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Getting Hifi Speaker Sound out of PC

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November 27, 2004 1:39:07 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.tech,uk.rec.audio (More info?)

OK, I asked a previous question earlier about whether I can connect 3.5mm
minijack output on my PC soundcard to my hi-fi speaker. The answer was that
it wasn't recommended - thanks to those that answered.

Therefore I'd like to know of another way of connecting my hi-fi speakers to
my PC. Cost plays a big part in my decision so what is the cheapest way of
achieveing this with decent results? Powered hi-fi amp? High-power
soundcard?

Thanks.

More about : hifi speaker sound

Anonymous
November 27, 2004 1:39:08 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.tech,uk.rec.audio (More info?)

You will need a power amp between the HiFi speakers and the PC audio output.
It is possible to get an adaptor that can go from the 3.5 mm mini jack on
the computer to a set of phono plugs that can be extended to reach your HiFi
amplifier. Use the AUX or the Tape monitor input to amplify the computer's
output.

Take care when doing this, because the computer can make some surprise types
of noises, clicks, and whatever. HiFi equipment tends to be less robust than
the computer equipment for this type of thing. I personally would get a
descent set of speakers for the computer. In relation to everything else,
you can get a cheap set of computer speakers, and you would be better off.

--

Jerry G.
======


"james" <james@ebay.com> wrote in message
news:30r3qbF33dq4mU1@uni-berlin.de...
OK, I asked a previous question earlier about whether I can connect 3.5mm
minijack output on my PC soundcard to my hi-fi speaker. The answer was that
it wasn't recommended - thanks to those that answered.

Therefore I'd like to know of another way of connecting my hi-fi speakers to
my PC. Cost plays a big part in my decision so what is the cheapest way of
achieveing this with decent results? Powered hi-fi amp? High-power
soundcard?

Thanks.
Anonymous
November 27, 2004 1:39:08 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.tech,uk.rec.audio (More info?)

"james" wrote ...
> OK, I asked a previous question earlier about whether I can connect 3.5mm
> minijack output on my PC soundcard to my hi-fi speaker. The answer was
> that it wasn't recommended - thanks to those that answered.
>
> Therefore I'd like to know of another way of connecting my hi-fi speakers
> to my PC. Cost plays a big part in my decision so what is the cheapest way
> of achieveing this with decent results? Powered hi-fi amp? High-power
> soundcard?

Do you just have hi-fi speakers? No amplifer, no other components
of a system (CD player, tuner, etc.)? If you have an amplifier, the
simplest solution would be to feed the sound card output into one of
the inputs of the amp.
Related resources
Anonymous
November 27, 2004 2:33:53 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.tech,uk.rec.audio (More info?)

In article <30r3qbF33dq4mU1@uni-berlin.de>,
james <james@ebay.com> wrote:
> Therefore I'd like to know of another way of connecting my hi-fi
> speakers to my PC. Cost plays a big part in my decision so what is the
> cheapest way of achieveing this with decent results? Powered hi-fi amp?
> High-power soundcard?

PC power supplies aren't designed for or up to driving a decent power amp.

An external power amp and speakers is the best way. Either normal 'Hi-Fi'
stuff, or a pukka PC external speaker set up.

--
*The statement above is false

Dave Plowman dave@davenoise.co.uk London SW
To e-mail, change noise into sound.
Anonymous
November 27, 2004 2:53:48 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.tech,uk.rec.audio (More info?)

james wrote:
> OK, I asked a previous question earlier about whether I can connect
> 3.5mm minijack output on my PC soundcard to my hi-fi speaker. The
> answer was that it wasn't recommended - thanks to those that answered.
>
> Therefore I'd like to know of another way of connecting my hi-fi
> speakers to my PC. Cost plays a big part in my decision so what is
> the cheapest way of achieveing this with decent results? Powered
> hi-fi amp? High-power soundcard?
>
> Thanks.

http://www.creative.com/products/product.asp?category=1...

then get a cheap amp from richersounds or somewhere. Go to your sounds
options though and select the "no sounds" soundscheme or the "pings" and
"you have mails" will really annoy you.



--
"Get a paper bag"
Anonymous
November 27, 2004 3:28:42 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.tech,uk.rec.audio (More info?)

On Sat, 27 Nov 2004 10:39:07 -0000, "james" <james@ebay.com> wrote:


>Therefore I'd like to know of another way of connecting my hi-fi speakers to
>my PC.

Use an ordinary power amplifier. If you have hi-fi speakers, use
whatever you normally drive them with, i.e. hook up your PC to your
hi-fi amp. Any line level input on the hi-fi amp will do. On the PC,
use a stereo line output, if there is one, or the headphone output.
The latter will not be optimal sound-wise, as the headphone outputs
tend to be noisy. Connect it and see if the quality is OK for your
needs.

>High-power soundcard?

No. We have been through this discussion recently.

Per.
November 27, 2004 4:46:03 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.tech,uk.rec.audio (More info?)

Tim S Kemp wrote:
>
> then get a cheap amp from richersounds or somewhere. Go to your sounds
> options though and select the "no sounds" soundscheme or the "pings"
> and "you have mails" will really annoy you.

....or better, buy a second PC/laptop exclusively for playing music and
network it to the PC/server where your music is being stored. Connect this
second PC/laptop to your stereo and you'll be insulated from the 'you have
mail'-type noises and also activity on the main PC (work, internet, editing
music etc etc) won't affect the sound thru the hi-fi.
Anonymous
November 28, 2004 6:06:23 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.tech,uk.rec.audio (More info?)

On Sat, 27 Nov 2004 13:46:03 -0000, "Stimpy" <stimpy1997uk@yahoo.com>
wrote:

>> then get a cheap amp from richersounds or somewhere. Go to your sounds
>> options though and select the "no sounds" soundscheme or the "pings"
>> and "you have mails" will really annoy you.
>
>...or better, buy a second PC/laptop exclusively for playing music and
>network it to the PC/server where your music is being stored. Connect this
>second PC/laptop to your stereo and you'll be insulated from the 'you have
>mail'-type noises and also activity on the main PC (work, internet, editing
>music etc etc) won't affect the sound thru the hi-fi.

What an expensive alternative to simply turning off system sounds :-)
Anonymous
November 28, 2004 6:10:33 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.tech,uk.rec.audio (More info?)

On Sat, 27 Nov 2004 10:39:07 -0000, "james" <james@ebay.com> wrote:

>OK, I asked a previous question earlier about whether I can connect 3.5mm
>minijack output on my PC soundcard to my hi-fi speaker. The answer was that
>it wasn't recommended - thanks to those that answered.

>Therefore I'd like to know of another way of connecting my hi-fi speakers to
>my PC. Cost plays a big part in my decision so what is the cheapest way of
>achieveing this with decent results? Powered hi-fi amp? High-power
>soundcard?


What drives your hi-fi speakers at the moment? Some sort of
amplifier? Has it got an Aux in, Tape In or CD In pair of sockets?
Connect Line Out of your soundcard to one of these with a stereo 3.5
jack plug to 2 X phono plug cable (commonly called a "soundcard
cable")

If you're starting from scratch, go out and buy a hi-fi amp with
suitable inputs. You'll find it hard to find one that hasn't got them
:-)
Anonymous
November 29, 2004 7:33:29 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.tech,uk.rec.audio (More info?)

"james" <james@ebay.com> wrote in message news:<30r3qbF33dq4mU1@uni-berlin.de>...
> OK, I asked a previous question earlier about whether I can connect 3.5mm
> minijack output on my PC soundcard to my hi-fi speaker.

There's nothing to stop you taking the audio line-out from a sound
card and putting it into one of the inputs on your hi-fi amplifier.

However, PCs tend to be very 'noisy' inside and you may notice a lot
of pops and whistles as other activity in the PC interferes with the
sound outputs. I'm just about to move to an external USB sound card
to get rid of this. Creative have been mentioned elsewhere in replies
but also have a look at the Philips Aurilium. USB1 can supposedly run
into bandwidth problems with multichannel sound so look for one of the
newer USB2 cards (like the Philips.)

If you've an AV amp some sound cards have an optical digital out which
you could take to the optical-in on the amp. The price of AV kit
means this may be more
cost effective if you've got optical out already and are buying the
kit new.

Finally, if you want a nice interface to play back music away from the
PC the Slim Device Squeezebox (www.slimdevices.com) is a great
solution.
Anonymous
November 29, 2004 12:52:28 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.tech,uk.rec.audio (More info?)

"Anthony James" <b33k34@gmail.com> wrote in message
news:708eebfb.0411290433.36c42b82@posting.google.com
> "james" <james@ebay.com> wrote in message
> news:<30r3qbF33dq4mU1@uni-berlin.de>...
>> OK, I asked a previous question earlier about whether I can connect
>> 3.5mm minijack output on my PC soundcard to my hi-fi speaker.
>
> There's nothing to stop you taking the audio line-out from a sound
> card and putting it into one of the inputs on your hi-fi amplifier.
>
> However, PCs tend to be very 'noisy' inside and you may notice a lot
> of pops and whistles as other activity in the PC interferes with the
> sound outputs.

It is true that activity inside a PC can cause noises in the sound, but its
not always true that using an external interface makes those noises go away.
For example, noise due to video card bus domination can affect external
audio interfaces just as easily as internal ones.

History shows that one of the first external digital audio interfaces, the
Zefiro was highly susceptable to noises due to PC operation and design.

Some people seem to think that the digital noise inside a PC is exceptional.
In fact virtually every hi fi DAC and CD player has the same noise running
around inside it. Particularly the CD player has at least one motor and a
3-D actuator mechanism. Most have a motorized tray. They almost all are full
of TTL signals with fast rise and fall times. Some even have switching power
supplies. What makes the CD player quiet sonically is not the absence of
sources of interference, but rather the care taken to avoid contamination of
its audio outputs.

It is the care taken to avoid contamination of audio outputs that makes a PC
quiet or noisy, sonically. One way to obtain this care is to upgrade to a
better audio interface, whether internal or external.

It is a false claim that putting common line-level audio circuitry inside or
outside the PC case necessarily makes an audible difference.

> I'm just about to move to an external USB sound card
> to get rid of this.

Depending, depending this might make things better or worse. Choose your
interface carefully, but don't choose it for sound quality based on where
the circuitry is mounted.
Anonymous
November 29, 2004 4:12:58 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.tech,uk.rec.audio (More info?)

On 29 Nov 2004 04:33:29 -0800, b33k34@gmail.com (Anthony James) wrote:

>There's nothing to stop you taking the audio line-out from a sound
>card and putting it into one of the inputs on your hi-fi amplifier.
>
>However, PCs tend to be very 'noisy' inside and you may notice a lot
>of pops and whistles as other activity in the PC interferes with the
>sound outputs.

No they don't. I do exactly this with my sound card (Echo MIa), and it
is of extremely high fidelity, and has never made even the slightest
pop or whistle. If you are getting extraneous noises, it is very
likely you are running your sound card on an inadvisedly shared
interrupt. It certainly isn't normal behaviour.

d

Pearce Consulting
http://www.pearce.uk.com
Anonymous
November 30, 2004 3:56:18 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.tech,uk.rec.audio (More info?)

On Mon, 29 Nov 2004 13:12:58 GMT, donaldun@pearce.uk.com (Don Pearce)
wrote:

>>However, PCs tend to be very 'noisy' inside and you may notice a lot
>>of pops and whistles as other activity in the PC interferes with the
>>sound outputs.
>
>No they don't. I do exactly this with my sound card (Echo MIa), and it
>is of extremely high fidelity, and has never made even the slightest
>pop or whistle. If you are getting extraneous noises, it is very
>likely you are running your sound card on an inadvisedly shared
>interrupt. It certainly isn't normal behaviour.

I guess he's talking about common-or-garden computer sound systems.
Quality cards like the Echo or M-Audio ranges have very acceptable
noise figures.
Anonymous
November 30, 2004 6:32:04 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.tech,uk.rec.audio (More info?)

In article <30r3qbF33dq4mU1@uni-berlin.de>, james@ebay.com says...
>
>
>OK, I asked a previous question earlier about whether I can connect 3.5mm
>minijack output on my PC soundcard to my hi-fi speaker. The answer was that
>it wasn't recommended - thanks to those that answered.
>
>Therefore I'd like to know of another way of connecting my hi-fi speakers to
>my PC. Cost plays a big part in my decision so what is the cheapest way of
>achieveing this with decent results? Powered hi-fi amp? High-power
>soundcard?

Get a cheap reciever and use that to power your speakers.
------------------
Alex
Anonymous
November 30, 2004 11:36:36 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.tech,uk.rec.audio (More info?)

In article <coilbv$6c9$17@newsmaster.cc.columbia.edu>,
Alex Rodriguez <adr5@columbia.edu> wrote:

>>Therefore I'd like to know of another way of connecting my hi-fi speakers to
>>my PC. Cost plays a big part in my decision so what is the cheapest way of
>>achieveing this with decent results? Powered hi-fi amp? High-power
>>soundcard?

>Get a cheap reciever and use that to power your speakers.

Agreed. I'd suggest checking with a local thrift store / charity
shop. They often have simple low-end receivers available for very
little money.

--
Dave Platt <dplatt@radagast.org> AE6EO
Hosting the Jade Warrior home page: http://www.radagast.org/jade-warrior
I do _not_ wish to receive unsolicited commercial email, and I will
boycott any company which has the gall to send me such ads!
Anonymous
December 1, 2004 7:45:19 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.tech,uk.rec.audio (More info?)

re: noisy sound inside pcs

>No they don't. I do exactly this with my sound card (Echo MIa), and
it
>is of extremely high fidelity, and has never made even the slightest
>pop or whistle. If you are getting extraneous noises, it is very
>likely you are running your sound card on an inadvisedly shared
>interrupt. It certainly isn't normal behaviour.

I've got a Shuttle XPC and was using the onboard sound. Since this
has a single PCI slot (which is already in use). Shuttle XPCs are
known for this as well and part of the problem is likely to be the
close proximity of everything inside them.

The sound card you've mentioned is almost certainly excellent but it
also cost nearly as much as my Shuttle and 2.5times the list price of
the USB sound card i've bought.

snip>
> It is the care taken to avoid contamination of audio outputs that makes a PC
> quiet or noisy, sonically.
and this isn't something that is very often a priority for a PC and
thus not something the designers are likely to have focused on. In a
CD player the manufacturers have full control and can ensure that
internal interference doenst occur. With a PC the user can stick a
graphics card with a gert big fan on it immediately adjacent to the
sound card.


> It is a false claim that putting common line-level audio circuitry inside or
> outside the PC case necessarily makes an audible difference.

maybe not in terms of a 'breakout box' but keeping the audio digital
until it's outside the box (by putting it over USB) has been effective
in my case.
Anonymous
December 3, 2004 3:16:31 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.tech,uk.rec.audio (More info?)

On 1 Dec 2004 04:45:19 -0800, b33k34@gmail.com (Anthony James) wrote:

>
>I've got a Shuttle XPC and was using the onboard sound. Since this
>has a single PCI slot (which is already in use). Shuttle XPCs are
>known for this as well and part of the problem is likely to be the
>close proximity of everything inside them.

I'm afraid you've just confirmed one of the limitations of
ultra-compact computers.
Anonymous
December 3, 2004 5:37:00 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.tech,uk.rec.audio (More info?)

Laurence Payne <l@laurenceDELETEpayne.freeserve.co.uk> wrote in message news:<q0cvq0trc73k0dj2sp3i3le3v7ji5jcj9h@4ax.com>...
> I'm afraid you've just confirmed one of the limitations of
> ultra-compact computers.

There are a few. Unfortunately there hasn't been a lot of
intermediate ground between a full tower/desktop and something like
the shuttle for kit that takes 'desktop' rather than 'notebook' parts.
Since i'm using powered speakers the seperate sound card is actually
pretty convenient as it gives a volume control.
January 3, 2005 10:59:32 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.tech,uk.rec.audio (More info?)

FWIW, I've had trouble in the past with noise on the line-outs, on
both a desktop and a laptop, and in both cases it was cured (to an
acceptable degree) by wiring a common mode choke in series with the
line out - I used a 4-winding 4.7mH unit (50c from a disposals shop).
Split into separate left and right pairs, then immediately take all 4
wires through the choke, then through unbalanced shielded cable to the
amp. Of course that won't help if the noise is actually inside the PC,
but don't assume it just because it's a compact PC - the proximity can
equally well cause ground issues that DO respond to a common mode
choke.

I also had one case where a serial out from the PC to an external Midi
synth (in "Host" mode, where it accepts serial data at 38.4kb/s)
caused noise in the audio system even when nothing was happening. this
was cured by a similar common mode choke in the serial port cable.

On Mon, 29 Nov 2004 09:52:28 -0500, "Arny Krueger" <arnyk@hotpop.com>
wrote:

>"Anthony James" <b33k34@gmail.com> wrote in message
>news:708eebfb.0411290433.36c42b82@posting.google.com
>> "james" <james@ebay.com> wrote in message
>> news:<30r3qbF33dq4mU1@uni-berlin.de>...
>>> OK, I asked a previous question earlier about whether I can connect
>>> 3.5mm minijack output on my PC soundcard to my hi-fi speaker.
>>
>> There's nothing to stop you taking the audio line-out from a sound
>> card and putting it into one of the inputs on your hi-fi amplifier.
>>
>> However, PCs tend to be very 'noisy' inside and you may notice a lot
>> of pops and whistles as other activity in the PC interferes with the
>> sound outputs.
>
>It is true that activity inside a PC can cause noises in the sound, but its
>not always true that using an external interface makes those noises go away.
>For example, noise due to video card bus domination can affect external
>audio interfaces just as easily as internal ones.
>
>History shows that one of the first external digital audio interfaces, the
>Zefiro was highly susceptable to noises due to PC operation and design.
>
>Some people seem to think that the digital noise inside a PC is exceptional.
>In fact virtually every hi fi DAC and CD player has the same noise running
>around inside it. Particularly the CD player has at least one motor and a
>3-D actuator mechanism. Most have a motorized tray. They almost all are full
>of TTL signals with fast rise and fall times. Some even have switching power
>supplies. What makes the CD player quiet sonically is not the absence of
>sources of interference, but rather the care taken to avoid contamination of
>its audio outputs.
>
>It is the care taken to avoid contamination of audio outputs that makes a PC
>quiet or noisy, sonically. One way to obtain this care is to upgrade to a
>better audio interface, whether internal or external.
>
>It is a false claim that putting common line-level audio circuitry inside or
>outside the PC case necessarily makes an audible difference.
>
>> I'm just about to move to an external USB sound card
>> to get rid of this.
>
>Depending, depending this might make things better or worse. Choose your
>interface carefully, but don't choose it for sound quality based on where
>the circuitry is mounted.

Tony (remove the "_" to reply by email)
!