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Hello, I'm a brand new user to this forum and wasn't sure where to post this question. For digital audio, why does it seem the standard is that most TV's have optical audio output but not optical audio input? It seems the only option to get digital audio into most TV's is through the HDMI input port. I understand the optical out is to connect to an external AV receiver.

Here is the issue. My cousin has a Mid 2009 15" MacBook Pro. She wants to connect the laptop to a TV. For video she can use the mini display port on the laptop and use a mini display port to HDMI adaptor to connect to HDMI on the TV. However on this computer there is no audio signal on the mini-display port out to HDMI. So she must connect separate audio cables. She will not be using an external sound/speaker system, only the built-in tv speakers. Since there's no audio signal over the HDMI (because of the computer's limitations), it seems there's no other way to get digital audio to the TV. The computer has an optical (Toslink) output via a mini (3.5mm) Toslink jack that is a dual purpose Toslink/headphone out jack. So it can output digital optical audio. But it seems no tv's have optical in. They only have optical out. The only option for getting digital audio into the tv, to playback over the tv speakers is HDMI. Why don't TV's have optical inputs?
 

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Hello, I'm a brand new user to this forum and wasn't sure where to post this question. For digital audio, why does it seem the standard is that most TV's have optical audio output but not optical audio input? It seems the only option to get digital audio into most TV's is through the HDMI input port. I understand the optical out is to connect to an external AV receiver.

Here is the issue. My cousin has a Mid 2009 15" MacBook Pro. She wants to connect the laptop to a TV. For video she can use the mini display port on the laptop and use a mini display port to HDMI adaptor to connect to HDMI on the TV. However on this computer there is no audio signal on the mini-display port out to HDMI. So she must connect separate audio cables. She will not be using an external sound/speaker system, only the built-in tv speakers. Since there's no audio signal over the HDMI (because of the computer's limitations), it seems there's no other way to get digital audio to the TV. The computer has an optical (Toslink) output via a mini (3.5mm) Toslink jack that is a dual purpose Toslink/headphone out jack. So it can output digital optical audio. But it seems no tv's have optical in. They only have optical out. The only option for getting digital audio into the tv, to playback over the tv speakers is HDMI. Why don't TV's have optical inputs?
Your situation is actually fairly unusual. Evéry common video source has conventional HDMI with audio, even later MacBook Pros. Its typical for manufacturers to design for the majority of situations and ignore the unusual, especially when it comes to TVs. Receivers, on the other hand, often have provisions for odd connection methods. For example, it wasn't a great many years ago that you could find an AVR with a firewire connector on it. Those are gone today but optical audio inputs pérsist. Perhaps a pre-owned AVR might solve your problem.

Many TVs still have analog audio inputs as well, which could work if all you need is audio.
 

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For digital audio, why does it seem the standard is that most TV's have optical audio output but not optical audio input?
Because the standard input sources for TV are cable boxes, DVR and DVD, which all have HDMI outputs. TVs have optical outs because most AVRs have optical inputs.
My cousin has a Mid 2009 15" MacBook Pro
Where computers are concerned that's verging on being an antique. Most current models have HDMI outputs. My 2013 Dell does.
 

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You could use the Monoprice adaptor that Lils Roro mentioned. However, since it seems that you are just using the TV's built-in speakers, I doubt that there would be any benefit from transmitting the audio digitally and having the TV decode it versus letting the MacBook decode and transmitting the audio to the TV as stereo analog. All you would need is a 3.5mm mini jack to stereo (red and white) RCA analog adaptor, which you can find at Best Buy for less than $10.
 

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You could use the Monoprice adaptor that Lils Roro mentioned. However, since it seems that you are just using the TV's built-in speakers, I doubt that there would be any benefit from transmitting the audio digitally and having the TV decode it versus letting the MacBook decode and transmitting the audio to the TV as stereo analog. All you would need is a 3.5mm mini jack to stereo (red and white) RCA analog adaptor, which you can find at Best Buy for less than $10.
I'm curious though if the TV will combine video from the HDMI1 input with audio from the Comp or A/V inputs. I've not tried this with any of my TVs, so I don't know. My receivers wont do this unless you specifically tell them to.
 

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Hello, I'm a brand new user to this forum and wasn't sure where to post this question. For digital audio, why does it seem the standard is that most TV's have optical audio output but not optical audio input? It seems the only option to get digital audio into most TV's is through the HDMI input port. I understand the optical out is to connect to an external AV receiver.

Here is the issue. My cousin has a Mid 2009 15" MacBook Pro. She wants to connect the laptop to a TV. For video she can use the mini display port on the laptop and use a mini display port to HDMI adaptor to connect to HDMI on the TV. However on this computer there is no audio signal on the mini-display port out to HDMI. So she must connect separate audio cables. She will not be using an external sound/speaker system, only the built-in tv speakers. Since there's no audio signal over the HDMI (because of the computer's limitations), it seems there's no other way to get digital audio to the TV. The computer has an optical (Toslink) output via a mini (3.5mm) Toslink jack that is a dual purpose Toslink/headphone out jack. So it can output digital optical audio. But it seems no tv's have optical in. They only have optical out. The only option for getting digital audio into the tv, to playback over the tv speakers is HDMI. Why don't TV's have optical inputs?
Because TV business is so competitive -- most display divisions lose money -- they get rid of any and all connectors/inputs they can. In this case, toslink input is not common anymore so they don't put it in. Another reason is that they want to push you to buy an AVR or as a minimum, a sound bar where such an input exists.

As mentioned, there is no benefit to piping the best fidelity into those little speakers anyway. So use the headphone output and feed it into an analog input of the TV assuming they have not ditched that also....
 

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Perhaps a pre-owned AVR might solve your problem.
Many TVs still have analog audio inputs as well, which could work if all you need is audio.
Thanks.
She will probably use the analogue RCA inputs on the tv in conjunction with the HDMI for video. I was just trying to see if there was another way she could get digital audio into the tv.

She'll be using Sling to watch tv through her computer while she is temporarily out of the country for her job for a couple months. Her company is providing her an apartment overseas, so she's not even sure yet what type of tv they have in the apt. I just know there's no AVR and sound system connected to it, and for the short time she's there she will just listen to the audio through the tv speakers.

This adapter says it turns DisplayPort + S/PDIF into HDMI output:
Thanks so much for the find, I will look into this!
 

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I'm curious though if the TV will combine video from the HDMI1 input with audio from the Comp or A/V inputs. I've not tried this with any of my TVs, so I don't know. My receivers wont do this unless you specifically tell them to.
Good point. Some TV's have a specific HDMI port that can be used for HDMI video only with audio sourced from the analog inputs (in order to support hookup of components that use DVI for video). Check the TV's manual to see if it supports this. If so, then both options will work. If your TV is not able to source its audio from the analog inputs while sourcing its video from HDMI then you would have to use something like the Monoprice adaptor.
 

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I'm curious though if the TV will combine video from the HDMI1 input with audio from the Comp or A/V inputs..
Mine does. My old cable box inexplicably sent the video via HDMI but the audio via analog stereo. The TV converted the audio to digital and sent it out the optical, but there was some latency. My current cable box sends both video and audio via HDMI, the TV sends the audio out the optical, now with no latency.
 
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