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post #1 of 14 Old 08-31-2013, 11:09 AM - Thread Starter
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Im about to purchase a soundbar and my question is:
In order to get 5.1 sound out of my soundbar from multiple consoles (PS3, TV, HD Cable TV Box, Blu ray player) i'll need a Optical or HMDI audio switcher right?

Here's a link : http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00B1V14XO/ref=ox_sc_act_title_2?ie=UTF8&psc=1&smid=A31DV9LWMQNJY6

Reason I ask is, I heard if I don't get a switcher; I won't be hearing true 5.1 DTS. Which means it will downconvert the sound right?

Someone please help me with this.
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post #2 of 14 Old 08-31-2013, 12:39 PM
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What soundbar are you purchasing? If your soundbar only has one optical in, then yes you would need an optical switcher.

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post #3 of 14 Old 08-31-2013, 01:53 PM - Thread Starter
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Vizio S4251w-B4
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post #4 of 14 Old 08-31-2013, 02:03 PM
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You will need an optical switcher like the one you linked, or a coaxial switcher (depends on if your component's digital output are optical or coaxial). Although it seems like you've got it figured out and are on the right path with the optical switcher that you linked.

Experience with the following gear:
Cambridge Audio 640R
Cabmridge Audio 752BD
Rotel RCD-1072
Pioneer BDP-05FD
Emotiva UPA-7
Sherbourn PT-7020A
Manley Labs Stingray Integrated
Totem Acoustics Rainmaker Center
Totem Acoustics Hawks
Adams Audio MK3 Pencil
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post #5 of 14 Old 08-31-2013, 02:17 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by monkiboy48 View Post

You will need an optical switcher like the one you linked, or a coaxial switcher (depends on if your component's digital output are optical or coaxial). Although it seems like you've got it figured out and are on the right path with the optical switcher that you linked.

Thanks man. So yea i will purchase that switcher.
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post #6 of 14 Old 08-31-2013, 02:25 PM - Thread Starter
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Was I right about the sound converting also without the switcher?
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post #7 of 14 Old 08-31-2013, 04:31 PM
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Not sure what you mean. The switcher allows you to "connect" four each devices to your single optical input on your soundbar. The soundbar can decode Dolby Digital or DTS Digital Surround.

Without the switcher, you will only be able to connect and decode one device at a time. Please explain what you mean by "sound converting".

Experience with the following gear:
Cambridge Audio 640R
Cabmridge Audio 752BD
Rotel RCD-1072
Pioneer BDP-05FD
Emotiva UPA-7
Sherbourn PT-7020A
Manley Labs Stingray Integrated
Totem Acoustics Rainmaker Center
Totem Acoustics Hawks
Adams Audio MK3 Pencil
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post #8 of 14 Old 08-31-2013, 04:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hip2bSquare View Post

Was I right about the sound converting also without the switcher?

As you've probably learned from the Soundbar forum, most HDTVs downconvert audio from connected devices to 2 ch. stereo. By connecting the audio from each of your source devices to the switcher, you'll be sending 5.1 (when available) directly to the soundbar.
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post #9 of 14 Old 09-01-2013, 09:05 AM
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A soundbar can only actualy provide 2 (or maybe 3) channels of sound since there are no REAR speakers....duhhhhh.

Just use the optical audio output of the TV to go to the soundbar, and feed all of the sources into the HDMI or Component-video inputs of the TV.

If you need a switcher, due to the number of components, install the switcher BEFORE the TV inputs.
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post #10 of 14 Old 09-01-2013, 09:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by commsysman View Post

A soundbar can only actualy provide 2 (or maybe 3) channels of sound since there are no REAR speakers....duhhhhh.

Well, in the case of this particular soundbar, there ARE rear speakers. Hence the reason for sending 5.1 audio to the soundbar. duhhhhh
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post #11 of 14 Old 09-01-2013, 10:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Possumgirl View Post

Well, in the case of this particular soundbar, there ARE rear speakers. Hence the reason for sending 5.1 audio to the soundbar. duhhhhh

Actually there are front speakers that are reproducing the surround channel content. It isn't the same thing as having surround speakers located beside or behind the listener.
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post #12 of 14 Old 09-01-2013, 11:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FMW View Post

Actually there are front speakers that are reproducing the surround channel content. It isn't the same thing as having surround speakers located beside or behind the listener.

Here is the Vizio product page for the soundbar in question. It DOES have two wireless satellite speakers in addition to the LCR in the "bar" portion. It is one of three soundbars that I know of that have five actual speakers, making them 5.1 systems as opposed to the usual 2.1 or 3.1 soundbar.

http://store.vizio.com/s4251wb4.html
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post #13 of 14 Old 09-01-2013, 01:59 PM
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I'm sorry. I spoke without doing the appropriate research. Yes the product does have surround speakers.
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post #14 of 14 Old 09-02-2013, 03:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by commsysman View Post

A soundbar can only actualy provide 2 (or maybe 3) channels of sound since there are no REAR speakers....duhhhhh.

It would appear that you don't understand how sound bars work. The more sophisticated of them use directional speakers and phase/time shifting networks to create a distinct spatial perception of the surround channels.

Even the ones that don't blend the surround channels into the front speakers so that you hear them, just not from a distinct spot.
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