Originally Posted by cgsooner
I've been thinking about getting a PS3 as a Blu-ray player, but apparently the PS3's lack of analog multichannel outputs is making a lot of people get a standalone player (or so I hear).
So, what exactly are analog multichannel outputs?
edit - Sorry, PS3/Blu-ray would go here, but I'm not sure if this is the right forum for my particular question, d'oh.
Normally, BD players are connected via HDMI or conventional digital audio to a device, such as an AV receiver, that will either decode raw bitstreams of multichannel and other audio sent from the player, or process already-decoded multichannel or other audio as Linear PCM sent from the player.
With multichannel analog outputs, a player decodes all codecs internally and converts the sound from digital to analog, sending each audio channel individually to an analog output.
These outputs can then be connected to any line-level input. You could use a receiver or pre-amplifier that doesn't have HDMI; you could even drive a set of powered speakers directly. You could insert a multichannel equalizer into the signal path, or any of the other things you can do with an analog signal.
The PS3 is a device that requires (at minimum) an optical digital input on the receiver in order to get any multichannel sound, and requires a receiver that can process multichannel LPCM in order to use the lossless HD audio codecs. You wouldn't buy one unless you could meet those requirements