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Alpine MRA-F350 amp w/MacMini Digital out?

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  • Alpine MRA-F350 amp w/MacMini Digital out?

    Thinking of using this amp with my MacMini car install.

    http://www.crutchfield.com/S-9MpbYEW...0&I=500MRAF350

    On Sale
    50w per channel is enough for me, and the 5th channel will let me throw in a small 8in sub w/out much trouble (I don't need a ton of bass to keep me happy).

    Dolby Digital, DTS, and Dolby Pro Logic II processing built-in
    optical digital input
    As far as I can tell, all I have to do is connect a TosLink, and I should have my surround sound... yes?
    http://store.apple.com/1-800-MY-APPL...More=TA968LL/A
    Buy 75%
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  • #2
    MonstrOso, let us know, bceause ever since moving to the MacMini setup from a standards windows box setup, I've had to give up my beloved bass until I get a new amp, or a line driver, or some other proper waay to get multiple channels from that single output. I've been thinking abo ut doing the same thing as you and that is to get a digital amp and be done with it.

    -rep
    replicant
    Audi A4 (flickr pics)

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    • #3
      Not quite

      Originally posted by MonstrOso View Post
      Thinking of using this amp with my MacMini car install.

      http://www.crutchfield.com/S-9MpbYEW...0&I=500MRAF350

      On Sale
      50w per channel is enough for me, and the 5th channel will let me throw in a small 8in sub w/out much trouble (I don't need a ton of bass to keep me happy).

      Dolby Digital, DTS, and Dolby Pro Logic II processing built-in
      optical digital input
      As far as I can tell, all I have to do is connect a TosLink, and I should have my surround sound... yes?
      http://store.apple.com/1-800-MY-APPL...More=TA968LL/A
      That will get you 5 channels for DVDs, which leaves out bass in 5.1 setups. For stereo, the bass is in the left and right channels. You'd need to be able to have some way to split it out to amplify it separately. It might be easier to boost the bass after the amp.

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      • #4
        Note: The MRA-F350 requires a compatible head unit for setup and control, it cannot be used without one. The current list of compatible head units includes (but is not limited to): IVA-D300, IVA-D310, IVA-D900, IVA-D901, DVA-9860, and DVA-9965.
        Looks like you need the headunit as well

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        • #5
          Damn, shouldn't have let my self be blinded by the Digital Optical In
          Back to searching.........................
          Has anyone found an amp w/a digital in that doesn't require a head unit?
          Buy 75%
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          Questions 100%

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          • #6
            What you are really looking for is a sound processor like this
            This still requires a "headunit" of sorts but it could be mounted in the trunk
            Then you will need an amp to send the signal to your speakers. Any amp will work but you will have 5.1 channels and they should probably be amped with a 5 chanel amp and mono amp for the sub. but this is just my $0.02

            -Ben

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            • #7
              Can someone confirm, that the optical output on the Mac mini (and G5, Mac Pro, MacBook Pro) is 5.1? I have implemented a general CoreAudio-based sound control module for QCar and CoreAudio reports the optical output as plain stereo/2 channels.

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              • #8
                So it is unfortunately true. The optical port is stereo-only. There may be a solution for using it for multi-channel sound, but it is not that easy. The multi-channel audio needs to be encoded using some codec, which the amplifier supports, before it can be sent over the optical output.

                http://www.thismuchiknow.co.uk/?p=24
                http://macaudiopro.digitalmedianet.c...e.jsp?id=69934

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                • #9
                  The firewave encodes it to 5.1. Looks like you have to have an external device to do it.
                  Originally posted by ghettocruzer
                  I was gung ho on building a PC [until] just recently. However, between my new phone having internet and GPS and all...and this kit...Im starting to have trouble justfiying it haha.
                  Want to:
                  -Find out about the new iBug iPad install?
                  -Find out about carPC's in just 5 minutes? View the Car PC 101 video

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                  • #10
                    Um. ok. this has been beaten to death before, but i'll cover it again anyway.

                    there are currently no shipping Amplifiers for automotive use that have a digital input that will decode a 5.1 signal. there is a thread dedicated to the options in the audio forum.


                    as for the mini. the problem is likely not the port, but the software. by default, the audio sent from ANY computer (normal sounds played by itunes, system, qt, whatever) over optical will be stereo. to get 5.1 you need to send an ENCODED signal, which is what DVD Player.app (and maybe frontrow??) do if the pass through option is ticked. until someone writes an audio driver/hack to (upmix and) encode to a 5.1 dolby digital encoded stream, it isnt gonna happen.

                    as for the firewave. as stated on the product page it DOES NOT do digital out, it is strictly an analogue device, so its a moot point.
                    www.Bobs-Bits.com - Where Stupidity meets Reality

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                    • #11
                      as for the mini. the problem is likely not the port, but the software. by default, the audio sent from ANY computer (normal sounds played by itunes, system, qt, whatever) over optical will be stereo. to get 5.1 you need to send an ENCODED signal, which is what DVD Player.app (and maybe frontrow??) do if the pass through option is ticked. until someone writes an audio driver/hack to (upmix and) encode to a 5.1 dolby digital encoded stream, it isnt gonna happen.

                      as for the firewave. as stated on the product page it DOES NOT do digital out, it is strictly an analogue device, so its a moot point.
                      I don't get what the firewave brings to the table then. It gets the audio information digitally by firewire, then processes it into 6 channels using Dolby Pro Logic II. Although the output may be analog, doesn't that mean you have 5 + 1 speakers you can connect to after amplifying it?
                      Originally posted by ghettocruzer
                      I was gung ho on building a PC [until] just recently. However, between my new phone having internet and GPS and all...and this kit...Im starting to have trouble justfiying it haha.
                      Want to:
                      -Find out about the new iBug iPad install?
                      -Find out about carPC's in just 5 minutes? View the Car PC 101 video

                      Comment

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