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Spdif to coaxial digital?

post #1 of 38
Thread Starter 
Im sure this is common knowledge but im still not sure if this will work.

My new soundcard has a 3.5mm connection, and it has an spdif, to get spdif out i already previously had a coaxial digital cable from monoprice ran to my computer.

How would i get spdif using the coaxial digital. Would a regular 3.5mm to rca cable work? Would the connection still be digital?
post #2 of 38
Thread Starter 
Can anyone tell me if this would work?

http://www.thesource.ca/estore/produ...roduct=2740300

Im kind of perplexed if these can adapters pass a digital signal.

Or this one.
post #3 of 38
monoprice makes an adapter that works good, i have 1.
post #4 of 38
Thread Starter 
I do love monoprice, but i live in canada, and was looking for a simpler place to buy one. Anyone know if the above links will work?
post #5 of 38
Right idea but you do not want to attenuate the signal - 3.5mm to rca male is the right format though.

I made my own with a 3.5mm plug and an old coax patch cord - cut one end off, solder on the 3.5 and voila! Digital sound from my laptop to my avr

Pre made, I would go with this one
post #6 of 38
im not really understanding what you are trying to do. you say your new sound card has a 3.5mm jack and an spdif optical jack, correct? well, if you want digital surround sound, you have to use the spdif. anything coming out of the 3.5mm jack is analog. the link you posted is an rca to 3.5mm connector, not sure why would would need that. if your receiver only has a coaxial digital input, then yes, there are spdif to coax adapters.
post #7 of 38
I think that thing has the right connectors but it also is an attenuator (a device that reduces the power of the signal). Maybe it can work if your cable length is short.

Worth a try if it doesn't cost you anything
post #8 of 38
You just need a cable that has 3.5mm on one end and RCA on the other. There's no need for any converter since the soundcard will be outputting a digital signal from the 3.5mm jack.

Example: http://www.thesource.ca/estore/produ...roduct=2740378
post #9 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by spivonious View Post

You just need a cable that has 3.5mm on one end and RCA on the other. There's no need for any converter since the soundcard will be outputting a digital signal from the 3.5mm jack.

Example: http://www.thesource.ca/estore/produ...roduct=2740378

Really? You can get digital from a 3.5jack on the sound card and just input it as digital coax to the receiver with an adapter? So we could pass through DDS/DTS 5.1 that way?
post #10 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by rizorith View Post

Really? You can get digital from a 3.5jack on the sound card and just input it as digital coax to the receiver with an adapter? So we could pass through DDS/DTS 5.1 that way?

As long as it's the proper output on the soundcard, yes.
post #11 of 38
hmmm, i've never heard of being able to output dd5.1 or dts from a 3.5mm analog jack.
post #12 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by sitlet View Post

hmmm, i've never heard of being able to output dd5.1 or dts from a 3.5mm analog jack.

It's not an analog jack.

Doesn't anyone read their soundcard manuals anymore?

Just to clear this up...the sound card can be set to output s/pdif over one of the 3.5mm jacks on the back. On the X-Fi series of cards, it's the topmost jack on the card (can also be used as Mic-in). Just hook up the cable with the adapter and set the sound card settings to "Digital Output Only". You will get 2 channel PCM for non DD/DTS sources, and bitstreamed DD/DTS otherwise.

edit: I'm assuming that the OP's soundcard supports this. If it doesn't, then he'd need some sort of converter that takes an internal s/pdif header and hooks it to an RCA output.
post #13 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by spivonious View Post

It's not an analog jack.

Doesn't anyone read their soundcard manuals anymore?

Just to clear this up...the sound card can be set to output s/pdif over one of the 3.5mm jacks on the back. On the X-Fi series of cards, it's the topmost jack on the card (can also be used as Mic-in). Just hook up the cable with the adapter and set the sound card settings to "Digital Output Only". You will get 2 channel PCM for non DD/DTS sources, and bitstreamed DD/DTS otherwise.

edit: I'm assuming that the OP's soundcard supports this. If it doesn't, then he'd need some sort of converter that takes an internal s/pdif header and hooks it to an RCA output.

I would actually like to do this but I'm not sure if my soundcard can - it's a built in sound card on my motherboard. Is there something I would need to look for to make sure it works? There is a s/pdif out header on the board but it says it's for a video card. Or do I just get the adapter and plug it in to the mini jack and see what happens? If it does work, is there any disadvantage versus using a toslink connection? I just want to pass through 5.1 dts/dds but I do at least want to get sound for a video file that isn't 5.1 dts/dds.
post #14 of 38
I use this Toslink to coax adaptor and it works fine.
I can't post urls yet so go to amazon and search for Digital Fiber Optical (Toslink) to Digital Coaxial (S/PDIF) Converter, it is $12 and works fine.
post #15 of 38
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the replys, I just want two channel sound for flac music, I want to pass digital sound so my receiver can do the analog to digital conversion. But i also want my headphones hooked up as well, i use them sometimes when its late.

I have an asus xonar DS.

Before I do this i have a question though, i have a short optical cable (i moved my pc closer to the receiver because its not long enough, i was just testing it though) anyway i hooked optical cable, it came with a 3.5mm to optical jack. I also had my headphones hooked in to the 2 channel analog jack, and the optical/spdif jack to my receiver, and sound came out of both. In the control panel it has a seperate spdif output connection, and a seperate analog. I check marked them both, and had them both output pcm, the spdif has a selection of dts interactive or pcm.

My question is, is this sound card outputting analog to my headphones, and digital to my spdif/optical cable? I would like for this to be the scenerio, but im not sure if it is. Can an optical cable even carry analog sound? If not then this is perfect. I also notice the spdif has a red light shining out of it.

I wanted it to simultaneously output analog to my headphones and digital to my receiver. Im wondering if i should just get an optical cable though to ensure it is digital, since i think coaxial digital can carry analog as well.

Someone please correct me if im wrong.
post #16 of 38
Thread Starter 
Also for the person who posted the link to the 3.5mm to rca coax output, its listed as a stereo jack, wouldnt i want a mono jack? And also given the fact the spdif is outputting a red beam of light, i think i may need optical?
post #17 of 38
I think spivonious misspoke a bit. S/PDIF is a method of transferring data over an optical or electrical cable; it's not an audio format. Your optical port is called TOSLINK, an optical S/PDIF format, and it cannot be transferred to a copper cable without some sort of conversion device. I think he meant that digital audio can be output from a 3.5mm jack as well as over S/PDIF. So, if your audio card supports digital over 3.5mm, then you'd just need a 3.5mm to coax S/PDIF cable.
post #18 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by kegobeer View Post

I think spivonious misspoke a bit.

No, spivonious got it right.

Quote:


S/PDIF is a method of transferring data over an optical or electrical cable; it's not an audio format.

Not a format? What does the "F" in "S/PDIF" acronym stand for then?

Quote:


Your optical port is called TOSLINK

The OP never wrote that he had an optical port, but rather that he had a 3.5mm jack and a "spdif" port. He didn't realize that they were the one and the same, as spivonious first pointed out. The OP made the common association of a type of electrical signal with a specific mechanical connector. There are conventions for such assignments; but the signal+connector associations are not cast in stone. Also the 3.5mm jack is not optimal for a high-frequency signal; of course neither is the more common RCA connector, but no manufacturer bothers to put BNCs on consumer-grade products.

Regards
post #19 of 38
I did not say that format was not part of the acronym. I said it is not an audio format. It is a specification for carrying digital audio signals. An audio format is WAV, FLAC, etc.

The OP stated he had an optical port in his last post.

Quote:


And also given the fact the spdif is outputting a red beam of light, i think i may need optical?
post #20 of 38
The OP probably needs to just read the manual.
The black 3.5mm jack is one of those special combo jacks with a optical port.
He needs to read the manual, find the adapter that came with the card, and get a Toslink cable.

Regards
post #21 of 38
Thread Starter 
Bluez, the op did read the manual all 3 pages that came with it. And no it did not give me the answers i want.

Thanks for telling me to get a toslink cable, I knew that much, but as mentioned I have a coaxial digital cable already ran from my receiver to my pc. Im not going to explain but i have a wall unit and running a new cable would not be easy.

So I was exploring the option if i could somehow use the spdif 3.5mm port with my coaxial digital cable. Again it is outputting a red beam of light and i was hoping it could pass digital audio.

If not then I will have no choice but to get an optical cable, but again running it is the hard part, and probably will take about 45 minutes, the person who made my wall unit did not give me the required space i needed to run all my cables, i asked for about a foot in behind and he gave me an inch.

Thats why I made this post, if it was just as easy as me getting a toslink cable i would not have bothered to post.

Also if you read my post i already used the adapter and hooked it up to a previously run optical cable which is to short to reach my computer. So yes the optical cable works, and so does the toslink adapter, but again thats not what i was asking.
post #22 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by Murilo View Post

My question is, is this sound card outputting analog to my headphones, and digital to my spdif/optical cable?

Yes, and yes.
S/PDIF is a digital format. Look it up in Wikipedia.

Quote:


Can an optical cable even carry analog sound?

Certainly not acoustic "sound", but maybe audio waveforms.
It probably could since the typical transceiver bandwidth is from DC to a couple MHz, but there might not be much amplitude headroom. I'm pretty sure nobody bothers; there are cheaper & simpler ways with copper.

So it seems that you have your setup working?

Regards
post #23 of 38
Thread Starter 
To rewrite the information given in the huge instruction booklet.

"3.5mm Spdif output port- optical toslink digital output port.Connects to external digital decoder, home theater systems, av receivers, for outputting digital audio including pcm, dts digital, DTS, WMA-Pro ect..."

So Im still a bit unsure if i can use a 3.5mm adapter and use a coaxial digital cable, or I have to get an optical cable and run a new cable.
post #24 of 38
Thread Starter 
LoL well I will end this thread, I decided to take bluez advice and just order a toslink cable. I figured i was wasting more time figuring this out, then i would to run the new cable.
post #25 of 38
Thread Starter 
On a side note this is an awesome card for 48 dollars, compared to my m-audio revolution and any other card i tried, im really happy it seems to be able to output 2 channel analog to my headphones as well as digital audio to my receiver at the same time. I always found it annoying switching back and forth in between digital out, and analog, for instance if i was looking at a youtube video and got sound out of my headphones, and i wanted to play it through the receiver and on my projector to show people, i would have to close all browser windows, and restart a new browser for settings to register. So much smoother now and alot easier.
post #26 of 38
While I can understand some of your frustrations, please be aware that some of us trying to help also get frustrated when the information is provided in vague and piecemeal fashion. We end up making educated guesses, and start arguing as to who is making the more accurate guess. For example, if you had mentioned the make and model of the card in your first post, that would have helped a lot. And post #21 explained a lot better what you were doing and wanted.

If you want to use the coax cable that you already have, then you need to use a converter like gbrown91 mentioned. You will have to use the special optical adapter for the 3.5mm jack with an optical cable to this converter, which will have an RCA jack for output.

Regards
post #27 of 38
Cards usually have S/PDIF pins on the board to facilitate I/O expansion beyond the jacks included on the backplate.
post #28 of 38
I've had several sound cards that had both a TOSLINK (optical) and 3.5mm spdif output. The 3.5mm could output either analog or digital, you had to select what you wanted in the software.

Yes, a normal 3.5mm to RCA cable will work, even a 3.5mm to stereo cable. With a stereo cable, you just have to figure out which one is getting the signal. Like I said, I've done this several times, and actually have to do it with my Dell laptop.
post #29 of 38
Okay, if it's outputting a red beam of light, then it is a toslink/optical port.

What is the model of your sound card? We could tell you for sure then if you can use one of the 3.5mm jacks for digital output.

From the manual it seems like you can.
"3.5mm Spdif output port" -> you'd need the 3.5mm->RCA adapter
"optical toslink digital output port" -> you'd need optical cable
post #30 of 38
SPDIF can be either optical (TOSLINK) or Coax. A lot of sound cards output coax type signal via 3.5mm jack which you can easily connect to your receiver's coax input. But be aware that it is a common practice that a lot of sound cards do not output the correct voltage required by coax SPDIF standard. It may cause damage to your receiver.

If your sound card has optical port, that will be a prefered way to use because it doesn't have the mismatched voltage issue and also isolates all the electronics noises of your PC from your audio system.
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