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  • CarPC audio wiring choices....

    Hey guys, I know there are one million and one threads that almost match this already, But I need some specific advice as I cant continue sifting through any more of the threads getting a semi answer to my predicament..

    I do thank you for your time in advance as the help and support from you guys here at mp3car is amazing.!


    First up i have my self a fairly basic CarPC getting ready to go in. The important part of it you all need to know is the motherboard: ASRock A75M-ITX

    Now to my predicament.

    I'm trying to decide how to go about getting the Audio from my CarPC to my Speaker/Sub Amps (5 Amps to be precise, 6 RCA inputs)
    What I need to keep in the process is the ability to use Balance and Fade.

    Wiring Method 1:

    3.5mm jack --> 3.5mm/RCA --> Front Speaker RCA input
    3.5mm jack --> 3.5mm/RCA --> Rear Speaker RCA input
    3.5mm jack --> 3.5mm/RCA --> Subwoofer RCA input

    Wiring Method 2:

    Optical Out --> Optical/RCA --> MPQ-5XO or MPQ-7B --> To Amps via RCA

    Wiring Method 3:

    2 or 3x 3.5mm jack --> 3.5mm/RCA --> so form of power addition to match high level input --> INT-2BX --> To Amps via RCA


    So my questions are, Which option is going to be better for me wanting the better of quality out of them and keeping the ability to have Fade and Balance in tact. If the Sub has to be on any specific channel i guess having it on the rear channel would be fine? If it gets its own even better.

  • #2
    None of the methods you show will allow you to fade or balance. You will only be able to adjust your sub level.

    The computer control will use surround sound which means for most music you will hear nothing from the rear speakers unless you have a mode that supports this.


    There was already a discussion about this elsewhere about using a specific DAC.
    It will use your optical output and feed it into a fully functional converter that will allow a lot more flexibility than anything you have listed there and cost about the same or maybe slightly more.

    You will have to look for it but the information within it is well worth the effort.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by redheadedrod View Post
      None of the methods you show will allow you to fade or balance. You will only be able to adjust your sub level.

      The computer control will use surround sound which means for most music you will hear nothing from the rear speakers unless you have a mode that supports this.


      There was already a discussion about this elsewhere about using a specific DAC.
      It will use your optical output and feed it into a fully functional converter that will allow a lot more flexibility than anything you have listed there and cost about the same or maybe slightly more.

      You will have to look for it but the information within it is well worth the effort.
      Ok thanks for that ill do some more digging, but if anyone knows of this discussion and has a link would be greatly appreciated.

      Comment


      • #4
        So even with this Realtek HD Audio Manager i cant output my music and what not via 3x 3.5mm jacks to 3 sets of RCA plugs use 1 set to Front, 1 set to Rear and 1 set to Sub
        Speaker Plug Theory
        I would just un-check the center optional speaker (highlights in yellow), and maybe check the speaker fill (highlighted in green).
        Also with the plugs highlighted in red i can set them to what i like. (aka have all speakers front or all rear)

        To me that looks like it would work as I click each speaker in that picture i get sound from that specific one so i would assume the same in a car?

        the only addition I would need is a line driver/pre amp on each set of RCAs before they get to my amps.?

        Comment


        • #5
          I know it's more expensive, but you've already got a computer setup and the amps. My route was to use a fully functional DSP instead of just an EQ in between the computer and amps. Not only will it give you complete control, but it'll give you far better SQ in the end. I used an optical connection to my DSP and used it's DAC after processing has been applied so that I'm not going through the conversion process more than once.
          Computer is in the car, but in a very "raw" install right now.

          Worklog - here

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by FockMasterDan View Post
            I know it's more expensive, but you've already got a computer setup and the amps. My route was to use a fully functional DSP instead of just an EQ in between the computer and amps. Not only will it give you complete control, but it'll give you far better SQ in the end. I used an optical connection to my DSP and used it's DAC after processing has been applied so that I'm not going through the conversion process more than once.
            Ok that's some good info right there

            With the MiniDSP 2x8 your using, have you/can you get a pic or two of the setup cabling from the PC to DSP (DIGI-FP to MiniDSP) please it would help me a bit..

            Also on that note will what i suggested before with jsut the 3x 3.5mm to rca with a line driver to amps work the same jsut not the quality of the MiniDSP?

            or maybe something like This will work from Toslink/Optical to the 5.1 i want?
            Last edited by tjr1990; 03-30-2013, 05:00 AM.

            Comment


            • #7
              So I have a Toslink cable going from my soundcard's optical out to the optical in on the Digi-FP card. You can see it here right in the middle.


              The Digi-FP card is jumpered internally to the 2x8, it's a IO card made by the same company as an expansion option. Here is a circuit board bench test shot, you can see the wide white cable in the middle.


              After that it's just RCA-RCA from the DSP to the amps.

              There are other DSP options out there, but if you're a DIYer the MiniDSP route is a really fun one to use and save some cash.

              If you want to retain potential surround sound I would go method 1 and figure out some software DSP solutions that you can run on the computer to get the control that you want. It will work to directly send the signals to the amp (or to an external EQ if you want), it's just a matter of how much control you get while in the car.

              There are also more powerful external EQs that can give you the fade and balance control that you'd want, but you'd have to research those. I didn't dig too deep into particulars because I went the DSP route, which was primarily for the active crossovers. I could have achieved the other functions through a simpler setup, but going active requires a DSP.
              Computer is in the car, but in a very "raw" install right now.

              Worklog - here

              Comment


              • #8
                awesome, thank you, you managed to answer my question and give me a good lot of info about them DSP's.

                They have got quiet a nice price tag on them though :L

                also I'm assuming they have software to control balance/fade etc...

                Comment


                • #9
                  Yeah the DSPs come with factory software to control all of that. Here is someone else's screenshot of the output page on the MiniDSP software.



                  If you aren't looking for that pricetag I would check out some EQs that have a remote control unit that mounts up front.
                  Computer is in the car, but in a very "raw" install right now.

                  Worklog - here

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I've looked and looked at EQs and jsut cant seem to find a suited one :L if anyone is currently using an EQ and likes it feel free to drop a name here

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      One other note, I won't ever build a system without time alignment again after having it. It makes an incredible difference. I seriously underestimated how much I'd appreciate it until I went that route. The MiniDSP applies tuning changes in real time while connected to the unit, so you can dial it in and listen as each change effects the sound.
                      Computer is in the car, but in a very "raw" install right now.

                      Worklog - here

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I'll second the time alignment... once you have heard how well it cleans up the sound, it's hard to imagine going back.

                        I use the JBL MS-8 DSP fed by a USB DAC. Stereo only in, and the DSP takes care of the rest, including fader. balance, etc.


                        Before looking into time alignment I was set on the Clarion EQS746 EQ because it can take stereo in and seperate into FL FR RL RR and subs, and still give the clean sound output that the USB DAC feeds it, to your amps. Only $60 too, but no time alignment. Did I mention CLEAN output?

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          as much as id love the JBL MS-8 the price stops me lol...

                          But i will defiantly consider the Clarion EQS746 as its well within my price range.

                          thanks

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I'm using a Rockford Fosgate 3Sixty.3 hooks up to optical and is configured with a Windows PC. Also has a remote with 2 configurable knobs. For some reason the remote is disabled when plugged in to a PC though.

                            I found it on Amazon for around $430 USD which isn't much cheaper than the JBL, I don't know which is superior though.

                            Are you wanting surround sound in your car or are you focused on stereo only?

                            You could feed the analog outs from the mobo to one of these processors for surround sound. Another option is an Alpine I remember seeing that has Dolby Digital decoding built in.
                            2008 Grand Prix GXP
                            • Winbook TW801 8" Windows 8.1 Tablet
                            • RF 3Sixty.3
                            • 4ch Alpine on factory bi-amped Monsoon speakers
                            • Directed HD-Radio
                            • I need to post a built log

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              well I'm happy with stereo, but id still like to be able to use fade & balance on that signal still.

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