digital audio out from cox cable box

Discussion in 'Playback Devices' started by KyleCT, Jan 18, 2004.

  1. KyleCT

    KyleCT Stunt Coordinator

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    i was wondering if it is worth it to buy coaxial cable to hook up my cable box for digital audio. are tv shows encoded in dolby digital? We do have cinemax which sounds like it might be dolby dig. even if shows are not dolby digital will a non audiophile be able to tell a difference in sound quality?
     
  2. Robert A. Willis Jr.

    Robert A. Willis Jr. Second Unit

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    If you have digital cable, then it's worth it. With the newer Motorola 6200 I have only the coax connected for audio.
     
  3. Andy Goldstein

    Andy Goldstein Stunt Coordinator

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    DO IT! it sounds great! even my wife turns on the receiver to "just watch tv".

    ag.
     
  4. Tom Fynan

    Tom Fynan Stunt Coordinator

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    I recently did the same thing, and it makes a big difference in the sound. The only caveat is that my local cable provider (Comcast in Connecticut) does not have digital sound on all the channels - only the extra channels that I got when I upgraded to the digital cable. The "basic" cable channels are still analog audio, so I need two audio outputs to my preamp. Still, it's definitely worth the investment in the coaxial cable for the improved sound.

    Tom Fynan
     
  5. KyleCT

    KyleCT Stunt Coordinator

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    when you say you need two outputs to your preamp does that mean one is with coax and one is rca for analog channels? do analog channels not play over the coax? if not, will i need to switch the input on my reciever depending on if the channel is analog or digital? does anybody know if you get dolby digital from cinemax?
     
  6. Tom Fynan

    Tom Fynan Stunt Coordinator

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    Kyle,

    That's right, I have a digital cable for the digital audio and an RCA cable for the analog. The analog channels do not play over the digital output in my system. I don't know if that is peculiar to Comcast, or if it is a universal issue. My preamp allows me to assign multiple inputs to one output, so I don't have to switch, but you would have to with a less flexible system. I just set up the digital audio output last week (I was using all analog into my preamp before that), so I'm still fiddlig with it. I don't have Cinemax, so I can't help you with that.

    Tom Fynan
     
  7. Stephen Tu

    Stephen Tu Screenwriter

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    Absolutely you should get it, especially when it's only $4-5 for cheap video dubbing cable which will work perfectly . (Don't go for those ridiculously priced $30 "digital audio cables").

    Whether analog channels are output over digital varies from box to box. My Motorola 5100 does have digital output for all channels. If yours doesn't, it helps to have an auto-sensing receiver that will fall back to analog if digital isn't present.

    HBO does have DD on most movies so Cinemax should have it as well. You could check for sure at the www.hbo.com web site.
     
  8. KyleCT

    KyleCT Stunt Coordinator

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    what is this "video dubbing cable". Is that just coaxial? The cheapest i have seen coaxial for is 13 bucks at best buy. What is this 4-5 dollar cables you are talking about.

    I called Cox and they said analog sound will not be put out buy the digital coaxial cable. I guess i will still get it even though i will have to switch inputs depending on certain channels. At least i will be able to watch cinemax with DD (im pretty sure it has it).

    Unfortunately my reciever (onkyo tx-sr501) doesn't have the auto detect like my dads reciever. That would be nice.
     
  9. Chip E

    Chip E Screenwriter

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    You could buy a digital coax cable or, make one easily. Just grab a piece of RG6 and use two "F" to RCA adaptors from Radio shack... same thing, cheap. I've done both.
     
  10. KyleCT

    KyleCT Stunt Coordinator

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    sweet, my onkyo can auto detect a digital signal. You hook up the cable box using both RCA and coaxial. If there is a digital signal it uses coaxial and if its analog it uses the RCA.

    I didn't realize the coaxial cable for digital audio was the same for cable tv. I got tons of that lyin around and i even have some extra RCA cords that i can rip up. Thanks a lot.
     
  11. Stephen Tu

    Stephen Tu Screenwriter

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    Just any cheap RCA coax video cable, like the one here. Certainly you can use any cheap RCA cords you have lying around.
     
  12. KyleCT

    KyleCT Stunt Coordinator

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    Do you mean to buy that cable in order to strip of the female connectors and make my own coaxial, or to buy that and it will work for digital audio? It says that is composite video cable, which i thought was the same as normal old RCA cables.
     
  13. Jason Brent

    Jason Brent Second Unit

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    Don't know if you have this box available, but I have Cox and have the Motorola DCT-6200 box. It sends everything through the S/PDIF connection.
     
  14. NickSo

    NickSo Producer

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    just grab a good-quality composite video cable, itll work fine.
     
  15. Jeff Gatie

    Jeff Gatie Lead Actor

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    You are confusing the coax cable used for cable tv connections (screw connectors) with the coax used for composite video (RCA connectors). Both are coax, they just have different connectors. Buy the one with the RCA's, that is what is required for digital coax (S/PDIF). Make sure it is a 75 Ohm video cable (audio is not always 75 Ohms), should be ~$5 at Radio Shack.
     
  16. Chip E

    Chip E Screenwriter

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    Jeff,

    the screw connectors you speak of are "F" connectors, the common termination for cable tv. When i said you can make one using RG6, it's because RG6 is 75ohm shielded cable. Perfect for digital audio. The "F" to "RCA adapters" are readily available at Radio Shack. I have a few laying around.. They make perfect sub cables too.
     
  17. KyleCT

    KyleCT Stunt Coordinator

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    dissapointing, cinemax outputs in dolby digital but it is only 2 channel. I was hopin for 5.1. On the bright side that 5 dollar video dubbing cable works for digital audio.
     
  18. Stephen Tu

    Stephen Tu Screenwriter

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    It ought to be 5.1 for some of the movies, just not all of them. At least HBO is that way; I don't get Cinemax.

    Edit: Hmm I take it back. After looking at their site it looks like they only offer 5.1 on their main HBO and HBO-HD feeds. Between that and the pan&scan hack jobs, might I suggest dropping Cinemax and getting a www.netflix.com subscription instead?
     
  19. Matt_Terpstra

    Matt_Terpstra Auditioning

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    I just signed up for Comcast Digital Cable, and opt'ed for the HDTV option ($5 well spent). They delivered an upgraded Motorolla HD decoder to complement the service. I was pleased that the installation kit included the component video and toslink cables. [​IMG] I went ahead and hooked up the component cables to my tv, and the Toslink cable to my reciever, and viola, everything worked like a charm. I am very pleased that both the analog (channels 1-99) and the digital (100-940) channels came through sharper than I had expected. I am not sure why other people are having trouble with their sound, but every single channel's audio works flawlessly with only the Optical cable hooked up. My reciever recognizes the single as either Stereo (for the analog channels) or Dolby Digital 5.1 for the digital channels. I have yet to hook up the analog RCA audio cables, which I am debating, as that would be the only way to take advantage of the Dolby Pro Logic II on my reciever. Just wanted to let you know my findings.
     
  20. KyleCT

    KyleCT Stunt Coordinator

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    That sounds like a good deal but the beauty of cinemax and the like is that i can just sit down at any time and watch any movie for any amount of time. if i were to have unlimited dvds i put it in and watch it till the end, and never get anything done. also, call me lazy but id rather just change the channel than have to get up and put in a dvd. haha
     

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