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Realtek HD Audio with 5.1 Speakers

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April 27, 2008 1:10:39 PM

I have a gigabyte GA-ma78gm-s2h it has realtek ALC889a HD audio on it. I have connected my dolby 5.1 speakers via the 1/8 inch headphone style cables and in the speaker test they all sound fine although i have to set it to an 8 speaker configuration to get it realize that i have no side speakers, but when I play and music or video file i only get stereo sound. cant seem to figure it out , is there no speaker setting for 5.1?? any help greatly appreciated!

More about : realtek audio speakers

April 27, 2008 2:16:10 PM

TBH if you have a decent Music setup, then i would buy a decent sound card liek the X-fi xtreme music. and if you can connect your Speakers to your s/Card via either optical or coaxiel SPDIF.

anyway on your problem, let me get this straight.
you haev 6 speaker (5.1) yea.

anyway on your problem, letr me get this straight.
you have 6 speaker (5.1) yea.
-5.1 foesnt have a any side speaker, so why not set your s/card to 5.1?

what happens if you play a DVD (not copied or compressed) on your system? do you get 5.1

Related resources
April 27, 2008 2:32:00 PM

I also have it set to 8 and in the speaker test everything works but anytime i play anything in media player or showtime , anything really, i only get stereo . WTF!
April 27, 2008 2:35:41 PM

Do you mean that you want sound to come out of all 6 speakers? If you have Logitech speakers, you need to hit the "matrix" button. And if your brand of speakers doesn't have this feature, then it's not likely you can play surround sound from a stereo sound file.
April 27, 2008 2:41:57 PM

we'll i updated from an msi k9mm-v with 5.1 out and it functioned just fine , no matter what file i played it came thru the sub and rear speakers , windows is set to 5.1 , and when i do the speaker test in the realtek software they al work , i cant seem to find the microsoft update to uninstall it like what was mentioned in your thread , what update number is it?
April 27, 2008 2:54:14 PM

With my Realtek HD when you open up the Audio Manager there is a Default Format tab. Under that there is a option for DTS Interactive 5.1 mode for playing music. But that is for taking stereo music and spreading it to a 5.1 system. You have to remember about 98 percent of music is recorded in stereo. The music DVD's that are recorded in 5.1 format out on the market would require the same needs as playing a DVD movie.

For DVD's if your using WinXP then you will need to buy a full retail version of PowerDVD or WinDVD to get the needed software for decoding 5.1 sound. The latest version of Windows Media Player will also let you go online to buy the codec for decoding 5.1 from both of these companys without buying the whole program as well, saving you a little money.

If your using Vista and your version has Windows Media Center as part of it then you don't need to buy anything. It already comes with the software for decoding 5.1 from DVD's.
April 27, 2008 3:17:32 PM

when i hit the dts interactive tab it informs me that only the digital outputs will be used, i went ahead and gave it a shot and nada as my speakers are just a cheap set of 5.1's ..... looking for an update with no luck
April 27, 2008 7:53:19 PM

thanks for the help guys but i found the solution.
Step 1: find soundblaster live! 5.1 in storage
Step 2: Install it
Step 3: DONE!
August 1, 2008 6:56:58 AM

Hi

Dunno if anyone is even gonna read this but i also came across this problem yesterday. I got a GA-MA790FX-DQ6 a few days ago and the 5.1 also works fine in the Realtek HD Audio Manager but only plays through 2 speakers (the "front" speakers) using winamp or media player. I think the retards at Realtek thought they would do us a favour and make all stereo recorded audio only work through 2 speakers - real useful since most stuff is recorded in stereo - gee i didnt wanna use my other speakers anyway <sarcasm>.

Okay so you have two options as i see it to fix this problem - don't know if it will be the same for you guys.

1 - you can set your speaker config to 2 channel in Realtek Audio Manager - that sometimes allows you to configure the sound to come out of all the speakers (kinda sets all your speakers to front) - you might have to select the audio jacks through the manager and change eat audio jack that the speakers are plugged into to "line out". - The only problem with this is when you have true 5.1 from say a dvd you'll have to manually go change back to 6 channel audio or whatever you looking for.

2 - i used an older driver from my previous gigabyte board (older Realtek driver). My previous driver was the Realtek R1.50. You might have to uninstall your driver and then install this older one - I didn't have to i just installed it over the newer one, restarted my pc and when I was back in windows went into the Realtek Audio Manager and set my stuff to 6 channel and everything worked fine. - I think the trade-off on this is you might lose some of the features especially if you have a newer chipset but for me i couldn't really care - I don't see why I need the extra environment settings like simulating me playing my speakers on the top of a mountain.

If it helps any i'm running on Windows XP SP2. GA-MA790FX-DQ6. Realtek ALC889A Onboard Audio.
October 27, 2008 12:04:32 PM

The thing is that Realtek Hd Audio manager has no fault if the speaker test is behaiving ok at 6 channel configuration, then it's probably is the media players configuration, and some codecs that messed it up.
As in my case, i have media player 11, with the same problem, i tryed going to Tools- Options or Left Click on - Now Playing -and select More Options (same thing i guess) and then select from the Popup menu -Devices - Speakers - Properties - Audio device to use: ex: Direct Sound:Realtek HD Audio output

I don't know the settings for winamp cause i don't use it. Not all players work, from stereo to 5.1 (video players), and it might be the filter used as well.
November 20, 2008 8:23:43 AM

Hello,

I figured out the problem, but not the solution :

Speaker setup up is :
front speakers and rear speakers settings in the connection menu popup. (black output is the rear, the front is green /below black/)

If you set-up 4 ch mode in settings, REAR speakers are muted.
Becauase in this channel mode there the 4 speaker means 2 FRONT and two SIDE speakers. What the hell ?!

If you set to 8 ch mode, you will hear the same speakers as REAR speakers, as it's should be.
But in this case you will not get the correct 4 ch sound, because for example monoaural center sound will not be hear in the front speakers.

This is really confusing situation. Why 4 ch mode according to side speakers, I don't know, but totally unusable the onboard sound card to enjoy full 4 ch speaker setup.

Best Regards,
pubem
November 21, 2008 1:50:38 AM

Hi,

Add me to the list of folks confused by this problem.

On my new Gigabyte 780G board I need to set the output to 8 channels so the rear speakers can work.

Lame.

Killervamp I'm gonna try your potential solution; I suppose I'll have to take my home theater to the top of a mountain now to get the desired effect.
November 21, 2008 6:52:14 AM

quick note for winamp - u need to use custom extension to get your winamp output to 5.1. Check the website for solution ;) 
By default winamp output is stereo...
November 25, 2008 6:51:38 AM

Holy Schneikies!! It worked!

I did exactly what killervamp recommended...find an older realtek driver if you have analog speakers...in this case version r1.50...and it worked like a charm!

Now I have true surround sound with the rear speakers working perfectly as before. I even can watch DVDs with DTS tracks. It sounds grreeeeeaaaat

Thanks dude! I owe you a frosty beverage. Once I get down this mountain.
April 28, 2009 2:59:15 AM

I had the same problem with the VIA Realtek Audio driver.

Found a small button named "Speaker fill" where you set up how many speakers you have (HD Audio deck) and it works perfekt. Guess it was as easy as that for me atleast, it uses the 2.1 musik and fills all speakers with it :p 
April 28, 2009 2:59:40 AM

I had the same problem with the VIA Realtek Audio driver.

Found a small button named "Speaker fill" where you set up how many speakers you have (HD Audio deck) and it works perfekt. Guess it was as easy as that for me atleast, it uses the 2.1 musik and fills all speakers with it :p 
May 13, 2009 6:06:44 PM

It sounds like the problem with 5.1 sound is you're plugging them into the wrong port. In a true 5.1, the best speaker setup is to have the "rear" speakers on either side of you facing your ears and all speakers equidistance from you. I'd imagine you are plugging the "rear" speaker plug from your speakers into the rear speaker plug on your on-board audio, when instead it should be going into the side speaker. This will give you the fullest audio, since otherwise you are probably missing sounds to the side speakers when it is set to an 8 speaker setup.

Anyway, since it really is a 2 channel sound source you're using, you need to set any applications that use stereo to matrix or in some way add the extra channels. Unfortunately, you'd probably have to get a decoder for that, since Realtek, as a cheap onboard solution, is not going to provide an application for that like a true sound card company would. PowerDVD or WinDVD will add the capability in WMP and probably winamp, as well.
May 17, 2009 8:08:54 PM

but does it really matter if you plug them into the wrong port?,because you know can change what speaker
you want it to be (front/rear/sides...)??
but anyway i have the same problem,i cant get a nice sound when i play my games,it sounds everything mixed
and some sounds are higher than others?
i have analoge speakers,a 5.1 system and theyre really powerfull,id like to get it fixed.
Damian.
Anonymous
June 17, 2009 8:27:44 PM

hi Guys!


had the same problem as everyone described...I have also instaled relatek hd r1.50 audio driver and now the sound is great and it work on all speakers (5.1)...I have one question though...NOw i am runing on windows XP SP3...I am planing to install Vista (becouse of the Media center)...has anybody solved the same problem runing on Vista (just to mention..my first operation system was Vista and had the same problem)??
October 3, 2009 5:46:25 AM

Quote:
hi Guys!


had the same problem as everyone described...I have also instaled relatek hd r1.50 audio driver and now the sound is great and it work on all speakers (5.1)...I have one question though...NOw i am runing on windows XP SP3...I am planing to install Vista (becouse of the Media center)...has anybody solved the same problem runing on Vista (just to mention..my first operation system was Vista and had the same problem)??



Oh yes. I just bought a Dell with Realtek audio and I´m only getting 2 channels. People at Dell are telling me it´s the applications and not the equipment but my last Dell was running XP and a Soundblaster with all six chanels pumping just fine with everything I threw at it. I think we have a case of crap hardware and everyone dodging the mistake. I´m seriously considering giving this system to the kids and getting something that isn´t total crap - except that they wouldn´t want it - they like their music loud and bassy too. A big bus is looking better and better. Crunch, crash - problem solved.

Dave
Anonymous
October 29, 2009 12:51:04 AM

Control Panel>sound>double click speakers>dolby tab> Dolby ProLogic IIx check box. Solved my problem. Although of course not true 5.1 but neither are my MP3s... so there ya go.
October 29, 2009 12:55:07 PM

No Dolby tab! I'm using up to date Vista and my OS is in Spanish (boy was that a mistake). Am I missing something?

Dave
Anonymous
November 15, 2009 10:17:08 PM

DaveBilling said:
Oh yes. I just bought a Dell with Realtek audio and I´m only getting 2 channels. People at Dell are telling me it´s the applications and not the equipment but my last Dell was running XP and a Soundblaster with all six chanels pumping just fine with everything I threw at it. I think we have a case of crap hardware and everyone dodging the mistake. I´m seriously considering giving this system to the kids and getting something that isn´t total crap - except that they wouldn´t want it - they like their music loud and bassy too. A big bus is looking better and better. Crunch, crash - problem solved.

Dave


Can u post here a link with driver 1.50 pls ? i cant find it anywhere. thanx
November 19, 2009 6:43:49 PM

DaveBilling said:
No Dolby tab! I'm using up to date Vista and my OS is in Spanish (boy was that a mistake). Am I missing something?

Dave

I had the same problem with vista. I got it to work as follows:-

Control Panel/Sound
Select your speakers - In my case Realtek AC97 Audio. (Ok they are Logitek 6 but they use the realtek chip on the m/board)

Click on [Properties]
Click on [Enhancements] tab
Scroll down until you sea Speaker Fill and check it.
Click apply.

Now when I use Itunes and Windows media player I get sound played out of all speakers and very nice it is too.

Anonymous
December 5, 2009 6:55:10 AM

hi there,

i think i hv figured it out...for 5.1 speakers they should hv subwoofer/center, front speakers and SIDE SPEAKERS(instead of rear speakers)...it sounds funny but it does make sense...have a look on ur realtek hd audio manager...if u select 5.1 system, the rear speakers are unavailable which i conclude that 5.1 system doesnt have rear speakers output..heheh

u may find it contradicts with ur motherboard user's guide (it says side speakers are only for 7.1 sytem) but it works for me...i just re tasking the black colour output to side speakers instead of rear speakers or mybe u can just stick with the grey output(no need of retasking)

how this will xplain everything....
December 11, 2009 2:41:22 AM

Solution
Im gonna post this on couple different boards to spread the word.

I have GIGABYTE GA-MA770T-UD3P motherboard and my speakers are connected to an onboard audio. This is running on Windows 7 64 bit. I just downloaded the latest Realtek drivers from GIGABYTE web site.

I had similar problem – no sound coming out of rear speakers while playing MP3s on WMP or Winamp. Speakers did test fine though, and during gaming all 5 satellite speakers were working properly.
"sketaful" already mentioned this previously but here it is with pictures
Here is what you do (if it applies to you)



Check the “Speaker Fill” Button

and if you need to



Enjoy

Thanks to ImageShack for Free Image Hosting
December 12, 2009 8:42:23 PM

go0o0o0o0o0o0o0o0o0o0d
Anonymous
December 13, 2009 4:43:30 PM

What happens if you only get the stereo (2 channel) options and cant select any of the other stuff??

I'm running Win7 64 bit, and downloaded the latest Realtek HDMI and Audio drivers. Connected the computer to a tv via HDMI, and then the TV to the 5.1 receiver.

Any ideas?
January 5, 2010 6:08:01 PM

Quote:
What happens if you only get the stereo (2 channel) options and cant select any of the other stuff??

I'm running Win7 64 bit, and downloaded the latest Realtek HDMI and Audio drivers. Connected the computer to a tv via HDMI, and then the TV to the 5.1 receiver.

Any ideas?



Having the same issue. I'm running 7 (64 bit) with HDMI to my receiver, and then HDMI to the TV. I don't have the option to do anything other than 2ch in the Realtek HD Manager, or in control panel.
January 5, 2010 6:24:01 PM

Guys, regardless of the number of spekers, most source audio from a PC is Stereo. As shown above, options like Spaker Fill will fill in the extra side/rear speakers, and upmixing techs, like Dolby Pro Logic, will upmix the source audio.

If you can't even SELECT 5.1, try manually doing so through the windows control panel.
Anonymous
January 23, 2010 8:51:07 AM

Can facing same problem, In my Vista 32 Bit OS, I'm getting only "Stearo" Speaker Configuration in Realtek HD Audio Manager.

Any idea how to enable that, I was getting the 5.1 option in XP, but I have reinstalled Vista after that I'm not getting the Speaker selection.

Thanks in Advance

Nagaraj
February 3, 2010 11:06:30 PM

@ Strelok7

Hiya :D 

I have downloaded the latest driver from the gigabyte website as well. I am running Win 7 64x as well but have a UD4P motherboard instead of your UD3P. Those were excellent pictures of the Audio Manager, but mine is slightly different. Where the "Speaker Fill" option is on yours is just a vacant spot on mine. Did you do anything special to enable that option? Also, the rear speaker option is greyed out for me.... so I'm not sure why these key differences are there.

PS I have been able to utilize 5.1 playback in video files successfully so I know the hardware is fine, but i would like a "fake" surround sound for my music as well and the "Speaker Fill" option seems like it would do just that. So frustrating for it to be so obviously absent in my audio manager (I mean there is a space where that option Should be, but it's just blank leaving only the last two options)

Victor
Anonymous
February 17, 2010 8:28:30 AM

I was having the same problem with not having music play through all 6 speakers until I saw the above method (THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR THAT), but since doing so, my 'front' and 'rear' speakers don't seem to be completely synced. Can anyone help me with this?
February 17, 2010 4:03:38 PM

I have the EXACT same problem as Victor, blank spot where speaker fill should be.
I have tried pretty much everything but I can't get it to work...

I have an EP45 DS3R motherboard with Realtek 2.42 installed. I'll try installing an older driver... Also, I have an old Hercules muse sound card and no matter what i do, only stereo sounds come to my face, except when testing the whole thing in the software.

Any help?
February 26, 2010 12:22:49 AM

Well it seems we all have the same problem,in a 5.1 setup,the rears are grayed out.I could care less about music because stereo is what it is.But you can not even test if the speakers work in the Realtek control panel.Before I installed the Realtek drivers,Windows gave me 2 choices to check off,5.1 with side speakers or 5.1 with rear speakers.My Onkyo AV receiver is a bit older HT-R530,it only has 5.1 with back speakers,not side.Mine will not test right plugged into gray or black plug.Naturally they should be plugged into the Black ones.Like I said,Windows gave the option to use either and worked,If I didn't need the Realtek driver and control panel I would can it,but I do so I can get Dolby Digital live.If I check off 7.1 then rears work,if I uncheck sides and do a test speakers,then the test sound for sides comes out of the fronts.It seems this has been a problem for quite some time with gigabyte boards.I have a ga-ma790gpt-ud3h motherboard.i have recently installed 239,241,242,243 all same problem.So anyone else have any ideas?
stin
February 26, 2010 12:35:34 AM

Victor55 said:
@ Strelok7

Hiya :D 

I have downloaded the latest driver from the gigabyte website as well. I am running Win 7 64x as well but have a UD4P motherboard instead of your UD3P. Those were excellent pictures of the Audio Manager, but mine is slightly different. Where the "Speaker Fill" option is on yours is just a vacant spot on mine. Did you do anything special to enable that option? Also, the rear speaker option is greyed out for me.... so I'm not sure why these key differences are there.

PS I have been able to utilize 5.1 playback in video files successfully so I know the hardware is fine, but i would like a "fake" surround sound for my music as well and the "Speaker Fill" option seems like it would do just that. So frustrating for it to be so obviously absent in my audio manager (I mean there is a space where that option Should be, but it's just blank leaving only the last two options)

Victor

He more than likely has the ALC888 or what ever,but probably not the ALC889a
March 13, 2010 12:54:03 PM

I propose a new word: spamjacker--someone who hijacks a thread in order to spam.
April 7, 2010 5:29:56 PM

I have a Gigabyte GA-H55M-UD2H, which has the ACL889 chipset, and as with a few others here, it seems that over the optical (SPDIF/digital) output, the latest drivers only support 2-channel PCM output by default. :pfff:  Frustrating. It's clear that Dolby Digital Live is supported by the chipset, but it's apparently not handled by the drivers. If anyone knows of a registry key that might enable it, PLEASE POST!

I've gone through a 10-post thread w/ Gigabyte support regarding why the Realtek HD drivers don't support any formats other than 2-channel PCM audio (like Dolby Digital Live 5.1), and they still can't understand my question. I've also e-mailed Realtek, but I'm not hopeful about a response from them directly.

HDMI isn't an option for me yet (although I assume HDMI users are in the same boat). My hope was that over optical I would at least get Dolby Digital for DVD playback, but even that doesn't work via Media Center (Win 7 x64)...it's stuck in stereo. I'm not sure if the problem is that Media Center doesn't support the 5.1 playback, or if the driver isn't properly bitstreaming the Dolby signal to my receiver.

Anyone have any successes to report?
April 14, 2010 6:02:30 AM

I Had this problem but the Anon posters right. Mobo is gigabyte P55M-UD4 with realtek ALC889A chipset, and to get surround sound i:

Right clicked realtek icon>audio devices>clicked speakers> properties>dolby> ticked dolby logic.

Now my speaker are playing out all 5 speakers.

To Coryseaman, I dont fully understand your problem, your saying that Dolby Digital is present, but not being played? Cause ive plugged mine through SPDIF output to a 5 beam speaker, which played out all 5 speakers as surround sound, but i first had to enable the Dolby Digital in the Realtek options (Digital output>Deafault Format>click Dolby Digital button)

Maybe your Amp/beam needs to be set itself, cause mine has multiple options (3 speakers + 2/5 beam/ stereo + 3/ Surround) each had different effects.
April 14, 2010 11:39:44 AM

DinkyDogg said:
To Coryseaman, I dont fully understand your problem, your saying that Dolby Digital is present, but not being played? Cause ive plugged mine through SPDIF output to a 5 beam speaker, which played out all 5 speakers as surround sound, but i first had to enable the Dolby Digital in the Realtek options (Digital output>Deafault Format>click Dolby Digital button)


No, I just discovered my issue...despite having the Realtek ALC889 chipset, the GA-H55M-UD2H mobo simply doesn't support Dolby Digital Live, which is, according to Realtek, an "optional feature". Gigabyte has to pay Dolby Labs to license Dolby Home Theater/Dolby Digital Live on each of their motherboards, and for some reason they elected not to do it for this one. "Dolby Digital Live" just isn't an option for the default format, and they told me that was by design. However, a sister board like the GA-H55M-USB3 does support it. Again...extremely frustrating. :pfff: 

Can I get a savvy volunteer with a GA-H55M-USB3 or (another Gigabyte board that supports Dolby Digital Live) to take a look at their Realtek registry settings and see what it would take to enable the support? These boards all use the same Gigabyte Realtek HD driver package, so there's got to be a software-based tweak that can switch on the support. It must look up the mobo model in the BIOS/system settings and enable/disable all the various possible inputs, outputs, and Dolby Digital Live at install time.
Anonymous
May 4, 2010 6:07:53 PM

Strelok7 said:
Solution
Im gonna post this on couple different boards to spread the word.

I have GIGABYTE GA-MA770T-UD3P motherboard and my speakers are connected to an onboard audio. This is running on Windows 7 64 bit. I just downloaded the latest Realtek drivers from GIGABYTE web site.

I had similar problem – no sound coming out of rear speakers while playing MP3s on WMP or Winamp. Speakers did test fine though, and during gaming all 5 satellite speakers were working properly.
"sketaful" already mentioned this previously but here it is with pictures
Here is what you do (if it applies to you)

http://img268.imageshack.us/img268/4238/configurationb.jpg

Check the “Speaker Fill” Button

and if you need to

http://img513.imageshack.us/img513/6724/roomcorrection.jpg

Enjoy

Thanks to ImageShack for Free Image Hosting

May 4, 2010 6:40:04 PM



Let's be clear: "Speaker Fill" doesn't magically allow you to use 5-channel sound...it simply re-distributes a stereo (2-channel) signal across 5 or more speakers. It's not even on par with something like Dolby Pro Logic, which uses a matrix algorithm to encode and then decode 5 channels within a simple stereo signal.

Just be aware that unless Windows, the Realtek drivers, and your game are all set up for a 5.1-speaker system, you won't be getting true 5-channel sound. If your game is set up for stereo and you have Speaker Fill turned on, your rear left speaker WILL NOT play sounds that are supposed to be "behind" you...it will play the SAME sounds that are coming out of your front left speaker. Does that make sense?

It might make some folks feel better for some reason to be utilizing all of the speakers in their setup when playing music or whatnot, but you're not doing yourself any favors by keeping Speaker Fill turned on if true 5.1 is available.
Anonymous
May 5, 2010 4:30:10 PM

Hello,
Hi everybody i need a help with my sound.I have now Windows 7 and 5.1 home system ..Genius-wood.I have a AS rock P45 Turbotwins 2000 mainboard.I install the HD realtek..and center dont play..why ? :D  In back analog panel i see green and orange.I have in green 2 inputs..(R and L in reducer or what is it :D  2=1 out..you know.Anything i do..never play the center..only if i have active administration bass and take off the change for out midle repro for subwoofer-But now play a slow subwoofer-very slow :(  So what i must do to fix this problem ?
May 21, 2010 3:20:34 PM

DinkyDogg said:
I Had this problem but the Anon posters right. Mobo is gigabyte P55M-UD4 with realtek ALC889A chipset, and to get surround sound i:

Right clicked realtek icon>audio devices>clicked speakers> properties>dolby> ticked dolby logic.

Now my speaker are playing out all 5 speakers.

To Coryseaman, I dont fully understand your problem, your saying that Dolby Digital is present, but not being played? Cause ive plugged mine through SPDIF output to a 5 beam speaker, which played out all 5 speakers as surround sound, but i first had to enable the Dolby Digital in the Realtek options (Digital output>Deafault Format>click Dolby Digital button)

Maybe your Amp/beam needs to be set itself, cause mine has multiple options (3 speakers + 2/5 beam/ stereo + 3/ Surround) each had different effects.



DinkyDogg THIS WORKED FOR ME AS WELL. I have a Gigabyte mother board. GA X58A-UDR3 with the ALC889 sound chipset. Their is NOT a speaker fill option in my RealTek control panel that comes with the latest (R2.46) driver from Gigabyte. But your solution worked perfectly. Now I can listen to stereo MP3s in Windows Media player in surround sound with my 5.1 analog speakers coming from all channels. Also, next to the Dolby ProLogic IIx check box their is a box with "..." inside this option it allows me to change the "Center Width" which controls how much sound comes from the center, with Narrow being alot of center and wide alot of front and rear, and a "Dimension" slider that controls how much sound comes out front to rear. This solution works in Windows Media Player 12, iTunes, and streaming Videos through Netflix. I'm sure it works for alot of other things but that's all I tested. I believe this is the solution the original poster was looking for.
June 6, 2010 3:01:44 AM

coryseaman said:
Let's be clear: "Speaker Fill" doesn't magically allow you to use 5-channel sound...it simply re-distributes a stereo (2-channel) signal across 5 or more speakers. It's not even on par with something like Dolby Pro Logic, which uses a matrix algorithm to encode and then decode 5 channels within a simple stereo signal.

Just be aware that unless Windows, the Realtek drivers, and your game are all set up for a 5.1-speaker system, you won't be getting true 5-channel sound. If your game is set up for stereo and you have Speaker Fill turned on, your rear left speaker WILL NOT play sounds that are supposed to be "behind" you...it will play the SAME sounds that are coming out of your front left speaker. Does that make sense?

It might make some folks feel better for some reason to be utilizing all of the speakers in their setup when playing music or whatnot, but you're not doing yourself any favors by keeping Speaker Fill turned on if true 5.1 is available.


Hey coryseaman, im having the same drama with no true surround sound from my gigabyte mobo (ma785gm-us2h) over optical AND hdmi to a onkyo TX-sr576 reciever (5.1 setup). Previously i had a gigabyte ma78gpm-ds2h and i had true surround with it. atm im only getting the 2 channel sound over optical and hdmi and there is no dolby digital live button to enable the 5.1. so very frustrating!!!!!!!!

Iv tried several realtek driver versions including r1.55, r1.93, r2.31, r2.44, r2.48 and none of them bring up the option.
If i was to boot up my old mobo (ma78gpm-ds2h) again where exactly would i look for these registry keys??????

Its crucial i sort this issue out cause all my movies have 5.1 sound and just cant go back to stereo sound....

eagerly awaiting your response...

mjh992
June 21, 2010 11:36:55 AM

Just thought I would chime in. I have Windows 7 Home Premium (64-bit) and a Gigabyte P35-DS4 (rev 2.1) motherboard with the Realtek High Definition Audio. I could not get my rear speakers to work, either. Then I changed the speaker configuration to 7.1 surround and the rear speakers started working. I did this by right-clicking on the speaker icon in the taskbar (down by the clock) and choosing Playback Devices. I then clicked Configure and change the configuration to 7.1 - this also changed the configuration in the Realtek HD Audio Manager. Now I get sound from all five speakers.

If you can't find the Realtek HD Audio Manager then go to Control Panel, then Hardware and Sound - you should see it in that window.

Hope this helps.
June 21, 2010 9:08:35 PM

mjh992, with A/V receivers you need to turn off HDMI Audio passthrough. Because hdmi port is linked to both the receiver and TV, the computer sees the TV which can only support 2 channel sound.

If you turn off HDMI Audio (I think it's one of the "input source" menus on the Onkyo) then the computer will sense the receiver only, and you should have options for 7.1 audio in the Windows Programs and Sound control panel.
July 22, 2010 4:05:39 AM

There are (at least) two different problems being referred to in this thread.

Problem #1) The Realtek HD drivers for Windows 7 -- at least the 64-bit version -- for some reason default to a 5.1 speaker setup having "side" speakers instead of "rear" speakers, but the driver defaults to the third speaker port being mapped to the "rear" speakers. This means that if you set it to 5.1 speakers and plug 5.1 analog outputs into the default ports on the MB, the rear speakers will not be getting any sound.

To fix that, just go into the "Realtek HD Audio Manager" (under Control Panel) and change the jack where the rear surrounds are plugged in from "Rear Speaker Out" to "Side Speaker Out". Changing the speaker setting to 7.1 will also enable them as rear speakers, but this may sound weird if applications like games or DVD/Blu-Ray movies attempt to play true 7.1 audio, since then the side speakers will be missing.

Problem #2) The Realtek HD drivers for Windows 7 do not currently appear to offer a stereo upmix feature, which is what allows 2-channel stereo to be played back on more than two speakers. So even if the rear speakers are recognized in the test utility, when you play normal stereo audio sources, sound will only come out of the "front left" and "front right" speakers (unless you use a program that has its own upmix functionality). This seems likely to be a bug: some of their earlier drivers offered this, and the drivers offer many *other* modes that upmix and modify stereo audio output, just not a simple surround upmix.

To fix this:

Ideally, Realtek should add back in the "surround fill" option that was there in some of their other (non-Win7) drivers. If that option is there, just check it and you should be set. You might want to try the latest drivers from the Realtek website to see if they have fixed this. As of 7/21/2010, the latest drivers (R2.50) do not have this option, at least in Windows 7 64-bit.

If that option is not there:

They *do* have another mode that will do this, but it may slightly affect the sound output. If you go under the "Sound Effects" tab in the audio manager, changing the "Environment" setting to "Room" will effectively cause a stereo surround upmix. (All of the modes will do a stereo upmix, but most of the other ones apply various effects that will make your music sound terrible. This one is close to neutral.)

Another option -- if your motherboard's chipset supports it -- is to use Dolby upmixing. This *also* may slightly affect the sound quality, although probably less than using their effects panel. To do this, go to Control Panel->Sound, select the "Speakers" output device, and hit the "Properties" button. This should open up a tabbed window with a bunch of settings. If you have a "Dolby" tab, go to it and check the "Dolby Prologic IIx" checkbox (or whatever option is there). This will remix stereo sound into 5.1 or 7.1. If there is no "Dolby" tab, then your motherboard does not support Dolby upmixing.

Another possible solution is to set all the jacks where your speakers are plugged in to "Front Speaker Output". This will cause the driver to send the same 2-channel output to all the speakers. However, this will break anything that tries to play real 5.1 or 7.1 audio, since the side and rear audio is then not going anywhere!

Realtek also offers a utility on their website called "3D Soundback". This may be helpful, although it has to be configured on a per-application basis. It is also designed for Windows Vista, so it may not work properly under Win7.
August 10, 2010 7:05:01 AM

Matthias99 said:
There are (at least) two different problems being referred to in this thread.

Problem #1) The Realtek HD drivers for Windows 7 -- at least the 64-bit version -- for some reason default to a 5.1 speaker setup having "side" speakers instead of "rear" speakers, but the driver defaults to the third speaker port being mapped to the "rear" speakers. This means that if you set it to 5.1 speakers and plug 5.1 analog outputs into the default ports on the MB, the rear speakers will not be getting any sound.

To fix that, just go into the "Realtek HD Audio Manager" (under Control Panel) and change the jack where the rear surrounds are plugged in from "Rear Speaker Out" to "Side Speaker Out". Changing the speaker setting to 7.1 will also enable them as rear speakers, but this may sound weird if applications like games or DVD/Blu-Ray movies attempt to play true 7.1 audio, since then the side speakers will be missing.

Problem #2) The Realtek HD drivers for Windows 7 do not currently appear to offer a stereo upmix feature, which is what allows 2-channel stereo to be played back on more than two speakers. So even if the rear speakers are recognized in the test utility, when you play normal stereo audio sources, sound will only come out of the "front left" and "front right" speakers (unless you use a program that has its own upmix functionality). This seems likely to be a bug: some of their earlier drivers offered this, and the drivers offer many *other* modes that upmix and modify stereo audio output, just not a simple surround upmix.

To fix this:

Ideally, Realtek should add back in the "surround fill" option that was there in some of their other (non-Win7) drivers. If that option is there, just check it and you should be set. You might want to try the latest drivers from the Realtek website to see if they have fixed this. As of 7/21/2010, the latest drivers (R2.50) do not have this option, at least in Windows 7 64-bit.

If that option is not there:

They *do* have another mode that will do this, but it may slightly affect the sound output. If you go under the "Sound Effects" tab in the audio manager, changing the "Environment" setting to "Room" will effectively cause a stereo surround upmix. (All of the modes will do a stereo upmix, but most of the other ones apply various effects that will make your music sound terrible. This one is close to neutral.)

Another option -- if your motherboard's chipset supports it -- is to use Dolby upmixing. This *also* may slightly affect the sound quality, although probably less than using their effects panel. To do this, go to Control Panel->Sound, select the "Speakers" output device, and hit the "Properties" button. This should open up a tabbed window with a bunch of settings. If you have a "Dolby" tab, go to it and check the "Dolby Prologic IIx" checkbox (or whatever option is there). This will remix stereo sound into 5.1 or 7.1. If there is no "Dolby" tab, then your motherboard does not support Dolby upmixing.

Another possible solution is to set all the jacks where your speakers are plugged in to "Front Speaker Output". This will cause the driver to send the same 2-channel output to all the speakers. However, this will break anything that tries to play real 5.1 or 7.1 audio, since the side and rear audio is then not going anywhere!

Realtek also offers a utility on their website called "3D Soundback". This may be helpful, although it has to be configured on a per-application basis. It is also designed for Windows Vista, so it may not work properly under Win7.


Thank you Matthias99
!