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surround sound from digital coaxial?

Last response: in Components
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September 4, 2008 8:21:44 AM

If I take a digital coaxial cable and connect it from the motherboard to a 5.1 receiver, will I get true surround sound from my speakers or will they all be producing the same exact audio?

mobo: Asus P5Q-E P45 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

potential receiver: Yamaha HTR-6130BL http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

digital coaxial cable: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
September 4, 2008 8:49:24 AM

You should get true surround. No reason why not.
a b V Motherboard
September 4, 2008 9:54:08 AM

Pre-encoded surrounds such as those found in movie sound tracks will be 5.1, while "Live" surrounds will probably be knocked down to 2.1 channel.
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September 4, 2008 10:34:22 AM

alright, cool
September 4, 2008 10:59:30 AM

That should work fine.
September 9, 2008 2:59:11 AM

That's the same setup I have. Except I got my digital coaxial cable a little cheaper : digital coaxial cable. :) 
September 9, 2008 11:20:53 AM

Here is the deal:

2 channel sources will NOT play in surround. You have to use either a filter on your amp or on your card. However getting your source(the pc) to convert 2 channel to surround through a digital connection like spdif or fiber is only a feature you can get on pro devices. The xfi series can do it but only with 3rd party apps. Basicly what I am saying is you can NOT get surround over a true digital connection in this case unless your amp supports it with some filter. Even then its fake. Nearly no sound cards will convert 90+hz to surround via a digital connection. You are stuck with analog.

Movies recorded in surround ect.. will play providing you have the codec ect.. for the hardware to do it all.

Games are another story. There is no game in creation that will play on any desktop hardware in surround sound while transmitting digital surround. You are stuck with analog when gaming or stereo sound when using digital. Some specialty systems claim its digital surround like the logitec systems but in trueth its just converted analog thus poor sound quality. In otherwords 99% of the time its stereo when gaming or analog bottom line.

September 9, 2008 11:38:27 AM

You'll be fine mate :)  What speakers you going to be using? I might have a couple of recommendations for ya.
a b V Motherboard
September 9, 2008 6:49:13 PM

Simple answer: If the source material is surround (5.1, 7.1, DTS, whatever), then the digital cable will deliver it to your receiver. If the source material is stereo, the digital cable will deliver a stereo signal, which your receiver can then process using it's own logic.


REALLY short answer: Yes. DOOO IT!!
a b V Motherboard
September 9, 2008 8:59:47 PM

Scotteq said:
Simple answer: If the source material is surround (5.1, 7.1, DTS, whatever), then the digital cable will deliver it to your receiver. If the source material is stereo, the digital cable will deliver a stereo signal, which your receiver can then process using it's own logic.


REALLY short answer: Yes. DOOO IT!!


Yeh, but you forgot about "Live" sounds such as games, which are usually 5.1, yet go out over the coaxial cable as stereo because the audio codec doesn't have the capability of combining them to a single digital signal.
a b V Motherboard
September 10, 2008 5:27:01 AM

I think that the new X-fi Titanium series can do the digital encoding on the fly (I could be wrong though)

EDIT: Yeah, it looks like they support Dolby Digital Live encoding. I think they're the only ones though.
a b V Motherboard
September 10, 2008 5:55:29 AM

cjl said:
I think that the new X-fi Titanium series can do the digital encoding on the fly (I could be wrong though)

EDIT: Yeah, it looks like they support Dolby Digital Live encoding. I think they're the only ones though.


Not the only ones, in fact Creative is several years behind everyone else. C-Media has had a DDL sound chip for over two years (with several brands of cards on the market), an even the old nVidia Soundstorm audio controller (nForce 3 over 4 years ago) could do on-the-fly digital encoding.
September 12, 2008 4:59:32 PM

Just to expand a little on what Crashman has said.

Unless you have a sound processor to do DD Live or similar (you will need a c-media equipped card with a CMI8770 or 8768+ or equivalent), you will only get 2 channels from games over s/pdif.

Creative are NOT a leader in this field as they prefer to rely on their proprietary EAX technology.
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