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  • Dolby 5.1 digital in car?

    Just wondering if it were possible to achieve dolby 5.1 digital in the car without the use of a headunit.

    Say i had an motherboard with onboard digital output, just wondering if there was anything that will allow me to connect my amps via rca and then have have some device send it via digital to the onboard soundcard?

    I plan to run 3 amps

    Amp 1# Powers front speakers
    Amp 2# Powers Rear Speakers and centre. (this will be a 4 channel)
    Amp 3# Powers Subs

    Is this at all possible? I don't plan to do this for awhile but was just wondering.

    Thanks in advance
    CarPC: Currently in progress...

  • #2
    There's a prior post on this subject somewhere on the forum.

    You need a stand alone signal processor with digital input. The tough part is many use a proprietary connection. Look at car dvd product lines to see if something fits your needs. There are a few people using an in dash Alpine unit for this purpose.

    If you can find the post I mentioned, it listed a couple of possible brands/models.
    -TJ
    Smart Playlists Plugin for RoadRunner
    CarPC - 05 Acura TL Navi (pics soon)
    Retired CarPC - 03 Infiniti Qx4

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    • #3
      it's possible. You got it backwards though. You need to enable digital out on your motherboard. Then connect the digital out to a Dolby Digital 5.1/DTS decoder. There's a thread about the Sherwood DD5.1/DTS decoder here somewhere, search for it. The decoder has the front,rear, center and sub output. Then you connect the outputs to the amp via RCA jacks.
      NEW complete and updated My project with 100+ pics on 7-4-03
      If you have a Shuttle FV24 motherboard in perfect working condition for sale, please PM me.

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      • #4
        another option is the Alpine PX-H700 processor that has optical input (3 actually if I remember right). This also has a rotary knob for volume too. there is a guy in the forum that uses it. He says it is awesome. It runs for about $800 retail, less online maybe. (or you can get the MEGA$$$ processor that Alpine has in its F#1 Status line)
        Search the forum for the Alpine.

        Ryan
        Just getting started........

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        • #5
          Okay, first, is there a difference between 5.1 and Dolby digital 5.1? (aside from analog vs. digital outputs?

          To get 5.1 in a car, all you need is a sound card that has 5.1 output, like the Audigy. You'll need three din->RCA cables. Connect them to the jacks on the sound card, then out to the amps. Unless you're trying to avoid the analog outputs, but there eventually has to be a D/A converter in there somewhere, it might as well be in the sound card. This way is the cheapest/easiest way to get 5.1 in a car.

          Turtle Beach and some other cheaper cards do 5.1 for less than the price of an SB Live or Audigy 5.1, just check around. Also, a bunch of the miniITX mobos have 5.1 in the on-board sound.

          Regards,

          Kris
          (I apologize if I misinterpeted the subject, but that's my thoughts. )
          How Much Horsepower Can I have And Still Go To Heaven?

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          • #6
            I got sucked into this car computer stuff again <sigh>

            So now I have on order, the Audigy 2 NX (USB 2.0, does DD5.1 and more)

            Clarion APX600.5 - eBay
            5 channel amp (75w x 4 components; LF/RF&Center + 190w x 1 sub (2ohm)

            MTX 6304 - surplus, laying around
            150w x 2 channel amp to power rear 6x9's.

            Yes, this means I won't be using one of the clarion's channels. The Audigy will be taken apart and and all various inputs/outputs and controls will be mounted logically. I only want to see maybe 3 or 4 of the buttons/knobs of the unit, namely a VOLUME knob.

            The source is an 850mhz, 20gb laptop with a custom mounted slim DVD/CDRW drive, with a USB 2.0 Cardbus card. The display is the liliput touchscreen xga. GPS is from deluo (Routis 2004) with their GPS reciever. Wireless internal network for home use is through USB 802.11b. Internet is through my Sprint PCS phone (USB, unlimited data between the two phones that the wife and I have, only $99/mo, called PCS Vision). Datalogging of the car is through the serial port.

            Haven't figured out the power supply stuff yet, should start on this as things start to arrive soon. I'll post back with results then. I don't see why it wouldn't work, except it's tough to install a center speaker of any kind on my car. If there is noise from the power, the whole thing minus the amps will run off it's own sealed lead acid 12v battery using a marine battery switcher (surplus from another project).

            Oh, and yes... I'm unemployed and bored. So if you have money, please send my way (started our own company, it's barely paying the bills, and keeping me occupied).

            And no, I don't watch dvd's or even listen to music when I drive, so I don't even know why I'm doing this... oh, I remembered, I wanted nav in the car.

            I hate you all

            91 Stealth RT/TT
            CarPuter: Inspiron 5150 P4 3.0ghz; Built-in WiFi; Deluo GPS; Radio Shark; OBD1; Nostromo Speedpad
            Audio: Audigy 2 NX; Clarion 500.5 amp; 100.2 center channel amp; Kicker Solo-baric L7 10" Sub
            Display: Lilliput 7" Touchscreen

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            • #7
              Originally posted by aphesis
              Just wondering if it were possible to achieve dolby 5.1 digital in the car without the use of a headunit.

              Say i had an motherboard with onboard digital output, just wondering if there was anything that will allow me to connect my amps via rca and then have have some device send it via digital to the onboard soundcard?

              I plan to run 3 amps

              Amp 1# Powers front speakers
              Amp 2# Powers Rear Speakers and centre. (this will be a 4 channel)
              Amp 3# Powers Subs

              Is this at all possible? I don't plan to do this for awhile but was just wondering.

              Thanks in advance

              cproaudio is right, you got it backwards..
              The idea of a 5.1 should be plain and simple, output all 6 channel sound into separate speakers.

              I have the same set-up like what you have in mind although it's not in my car yet, its in my homemade home theatre, since my dvd player has 5.1 output (its RCA), all I did is connect 6 PC speakers, each one set already has its own built-in amply...

              For a carputer (assuming you can playback dvd) you can use an internal or external soundcard that has 6 channel output. most of the ones I've seen has a normal 3.5mm sockets but you can easily get a cable that has rca on the other side, In my case I built my own, easy two wire soldering...

              I found a cheap soundcard for $AU99 (AV Labs Audacity). This is in my wish list since right now I'm still busy with my DC-DC PSU...

              danon
              [....99.9%]
              [HW] 566eMHz/128mb/6gb, FlyVideo3k, RandMgps, M1-ATX, 7" Lilliput, VGA2AVadptrFor2ndVideo, 4CH/100rms, 10"Sub, 40AhDeepCycleTank
              [....99.8%]
              [SW] XP/MMC/FP:D3,FlyTV/AxifeFM,CarMM?
              [Working on] puttingBackEvrythg.

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              • #8
                so suppose you get a decoder working, and figure out where to mount the center channel, and have seperate amp channels for all these speakers...

                How much actual audio content out there is actually in 5.1, and can you maintain it while converting to MP3? I know that most audio has the old prologic analog standard built in, and that is maintained with MP3 encoding. Even if you only plan to use the 5.1 for movies can you maintain 5.1 when converting to divx, or do you have to have DVD?

                mike
                91 cadillac sedan deville, winXP, FV25 with Celeron 800, Redant 7" widescreen in dash, Opus DC-DC, Irman, Digital Cable remote(lots of buttons), 120 gig 7200rpm 8meg cache WD hard drive, VI power mobile HD rack, mediaengine

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                • #9
                  I have an alpine pxa-h510 (will be) hooked up via toslink to the computer (santa cruz). When watching movies, I set windvd to output raw pcm stream and then the pxa-h510 automatically pics that signal up and processes it. When I'm not watching movies, the processor will also automatically send sound to all four speakers and subwoofer-even though i'm not listening to 5.1 stuff. I dont' have a center speaker so I dont' know if that would play.

                  -Jason

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                  • #10
                    If a computer has 5.1 output (onboard sound or soundcard), does that mean it already can do dolby/dts decoding and such, or do you need a seperate decoder like suggested in other threads?

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