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Laptop Surround Sound via Plasma TV

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
Hi, I am hoping someone can help shed some light on my current situation.

I just recently bought an LG 50PA6500 Plasma TV and I am using it on occasion as a screen for my laptop. I am trying to find a way to get the sound from my laptop (mostly games and such) to play via my Samsung HT-TQ72 Home Theater system. Here is my current setup:

Acer Laptop ----> HDMI ----> LG Plasma ----> Fiber Optic Digital Audio ----> Samsung Surround Sound

I am not having any issues getting the sound to work in general, but it comes only out of the front two speakers. The setting for the device when the laptop is hooked up to the TV (Realtek HDMI Output) shows only 2 available channels and no options to pick 5.1 as the output type.

Now I have done a lot of research and have come into many different views on why this is the case. From my perspective, it seems as though there is a lack of communication between the TV and the laptop. The laptop seems to think that because the TV only has two speakers (event though they are disabled) and cannot seem to tell that it is hooked up to the surround sound system. Is there a way to force the laptop to realize there are actually more speakers involved?

I read somewhere else on these forums about EDID hacking and whatnot, but I was only able to follow that lead so far as I couldn't seem to locate my Samsung EDID raw data that was required. Either way, I know my computer has the ability to play surround sound as the speakers show options for Dolby Digital.

If anyone has any insights into my issue, or has more questions needed to clarify my position, just let me know and I will try to answer them.

P.S. My surround sound system only has HDMI out (as it is also a DVD player) or else I would just hook the computer into that.
post #2 of 9
As a test, what happens if you disconnect the HDMI to the TV? If you then get encoded surround out the optical port , you'll know the HDMI handshake is to blame.

Also, are you playing sources that you know have DD 5.1 or DTS tracks?
post #3 of 9
Thread Starter 
The optical cord is running from the TV to the surround sound, not the computer to the surround sound, it has always transferred surround sound from the TV just fine as far as I can tell (the back speakers are transmitting sound). I just can't seem to figure out why it isn't transferring the sound to the speakers in 5.1 instead of 2.

I have tried it on a few games, and they do have surround sound capabilities, but no options in the device configurations were able to be checked for 5.1.
post #4 of 9
Most TVs only output stereo from external devices. What TV do you have? The fact that your surround speakers are active at times does not necessarily mean the TV is sending 5.1. Your sound system may be expanding a stereo signal.
post #5 of 9
Thread Starter 
Ya, I was afraid that might be the case in this situation. I do hear sound from the speakers, but I haven't got any specific indication that the sounds are surround or just an expansion. My TV is an LG 50PA6500 Plasma. There is a digital audio out option in the settings with two options "Auto" and "PCM." I currently have it set to auto.
post #6 of 9
The TV manual should say something about whether it passes DD 5.1 from HDMI inputs. TVs send DD 5.1 from sources they acquire themselves (from off air antennas, direct cable feeds, and Smart TV apps). But, most do not pass it from external devices. Almost none do DTS pass through.

Does your receiver tell you what format is arriving over the optical input? Most do.
post #7 of 9
Thread Starter 
The manual doesn't say anything specific. It mentions connecting a computer via HDMI and it mentions connecting to an external sound source via optical cord, but it never says that it does or does not pass DD5.1.

So your suggestion would be find some way to connect the computer directly to the surround sound system instead?
post #8 of 9
I see what you mean. The manual is pretty thin, although it looks like there may be more specifics in the User Guide on the set itself. But, yes, I suggest you find a way to run audio direct to the sound system. Does the card have an optical output you could try?
post #9 of 9
Thread Starter 
Unfortunately, my laptop is a mid-range and doesn't have anything too much extra, so no digital output. When I bought the TV I figured it would just pass the surround sound....

Interesting find:

On the LG website, I found that under specifications it says that has "Dolby Digital Decoder" does that have anything to do with it?

Also found this, if it sheds some light on the audio output option:

Edited by Benjiboy180 - 2/11/13 at 8:46pm
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