Originally Posted by qwiktune
First question is I own a Panasonic Viera TC-P46C2 and it has 2 inputs for HMDI and 1 output for Optical Out, does anyone know if I will be able to get 5.1 from the Optical out? I have an Xbox going into the one and my computer going into the other HDMI inputs. If I run an optical from the optical output to my receiver will I get 5.1 from everything? If not how can I do it so I get 5.1? Running the optical from my Xbox straight to the receiver? Also I've heard that HDMI sound is better? There are no HDMI outs on the tv [as well as no HDMI inputs on my reciever] and if i use the HDMI for video into the TV, i cant use another HDMI cable from the xbox to a receiver for sound since theres only one HDMI out on the xbox.....i've been researching but im kinda confused. How can I set up my things that go into the HDMI inputs on my TV to get 5.1 sound with them all? I'm willing to buy a new receiver, but not a new TV lol
Usually if you connect the optical output from the TV to a reciever it will only be 5.1 (Dolby Digital) if the source is DD itself (a lot of HD channels are DD) AND
the source of the signal is your TV. If you want the sound from another source (PS3, Xbox) to rout through your TV it will only be in stereo (that's how my Samsung works so check the TV manual for the optical out connection).
TV's don't generally have an HDMI out connection, they are mostly an input device. The exception is the new HDMI 1.4 connections which have an Audio return channel (ARC) built into them, but the reviever must also be 1.4 capable. I'm pretty sure the ARC function only works when the TV is the source.
To get 5.1 from the Xbox you need to run the optical into the reciever and then setup the receiver for that input. The sound will be no different than if you used HDMI unless the Xbox is using the new "Blu Ray" type codecs - DTS master audio or Dolby true HD - the optical connection can't support these and it will revert back to normal DD and DTS.