Trying to understand 6ch sound and SPDIF

Trying to understand 6ch sound and SPDIF

Post by felixcc » Wed, 17 Dec 2003 05:39:14

I have a new system which supports 6-channel sound output which I'm
trying to hook up. I find it all a bit confusing, and I'd sure
appreciate some help answering a few questions.

This system has separate analog audio output connectors for all
channels, plus digital output through two separate SPDIF connectors
(one on the motherboard, the other on the ATI All-In-Wonder video
card), plus a digital RCA connector on the ATI All-In-Wonder card.

1. If I hook up to an external multi-channel sound system, I guess it
would be better to use a digital connection rather than the 6 separate
analog channels? If so, which one of the digital connectors? Are all
of them active all the time, or do I have to choose one and find a way
to activate it?

2. Does the digital output include all 6 channels of sound in the
digital data stream? If I plug in a digital link from the computer to
a separate receiver, will it automatically decode and output 6

3. I don't think this system can encode Dolby Digital 5.1, although it
can probably pass it through from a source like a DVD. How is the
Dolby Digital 5.1/AC3 stream different from regular discrete 6-channel
sound, presuming they can both be passed over the same digital link?
Does the receiver decide if the signal is Dolby or not?

Trying to understand 6ch sound and SPDIF

Post by Pris » Thu, 18 Dec 2003 07:08:57

There you have it. If it doesn't encode DD, you can only pass stereo
signals through the digital out.