GTX560 + Asus Xonar DX = DD audio over hdmi?
Hi all, I'm planning to buy a new gpu this year (probably gtx560) and I have a question about hdmi audio. My soundcard supports realtime Dolby Digital encoding but I'm not sure whether it will pass the digital stream to the gpu and the hdmi port. What do you think?
...Why would you want to? Dolby is a lossy format. Yes, the DX is a great soundcard, but I'd stick to a regular 5.1 stream over a lossy format any day.
As for the question: I'm not sure exactly how audio is carried over. While the card is capable of carrying a dolby stream, I'm not sure what audio device [onboard or other] would be responsable for generating the audio signal that is sent via the GPU.
The reason is I want to connect it a tv in another room and the less cables running along the wall the better. And since my tv can pass through the DD stream from hdmi to optical output, I wouldn't have to switch from optical to analog on the speakers when changing inputs on the tv. Also on my speakers, Logitech Z-5500, I actually find the optical input to sound a little bit better (less boomy bass). Nonetheless, the goal is to make it work, so if the video card won't pass the sound, I'll buy some long audio cables which will eventually cost less than those dvi+toslink to hdmi converters anyways :P But thanks for the reply, I haven't thought about that variant before.
You won't get the audio from your soundcard if you use audio over HDMI, you will get the audio from the graphics card. The soundcard will be inactive.
Further complications: You will need to set which audio device is being used by windows when you move from using your PC at your desk or at your TV.
There is a solution:
Disable the audio output on your graphics card, feed the HDMI output of your graphics card and the audio output of your soundcard into some kind of hardware converter / muxer and use the output from that to drive your TV and your desktop speakers. Then you will always be using the output from your soundcard both at your desk and at your TV.
I feel finding the right hardware will be your main issue.
Personally I use a Yamaha Home Cinema AV amp as the hardware converter / muxer. It has HDMI inputs, TOSLINK inputs and speakers connected to it. My PC, Xbox etc all go into it and it drives the sound and outputs HDMI to the TV. It also has an aux output so I could connect some desktop speakers to it as well.
But that would require me to run a toslink cable to another room. I looked for some of those dvi+toslink muxers but none is available in my country and shipping from US is too high. Fortunately, it seems like I found a solution: Asus Xonar HDAV 1.3. This soundcard has hdmi input and output and can combine digital audio and video into single hdmi cable Even though it's a bit expensive, I wouldn't have to buy a receiver yet. Although it's advertised as an htpc sound card it can live encode DD and DTS which means I shouldn't have any problem playing games. It also does some video processing which is a good thing, but may cause some lag (hopefully can be turned off in that case). Does anyone have any experience with this one or maybe some other ideas? Thanks for the replies so far guys