how to force 5.1 sound from laptop to sound system

newfiedog95

Estimable
Apr 27, 2015
7
0
4,510
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I have a Toshiba laptop with 1 head phone jack, 1 mic jack, 1 hdmi jack, 1 vga jack, 2 usbs and 1 usb 3.0. i have a sony home theater system (bdv-e2100) it has 1 arc enabled hdmi output, a left and right analog audio jacks and 1 digital optical audio cable.

I have my laptop connected to tv via hdmi i have my tv connected to my sound system via arc hdmi, also connected with audio jack and connected with the digital optical jacks.

my computer gives me the options to switch to 5.1 in the speaker settings for my tv but the sound only comes out of my left and right speaker

so my question is what do i have to do in order to get 5.1 surround sound from my laptop to my sony home theater system

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
UPDATE


When i go into the sound properties and go to my tv then supported formats it even says it can support 6 channels of audio. do i need some sort of program to tell my computer what speaker to send the audio too?
 

newfiedog95

Estimable
Apr 27, 2015
7
0
4,510
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When I connect the laptops hdmi directly to my theater system i lose all sound and picture, when i go into my play back devices in my sound options there is nothing listed at all

I would like to avoid forking out more money for this sound system if possible i already bought a digital optical cable today because i read somewhere that that was the problem and it has helped it gave me sound out of my front left and right speaker but not the 5.1 like i wanted
 

ssddx

Glorious
Moderator
test another device in place of the computer (say a dvd player). does your system output 5.1 ? if not, perhaps the HT is not capable of such input (which isnt uncommon on cheap units)

do a speaker test on the pc in the speaker dialog box. does it work? if not, even with 5.1 selected double check your tv's hdmi ARC output settings to verity that your tv is outputing 5.1
 

newfiedog95

Estimable
Apr 27, 2015
7
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4,510
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my tv is a smart tv and when using netflix it does output full 5.1 sound. when i do a speaker test for my front speakers they make sound when i do a speaker test for my sub-woofer no sound when i do it for my rear speakers my front speakers make sound.

where would the options for the arc hdmi be? i've searched all the normal settings and have yet to find it

my tv is a 3D sony smart tv
 

ssddx

Glorious
Moderator
if your tv's netflix smarttv app and ARC are working fine i'd say everything is capable of 5.1 and you can ignore what i said about tv settings.

on your laptop, right clicking on the sound icon, playback devices, click hdmi output or your tv (whichever shows up), configure. you are sure this is set to 5.1 and you accepted the change correct?

if the above is true then you may want to update your audio and graphics drivers for the laptop and then give it a try. i have encountered some cases where older drivers were not allowing full surround over hdmi, strange as that sounds.
 

newfiedog95

Estimable
Apr 27, 2015
7
0
4,510
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i manually updated every sound card and graphics card in my device management and triple checked the sound configuration it is on 5.1 but the tests on put noise out of the front left and right speaker... is there some simple option or solution that i am missing here??

also thank you for your help this far
 

ssddx

Glorious
Moderator
a few tests you could do to try and rule out a few things:

-if you have another laptop or pc (or know someone with one) hook it up via hdmi and see if it works fine. if it does, its likely driver based on your laptop side. if it doesnt, could be that the tv doesnt accept 5.1 inputs or a setting limiting you but needs the test below to confirm.

-hook a dvd player up in the same manner as you did the pc, see if you get 5.1 (note: using the big dvd player/receiver combo box that came with the HT is NOT okay for this test). borrow a dvd player from a friend if you need to for a few hours. this is important because it also allows you to double check if your tv is actually accepting a 5.1 input (and isnt limiting you to stereo!)

-swap the hdmi cable that you use for the laptop->tv connection and try it between the tv->receiver. if everything works fine with your tv smart netflix app and 5.1 the cable is fine. you can put it back when done.

it could very well be that since your tv is a stereo device that sound is getting transmitted to it only in stereo though i've seen many others with the same hdmi arc setup and it works fine. hooking up different devices to test this is important to see if this is the case or not.

--

are there alternatives to hdmi?

possibly. you will want to check if your dvd/receiver unit is capable of 5.1 from its optical jack. if it is, an external soundcard for your laptop which supports formats for 5.1 over optical (compressed audio formats) then you may be able to get it working in this manner.

--

this would have been a whole bunch simpler if cheap HTIB's had 5.1 compliant hdmi inputs...

this is why i prefer full blown AVR /receivers better.
 

newfiedog95

Estimable
Apr 27, 2015
7
0
4,510
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on my computer my ty is listed with the ability to use 6 channels of audio. i disconnected my hdmi from my tv to my ht and only used the digital optical. when using netflex that way i still get 5.1 surround sound

but when i use my laptop that way i only get left and right speaker. so why is it that my computer knows the tv takes 5.1 and my tv know my ht takes 5.1 but im not getting 5.1 is there some option or program i can use to force it?
 

newfiedog95

Estimable
Apr 27, 2015
7
0
4,510
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ok here's an update i am now getting sound out of all my speakers except my sub woofer. now when i do a sound test for the front and rear right speaker sound comes out of the back and front right speakers as well as the right hand side of the center speaker. when i do the left hand side test sound comes out of the front and rear left speakers as well as the left hand side of the center speaker. is this normal? or is there a way to get each speaker on its own channel?
 

ssddx

Glorious
Moderator
you still need to test another source on the input line of the tv (such as a dvd player or another computer on the hdmi in)

what you have tested above is that the tv can output 5.1 on optical and hdmi (we already knew about the hdmi). what is nice to know is that it seems 5.1 is working for optical on the receiver which means if all else fails completely that an external soundcard with optical support should fix the issue and allow 5.1 in a worst case scenario.

it sounds like you just found the mode on your receiver or in settings on the pc to push sound to the other speakers to expand 2.0 sound across both sets of speakers (on my full AVR receiver this is called ext stereo mode). true surround output will play across each speaker individually.

--

in short...

hook up a dvd player or another pc to the hdmi input on the tv (preferably test both types of devices) and respond with what happens.
 
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