Panasonic LCD TV - workaround for no headphone or analog audio output? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 8 Old 08-01-2009, 11:26 AM - Thread Starter
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I'm considering picking up another panasonic LCD 32 -- either an LX85 (there may be a few left, somewhere -- love the one I have now), or possibly the newer X1 -- the bad part is, neither have headphone jacks or analog audio out. There's a 26 inch Samsung 'monitor' with HDTV tuner that might fit the bill for the bedroom, too, but despite the longer warranty (3 yrs) that model doesn't appeal to me as much as the panasonic TV, given what I've been reading ) So, I'm hoping to find a workaround for the Panny that can justify the purchase.

All I need is a creative way to listen via headphones because it's for the bedroom. TV would be connected to a comcast box - either directly, or with a panasonic DVD recorder in the path so I can record programs. Since the only audio out option for the TV (as far as I can determine from online specs) is a stereo digital audio (toslink?) and there's no receiver in the bedroom -- what would be the best way to use headphones? Sorry if this is a newbie question, but I'm not that familiar with toslink. Is there a stereo audio adapter or converter that could make the connection? Could I feed the audio out of the comcast box and bypass the TV alltogether for the headphone portion, without interrupting the audio to TV connection? Or maybe I could I bypass the tv audio all together and use a secondary audio out from the DVD recorder to connect a headphone (presumably RCA out to a stereo mini adapter to headphone). It's hard for me to conceptualize this set up -- I've been using a computer to watch tv in this room for so long, the idea of not having headphones never occurred to me til I looked at the specs. I was surprised that a tv marketed as ideal for the bedroom -- especially the x1 which has a sleep timer -- doesnt' also include headphone or audio out option. I suppose I could get a small receiver, but I don't really need one , and my powered speaker for ipod doesn't have digital stereo input option. I would rather not have to spend a few hundred dollars more to make my bargain tv watchable in the wee hours. Any ideas you can share regarding set up solutions would be greatly appreciated ...
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post #2 of 8 Old 08-01-2009, 12:45 PM
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A Wireless set of headphones can connect to RCA outputs on cable box or DVD. Volume control is on the headphones itself, base unit hooks to source. The might even be wireless headphones that work from Toslink, although I don't know if the analog sources (component,composite) will output from that.
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post #3 of 8 Old 08-01-2009, 02:45 PM
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Quote:


All I need is a creative way to listen via headphones because it's for the bedroom. TV would be connected to a comcast box - either directly, or with a panasonic DVD recorder in the path so I can record programs. Since the only audio out option for the TV (as far as I can determine from online specs) is a stereo digital audio (toslink?) and there's no receiver in the bedroom -- what would be the best way to use headphones?

What type of cable connection from comcast box to tv, HDMI, component or composite?
Use X1 Stereo Audio Splitter Cable - plug this in the comcast box audio red and white.
Then you can connect component audio cable or composite audio cable red & white to this splitter and then to tv. Then the other end of the splitter is a 3.5mm female for headphone connection.

Or purchase from monoprice: product #2050 RCA Video Audio Splitter Adapter (get 2) and product #5612 3.5mm Stereo Female to 2RCA Male 22AWG Cable - 6 inches. And this would work just the same as the above X1 splitter.
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post #4 of 8 Old 08-02-2009, 12:27 PM - Thread Starter
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I was unsure if the cable box output needed some kind of additional processing in order to 'play', but it sounds as though the sound is okay directly from the box, so the splitter makes sense. I'm not using it now, but I think the comcast box has both HDMI and component - right now I'm just using composite since it's going to an old DVD recorder but it's a fairly new box so it does have a few extra output options. I thought I had to choose one -- didnt realize I could split the signal out and simultaneously "feed" the tv and the dvd recorder from the box using two separate cables. (I've been piggybacking them), so was trying to get sound out of the tv, when , as you pointed out, it's possible to split it and do both. Wireless headphones are also an interesting option -- a lot less costly than some of the other workarounds (new stereo, for example! Lots of good suggestions - thanks so much!

PS - did find wireless headphones w/ both analog and digital audio toslink option Sony MRD-DS6000 but they are a little more $$$$ than I was hoping to spend and a lot bigger than what I need. interesting idea though, glad to know they exist
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post #5 of 8 Old 08-21-2009, 12:43 PM - Thread Starter
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ok, here's my update and a question. I just discovered an audio out option on the LX85 Panasonic that looks as though it might work. I had thought my tv had ONLY a digital audio out but there's also a "to audio amp" option that takes RCA cables. That seems to suggest it needs amplification, so I tried connecting it to a small powered speaker that accepts audio aux in via a stereo mini male (so I added an RCA to mini adapter) ... and it has headphone jack out. I'm guessing that it would be best to route nighttime audio through this "to audio amp" output on the tv... since the speaker has volume control etc. I was under the mistaken impression (based on everything I'd read) that there was no analog audio out on this tv -- but I spotted something on CNET that got me thinking it might work ... despite the labeling.

I wonder if any of you have a similarly labeled output jack and if so, do you know whether or not it can be used without passing it through a powered speaker (or amp) first?

I'm happy, since I just ordered the bedroom tv anyway, and figured I'd solve the problem after it arrives. Waiting for a few adapters, but rather than going from the comcast box, I think going out from the TV makes more sense (so I can hear DVDs as well) . My DVD recorder is old and also has no headphone jack and limited audio out options. Lots of ways to plug things IN to these boxes, but not too many ways to get the signal out.

I deliberated briefly about getting the newer model - though I had some reservations as to whether it was an improvement over my current model -- so when last year's model showed up at a great price "new", I bought it. i'm hoping it arrives in good condition, since I do like this TV model and they are few and far between these days. I probably will go the 'powered speaker' route, which also can serve as an ipod charger (like the X1 . If I don't NEED to use the speakers and can just use the RCA - to splitter - to headphone directly, that'd be even better, since it would be one less thing to plug in and glow in the dark. (blue LED on speaker is *bright*) But, anyway you look at it, I think this solves the immediate problem.

Thanks again for your help. Figured I'd post since someone else may be in the same boat and not realize that "to audio amp" might also be a way to use headphones.

ETA - problem reared its ugly head again, when the vendor contacted me to say the older model I ordered was not available (big surprise, they shouldn't have taken the sale), and I could have one of the new models (X1) for the same price. But... that newer one only has a single digital audio out. I cancelled the order. Will have to swap DVD recorders and use the newer model with audio out and HDMI with the TV with no analog audio out and move the older recorder into the living room where headphones aren't necessary. Crazy -- they added the ipod doc so you could HEAR things, but ... to make room they eliminated the audio out port. Seems a little short sighted...


ETA #2 --- well, they shipped it anyway, so now I have a new 32 x1. I could have sent it back but decided it was meant to be -- and actually not too unhappy with it now that I've had to juggle some peripherals. Turned out the ports were all on the far left side and my other tv has ports on the right, so I needed to move a lot around and also get some longer cables. I ended up attaching a Viera panasonic dvd-recorder (EA38) that had two "out" RCA options, as well as HDMI and swapped the older DVD recorder to use on the TV that didnt need headphones. A 2 RCA male to stereo mini adapter connects to a female/female mini extender .... and that accepts the headphones -- since it's being fed by the comcast box and also plays CDs and DVDs, it made more sense to hook the headphones to the DVD rather than the comcast box. Only thing I have to remember is to turn it OFF before a scheduled recording (annoying but do-able). There's a maze of wires that I need to organize, but at least a resolution to the problem of no RCA out or headphone jack on the tv.

thanks again for all your suggestions
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post #6 of 8 Old 09-29-2009, 11:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JChin View Post

artwire


3.5mm Stereo Female to 2RCA Male 22AWG Cable - 6 inches. And this would work just the same as the above X1 splitter.

if i connect this cable to comcast's audio out, how would i change the volume on my headphones? i'm not aware of volume control thru comcast's tuner box.
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post #7 of 8 Old 09-30-2009, 06:54 AM
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Quote:


if i connect this cable to comcast's audio out, how would i change the volume on my headphones? i'm not aware of volume control thru comcast's tuner box.

you wouldn't. you're right, the box has no volume control. if you wanted to control the volume, you would have to plug the output into a stereo or ipod boombox with its own volume control.
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post #8 of 8 Old 11-14-2009, 07:41 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sitlet View Post

you wouldn't. you're right, the box has no volume control. if you wanted to control the volume, you would have to plug the output into a stereo or ipod boombox with its own volume control.

Right, or use headphones or earbuds with volume control, or one of those combo ipod charger + flat panel speakers (which probably would need a stereo mini plug). Bringing an old relic back into service when you've just bought a nice new streamlined tv takes some of the fun out of it, but you can just pass the audio through old equipment like a dvd recorder, vcr, receiver , etc)
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