Rear Channels Play Through Front Speakers

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MrSalty

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Oct 21, 2015
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So I have been trying to get my surround sound to work properly for a while now and I'm finally giving in and asking for help.

I am trying to get 5.1 surround sound from my PC to my surround sound system.
I have tried two different computers (one running Windows 7 and the other running Windows 10) and am having the exact same issue.

Just as the title says, when I play sound that is supposed to go to the rear speakers it comes out of the front speakers. Windows recognizes that the speakers support 6 channels and it allows a 5.1 configuration.

The left, right, center, and subwoofer all seem to work properly through the sound tests I've done.

I am running audio from my PC to my speakers via HDMI.

My speaker system is a VIZIO SB4551-D5
 

VincentP

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In Windows, open playback devices.
Right hand click the audio device for your hdmi output / amplifier and select "Configure speakers".
Select the correct configuration from the wizard.
Click on individual speakers to test them.

 

MrSalty

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I have tried this multiple times.

When I click the left rear speaker, sound comes out of the left front speaker and when I click the right rear speaker, sound comes out of the right front speaker.

Thanks though!
 

MrSalty

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The speakers are relatively simple being an out of the box system.

When I test each speaker through the amp's built in speaker test they all play beautifully.
 

VincentP

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I use a Yamaha AV receiver and it has audio modes for 5.1 or 2.1.
It is strange though that the centre speaker works if the problem is in the amp.
There are two "5.1" options under Windows configuration. You would typically use the surround option with the surround speakers to the side rather behind the listener.
Is there any other sort of audio input you can try, e.g. optical or coaxial?
 

MrSalty

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I have tried optical and I occasionally get sound out of the rear speakers but seemingly only when the sources outputs in DDL. Using HDMI was an attempt at having uncompressed surround sound compatible with more sources.
 

VincentP

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HDMI audio is a digital audio source just like optical or coaxial.
The only way to have the audio decoded by the PC is to use individual analog outputs for each channel.
You typically wouldn't want this as the decoder in a decent amp is better than the CODEC on your motherboard audio.

 

MrSalty

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I realize that HDMI is digital but I am under the impression that it is a higher bandwidth than optical.

Maybe calling it uncompressed was incorrect but my research suggests that HDMI is better for surround sound.
 

VincentP

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HDMI, optical or coaxial will all send digital audio as Dolby Digital, DTS or PCM depending on the source and if there is any internal conversion.
All can support Dolby Digital or DTS, but optical and coaxial are limited to 2-channel PCM as I understand it.
I think audio from the PC will typically be PCM unless playing a DVD or Blu-ray disc.
 

MrSalty

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This seems right but with all due respect, none of your replies have really helped me with the issue I'm having.
 

Michael_427

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Oct 7, 2016
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On my RX-V377 I had to hit the "Straight" button. Forces it to use straight decoding. Without that, my center would play as a phantom on both L and R, and both surrounds would play in tandem with their respective L or R. It was infuriating me, but your thread put me over the edge and i was searching for how to do a factory reset on my receiver, and one of the steps was hit the Straight button, AH HA moment!

So thank you for helping, not sure your Vizio will have that option though.
 
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