Optical cable for your CD player makes a HUGE difference!

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by ReggieW, Aug 6, 2001.

  1. ReggieW

    ReggieW Screenwriter

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    I finally up and bought a digital optical cable for my JVC mulit-disc CD player and connected it to my 110 watt JVC 778 receiver. My god! What a world of difference this makes! Two channel dolby surround from all speakers. I swear that I'll never listen to a regular CD again. Switching from analog to digital settings with my remote really shows you the difference in the sound. I mean, the DTS discs don't even sound much better than this. Anyway, just had to vent.
    One happy camper!
    Reg
     
  2. Nicholas A. Gallegos

    Nicholas A. Gallegos Stunt Coordinator

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    That actually might have something to do with the fact that your receiver possibly has higher-quality DACs than your CD player does. When you connect a digital cable, the PCM signal goes straight to the receiver, which acts as the DAC instead.
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  3. Ben Cannon

    Ben Cannon Extra

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    Cutting out an additional DA/AD cycle always helps things [​IMG]
    Here's another quickie; you can connect your computer's audio output to your reciver the same way, via coaxial or optical SPDIF digital. (you will need a Sound Blaster Live or similar soundcard or a computer that comes with digital out)
    The Sound quality is the same as that given by your CD player, fun!
    Best!
    Ben
     
  4. Graham Perks

    Graham Perks Second Unit

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    You are now listening in Dolby Surround rather than the stereo you were listening to before?
    Well, sure it will make a difference. Prologic vs 2-channel stereo. Now your rears and center are involved.
    I don't believe music is mixed with prologic in mind however.
     
  5. Jay Mitchosky

    Jay Mitchosky Producer

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    It's been mentioned over a couple posts above, but just to clarify:
    • The improvement one will hear with a digital connection vs. analog entirely depends on where the better digital/analog converters lie. If the better DACs are in the player than an analog connection will win. If the better DACs are in the receiver/processor than a digital connection will have the advantage. Alternatively, you could use a premium external, standalone DAC - the player would connect via digital to the DAC, which in turn would connect via analog to the receiver. But ultimately the best choice lies where the 1s and 0s are processed best.
    • The ability to engage Dolby Pro Logic is independent of the digital vs. analog connection. Consider that Dolby Surround material from your VCR or cable TV broadcasts will also get the DPL treatment.
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    --Jay
    "No one can hear when you're screaming in digital."
    My Home Theatre Pictures...
    "You're no mesiah. You're, you're a movie of the week. You're a ... t-shirt, at best."
     
  6. Westly T

    Westly T Second Unit

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    Although the previous remark is basically true, I don't think it is the main reason here. Having had a few receivers with this problem in the past (ones that convert all analog signals to digital with poor quality A/D's), I found that many low to medium range receivers have fairly poor quality A/D converters in them. When you use the analog connection, the analog signal is converted to digital to be processed in the receiver, and this is where the main loss in quality occurs. You could connect the highest quality $100,000 CD player and still end up with a poor quality signal. This is because that nice analog signal is still getting converted back to digital by the low quality A/D converter. If you use the digital cable, the A/D converter is bypassed, and the signal is processed directly. Then the usually higher quality D/A (as compared to the A/D converter) converts it to analog to be amplified in the receiver. Any advantage the a good D/A converter in the CD player had, has been lost going through the receivers circuitry. Of course this is only true of receivers that use this process, and ones that don't have high quality A/D's in them. If your receiver has an analog bypass, you may find it provides better quality then the digital cable if your CD player is very high quality (But if you have one of these digital processing receivers, you'll loose EQ and any surround mode effects when in analog bypass).
    A/D (Analog to Digital)
    D/A (Digital to Analog)
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    - Wes
    My Home Theater
    The MMG were replaced with 1.6QR's and added Marantz MA-700's. SVS is here. Ok, allot more then that has changed, I'll update my page some day...
    [Edited last by Westly T on August 07, 2001 at 09:54 AM]
     
  7. Eugene Hsieh

    Eugene Hsieh Supporting Actor

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    Whew! I thought you were going to say optical sounds much better than coax digital. [​IMG]
    Anyways, I like optical, but prefer not to have to spend the bux on long optical cables. Thus, I use coax digital when I can, but that does risk ground loops (which are a nagging problem on my system).
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    Eugene Hsieh, VisorCentral FAQ Editor
    1000 km on a tank of gas??? Check out the Prius and drive the future now!
     

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