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HELP! Question re: routing of cables (1 Viewer)


Mar 11, 2003
I have a new receiver (Onkyo TX-SR600) and am getting a new HDTV with 2 sets of component video inputs (as well as DVI, for what it's worth). The set-top box will be a Scientific Box (3100HD) through Time Warner.

When I'm watching TV, I'd like to have the option of bringing the sound through the receiver and my big speakers, but I'd also like to have the option of leaving the receiver off and bringing the video from the STB straight to the TV and bringing the sound just through the TV's speakers (when I'm just watching the news, for example).

The question, though, is this: how can I give myself this option while still bringing the video to the TV through component cables? In other words, I want to have the option of getting audio through the receiver or of leaving the receiver off and getting the sound just through the TV's speakers. How, if at all, can I do this, while maintaining the highest possible video quality?

If I run RF from the STB to the TV, then obviously I can get audio through TV without going through the receiver, but that will mean that the video is coming through the RF too, and I don't want that.

The STB has an optical out, and that will go to the receiver obviously. But there's also obviously lots of non-digital audio. The STB will only have one analog audio out (L/R) and I can send that to either the receiver or the TV, but not both. If it's send to the receiver, I'll always have to have the receiver on to hear the TV... and if it's not sent to the receiver, then how will I be able to get the sound through the receiver when I want to (for a movie on TBS, for example).

Help, please!

Bob McElfresh

Senior HTF Member
May 22, 1999
You are making your life too complex with too many requirements. You may also be trying to 'baby' your electronics and speakers by not using them all the time. Dont.

Simple: use RF to the TV for casual TV watching.

Critical: run Left/Right/Digital sound to the receiver and video to the TV and use the receiver.

WARNING: the digital output on many CATV box's only works on their 'digital' channels (ones over 100 on many systems). This means you need to hook the optical connection to the receiver, and the L/R audio to a DIFFERENT input. Then you have to switch inputs on the receiver as you cross the channel 100 boundary. This alone may make you do all your channel-surfing with the RF feed.

Unless you live in an area with lightning or lots of power outages, you can leave your receiver on 24/7. It stays ready but only eats major power when you are using it.

Hope this helps.


Mar 11, 2003
Thanks for the replies. Another set-up dawned on me, and it seems pretty natural. What about...

--Component video from STB straight to TV.
(I'll still have the second set of component inputs for the DVD player -- no video, then, will be going through the receiver.)

--Digital coax (earlier I mistakenly said it was optical) from the STB to the receiver.

--For analog audio, put a y-adapter on the STB's left audio-out, and a y-adapter on its right audio-out. The y-adapters will allow me then to run RCA audio cables to the receiver (for the things I want to hear through my big speakers) and *also* to the TV (for the things that I'd rather just hear through the TV's speakers).

{Bob, the receiver detects the signal and switches on its own between the digital and the analog audio in, so that's not a worry!}

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