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Old August 7, 2010, 11:09 PM
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Default What's with onboard sound these days?

I've got a setup in my garage that didn't work out as planned. Wanted to go digital to the HK receiver I've got here but my mobo doesn't support what's required by the reciever since it's a pretty old receiver (HK AVR80). So just to get thing's working I'm using the analog out from the mobo (Asus M4A785). BTW the receiver is driving some pretty good "book shelf" size speakers ATM.

I gotta say I'm pretty impressed with the SQ! All the nasties I used to associate with onboard sound, (i.e. noise, hiss, whines & pops) just isn't there. I can tell there's a little bit of high end detail missing vs. my better receiver in the basement but it's still a lot better then I expected.

I guess there's no point to this, just wanted to post my impressions.
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Old August 8, 2010, 03:21 AM
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You're absolutely right. While onboard sound still cannot compete with higher end DACs in terms of fidelity ..it's not the shit that people make it out to be.
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Old August 8, 2010, 03:52 AM
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if the question arises, then you need a dedicated unit. if not? itll do.

but,as a general rule of thumb its ok. has been ok for a few years.
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Old August 8, 2010, 06:55 AM
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Yup.... onboard sound has come a hell of a long way in the last 10 or so years.

What's the issue with digital o/p to your amp though? Does your amp only accept "coax" spdif? (Looks like the motherboard only has optical). I've been running digital out for quite some time now (couple of different amps, several different audio sources), and the only issue I've had is that one of my older amps required that I drop the bitrate down.
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Old August 8, 2010, 04:52 PM
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Yeah the AVR80 only has coax digital. I made an adapter the go to the mobo header but when trying to figure out why it wouldn't work I found out that the receiver can only use 44.1 and the mobo only does 48 or 96.

I've got a DIY USB DAC kit that AFAIK is PDG . If only I could find the little baggie of parts.
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Old August 8, 2010, 05:06 PM
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Is that a realtek audio chipset on that? I was just having a look at an old "instructions" pdf for the realtek control software that allows for 44.1, but it looks like it's describing a really old set of drivers as the settings are broken down into "Studio" quality (DVD - 48K) or CD quality (44K).

Maybe an older set of drivers would do the trick? Anywise... it sounds like you've already got it working, but if you're interested in what I'm talking about it's at the bottom of this PDF.....

http://www.google.ca/url?sa=t&source...mFYzxnW1FVgsDQ
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Old August 8, 2010, 07:13 PM
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Thanks, I'll look into it again. I should really do a try this receiver on my HTPC. It has an asus P5E-VM HDMI that has a lot of different sample rates just to make sure this reciever's digital coax is working properly. It's labaled as Laser Disk Digital Audio.... shows it's age. Not sure if the two formats are the same or not. I should also try conecting this computer to my other HK to make sure this mobo header is working right. I can't select s/pdif digital coax as the default output on this computer but that's probably because there isn't a compatible device on the other end of the wire so I'm guessing that's why it's not showing as an option?

[edit]Just looked and this board has a via chip[/edit]
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Last edited by biff; August 8, 2010 at 07:23 PM.
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Old August 8, 2010, 07:39 PM
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hrmmmm......

ASUSTeK Computer Inc.-Support-

from the instruction manual pg. 40, it looks like the coax out goes through some form of daughter board. Doesn't look like you can just jury-rig a 2 pin to rca jack for coax out. I've never tried to use a motherboard header for coax.... maybe they all need something like that? If so, I wonder if they're universal.... seems to me I've got something in my tickle trunk that looks a hell of a lot like that daughterboard.
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Old August 8, 2010, 08:09 PM
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I managed to dig that daughter card out of my misc. box, it is an ASUS (would have to be at least 3 years old, if not older) and I can verify that there's a little bit more to it than just a straight line from the connector to the rca jack. Not a hell of a lot, but it looks like there's a capacitor in series with a couple of resistors in parallel on the center post.
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Old August 8, 2010, 08:28 PM
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I've got one of those asus daughter boards too but probably a bit older. Tried that too - no dice. I don't recall there being anything inline with the output, just an inverter IC to buffer the input IIRC... and I think some SMD caps to for the PS to the IC. FWIW all the stuff I looked up on it seems everyone does the jury-rig header to RCA. I really should just start swapping equipment to see exactly where the problem lies. just too bad it a royal PITA to unhook everything and start toting around 50lb receivers but i think it's the best way to start the trouble shooting. I seem to recall that my HTPC wouldn't show the digital outputs as possible output devices either but once I pluged in the receiver it showed up in the list and everything went perfectly. Only one way to find out . Or I could just say F it! and go drink beer and throw on some tunes and go back to my speaker building.... hmmm.
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