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Optical converter to 5.1, is this possible.


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Old 09-11-2012, 01:09
ocox
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I want to run the audio from my stand alone Blue Ray player (using the Optical out) in to my DVD Home cinema system, to use its 5.1 capability (not sure what the in would be, it has no Optical connection). I have seen converters for sale, but they come across as converting the sound in to stereo. Can anyone enlighten me please?
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Old 09-11-2012, 09:17
grahamlthompson
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Without knowing what input connections your home cinema system actually has there's no way to answer this. Systems like this usually have very limited connection capability.

It would be easily possible if the kit has a single phono connection marked S/Pdif or Digital Audio. Conversion of optical to coaxial digital audio is simple.
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Old 09-11-2012, 09:27
chrisjr
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Make and model of Home Cinema system would help. That way we can advise whether it is even possible and if so what might be required.

The Home Cinema system would need one of two connections to make it possible. Either some form of digital input, either optical or electrical on a phono socket. Or it would require a full set of six analogue audio inputs, one each for the 5.1 channels.

You say it does not have optical. If it does however have an electrical (AKA coaxial) digital audio connection then that is easy. You can get converters from optical to coaxial quite readily. And quite cheaply too

http://cpc.farnell.com/unbranded/pof...tor/dp/AV12737

If it has six analogue phono sockets then that becomes more complex and expensive. That requires a box that can decode the surround sound format coming out of the Blu Ray player (there is no e by the way ) and convert to analogue.

Of course if the Home Cinema has neither a digital audio or 5.1 analogue inputs (or any inputs of any kind which is not uncommon) then there is no way you can connect the Blu Ray to it and get true surround.

If the Home Cinema just has a stereo Aux input (which many have) then the best you'll be able to do is take a stereo output from the Blu Ray and use the Dolby ProLogic facility on the Home Cinema to create a sort of surround effect (assuming it has ProLogic of course).

But as i say it will help greatly to know what you have.
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Old 09-11-2012, 23:12
ocox
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Thanks for the replies so far.

Sorry, it is a PANASONIC SCHT990.
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Old 09-11-2012, 23:25
Deacon1972
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Thanks for the replies so far.

Sorry, it is a PANASONIC SCHT990.
Doesn't look like the Panasonic has any digital inputs, the best it has is audio inputs (phono).

If the Bluray does not have audio outputs (phonos) then.......

There is a converter out there that will convert digital (optical) to phono so you can at least use the DPL on the system.

A search should find something cheaper, but you'll need something like this.....

http://www.cables2u.co.uk/spdif-opti...no-p-1166.html
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Old 09-11-2012, 23:34
chrisjr
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Of course if the Blu ray player has analogue stereo outputs on phonos as some do then no need to convert digital to analogue externally, after all it's already been done for you in the player.

Just need a cable to go between the two. Which is a whole lot cheaper and easier.
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Old 10-11-2012, 04:52
jjne
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http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/5-1-AC3-DT...item3376345c94

Is this the sort of thing you need OP?

(I wouldn't worry too much about it coming from China -- I have been impressed with their unbranded hifi gear of late -- this is, I believe, based around an outdated but still decent Dolby/DTS decoder which once powered some of the receivers on sale -- the one I saw had a Cirrus Logic (not misspelled in my case!) chipset, which isn't too shabby).

Review/hacker site here: http://www.dr-lex.be/hardware/hdar_review.html
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Old 10-11-2012, 11:37
Chris Frost
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The simple answer for ocox is that you're not going to get a 5.1 signal in to the Panasonic SCHT990 no matter what fancy boxes or cables you buy.

The reason is that the Panasonic doesn't have an input capable of accepting a 5.1 signal: No optical, No coax, and certainly no 6x phono 5.1 input so a box like this....

... would be a complete waste of time too.

Quite a few budget Blu-ray players are coming now with just a HDMI out and a digital audio out on either coax or optical. Here's an example of an LG (see page 14 of the pdf manual), so even stereo phono has been ditched!

The answer is the box that Deacon1972 pointed out. Coax out from the Blu-ray player to the box, and then a stereo phono cable from the box to the Panasonic. Set the Blu-ray player menus to downmix everything to stereo. Select the AUX input on the Panasonic to hear the sound from the Blu-ray player.

The SCHT990 manual isn't clear about whether Dolby ProLogic II (DD PLII) decoding also works on the AUX input or if is just for things played from the disc tray. You might have to try both options to see what happens...

For DD PLII press the remote's button with the DD PLII logo.

For Panasonic's own 5.1 decoding press the remote's button with the SFC logo. Repeated presses cycle through the various options. Movie / Sport / Music are the most appropriate choices from the SFC menu.
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Old 10-11-2012, 15:39
ocox
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The simple answer for ocox is that you're not going to get a 5.1 signal in to the Panasonic SCHT990 no matter what fancy boxes or cables you buy.

The reason is that the Panasonic doesn't have an input capable of accepting a 5.1 signal: No optical, No coax, and certainly no 6x phono 5.1 input so a box like this....

... would be a complete waste of time too.

Quite a few budget Blu-ray players are coming now with just a HDMI out and a digital audio out on either coax or optical. Here's an example of an LG (see page 14 of the pdf manual), so even stereo phono has been ditched!

The answer is the box that Deacon1972 pointed out. Coax out from the Blu-ray player to the box, and then a stereo phono cable from the box to the Panasonic. Set the Blu-ray player menus to downmix everything to stereo. Select the AUX input on the Panasonic to hear the sound from the Blu-ray player.

The SCHT990 manual isn't clear about whether Dolby ProLogic II (DD PLII) decoding also works on the AUX input or if is just for things played from the disc tray. You might have to try both options to see what happens...

For DD PLII press the remote's button with the DD PLII logo.

For Panasonic's own 5.1 decoding press the remote's button with the SFC logo. Repeated presses cycle through the various options. Movie / Sport / Music are the most appropriate choices from the SFC menu.
Hello Chris Frost.

Thanks for all your information. I have one question, if I used the box recommended by Deacon1972, would I get a better sound than if I used the SCHT990s Surround Enhancer function? This is what Im currently doing.

Oh to be able to just upgrade the whole system, Im not able financially to do this at present, hence attempting a cheap fix.
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Old 10-11-2012, 15:55
chrisjr
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Hello Chris Frost.

Thanks for all your information. I have one question, if I used the box recommended by Deacon1972, would I get a better sound than if I used the SCHT990s Surround Enhancer function? This is what Im currently doing.

Oh to be able to just upgrade the whole system, Im not able financially to do this at present, hence attempting a cheap fix.
Does that mean you have an audio connection between the Blu Ray and Home Cinema already? If that is the case then forget about buying any extra kit as it will not make one jot of difference.

The optical digital to analogue stereo converter linked to by Deacon1972 simply replicates what is already being done by the Blu Ray if it has a stereo analogue out. In fact it is possible the digital to analogue converter in the Blu Ray is better than the one in that external box.

But it will have absolutely zero effect on how the Home Cinema deals with the input. You would still need the Surround Enhancer to generate a surround effect. So would be no better off.

In fact if the Home Cinema has the ability I would use Dolby ProLogic instead if that is available. I use it on my system all the time watching telly and it does give a pretty decent surround effect.
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Old 11-11-2012, 08:20
Chris Frost
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...would I get a better sound than if I used the SCHT990s Surround Enhancer function? This is what Im currently doing.
See chrisjr's answer. If you already have a connection from the Blu-ray to the surround kit then save your money.

As for sound, DD PLII is a more precise surround decoding system than any manufacturer's own effects processing algorithm. However, what you prefer is a purely personal choice. My advice stands: try the options available and trust your own ears and judgement.
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Old 11-11-2012, 16:48
ocox
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Thanks to all for your help.

It appears that the set up Im using is the best I can get for now, until I can afford to upgrade.
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