Can I get surround sound to work with cable TV?

Discussion in 'Speakers' started by blackturtle2112, Mar 7, 2008.

  1. blackturtle2112

    blackturtle2112 Auditioning

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    We recently bought a 46' LCD widescreen that came with a surround sound system as part of the package.

    The surround sound system came with a DVD player that all the speakers plugged into.

    The speakers sound great when playing a DVD, but I was wondering if there was a way to set it up to have surround sound with regular cable TV. I've read the instruction manual front to back and couldn't find anything to solve the problem, which is why I'm asking here. Thanks in advance.

    TV and DVD player are both LG if that makes a difference.
     
  2. SethH

    SethH Cinematographer

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    Do you have a cable box or does the cable just plug directly into the tv?

    If the cable plugs directly into the TV then the TV would have to have an audio out jack. Then you would run a cable from that to an input jack on your receiver (which is presumably built-in to the DVD player).

    If you have a cable box, then you would run the cable from there. In that case it would probably be a digital cable that would run to the receiver.
     
  3. John Dirk

    John Dirk Second Unit

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    Look on the back of the DVD unit. Hopefully you will see some sort of auxiliary inputs that could be used to connect the cable box or TV outputs as described by Seth. If you do not have a digital cable box, then it will never sound as good as the DVD player because the TV will likely only output 2 channel stereo as opposed to 5.1 channel surround. How many speakers do you currently have connected? Also, the specific model number of the DVD unit [and TV] will allow myself and others to provide more accurate answers.

    John
     
  4. blackturtle2112

    blackturtle2112 Auditioning

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    DVD model # LH-E932TB
    TV # 47LY3D

    Just regular cable, but I still can't get it to output from the speakers instead of the TV's built in speakers.
     
  5. SethH

    SethH Cinematographer

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    There should be a setting in your TV to activate the output. On my panasonic tv (old CRT) I have to press the menu button and then go into the audio section and my choices are "Built-in Speakers", "Variable Output", and "Fixed Output". I have mine set to "Fixed Output" so I can adjust the volume through my receiver.
     
  6. pink

    pink Stunt Coordinator

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    like you said it was a package deal, i hate to tell you but you got to deal with it, just kidding. the only way you get surround sound when your watching tv is, you have to go from your cablebox to your surround sound dvd player if it has an auxillary input via optical or digita coax if not forget it.
    so much for package deals.....
     
  7. John Dirk

    John Dirk Second Unit

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    According to your TV's manual, it has one optical audio output and one coaxial. Either can handle standard 5.1 surround such as DD or DTS. To get the TV to output to either of these, set it's internal speakers to "off." This setting can be found under your "audio" menu.

    Specific information on your HTIB DVD unit was not forthcoming, but reviews from others do suggest that it has digital audio inputs. Just check the back for connectors that look like the ones [labeled coaxial and optical] on the TV. The coaxial input would be the cheaper choice and will produce about the same quality of sound. Optical cables can be expensive, expecially if the length exceeds a few feet, whereas a standard RCA [audio] cable can be used for coaxial inputs/outputs.

    Reviews also suggest you should turn on the DVD unit before turning on the TV, to ensure proper audio playback.

    Hope this helps.

    John
     
  8. Steve Schaffer

    Steve Schaffer Producer

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    Digital audio outputs on tvs are only active when using the tv's own internal digital tuner, they don't pass digital audio received from external sources like dvd players or cable boxs.

    If the OP's cable box is an HD digital model it should have a digital audio output on the box, which could be connected directly to the digital audio auxiliary input on his HTIB unit--most LG's have this.
     
  9. John Dirk

    John Dirk Second Unit

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    My post assumes the use of the TV's tuner. Blackturtle2112 has not indicated he is using a digital cable box.

    John
     
  10. Jeff Gatie

    Jeff Gatie Lead Actor

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    Answer these:

    Cable box or no cable box?

    HD cable or non-HD cable?

    Digital cable or no digital cable?

    If the answers are:

    YES, YES, YES or YES, NO, YES - Run a digital coax/optical from the digital coax/optical out on the cable box to the digital coax/optical in on the surround sound system. Turn the speakers on the TV off (via the menu) or turn them down.

    YES, NO, NO - Run stereo analog cables (R/L red/white RCA cables) from the analog audio outs on the cable box to a set of digital audio ins on the surround sound sytem. Turn the speakers on the TV off (via the menu) or turn them down.

    NO, NO, NO - Run a digital coax/optical from the digital coax/optical out on the TV to the digital coax/optical in on the surround sound system.

    In order to assign the audio input to the proper "TV/Cable" selection on the surround system, you have to either use pre-assigned audio inputs or assign them them to the "TV/Cable" slection manually. The pre-assigned inputs will be marked on the back of the surround system, the manually assigned ones will require you to enter the setup menu. Consult your manual before picking the audio input(s) on the surround system to connect to in order to do this step correctly.
     
  11. Kurt Ferguson

    Kurt Ferguson Auditioning

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    I am assuming the TV has a standard pair of line level outs? Just hook those up to the input on the dvd player. I would first go into the TV's audio settings and make sure that any internal "surround" processing or anything of that nature is disabled, as it typically just muddles up the signal. Assuming your receiver/dvd player has line level inputs though, this should be fairly easy to accomplish.

    As was already said, if you get cable through a box, then this should be even easier.
     
  12. Joseph DeMartino

    Joseph DeMartino Lead Actor

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    If you get analog cable you can get matrixed Dolby Pro-Logic "surround sound" from those shows that are broadcast that way, by connecting your TV or other cable source to the HTiB via the red and white analog stereo jacks - assuming your system has these inputs.

    Digital surround sound, true, discrete Dolby Digital 1.0 through 5.1, requires at least digital cable transmitting available 5.1 programming as 5.1 or HD cable. For those connections we would need all the information re: cable box, details of HTiB which have been requested previously but which have not yet been supplied.

    Regards,

    Joe
     

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