapter and plugged this into my amp via a digital coax (75 ohms) cable. Still no luck.

    Just wondered if anyone had tried:

    http://www.maplin.co.uk/Module.aspx?ModuleNo=34128&doy=3m5

    and would it give the same quality as my direct digital connection to my amp from my standalone DVD player?

    Thanks.
     
  2. JonMace

    JonMace
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    Think you need a toshlink cable
     
  3. DaveP

    DaveP
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    I had a similar feature on an old SB 5.1 card. It didn't work with a mono jack to phono but was OK when used with a stereo jack to twin phono adapter. Have you tried that?

    Dave
     
  4. jpfrost

    jpfrost
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    I have tried a stereo jack to twin phono and plugged one of the plugs into my digital coax input on my amp. Still no sound.

    Anyone tried one of the USB things?
     
  5. JonMace

    JonMace
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  6. jpfrost

    jpfrost
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    Jon,

    Just a bit worried about buying/waiting for one of these cables to come and still gives me no sound. The 3.5mm plug is the same as the typical PC soundcard socket?
     
  7. JonMace

    JonMace
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    3.5mm is the standard headphone size socket, I'm guessing that this is some sort of duel socket that you have analoge L&R and digital 5.1. Digi 5.1 and only be carried by either fibreoptic (the cable I linked to) or coaxal seeing as you do not have a coax output I cannot see how else it could work.

    The other prob maybe is do you have a toslink input?
     
  8. MPK

    MPK
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    If I understand you correctly, you are trying to use the digital out on your soundcard. This means you have to "tell" your soundcard/motherboard to bypass the DAC, which you do as follows:

    1. Click Start, point to All Programs, point to Accessories, point to Entertainment, and then click Volume Control.
    2. In Volume Control, on the Options menu, click Advanced Controls.
    3. Click Advanced Options on the Play Control dialog box.
    4. Click to clear the Digital Output Only check box, and then click Close.

    Note that this means your analog speakers won't work anymore, i.e. you have to switch this each time you want to divert to the amp. Alternatively, just use the analog out to the amp rather than the digital. This deteriorates the sound, but you don't have to keep switching the digital output on and off.

    Also, make sure you have any kind of 5.1 processing switched off. You want only a digital multichannel stream to go to your amp and bypass the decoder on the soundcard/motherboard.

    This should help. However, the topic of hooking up your soundcard to a receiver is not as easy as it sounds. You will find hundreds of threads on the web with posts from desperate people close to a nervouse breakdown. Also, be very careful because the SPDIF out was not originally designed to be hooked up to an amp. The voltage is +/- 5 Volts whereas the digital input of your amp expects +/- 0.5 Volts, i.e. you could actually fry your amp. To be safe, use the analog out of your soundcard.
     
  9. jpfrost

    jpfrost
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    Probably not explaining myself to clearly, but my soundcard does not have a SPDIF out (coax or optical socket). I have the Realtek ALC 880 onboard sound which states that it can actually output digital sound. I have read on other posts that some boards actually use the front speaker 3.5 mm socket to output the SPDIF. When trying to follow MPK's unstructions my "Advanced Controls' is greyed out.
    I have attached a screen dump of the options i get in the Realtek software - but whatever I try it doesn't seem to work.
    The voltage thing is a bit worrying, would the USB Sound Box (link in my original post) overcome this problem?
     

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  10. DaveP

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    You have to enable the S/Pdif pass through mode to get digital, otherwise the sound card will decode it and produce analogue

    If you wish to use headphones or PC speakers, you have to keep switching it on and off to get the sound out of the appropriate connection.

    Dave
     
  11. MPK

    MPK
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    Presumably your spdif will also be the analog L/R out, same as with soundcards. you will then have to set the digital out option in the menu you're showing in your last post. Presumably, the windows settings are greyed out because your Realtek menu takes priority. Have you checked that you do NOT have any 5.1 decoders enabled in the Realtek menu. You want your receiver to do the decoding and not your mobo. Also, I understand that it might only work if you have the speakers set to 2 speakers rather than 5.1 speakers, give that a try.
     

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