Surround Sound Cards - Recommendations

title says it all

Surround Sound Cards - Recommendations

Postby PhilB on Sun Jan 06, 2008 4:28 am

Looking for some ideas on the best setup for DVD audio to surround sound speakers. I was just using S/PIDF audio from my media server to a DVD player that is located next to the tv. That DVD player finally died and I would like to drive the 5.1 speakers directly from the media server.

Questions:

1 - What sound card are people using for this?
2 - Can the individual channels be controlled/adjusted from XL?
3 - Sometimes we like to turn off the surround sound and just use the center channel speaker. i suppose if I can do #2, this is possible via XL button?

If I can get this working, I will drop a DVD drive in the mediaserver and not use a DVD player at all!

I am using ZoomPlayer in this setup.

Thanks for any help,
PB
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Re: Surround Sound Cards - Recommendations

Postby lpg on Wed Feb 06, 2008 7:40 pm

My solution has produced incredible sound for me but it is expensive. I use the LynxTwo-B from http://www.lynxstudio.com approximate $900us. I have it connected directly to 3 amps and then to my Martin Logan speakers. Under XP Lynx provides a tray volume control that will alow you to create four sound profiles that are keyboard controlable. They aslo provide a command line interface that lets you execute scenes and other functions of the Lynx.

All of this is great but there have been problems with channel steering. If you play/pause skip chapters alot this may not be the solution for you. It seems when the stream stops the channel placement gets mixed up(More in zoomplayer less in Theatertek). I have not had this problem as much under Vista but the keyboard control does not work because of the change to the windows API.

What seems to work best with analog are applications control the application volume like zoomplayer not the windows volume slider.

Hope this helps.
Larry
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Re: Surround Sound Cards - Recommendations

Postby defrag on Wed Feb 06, 2008 7:53 pm

I use an Auzen X-Plosion 7.1 DTS Connect (link) with s/pdif to an A/V receiver. For most AVI, DVDs I let the filters send direct via s/pdif and let the amp sort out what configuration. The card really comes into play when listening to music, as it will encode to DTS 5.1 on the fly (similar to the nvidia soundstorm that was on the old nforce2 motherboards).
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Re: Surround Sound Cards - Recommendations

Postby PhilB on Thu Feb 07, 2008 12:40 am

I settled on replacing the dead surround sound DVD player with a similar unit that takes optical input and does the decode. I imagine that eventually, PC peripherals will get better at handling this stuff inside the box.
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