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Cheapest way convert USB Audio to either SPDIF or TOSLINK

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  • Cheapest way convert USB Audio to either SPDIF or TOSLINK

    I want to connect my laptop that doesn't have a spdif connection to my H701.

    I already bought a box that converts SPDIF to TOSLINK, because the dock I was planning on using already had SPDIF.

    Thanks

  • #2
    First thing we need to do is sort out what is what.

    SPDIF = a standard format for sending digital signals

    TOSLINK = an optical connector invented by Toshiba, almost an industry standard now on opticalcables

    SP/DIF can be thought of as a set of rules that keeps everything compatible. So if you have optical cable or digital coax they can both use SPDIF, it is kind of like a digital pipeline between electronics regardless of the connenting cable. Then through this digital pipeline we can send many different digital signals -- PCM, DTS, dolby digital, etc.. A stereo pair is usually sent as PCM. (Pulse Code Modulation)


    SO you have a digital out on your docking station, is it Coax with a RCA connector or something else?

    If you have a digital out via coax with RCA, it is very simple to convert to optical with TOSLINK connector.

    Here is an example of these converters.


    And finally a USB to optical unit that is easy, cheap, and high quality is the M-Audio Transit, can be had on eBay for $60-70, it would act as your soundcard and has both analogue and Optical digital output.(Digital out via TOSLINK and MINI TOSLKINK)


    Laters
    ///
    Ours is the age that is proud of machines that think and suspicious of men who try to.

    ___________________________________
    Current SYSTEM
    AMD64X2 2.5
    Xenarc
    ZAPCO DSP-6
    ARCAUDIO SE Amps
    Rainbow Profi CS365 & Profi Vanadium 12"

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    • #3
      Since i could never get my creative 2nx to work properly.
      I decided to look for something similar and i found this on ebay, and i found this one:
      http://cgi.ebay.com/USB-5-1-Ch-optic...QQcmdZViewItem
      Looks cheap, and it does not even require an ext. power source, but i'd like to see if anyone has experience with them first before iget one.

      Comment


      • #4
        Sorry for not fully explaining my situation, here goes.

        My original plan was to use my laptop (Dell 600M) with a dock that has SPDIF digital xocial out to a converter that would change the signal to optical TOSLINK, which would then go to my H701.

        However, since dells have a proprietry third pin in their power sources, the dock will not work off of my PSU (carnetix P1900). Thus, my dilemna of how to get my sound to my H701. I'd strongly prefer not to go through the headphone jack or a expensive soundcard since i have the Alpine H701 as a digital processor.

        Thanks

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        • #5
          Well the Transit is a great card, under $70(sometimes $30-40 used on eBay), i use one to get Digital out from my computer to my Zapco DSP-6.

          What do you consider 'expensive'? You may have a hard time finding a quality USB/firewire solution cheaper than the transit, although i am sure there are some out there..
          Ours is the age that is proud of machines that think and suspicious of men who try to.

          ___________________________________
          Current SYSTEM
          AMD64X2 2.5
          Xenarc
          ZAPCO DSP-6
          ARCAUDIO SE Amps
          Rainbow Profi CS365 & Profi Vanadium 12"

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by hypnotiq View Post
            Sorry for not fully explaining my situation, here goes.

            My original plan was to use my laptop (Dell 600M) with a dock that has SPDIF digital xocial out to a converter that would change the signal to optical TOSLINK, which would then go to my H701.

            However, since dells have a proprietry third pin in their power sources, the dock will not work off of my PSU (carnetix P1900). Thus, my dilemna of how to get my sound to my H701. I'd strongly prefer not to go through the headphone jack or a expensive soundcard since i have the Alpine H701 as a digital processor.

            Thanks
            there are several cheap soundcard in the market with spdif out (coax, toslink, or both), like terratec aureon dual usb, its about 30$, or you can buy a really cheap CMedia CM108 based adapter, for ~10-15$. usually the spdif output is not used, but the chipset can handle it, just connect to the 1st pin with soldering... it has a smart driver with control panel, several options (equalizer, enviromental effects, etc), kernel streaming support and others... (i think, the terratec has cm108 too)
            "case": Skoda Superb Elegance 1.8T
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            • #7
              Originally posted by Felix509 View Post
              Well the Transit is a great card, under $70(sometimes $30-40 used on eBay), i use one to get Digital out from my computer to my Zapco DSP-6.

              What do you consider 'expensive'? You may have a hard time finding a quality USB/firewire solution cheaper than the transit, although i am sure there are some out there..
              Originally posted by FPeter View Post
              there are several cheap soundcard in the market with spdif out (coax, toslink, or both), like terratec aureon dual usb, its about 30$, or you can buy a really cheap CMedia CM108 based adapter, for ~10-15$. usually the spdif output is not used, but the chipset can handle it, just connect to the 1st pin with soldering... it has a smart driver with control panel, several options (equalizer, enviromental effects, etc), kernel streaming support and others... (i think, the terratec has cm108 too)
              Thanks for all the replies thus far.

              I'd like the unit to be under 30, the aureon usb looks pretty good. Any idea where to buy it in the US?

              I'd love to get the transit at 30-40, but at 70+shipping, it's a little out of my price range.

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              • #8
                Totally just get the Tutrle Beach Audio Advanatge Micro -- $25-$30 and has toslink out. It's a fairly good quality piece too. I have one and it works well. Can be had at newegg, turtle beach's website, and probably many other places.
                -James
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                • #9
                  Well, since i am a lil bored today, i did some ebay browsing:

                  $40 shipped USB --> digital converter


                  $37 shipped USB --> SPDIF Toslink


                  USB --> digital for $30 shipped


                  These designs are very simple and utilize widely known and proven chips from Burr Brown and crystal semiconductor.. I imagine there is not much that can go wrong with them except solder coming undone..

                  --

                  Laters
                  Ours is the age that is proud of machines that think and suspicious of men who try to.

                  ___________________________________
                  Current SYSTEM
                  AMD64X2 2.5
                  Xenarc
                  ZAPCO DSP-6
                  ARCAUDIO SE Amps
                  Rainbow Profi CS365 & Profi Vanadium 12"

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Extide View Post
                    Totally just get the Tutrle Beach Audio Advanatge Micro -- $25-$30 and has toslink out. It's a fairly good quality piece too. I have one and it works well. Can be had at newegg, turtle beach's website, and probably many other places.
                    Originally posted by Felix509 View Post
                    Well, since i am a lil bored today, i did some ebay browsing:

                    $40 shipped USB --> digital converter


                    $37 shipped USB --> SPDIF Toslink


                    USB --> digital for $30 shipped


                    These designs are very simple and utilize widely known and proven chips from Burr Brown and crystal semiconductor.. I imagine there is not much that can go wrong with them except solder coming undone..

                    --

                    Laters
                    Thank you both. Just placed an order for turtle advantage for 25 shipped brand new

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      i am using a Kohjinsha UMPC running Geode LX800

                      which of these USB audio consume the least CPU power?

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by kwchan View Post
                        i am using a Kohjinsha UMPC running Geode LX800

                        which of these USB audio consume the least CPU power?
                        I think most USB cards consume less CPU power..... or at least that is what I have read. Onboard cards will always eat more.
                        Nirwana Project, the Android/Win 7 hybrid system!

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Felix509 View Post
                          which is better for optical out? this or Tutrle Beach Audio Advanatge Micro?

                          The price is the same but i am not sure what chipset the Tutrle Beach using for optical out.

                          Features wise, I will prefer Tutrle Beach as i can use it for analogue too.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by kwchan View Post
                            which is better for optical out? this or Tutrle Beach Audio Advanatge Micro?

                            The price is the same but i am not sure what chipset the Tutrle Beach using for optical out.

                            Features wise, I will prefer Tutrle Beach as i can use it for analogue too.
                            If you plan on using this with XM and or HD radio, I would research. I bought the Advantage SRM and it sucked because it will only play through the 2 front speakers, were as the SoundBlaster I had played through all 4.
                            Nirwana Project, the Android/Win 7 hybrid system!

                            1X Ainol Novo Flame Tab
                            4X MK808b
                            3x Perixx Touchpads
                            3x 7 inch Screens
                            1X 7 inch motorized Screen
                            1x Win 7 PC

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