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Sound out of my computer to my 5.1


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19 replies to this topic

#1 of 20 OFFLINE   Mike Bassi

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Posted July 25 2012 - 06:16 PM

Ok, I have a question. I have a decent system, Arcam avr300 acoustic zen speakers front and center. VS woofer and an older Mit 65 inch TV diamond version. I am hooked up from the computer to the arcam via dvi on the computer to the TV's DVI. I have an optical cable running from the computer to the amp for sound. I have some lossless audio that I play though J-River media center. Am I getting the best out of my sound? I go to the store, listen to products that should not be as good, and sometimes I think they sound better. Now going through an average computer may not help, but what should I be doing to get the best out of my system other than better audio cables. Can the bottleneck be playing music on the computer killing the very best of my system, even though I have lossless audio? Thanks in advance Mike

#2 of 20 OFFLINE   Sam Posten

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Posted July 25 2012 - 06:46 PM

Don't think ya can do lossless over optical except stereo. No 5.1

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#3 of 20 OFFLINE   Mike Bassi

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Posted July 25 2012 - 07:15 PM

Hey Sam. Not sure if that's not how I am doing it now. I hire a AV remote guy to do this for me as I don't have a clue, but would like to get the best sound possible out of my system. I am looking at going pre-pro and changing some stuff around, not sure if I have to change the computer to do stuff better.

#4 of 20 OFFLINE   Mike Bassi

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Posted July 25 2012 - 07:37 PM

I can rebuild or build a new computer for it, if I need to get special parts, like sound card or a better video card but not sure what I need to make it sound better. I am using the stock sound card built in, in the motherboard.

#5 of 20 OFFLINE   Sam Posten

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Posted July 26 2012 - 05:10 AM

Unfortunately most computer sound cards today are piles of steaming dung. It took me 2 weeks to finally get my new Soundblaster to work right over optical. Most HDMI solutions on the motherboard are sufficient for 99.09% of people. Once you start going option boards tho it's a mess. I have no recommendations on that except 'don't unless you really really have to'

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#6 of 20 OFFLINE   Mike Bassi

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Posted July 26 2012 - 08:51 AM

Do you think there are sound cards that are better for this type of thing? For high end listening? Thanks for your comments so far. :)

#7 of 20 OFFLINE   Sam Posten

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Posted July 26 2012 - 09:17 AM

I really don't know =(

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#8 of 20 OFFLINE   schan1269

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Posted July 26 2012 - 12:40 PM

I know a "computer tech guy" that builds screaming machines for serious gamers... Even he still has a BD player... Until he gets rid of his BD player...I'm not even going to bother.

#9 of 20 OFFLINE   Sam Posten

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Posted July 26 2012 - 01:01 PM

Yeah, I don't use my PCs for video playback, it's not worth it. I only use it for gaming, and that was bad enough. If you want to see how miserable my experience was getting sound to work with my new (expensive!) PC, look here: http://hardforum.com...d.php?t=1705919 I built every computer I ever had except for this one, figured it would be 'get one big box and play' this time. No such luck.

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#10 of 20 OFFLINE   schan1269

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Posted July 26 2012 - 01:10 PM

The only thing I use the internet for, when it comes to movies... Really esoteric French art film. The odd stuff from Poland and Croatia...etc. That stuff doesn't come with a 5.1 soundtrack...even when you do manage to find it on disc from a country you can easily expect that you'll really get it from. I ordered a movie out of Bosnia once. I got it 4 months after I paid for it. I've actually seen all of Monica Belluci's movies from the early 90's that AREN'T Dracula...

#11 of 20 OFFLINE   Mike Bassi

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Posted July 26 2012 - 03:24 PM

Well I figure that sound cards and video cars are updated and much better than ones in processers for pre's. No? I don't mind rebuilding my computer to get the best stuff possible. I have over 400 blu ray and HD movies that I have for my TV. They look great, and sound great, but maybe they can sound better with better computer parts? That's the thing I don't know.

#12 of 20 OFFLINE   Sam Posten

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Posted July 26 2012 - 05:55 PM

No, not really. Get a PS3 and be done with it. Or go nuts and buy the latest $300 Sony or Panasonic top end deck. But don't count on your PC being the ultimate blu ray device, you will be sorely wrong.

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#13 of 20 OFFLINE   Mike Bassi

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Posted July 26 2012 - 07:54 PM

I don't use the computer as a blu ray player, I use it as I have stored up movies in there. I have converted and downloaded HD movies and play from the hard drive.

#14 of 20 OFFLINE   Mike Bassi

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Posted July 26 2012 - 11:02 PM

I guess what I want to know is, since my computer has a decent HDMI nvidia video card and an onboard optical sound card, should I upgrade those to top of the line stuff to make playback on my stored computer files like movies and songs better? Thanks again guys.

#15 of 20 OFFLINE   schan1269

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Posted July 27 2012 - 02:53 AM

The only thing you need is a "more current" pre-pro. Not had my coffee yet this morning, but... Look for the Integra DTC 9.8(and newer) on the used market. Onkyo has the "same model" known as the 5508(I think). Those are from 6-ish years ago(non-coffee brain fog) when HDMI 1.3 debuted. Can be had anywhere from $450-$800. And they are PLENTIFUL. That is the one piece made by Onkyo/Integra(and the current ones to boot) that own darn near 50% of the pre-pro market. Yes...Onkyo/Integra owns the pre-pro market...and has for 6 years...on 2 or 3 models per year. That is why they are easy to find used.

#16 of 20 OFFLINE   Sam Posten

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Posted July 27 2012 - 06:48 AM

I guess what I want to know is, since my computer has a decent HDMI nvidia video card and an onboard optical sound card, should I upgrade those to top of the line stuff to make playback on my stored computer files like movies and songs better? Thanks again guys.
Again I'm not really the right guy to answer this but my opinion is a resounding NO. But you have to understand that I think that everyone who thinks they can (for example) pass blind A/B testing between lossy and lossless sound 100% of the time is an absolute nutjob and that consumer grade stuff is good enough. Obviously audiophiles will disagree because that's what they do. In your particular example you are wanting to know if upgrading your computer hardware will make your rips, downloads and streams sound better. Again to me that's like asking if one brand of tofu is better than the other, it's still not the real thing but if you like the taste of tofu you probably would be fine with one brand just as much as the other =)

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#17 of 20 OFFLINE   Mike Bassi

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Posted July 27 2012 - 08:38 AM

Ok great, thanks guys. To Sam Chandler. I am buying an Arcam fmj-77 amp today or tomorrow. 150x7. I can afford a better pre, so I will go newer as I want some of the newer features. Which is a good buy, but yet high quality? Thanks again so much for the response guys, really helping me out here. :) I take it the amp and the pre will have more to do with sound, eventhough it is orginally coming from the computer, correct?

#18 of 20 OFFLINE   schan1269

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Posted July 27 2012 - 09:11 AM

Technically yes... But, if the originating source is a turd... IE... Lowbit MP3... Very badly done DVD...

#19 of 20 OFFLINE   Sam Posten

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Posted July 27 2012 - 09:43 AM

As they say Garbage In Garbage Out. Not to say that streams and rips sound like garbage, I use all of the above all the time. It's just a matter of setting expectations. You are starting with less than stellar source material. Nothing else in the chain will make that better than what it is. Start with high quality material and you can hope to bring that to life with good quality gear, but everything, no matter how good, is a compromise.

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#20 of 20 OFFLINE   Mike Bassi

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Posted July 27 2012 - 10:13 AM

As they say Garbage In Garbage Out. Not to say that streams and rips sound like garbage, I use all of the above all the time. It's just a matter of setting expectations. You are starting with less than stellar source material. Nothing else in the chain will make that better than what it is. Start with high quality material and you can hope to bring that to life with good quality gear, but everything, no matter how good, is a compromise.
Yes exactly, I know you're correct. I'm starting to wonder if I do have true lossless audio stuff to begin with. It sounds a lot better than the mp3s but not as good as going to a high end stereo store and listening to sacd's or LP's. I guess I was trying to replicate that sound. I did just buy, or am buying the new amp today and should have it in about a week's time with new speaker cables and whatnot. Just have to find a good pre now.




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