"Newbie-dad" to PS-3 wants advice on digital sound options - High-Def Digest Forums
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Old 06-05-2010, 10:30 PM
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Default "Newbie-dad" to PS-3 wants advice on digital sound options

I'm a proud but somewhat out-of-date parent of a deliriously happy newly 17 year old who just got a used CECHA-01 PS-3 for his birthday. Unfortunately the analog output is lop-sided so I'll be sending it back and getting another one, but here are my details and questions, ready for when I get one that works:

My "old" SharpVision 32 inch flat wide-screen TV does 1080i, but is pre-HDMI, so I'll have to use component video till I can upgrade the TV. That means I can't get audio from the HDMI stream, and I have to get it from the Scart connector. But researching the PS-3 on the web tells me the analog outputs are unusually low level, which isn't good for noise.

When I do go HDMI, I read confusing reports on extracting more than 2-channel audio from the HDMI stream. How do I make this work? I certainly don't want to use built-in speakers on a new flatscreen TV. What do people do in this case?

My Sony ES-777 receiver's digital inputs (electrical and optical) are broken until I can fix them; I may have to invest in a new receiver. Either way I'll have to use component video and analog audio until then. Is there any encoded (surround) audio option on the analog outputs?

The PS-3 has an optical sound output. I presume I can get multi-channel sound from that. Does anyone know of a converter than I can buy that will take either the HDMI or the optical stream and give me two or five channels of audio that I can feed into the stereo or 5.1 analog channels of my receiver?

Lastly, Googling tells me that I can't bring an optical stream into a PC sound card and get the 5.1 (or whatever). Is that true? Or is there a sound card that will do that?

I'd very much appreciate specific help on my questions, but if there are "stickies" or FAQs someone could point me to, I'd appreciate that too.
I can develop embedded computer systems for airplanes but I'm totally out of date on modern audio/visual technology. Getting old stinks ;-)

Many thanks!
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Old 06-08-2010, 01:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by julianop View Post
My "old" SharpVision 32 inch flat wide-screen TV does 1080i, but is pre-HDMI, so I'll have to use component video till I can upgrade the TV. That means I can't get audio from the HDMI stream, and I have to get it from the Scart connector. But researching the PS-3 on the web tells me the analog outputs are unusually low level, which isn't good for noise.
Video and Sound options in the PS3 menu are independent of each other, so you can get audio from any connector you like, regardless of what cable you're using for video.

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Originally Posted by julianop View Post
When I do go HDMI, I read confusing reports on extracting more than 2-channel audio from the HDMI stream. How do I make this work? I certainly don't want to use built-in speakers on a new flatscreen TV. What do people do in this case?
When you choose your audio connection, HDMI or optical, you choose the number of channels and audio formats that your playback device (receiver, tv, etc) supports.

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Originally Posted by julianop View Post
My Sony ES-777 receiver's digital inputs (electrical and optical) are broken until I can fix them; I may have to invest in a new receiver. Either way I'll have to use component video and analog audio until then. Is there any encoded (surround) audio option on the analog outputs?

The PS-3 has an optical sound output. I presume I can get multi-channel sound from that. Does anyone know of a converter than I can buy that will take either the HDMI or the optical stream and give me two or five channels of audio that I can feed into the stereo or 5.1 analog channels of my receiver?
The PS3 only supports stereo analog output. Dolby Prologic processing in your receiver will create a surround effect from a stereo signal, but it doesn't compare to discrete multichannel surround. There are digital surround decoders available that would convert an optical signal to 6-channel analog, but they generally cost more than a digital receiver.

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Originally Posted by julianop View Post
Lastly, Googling tells me that I can't bring an optical stream into a PC sound card and get the 5.1 (or whatever). Is that true? Or is there a sound card that will do that?
It's possible that you could record a 5.1 stream over optical but I'm not aware of anything that simply accepts an optical signal, decodes it and plays it back in real time. If such a hardware/software combination exists it would likely cost more than a new receiver as well, not counting the hassle of getting it to work.
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Old 06-22-2010, 03:48 PM
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Thanks for your reply, MrAngles.

We replaced the unit with a factory refurbished unit, and the analog audio output from it works fine.

I've seen a couple of amplified PC speaker systems with digital 5.1 capability, but you're right - they're quite expensive - so we'll make do with the two-channel output until I can get around to fixing the receiver.

Thanks.
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