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Graphics card questions

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
Hi folks,

I have been searching and give up. So I'll just ask.

I currently have a mobo with a vga monitor that uses analog stereo speakers. This is how the computer is used most of the time.
It also has onboard HDMI, but will only put out 2.0 sound. To switch between the analog and digital audio, I have to open the audio properties and then choose between the rear output(stereo or headphones) or the HDMI audio.

I want to upgrade to a graphics card that will allow me to use the computer with a vga monitor that uses analog stereo speakers most of the time, but will also put out up to 7.1 audio.

I believe I have found that the dual monitor is not a problem, but I can't find anything on the sound. I want to be able to use the computer speakers when I'm not sending things to the HDTV and then switch to digital (up to 7.1 audio) when I enable the HDTV.

I would also like video card suggestions. I do not game so I think I can use one of the lower end cards (cheap).

Thanks for any help,

post #2 of 9
Can you tell us more about your system?

post #3 of 9
It also has onboard HDMI, but will only put out 2.0 sound

Which mb? Usually it also supports DD and DTS.

Many HDTV support only stereo PCM with HDMI IN (no DD, DTS, let alone 7.1 LPCM) anyway.
post #4 of 9
If you have HDMI it's probably a setting thing... or set up problem. most HDMI will do audio as you want.
post #5 of 9
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by Sammy2 View Post

Can you tell us more about your system?

os = xp 32bit
MoBo = GIGABYTE GA-MA78GM-S2H AM2+/AM2 AMD 780G HDMI Micro ATX AMD Motherboard
CPU = AMD Athlon 64 X2 6000+ Windsor 3.0GHz Socket AM2 125W Dual-Core Processor
RAM = 4 gb (1gb x 4) corsair

I know that the mobo is limited to 2 channel audio from following the thread on avsforum. It's just a hardware limit because it's several years old.

When using HDMI, I run it through a HK 2600 AVR that supports 7.1.

1. 80% of the time I use it as a simple desktop computer - VGA with stereo speakers and second display (HDMI) disabled.
2. 20% of the time I send the signal out to my 73" DLP (HDMI input only) to show pictures/videos, etc.
I have to go into audio settings where I have a choice of the rear analog outputs or HDMI audio (can only pic one or the other)

I am thinking about ditching Dishnetwork and moving to netflix and hulu. Or just be able to play a file with up to 7.1 audio.

What I think is to add a PCI Express graphics card that will pass up to 7.1 audio through HDMI. The cards I'm looking at have a DVI, HDMI, and VGA port. Most do not say anything about audio????
My question is; if I add a card like this, will I still be able to run dual monitors (VGA and HDMI) and choose which port the audio is sent (rear for 1. above and HDMI for 2. above)

There may be times I want to surf the web on the VGA monitor while playing a video with sound out of the HDMI port.
Or I may want sound to the stereo speakers while showing the parents pics on the TV (no need for HDMI sound then).

I'm really confused because the graphics cards run from $30 up and do not say anything about audio. Since the card also has the VGA port, I am assuming that the onboard video will be disabled by the card and I will use the VGA port on it as well as the HDMI. If the card has an audio processor for the HDMI, will I still be able to use the back port for the stereo speakers.
I don't need 3D. I don't play games. I just want to pass 1080p with up to 7.1 sound through HDMI, but still use the VGA and stereo port when using the computer just to surf the web.

Help and suggestions?
Budget is a factor.

Edited by girdnerg - 12/12/12 at 2:15pm
post #6 of 9
Any of Radeon HD 5450 and above, HD 6450 and above, HD 7750 and above, GT 520=610, GT 430, GT 440=630, GTS 450, GT 640 and above supports 7.1 LPCM / TrueHD / DTS-HD over HDMI / DVI (with a proper DVI to HDMI dongle in the case of AMD). Connect HDMI port to AVR 2600 and VGA port (either the discrete card or the onboard video) to the PC monitor. Onboard video won't be disabled even if you insert a discrete card, unlike older Intel platform; just configure BIOS correctly.
Edited by renethx - 12/13/12 at 6:41pm
post #7 of 9
Newegg has MSI 6450 card for $15 today on egg saver !
post #8 of 9
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the replies. I'll look into it.

Will all of those cards do dual monitors just in case the onboard is disabled?

I went with the MSI 6450 card Mfusick. Found all the info I needed in the reviews about 5 pages deep.
1 guy was doing dual monitors with VGA and HDMI.
Another stated that he was sending 7.1 from his blu-ray through HDMI.
Edited by girdnerg - 12/13/12 at 11:17am
post #9 of 9
Every discrete card supports dual display. (Every HD 6xxx/7xxx with EyeFinity supports up to six displays, every GT 640 or higher supports up to four displays.)
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