We help IT Professionals succeed at work.

Problems with S/PDIF sound output

lyonsjw
lyonsjw asked
on
3,097 Views
Last Modified: 2013-11-09
System:
Brand new multimedia system with ASUS M2NPV-VM motherboard with 2GB RAM and AMD Athlon 64 X2 3800+ 2GHZ CPU.  Turtle Beach Montego DDL sound Card.  Gigabyte GV-NX73T256P-RH GeForce 7300GT 256MB GDDR2 PCI Express x16 Video Card.

Background:
I am using both Dolby Digital test files and a home theater audio video test and setup DVD for doing the main sound setup so that I know I an using sources that have all 6 channels (5.1).  Also the Nero application has an information feature that confirms the source has all channels.  I have an optical connection between the computer and my Yamaha receive.  My receiver shows the type of signal and number of channels it is getting on the front display.

Problem:
All of the hardware is working.  If I play a DVD using the PowerDVD application I get great Dolby Digital from my home theater sound system.  So I know that the sound card and optical connections are working.  If I play any DVD with any other application (Nero, Windows Media Player) I only get stereo sound indicated on the Yamaha front panel and no surround sound from the speakers.  If I play any Dolby Digital Multimedia file from the hard drive using any application I also only get stereo output.

Questions:
At this point I don’t know where I look for the problem.  What part of the system is in control of the Dolby Digital signal (taking it from the DVD or file and sending it out the S/PDIF)?  Is there any utilities available that will help in diagnosing this kind of problem?  What else should I check?

Is there a good source of information on the internet that describes in detail how the Dolby Digital signal is taken from a file or DVD, processed and sent out the S/PDIF?

Thanks in advance for any help
Comment
Watch Question

CERTIFIED EXPERT
Top Expert 2012

Commented:
I think the setting you are looking for is in the application: PowerDVD definitely lets you choose whether to use S/PDIF or analog outputs, and you should see it in Nero and WMP.  I use another player that gives me this option in the configuration.

Author

Commented:
Callandor

I found the S/PDIF output selection in Nero and get no sound when it is selected. I have not found the equivalent in WMP.
CERTIFIED EXPERT
Top Expert 2012

Commented:
What version of Nero are you using?

I saw this bugfix note on http://www.nero.com/nero7/enu/RN_details.html?Nero_Home
Version number 1.0.1.9
Release Date: 2005-12-12
SPDIF output was not working for DVD-Video playback

Update Nero to the latest version if this applies.

Author

Commented:
I am using the very latest version V7.7.5.1 downloaded Jan 07 and WMP 11.  I have XP and have installed all updates.
CERTIFIED EXPERT
Top Expert 2012

Commented:
Can you verify if VLC media player behaves the same way?  http://www.videolan.org/vlc/

Author

Commented:
I will test the VLC application tonight and let you know tomorrow.

Author

Commented:
Nice Try but the VLC application did not work any better then the WMP or Nero.  Anybody have any other thoughts or utilities that might give me some idea where the problem is located.
CERTIFIED EXPERT
Top Expert 2012
Commented:
This one is on us!
(Get your first solution completely free - no credit card required)
UNLOCK SOLUTION

Author

Commented:
Callandor

I have not tried any mixer setting; when the card is set to S/PDIF out all of the various controls do not have any effect.  Thanks for the tip on the driver, don’t know how I missed that.  I will try the C-MEDIA drivers with the Turtle Beach card tonight.

It is interesting that the sound card built into the MB works with WMP, Nero and PowerDVD but not with VLC.  I am not using the stock sound card because it does not have an optical out and it will not do up mix 2 channel to 5.1 when desired.

Anyone have a recommendation of a better sound card?

lyonsjw
CERTIFIED EXPERT
Top Expert 2012

Commented:
The M-Audio Revolution 7.1 is highly recommended by many enthusiasts as a fairly low priced, high quality card: http://techreport.com/reviews/2003q2/maudio-rev/index.x?pg=1  I myself have an M-Audio Delta410 which has served me well over the years.

Author

Commented:
I have rebuilt my system with the C-Media drivers.  Now all sounds come out as 5.1 and with an echo.  I have not found a way to set it up for S/PDIF passthrough. There must be a way to set passthrough.
CERTIFIED EXPERT
Top Expert 2012

Commented:
That feature is loudly proclaimed on their site: http://www.turtlebeach.com/site/products/soundcards/mtgoddl/indetail.asp  Surely it is in the documentation that came with the card?

Author

Commented:
I found the correct C-Media configuration settings.  You have to turn off the 5.1 to get passthrough.  I guess that makes sense.  Now on to the video settings.

Thanks for your help.
Unlock the solution to this question.
Join our community and discover your potential

Experts Exchange is the only place where you can interact directly with leading experts in the technology field. Become a member today and access the collective knowledge of thousands of technology experts.

*This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

OR

Please enter a first name

Please enter a last name

8+ characters (letters, numbers, and a symbol)

By clicking, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.