Solved! Hdmi audio to Home Theater

gijoe50000

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I've got a home theater arriving in the mail soon and I'm just wondering which HDMI port to use. The motherboard z97 Deluxe, or the gpu 1080ti?
Or does it even make a difference?

I've always ignored the HD audio drivers that come with gpu drivers, so I'm not sure if this is what they're supposed to be used for? Or will I get a better sound from the motherboard software, whose drivers are a few years old, since the z97 is 4-5 years old?

The home theater is a HTB3520G with Dolby True HD and ARC.

It also has an optical output, but I heard that optical won'd do Dolby True HD.

Or, again, will it even make a difference?

 

Dugimodo

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The monitor is unlikely to work, it's designed for a TV with ARC functionality and I don't think monitors do that.
I also don't know if you can use a normal HDMI output from the PC as a sound only connection because I'm not sure if ARC sends the Audio down the same pins or not as when used in the other direction. (ARC is audio coming OUT of an INPUT - audio return channel as opposed to it coming out of an OUTPUT from the PC)

But the optical should definitely work, did you set the default sound device of the PC to use the optical output and play some sound? I suspect the issue is at the PC settings end of things. You would also need to change the default audio device to use HDMI if you want to try that again. PC sound will only come out of one output at a time and you need to configure which one.
 

Dugimodo

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Just for Audio it's not important, just set your default audio device to match whatever port you use, and yes that's what the HDMI audio drivers & devices are for.

It also has a digital coax and optical input option which you could connect to your motherboard if you have a digital output and the appropriate cord, many motherboards have that. Either way you should be able to get full surround sound, and with all these options being digital there should not be any noticeable difference in quality regardless of which you use.
 

robert600

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"It also has an optical output, but I heard that optical won'd do Dolby True HD."

I don't think you have any choice but to use the optical ... the home theater you're getting doesn't appear to have hdmi in!
 

gijoe50000

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So, the home theater arrived today, and I can't get it working!

I connected it up, and powered it on, with the optical connected to my PC, and got only a single standby red light on the HT.
I then connected the HDMI cable from the HT to my monitor and got the same result.
When I connect the HDMI cable from the HT to my PC I get a brief flash of the display for a split second, then just the red light again.

I can connect to the HT with my phone, via bluetooth, but I don't get any sound or display.

I don't know if it's just plain broken, or if it HAS to have a compatible TV to work via HDMI? That seems a bit mad.

My monitor is 1.4 HDMI (MHL) and HDCP compatible, and the HDMI cable is a high speed one, from what I've read around, this SHOULD give a display.

I don't have a TV to test it with (I do everything with my PC) so I'm not sure what the deal is.
Basically nothing works, DVD tray, etc. When I press the power or source buttons, the red light just goes away until I cycle power at the wall.

Can anyone shed some light on this?


 

Dugimodo

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The monitor is unlikely to work, it's designed for a TV with ARC functionality and I don't think monitors do that.
I also don't know if you can use a normal HDMI output from the PC as a sound only connection because I'm not sure if ARC sends the Audio down the same pins or not as when used in the other direction. (ARC is audio coming OUT of an INPUT - audio return channel as opposed to it coming out of an OUTPUT from the PC)

But the optical should definitely work, did you set the default sound device of the PC to use the optical output and play some sound? I suspect the issue is at the PC settings end of things. You would also need to change the default audio device to use HDMI if you want to try that again. PC sound will only come out of one output at a time and you need to configure which one.
 

gijoe50000

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Yea, I have the sound panel on the PC open all day, changing between various default devices.. optical, HDMI, GPU-HDMI etc. And I can see the sound level bouncing up and down as I was playing music in the background to make sure there was sound to hear.

The problem is though, that the HT seems to be basically dead, except for the single red light. And the split second flash of the display when I initially power it on, but this only happens when the HDMI is connected to the PC.

This leads me to believe that either: It MUST be connected to a compatible TV to get HDMI feedback, and to set it up using the TV display, or else it's just plain broken.

I had an older Philips model a few years ago, with a SCART connection, and I could just connect audio-in, composite, no problem without a TV connected. I assumed this would be the same..
 

Dugimodo

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There would be no reason to have an optical input if it won't work with one. Does it have a remote and does that or the unit have a power button or a source/mode selection? I'm thinking it's more likely a setup issue than a faulty unit, although both are possible of course.

Does your monitor have speakers to test if sound is coming out of the HDMI?

In my home theatre setup with a PC connected to a Receiver and the receiver connect to a TV I have an issue where I get no sound even when the windows levels show it going up and down like you describe if I turn the PC on first. I need to make sure the reciever and TV are both on and the input selected before booting up the PC or it doesn't work. You may have a similar issue where the PC needs to detect the home theater is connected before it'll output sound, but if the home theater is in standby waiting for an input that might be an issue. This is for HDMI which has 2 way communication, optical should just work so that one confuses me.
 

gijoe50000

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Yea, the remote seems to "work", it has the same Power and Source button behaviour as the main unit. ie, when I press any button, the red led on the unit just disappears. Until I power cycle the unit at the wall, then the red led comes on, until I press either of these buttons.

There was no sound from my monitor speakers. They're really bad, tinny speakers but nothing on them from the Home Theater.

I tried rebooting and cold booting the PC, but still nothing happens. When the PC is turned off, or the HDMI cable is disconnected the red led goes away and the unit is totally dead.

It seems the red led only comes on if the HT is connected to the PC via HDMI, even if the HT is disconnected from the mains. And it will only connect via Bluetooth if the HDMI is connected. It's like as if the system is getting a scrap of power from the HDMI or something..

Besides that it, looks like the unit is just totally dead.
 

robert600

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Am I understanding that you are connecting via hdmi diectly from your pc to the HT??? That will not work ... as I mentioned earlier ... your HT has no pure hdmi input ... it only has ARC which will only function when connected to another device that supports ARC.

Given that ... I would focus on the optical. As A first step, I think you should make sure the PC is outputting through the optical connector. To do that, plug one end of the optical cable into the PC, leave the other end unplugged. Configure your PC to use the optical connector then play an audio file - the end of the optical cable that is not plugged in should be glowing (red, I believe) and perhaps pulsating with light. This is the optical signal ...can you get it to do this? The HT has nothing to work with if the signal is not there.
 

gijoe50000

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Yea, the optical was fine and bright.
I ended up taking the unit apart and having a look inside, and found that the main circuit board had a big crack on it. The monsters who repackaged it for the eBay Global Shipping Programme were probably tossing it around the place.


I did a bit of dirty soldering on it and it's working fine now, started up properly first time.
I'm running the audio from the PC via optical, and outputting to the monitor via HDMI to do the setup. All working fine. There's also an option in the menu called "browse PC" so I assume there's some way to do that, probably over ethernet\network or something.


I was kind of suspecting a power problem alright, since there was no display at all on the main unit, but it was only a guess, as I didn't know the ins-and-outs of it. But thanks to all for the advice and tips, and helping me to get there!

Much appreciated..

 

Dugimodo

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I take it this was not a brand new unit? because if it is I would have sent it back rather than fixing it myself.
If someone who didn't know how to find and solder up the crack tracks had got it they would have had a total dud on their hands.
 

gijoe50000

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No, just a random eBay auction. I think it was about £29, but the hassle and time of shipping and repackaging, etc, would be a pain. Hardly worth it for the cost (and size) of it.
I'm not an expert at soldering or or repair or anything, I just like taking things apart, but they usually stay apart..
I just got lucky this time.

The sound is vastly superior to my old logitech z506 alright, although I probably shouldn't be testing and blasting it at 2:00am!
 

robert600

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Excellent ... 2:00 am blasting is why I live in the country ... nearest neighbour is a 1/4 mile away.
 

gijoe50000

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Yea, me too, it's great!
There's a kind of freedom with sometimes having it a little louder than you even like it yourself, just because you can.

With the added bonus that you don't have to listen to other people's crappy loud music at 2:00am..

 
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