Hi, I was just wondering if there was a big difference between analog 5.1 audio from a PC to a PC surround sound set or using the optical SPDIF output into a receiver with 5.1 audio? My motherboard supports both. Thanks
If your PC surround setup accepts a digital input (either optical SPDIF or Digital coax) then use that. If it doesn't, use the analog outputs. Pure digital signals are better because analog signals are subject to degradation (quality-loss) and interference (especially if the cables are poorly shielded). Digital is preferred but if your surround speaker setup doesn't accept digital then don't worry about it. If it does then use digital.
That's the thing, I didn't buy anything yet. The price difference between analog and digital sets is ridiculous, so if there isn't a significant quality difference then I'll just get an analog system. I have a really good set of speakers though but no receiver, so if I can find a digital receiver cheaper than anything else, which is doubtful, I'd rather go with that.