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Audio via HIS HD RADEON 6870, XBOX and PC

Last response: in Home Audio
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May 27, 2011 4:41:46 AM

I guess this is probably the right forum for this, but I'm not entirely sure. I'm having some audio issues and I'm trying to figure out the best set up.

Currently this is my set up:

Monitor: Samsung BX2231 (2x HDMI input, 1x VGA input, 1x audio out 3.5mm)
Relevant PC components: HIS RADEON HD 6870 (2x dvi, 2x mini display port, 1x HDMI), BIOSTAR TP67B+
Other Components: XBOX 360, Logitech S220 sound system, Logitech X-140 Speakers.

Right now, both my 360 and my PC are hooked up to my monitor via HDMI. I'm using my S220's for my PC (coming directly from my motherboard), and the audio out on the monitor going to the X-140's for use with my 360.

The reason I have such a weird set up is because when I used my S220's on the monitor and played sound from my computer, it sounded like crap. It was about at half the level of the motherboard sound, and it sounded really choppy with too much gain when I turned the volume too high.

I'm guessing this has something to do with the audio controller on my Radeon 6870 via the HDMI. I checked in windows sound and the levels are all the way up. Do these integrated audio controllers on video cards usually suck this badly? Is there any way to tweak them to make it sound as good as my motherboard sound so I don't have to use two sets of speakers?

More about : audio radeon 6870 xbox

May 27, 2011 5:29:11 AM

the hdmi output shouldnt have any effects on the audio, as it is a digital transport.
we are talking about 1's and 0's here.
electrical pulses that are like morse code, with each combination translating to a symbol that is decoded by the digital to analog convertor chip.

when you use the soundcard on the motherboard, that is the DAC of the soundcard.
using the television as the output uses the DAC inside the television.

of course each DAC can sound different.
but
if you notice a difference with the s220 sound system, you should notice a difference with the x-140's
although, you said the output was half the level.. and that instantly suggests an impedance difference with the speakers.
the television amplifier might not have the extra energy to feed the power hungry input of the s220 speakers.

try the xbox 360 with the s220 speakers connected to the television and listen for the same problem.
i find it highly unlikely that the radeon graphics card is trimming the quality of the audio before it is sent out the hdmi cord.
the graphics card shouldnt have to touch the audio hardly at all, except to simply pass along the data through the hdmi cord.

i have never heard of anybody complaining about the audio quality coming from their graphics card audio output.
you are the first person.

why you are playing the audio from the television and not from the soundcard when it sounds worse on the television is a bit frightening.
i'm thinking the television amplifier isnt powerful enough for those speakers and you are stressing out the circuit boards inside the television.
because if the audio didnt sound like crap with the x-140 speakers.. it could mean the television and the speakers are a perfect match for eachother.
and that means if you plug the x-140's directly to the computer, they will sound different (probably worse) than they do when connected to the television.
and if the output is loud and clear, i dont see how you are stressing the television any worse than with the s220 speakers.

play some audio from the computer into the television with the x-140 speakers and see if there is a problem.
if both sets of speakers sound different from the television, then that would clear up some confusion.
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May 27, 2011 11:37:54 AM

anwaypasible said:
the hdmi output shouldnt have any effects on the audio, as it is a digital transport.
we are talking about 1's and 0's here.
electrical pulses that are like morse code, with each combination translating to a symbol that is decoded by the digital to analog convertor chip.

when you use the soundcard on the motherboard, that is the DAC of the soundcard.
using the television as the output uses the DAC inside the television.

of course each DAC can sound different.
but
if you notice a difference with the s220 sound system, you should notice a difference with the x-140's
although, you said the output was half the level.. and that instantly suggests an impedance difference with the speakers.
the television amplifier might not have the extra energy to feed the power hungry input of the s220 speakers.

try the xbox 360 with the s220 speakers connected to the television and listen for the same problem.
i find it highly unlikely that the radeon graphics card is trimming the quality of the audio before it is sent out the hdmi cord.
the graphics card shouldnt have to touch the audio hardly at all, except to simply pass along the data through the hdmi cord.

i have never heard of anybody complaining about the audio quality coming from their graphics card audio output.
you are the first person.

why you are playing the audio from the television and not from the soundcard when it sounds worse on the television is a bit frightening.
i'm thinking the television amplifier isnt powerful enough for those speakers and you are stressing out the circuit boards inside the television.
because if the audio didnt sound like crap with the x-140 speakers.. it could mean the television and the speakers are a perfect match for eachother.
and that means if you plug the x-140's directly to the computer, they will sound different (probably worse) than they do when connected to the television.
and if the output is loud and clear, i dont see how you are stressing the television any worse than with the s220 speakers.

play some audio from the computer into the television with the x-140 speakers and see if there is a problem.
if both sets of speakers sound different from the television, then that would clear up some confusion.


I will certainly try your suggestions, but it will be later today before I get back to you. You sound very knowledgeable and I appreciate your deep response.

The one thing that strikes me odd about your post though, is that you said the S220's could be too powerful for my monitor. How could a $30.00 speaker system be too powerful for a Samsung monitor?
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May 27, 2011 1:32:25 PM

i said the amplifier's inputs might be very stubborn and hard to drive.
meaning, if you give it some electricity .. those inputs might be saying 'that isn't enough'
because the input is saying 'it isn't enough' then you get the lower output.

a bunch of people can translate to car audio pretty easily.
if an 8 ohm subwoofer requires 150 watts
an amplifier that puts out 150 watts @ 4 ohms is typically going to put out 75 watts at 8 ohms
but on the box it says the amplifier is a '150 watt' amp
(or maybe it combines the left and right = 300 watts.. and then it uses the maximum burst power = 600 watts)

so you see how you are trying to get 150 watts for the 8 ohm subwoofer from a 600 watt amplifier and you are really only giving it 75 watts.

it is the same principle for input resistance.

if the x-140's have an input resistance of 10,000 ohms
and
the s220's have an input resistance of 20,000 ohms
then the s220's should have half of the output IF both sets of speakers are the same wattage.
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May 27, 2011 10:32:21 PM

anwaypasible said:
i said the amplifier's inputs might be very stubborn and hard to drive.
meaning, if you give it some electricity .. those inputs might be saying 'that isn't enough'
because the input is saying 'it isn't enough' then you get the lower output.

a bunch of people can translate to car audio pretty easily.
if an 8 ohm subwoofer requires 150 watts
an amplifier that puts out 150 watts @ 4 ohms is typically going to put out 75 watts at 8 ohms
but on the box it says the amplifier is a '150 watt' amp
(or maybe it combines the left and right = 300 watts.. and then it uses the maximum burst power = 600 watts)

so you see how you are trying to get 150 watts for the 8 ohm subwoofer from a 600 watt amplifier and you are really only giving it 75 watts.

it is the same principle for input resistance.

if the x-140's have an input resistance of 10,000 ohms
and
the s220's have an input resistance of 20,000 ohms
then the s220's should have half of the output IF both sets of speakers are the same wattage.


Well, I tried the S220's with my 360 via the monitor, and it definitely is not just the video card. There's a volume limit to the S220's that I can't even get over via the monitor.

This kinda sucks, but I guess I'll just use the S220's for PC and the X140's for the monitor, do you think that's the best option?
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May 27, 2011 11:36:34 PM

hard to say without being there to observe things for myself.
the low output is kinda scary, and i wouldnt want to break the television's audio amplifier.
but
just how much lower compared to how good they sound.. it is a difficult decision without really knowing.
only because i am imagining a set of speakers that dont play as loud, but if you listen closely .. they sound tremendously better.
maybe i am letting my imagination get in the way.
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