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No sound from coax S/PDIF on HP computer (Realtek ALC658)

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January 9, 2010 9:16:18 PM

I have a HP Pavilion a1209.se, Windows XP SP3:

http://h10025.www1.hp.com/ewfrf/wc/product?product=1148...

It has the MS(I)-7184 motherboard:
http://h10025.www1.hp.com/ewfrf/wc/document?docname=c00...
http://217.110.237.67/Manuals/7184-engl%20v1.x.pdf


There's a s/pdif output from the Realtek ALC658 chip an I get no sound from it. I'm using a coax -> toslink adapter that I have tested with one of my DVD-players and that setup works.

I can't get any digital sound from the computer.
The digital output has never been used as far as I know, I wanted to use it to get rid of some audio hum when connecting the computer to the TV (I already have a galvanic filter on the antenna input so that's not the problem).


I have uninstalled all sound software related to the soundchip, cleared the register of anything realtek sound or AC97 and reinstalled the original drivers from the HP page linked to above, tested - didn't work.

I installed the HP update from the same page, tested - didn't work.

I downloaded WDM_A397, A400 and A406 which is the latest one at Realtek's homepage:
http://www.realtek.com.tw/downloads/downloadsCheck.aspx...

I got no digital output after any of the updates.

Also tried the bios update from HP:s page above (I think it was 3.47), MSI have no more update for that motherboard, it's a HP specific apparently.


The analog outputs work, if I set it to 5.1 audio and use the test for the speakers, I can hear the test sound in all speakers if I move the speaker-connector to the three connectors. This has worked for all five versions of the drivers.

I have measured the output of the S/PDIF with a Fluke 89 IV Multimeter and when the digital output is set to off I have about 20 mV AC, when on it's about 120 mV AC (when no sound was playing), which is the same value as the DVD-player that worked with the adapter. I'm sorry but I have no scope to check with.

Now I'm thinking there's a software error, the digital output is muted somewhere or something like that, the digital output hardware is broken or the adapter simply doesn't work with the computer for some reason.

I had plans to clone my hard drive and make a recovery on the hard drive copy but I have had no success with that, it seems the backup hard drive is defect, I got a lot of read errors in the verifying process so I'm currently writing this quick message.

I've also thought about building my own coax -> toslink adapter or modifying the one I've got according to some plans I googled for. It's already based on a 74HC04 so it's just a few components that differ as far as I can see.


Any ideas what I can do to test the output of the computer?

Any ideas what I can do software-wise to make sure the output is not muted or something like that?

Yes, buying a new audio card would probably solve the problem, but I have more time than money right now and it would be fun if I could make it work somehow. I'm not reinstalling Windows just to see if it works - I'd like to keep my stuff and settings where they are.
January 10, 2010 1:49:06 AM

Most of the time the default output of the soundcard is the old 3.5mm analog jack.
So go into the properties of your sound card and select the source you want to use.
January 10, 2010 3:58:38 PM

I have tried all S/PDIF-settings and "digital out" settings in the "SoundMan"-control in the Control Panel (they are called different thing in Swedish of course).

Also tried different settings in the three different programs I have for DVD playback, but first the speaker test in "SoundMan" should work, shouldn't it?
Related resources
January 10, 2010 7:50:26 PM

I took a few pictures of the ALC658-chip and cleaned out some dust after trying to clone the system hard drive and running a destructive recovery - which means it is set to it's original fall of 2005 state.

Still didn't work, neither did it work after the HP update nor the Realtek one.

Anyway, checking the photos some of the solder joints didn't look perfect but they probably work. After checking the datasheet I'm now thinking about connecting directly to the SPDIF out, pin 48 and see if I get any sound.

http://realtek.info/pdf/alc658.pdf

Question is if I can get the correct SPDIF-signal (if it even works) directly from pin 48 without adding any components.
March 3, 2010 5:49:56 PM

Any BIOS settings to change between S/PDIF/AC '97?
July 30, 2010 8:45:30 AM

e5frog said:
I took a few pictures of the ALC658-chip and cleaned out some dust after trying to clone the system hard drive and running a destructive recovery - which means it is set to it's original fall of 2005 state.

Still didn't work, neither did it work after the HP update nor the Realtek one.

Anyway, checking the photos some of the solder joints didn't look perfect but they probably work. After checking the datasheet I'm now thinking about connecting directly to the SPDIF out, pin 48 and see if I get any sound.

http://realtek.info/pdf/alc658.pdf

Question is if I can get the correct SPDIF-signal (if it even works) directly from pin 48 without adding any components.


Did you ever sodder this or try it? I kind of want to do the same thing on a motherboard with this chip and no spdif port.

A compaq sr1110nx actualy.

I added a usb2 hard drive and a normal pci geforce 8400 gs, installed ubuntu lucid and boxee and now have a machine from 2004 that plays 1080p! No spdif out tho.

Seems I could do analog surround just fine, but I like to do crazy things. I have a sodder gun and I havn't used it in a while. If I wanted to do something sensable I would just have bought a newer machine for HTPC purposes ;P
!