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Coaxial, Optical, or regular audio input cable?

Last response: in Home Audio
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November 16, 2009 11:20:58 PM

the back of my motherboard has coaxial S/PDIF, optical S/PDIF and regular audio input.

which one is the most beautiful sound?
a b V Motherboard
November 17, 2009 10:54:17 AM

Depends on the speakers and you're prefrence on Digital vs. Analog. Coax/Optical are basically the same, except the transmission is different. So it comes down to digital vs. analog.

I prefer digital, although most audiophiles still prefer analog.
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November 17, 2009 3:56:38 PM

gamerk316 said:
Depends on the speakers and you're prefrence on Digital vs. Analog. Coax/Optical are basically the same, except the transmission is different. So it comes down to digital vs. analog.

I prefer digital, although most audiophiles still prefer analog.

my speakers are a home theater system. 2 RCA cable. since my PC does not have RCA connector. I went to store to get a RCA-to-Analog and connected to computer. It works.
I can also go to store to get a USB sound card that has 2 RCA connector. I just dont know how is the difference.
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a b V Motherboard
November 17, 2009 7:56:00 PM

Analog then. Basically, the only real difference between RCA and AC97 is that stereo is 2 plugs for RCA and one for PC, hence why converters are easy to find.

Basically, for analog (following the AC97 standard), its 2 channel output per plug (8 channel audio = 4 plugs), and you have atypical analog quality dependent on the output device. You get the full "richness" of the audio, but tend to have more background noise.

For digital, you tend to lose the high/low end of the sound spectrum a bit (weather or not this is detectable without high end equipment is open to debate), but lose the background noise (Which I can't live with, frankly). Transmission beyond 2.0 is difficult due to size; SPDIF only allows 5.1 using compressed formats (Dolby/DTS), and only HDMI allows for full transmission of all current formats (5.1 and 7.1).

Either way, gettting a USB soundcard for this purpose is pointless, as you're basically accomplishing the same exact thing without boosting sound qualiy much (possibly even lowing it based on the one time I used a USB soundcard...). If you REALLY wanted to bump up quality a bit with native RCA connectors:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Although its overkill for most people.
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November 18, 2009 1:03:50 AM

gamerk316 said:
Analog then. Basically, the only real difference between RCA and AC97 is that stereo is 2 plugs for RCA and one for PC, hence why converters are easy to find.

Basically, for analog (following the AC97 standard), its 2 channel output per plug (8 channel audio = 4 plugs), and you have atypical analog quality dependent on the output device. You get the full "richness" of the audio, but tend to have more background noise.

For digital, you tend to lose the high/low end of the sound spectrum a bit (weather or not this is detectable without high end equipment is open to debate), but lose the background noise (Which I can't live with, frankly). Transmission beyond 2.0 is difficult due to size; SPDIF only allows 5.1 using compressed formats (Dolby/DTS), and only HDMI allows for full transmission of all current formats (5.1 and 7.1).

Either way, gettting a USB soundcard for this purpose is pointless, as you're basically accomplishing the same exact thing without boosting sound qualiy much (possibly even lowing it based on the one time I used a USB soundcard...). If you REALLY wanted to bump up quality a bit with native RCA connectors:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Although its overkill for most people.

this is heplful. However that sound card costs $200. I will rather just get a converter.
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