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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I bought a cheap sound card becasue it had SPDIF output and worked with my nVidias DVD decoder. When my computer is only plugged in to the receiver via COAX SPDIF, I get no system sounds (the dings and bloops), and iTunes, WMP, and MCE provide no sound feedback or sound when playing songs.


When I play a DVD, sound come through fine in Dolby Digital. Also, in Media Center, if I go into Setup and tell it I have 5.1 speakers and hit test, each speaker dings, indicating that Media Center does know how to pass the sound direct through SPDIF in a DD-like manner. Even after that setup, however, when I attempt to play music through WMP or MCE, I get no sound, even though it appears to be playing. There aren't even any bloops as you navigate the menus.


Is it even possible to have Windows Media Player (or MCE) pass a stream directly into SPDIF regardless of the stream type? I.e. - if I play an mp3 or aac file, is there a way to get WMP to do what ever it has to do (upconvert maybe?) to play that stream through SPDIF?


I hope I am asking the right questions. I've search around here, and what I'd like to do sure seems possible (since the questions and answers I found were steps past where I am now).


Thank in advance!


Nate
 

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I can't think what your problem is, but it should work. I have my system setup exactly as you describe (i.e. everything through sp-dif) and it works fine.


The only thing I can think of off the top of my head is to go into control panel>"sounds and audio devices" and make sure everything looks OK in there. In particular, look for any sliders set to zero (I don't know how and why this can happen, but it does) and that the appropriate devices and speaker setups are there.


Good luck.


Chip
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Chip -


When you say exactly the same, do you have the same sound card?


I'll tell you what I am worried about: When I go to the Philips PSC703 Audio Control Panel and click on S/PDIF I get 4 options: Disabled, Front Left and Right Chennels, Rear Left and Right Channels & DVD AC3/DTS Passthrough.


I do get sounds when I change the setting to Front Left and Right. However, then my DVDs are no longer DD. Typically I would have quit there and figured I bought a stupid soundcard. But, when I set up the Media Center and had it test my speakers and each speaker dinged in order (left, center, right, rear right, rear left) I thought something else must be up. Media Center can test my speakers and they work great. But then when I use Media Center to actually play something, I get no sound.


I've checked and rechecked those volume sliders (I've had problems as simple as a mute button that won't stay unpressed), set the speakers to 5.1 in Windows and restarted a lot in between. Sure seems like this should be easier than it is :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Rob -


Originally I had a Hercules Game Theater XP (what a great device), but I could not get nVidia PureVideo Decoder to output sound via SPDIF. Hercules had apparently only given PowerDVD the "right" to use it.


When I went to buy a new one, I wanted to go cheap becuase I wasn't sure if it would work. This is an old machine (Athlon 1.6GHz) and I didn't really want to dump money into it. I got a deal on MCE (a friend, not **********, I swear) and thought I'd try it.


nVidia has a list of supported SoundCards: http://www.nvidia.com/object/dvd_decoder_sysreqs.html


I would guess that other sound cards also work, but even $26 is too much to spend on yet another sound card that won't work. I like using the PureVideo decoder since I also have a 6600 in the machine. They work very well together and give a fairly stunning picture, IMHO.


So my question, I guess, is, have you tried to use the Chaintech with MCE and nVidia PureVudeo decoder? If everything worked for you (sounds through MCE, DolbyDigital for DVDs) I will purchase in an instant. :)


Nate
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by nathanziarek
Chip -


When you say exactly the same, do you have the same sound card?
No, sorry I have an M-Audio card.


Chip
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by nathanziarek
Rob -


I would guess that other sound cards also work, but even $26 is too much to spend on yet another sound card that won't work. I like using the PureVideo decoder since I also have a 6600 in the machine. They work very well together and give a fairly stunning picture, IMHO.


So my question, I guess, is, have you tried to use the Chaintech with MCE and nVidia PureVudeo decoder? If everything worked for you (sounds through MCE, DolbyDigital for DVDs) I will purchase in an instant. :)


Nate
That is the exact setup I am running, Purevideo decoder, Chaintech card, and MCE 2005. One thing I really like on this setup is even mp3's and SD tv output whatI would guess is "simulated" surround on the rear speakers. Dolby stuff switches the receiver over and I get true surround. Like I said I fought forever trying to get other cards I had to work, this one just works.


Before giving up on the Phillips though, play a DVD you know has AC3, minimize MCE, right click on the Nvidia tray icon, and make sure it is set for AC3 passtrhough.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
3rob3 -


DVDs play fine, full DTS/Dolby digital. It is the other sounds that fail to come through. If the PureVideo Decoder works with the Chaintech card and you get MP3 / system sounds all through the same cable, that is all I need. I am ordering one as we speak.


Thanks for the help everyone. I'll post back letting you all know how I fared.


Nate
 

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I am running MCE2005 with the Chaintech AV710, with a leadtech 6600GT. I love the picture and sound I am getting. I am also using theatertek with FFdshow for postprocessing. All this going to my Sanyo Z3 with a DVI to HDMI cable. I am also feeding the sound to my Pan 1015 via optical connection. I am amazed at how well the video and sound is.
 

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Does your receiver automatically switch between different kinds of digital signals?


Most audio cards do not have built in DD encoding, the only way you will get DD coming through the SP/DIF is via passthrough on some DD encoded source (e.g. DVDs). Everything else is just going to send PCM 2-channel sound through your SP/DIF connector.


Personally, I find digital sound output from PCs to be way confusing. Anyone have a link to a page that explains it all?
 

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i think this may be a limitation of the philips drivers or the card itself. I have a psc706 card and have the same issue, I can only get DD audio if I select dvd/ac3 passthrough in the philips control panel, but in doing so I lose sound from all other programs. I have to go in and manually toggle back to one of the other settings like "front left and right channels" to get audio back from media player. Also, media player does not pass through the DD ac3, I had to play the dvd through power dvd before I could get ac3 passthrough. This is ridiculous if it was designed this way where you have to manually switch the sp-dif setting back and forth.
 
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