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HDMI output from computer? What HDMI output?


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I've seen several mentions of "HDMI output [from computer]"

 

What HDMI output?

 

Some sound card? An HDMI output on a video card being co-opted for audio?

 

And do some of these [mysterious to me] HDMI outputs support multichannel?

 

I also posted a "need an introduction" message but only one person responded about one aspect of the post, which I appreciated, but I still "dont' get" the whole computer to sound system "thing".

 

Right now, my computer is on the opposite side of the room from my secondary A/V system and in a different room from my main A/V system. I might be willing to put computers in the area of the audio systems if they offered some practical advantages, but playing music from a computer seems to be more of a computerphile's choice than an audiophile's choice, if you get my drift.

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I've seen several mentions of "HDMI output [from computer]"

What HDMI output? Some sound card? An HDMI output on a video card being co-opted for audio?

 

And do some of these [mysterious to me] HDMI outputs support multichannel?

 

......................................................................................

 

I might be willing to put computers in the area of the audio systems if they offered some practical advantages, but playing music from a computer seems to be more of a computerphile's choice than an audiophile's choice, if you get my drift.

 

1. Yes.

2. Yes.

3. ??? Seems perfectly normal to me.

Kal Rubinson

Senior Contributing Editor, Stereophile

 

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Somebody at "serviio" mentioned using an HDMI cable, but didn't mention from what to what (my Sony receiver does have DSD over HDMI support which I use now, but the only HDMI output on my computer is from my video cards).

 

The idea is to connect the HDMI cable between the HDMI output from your video card (which is also an audio card), and the input of your receiver. Unless you watch only silent movies, you will have probably noticed this transfers multi-channel audio as well.

 

The whole "computer to sound" thing shouldn't be any more difficult to realize than the "iPod to sound" thing. If you don't have audio files or a computer within striking distance of your AV system, then you are probably correct that this isn't worth the trouble. But many people prefer the convenience to a disc player. Admittedly, most of those people focus on two channels, but that really shouldn't matter.

 

Probably the best thing to do is move your computer temporarily within striking distance of your receiver, hook up an HDMI cable, and verify you can play back 2-channel and multi-channel music files.

 

Then focus on how to do this via DLNA.

 

Some links

 

There are also other wireless solutions like Apple TV, which works well for streaming multichannel audio in the context of video, but I personally don't have experience with multichannel audio alone. Other set top boxes probably allow this as well.

 

If you join a website called Computer Audiophile, chances are many here believe that computers offer some practical advantages.

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The idea is to connect the HDMI cable between the HDMI output from your video card (which is also an audio card), and the input of your receiver. Unless you watch only silent movies, you will have probably noticed this transfers multi-channel audio as well.

 

The whole "computer to sound" thing shouldn't be any more difficult to realize than the "iPod to sound" thing. If you don't have audio files or a computer within striking distance of your AV system, then you are probably correct that this isn't worth the trouble. But many people prefer the convenience to a disc player. Admittedly, most of those people focus on two channels, but that really shouldn't matter.

 

Probably the best thing to do is move your computer temporarily within striking distance of your receiver, hook up an HDMI cable, and verify you can play back 2-channel and multi-channel music files.

 

Then focus on how to do this via DLNA.

 

Some links

 

There are also other wireless solutions like Apple TV, which works well for streaming multichannel audio in the context of video, but I personally don't have experience with multichannel audio alone. Other set top boxes probably allow this as well.

 

If you join a website called Computer Audiophile, chances are many here believe that computers offer some practical advantages.

 

I really do not recommend tangling with DLNA. It adds complexity and has equipment specific limitations.

 

Straight HDMI from a PC into an AVR or prepro ought to work just fine, though it gets flaky sometimes in my experience due to pWindows handshake issues on the audio side. It is also cable length restricted - beyond 15 ft. may be iffy - unless you use an HDMI extender.

 

I did use HDMI successfully for Mch audio and video and friends have used it for years from a PC. But, currently I use HDMI for video only and USB for audio.

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I added in the DLNA bit after I looked up his previous posts.

 

I agree, it is probably one of the harder things to do in computer audio, but I think this is what he is trying to do.

 

Does USB work for multi-channel audio?

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I added in the DLNA bit after I looked up his previous posts.

 

I agree, it is probably one of the harder things to do in computer audio, but I think this is what he is trying to do.

 

Does USB work for multi-channel audio?

USB can handle multi-channel. It's down to the DAC.

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USB can handle multi-channel. It's down to the DAC.

 

Yup. But, Mch DACs are scarce and pricey. And, many folks already have their AVR or prepro already set up for Mch and it includes its own DAC. Usually, HDMI is the only way to get Mch sound into those. Typically, and I know of no exceptions, Mch cannot be done via ethernet/DLNA because of limits within the processor, only stereo.

 

I totally eliminated my prepro in favor of a Mch USB DAC and direct HDMI connection to my TV monitor. Am I pleased with my sound? Absolutely. It is much better.

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I've seen several mentions of "HDMI output [from computer]"

 

What HDMI output?

 

Some sound card? An HDMI output on a video card being co-opted for audio?

 

And do some of these [mysterious to me] HDMI outputs support multichannel?

 

I also posted a "need an introduction" message but only one person responded about one aspect of the post, which I appreciated, but I still "dont' get" the whole computer to sound system "thing".

 

Right now, my computer is on the opposite side of the room from my secondary A/V system and in a different room from my main A/V system. I might be willing to put computers in the area of the audio systems if they offered some practical advantages, but playing music from a computer seems to be more of a computerphile's choice than an audiophile's choice, if you get my drift.

 

My external monitor is connected to my laptop via HDMI:

HDMI :: Resources :: HDMI Forum

 

I'm in the same situation as you describe in your last paragraph. I find Open Home/UPnP sorts this quite well.

 

...

 

Then focus on how to do this via DLNA.

 

...

 

Whilst DLNA works with audio AND video, I wouldn't recommend using it for audio apps. That's what Open Home and UPnP are for, as they are simpler to configure:

OpenHome

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Respectfully, I think y'all are making this more complicated than it needs to be.

Computer w JRiver (how 'bout an i3 NUC) $1000 absolute max

to

Oppo 103 (yes, it's an hdmi connection) $499

to

multichannel amp (yes, the Oppo can act as a Pre/Pro) You decide how much you want to spend. You may substitute an AVR here if you like. Or insert a real Pre/Pro...Emotiva XMC-1?

to

5.1 speakers and sub Your choice.

You will have better audio than at least 99% of the readers of this forum. Sorry dudes, MCH is significantly better than stereo. It just is. If you don't believe me ask Floyd Toole or Sean Olive.

Boom. I'm out.

jjk

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I've seen several mentions of "HDMI output [from computer]"

Right now, my computer is on the opposite side of the room from my secondary A/V system and in a different room from my main A/V system. I might be willing to put computers in the area of the audio systems if they offered some practical advantages, but playing music from a computer seems to be more of a computerphile's choice than an audiophile's choice, if you get my drift.

 

 

Actually, the computer-sound system thing is pretty straightforward. Forget HDMI and DLNA for now. These are advanced topics. Forget also for now streaming servers over the network.

 

(a) You need a computer (PC or Mac) with USB2.0 output and with some music playback software. Examples are JRiver, Audirvana, etc.

(b) You need a Digital to Analog (DAC) box that's sits between your computer and your amplifier. Buy a low cost DAC for starters that has USB input, most do nowadays. its RCA out goes into your amplifier. Essentially the PC is replacing your CD player.

 

The benefit is that you can now manage all your music files in one location/PC. You can also select different resolution of music files to purchase.

 

I have found that the Hi-Res (24bit/96) sound much much better than CD, provided your DAC can support this.

 

This is the computer to sound system "thing" in a nutshell. :-)

Let every eye ear negotiate for itself and trust no agent. (Shakespeare)

The things that we love tell us what we are. (Aquinas)

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The original post referenced multichannel and hdmi.

I stick with the recommendation of an Oppo.

1. Highly rated and value priced equipment.

2. Hdmi and multichannel.

3. Arguably the best DAC chip...ESS 9018 Sabre Reference.

4. "For free" you get an outstanding bluray player. With Darbee if you want it.

Best wishes to all

jjk

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The original post referenced multichannel and hdmi.

I stick with the recommendation of an Oppo.

1. Highly rated and value priced equipment.

2. Hdmi and multichannel.

3. Arguably the best DAC chip...ESS 9018 Sabre Reference.

4. "For free" you get an outstanding bluray player. With Darbee if you want it.

Best wishes to all

 

Right, that would be the Oppo 105D, not the 103 or 103D you previously mentioned. The 105D has pros and cons vs. a prepro or AVR, but it is a seemingly cost effective solution that can do Mch via HDMI. Also, Oppo is a great company in my opinion.

 

I am not an owner, but can it also do Mch via asynch USB? Just curious and not looking to buy. Just looking to provide the OP with info.

 

I love Mch, but I use an Exasound E28 DAC via asynch USB quite happily. I did formerly use HDMI into an Integra prepro using an Oppo93 with great success with Mch rips on my PC/NAS. But, there is always something better, and more expensive, of course.

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Right, that would be the Oppo 105D, not the 103 or 103D you previously mentioned. The 105D has pros and cons vs. a prepro or AVR, but it is a seemingly cost effective solution that can do Mch via HDMI. Also, Oppo is a great company in my opinion.

 

I am not an owner, but can it also do Mch via asynch USB? Just curious and not looking to buy. Just looking to provide the OP with info.

 

I love Mch, but I use an Exasound E28 DAC via asynch USB quite happily. I did formerly use HDMI into an Integra prepro using an Oppo93 with great success with Mch rips on my PC/NAS. But, there is always something better, and more expensive, of course.

 

Guys, please read the OP carefully. The person is asking "What HDMI Ouput" [from a computer], not "please recommend me a DAC that had HDMI input etc."

 

I'm reading his/her post as a newbie question.

Let every eye ear negotiate for itself and trust no agent. (Shakespeare)

The things that we love tell us what we are. (Aquinas)

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Fitz,

You are correct sir. The 103 does not have an ESS 9018. It will still work as above though.

I do have the 105D and it works very nicely as above.

Oppo does not support MCH over USB.

Conan, any hdmi output from a computer will do as long as the proper configuration is accomplished.

Be safe.

jjk

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Thanks to all - this is the kind of discussion I had hoped for. "Newbie" only for the computer-to-A/V system aspects; I'm a full-time software developer and long-time musician and / or audiophile.

 

My two A/V systems are already very multi-channel, including ARC for the televisions, only I have no ability (yet) to play audio files on an A/V system, from my main (Windows 7) computer and no co-located computers.

 

I'm not 100% sure how / what the Oppo unit (units?) do, but I know it/they include multi-channel. I have mostly SA-CD, but a handful of DVD-Audio that most of my (mostly Sony) equipment doesn't play.

 

Given the lack of availability of multi-channel analog switches (I have to wait for old Zektors to appear on eBay) and single multi-channel inputs on receivers, it's surprising to me to see some emphasis on multi-channel analog.

 

Windows DLNA / Serviio seem to be out; moving to JRiver next. The "miniDSP" DAC seems nice if I put a Mac with my A/V system, but would the Mac read files from my Windows (as a file server) and then output them to the co-located A/V system?

 

With regard to silent movies, they mostly have sound tracks (see The First Woman On The Moon and the most recent restoration of Metropolis and listen for the Dies Irae in both Metropolis and the theatrical version of Star Trek: Into Darkness]), but I'm talking about multi-channel music; I am most definitely not a videophile.

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Thanks to all - this is the kind of discussion I had hoped for. "Newbie" only for the computer-to-A/V system aspects; I'm a full-time software developer and long-time musician and / or audiophile.

 

My two A/V systems are already very multi-channel, including ARC for the televisions, only I have no ability (yet) to play audio files on an A/V system, from my main (Windows 7) computer and no co-located computers.

 

I'm not 100% sure how / what the Oppo unit (units?) do, but I know it/they include multi-channel. I have mostly SA-CD, but a handful of DVD-Audio that most of my (mostly Sony) equipment doesn't play.

 

Given the lack of availability of multi-channel analog switches (I have to wait for old Zektors to appear on eBay) and single multi-channel inputs on receivers, it's surprising to me to see some emphasis on multi-channel analog.

 

Windows DLNA / Serviio seem to be out; moving to JRiver next. The "miniDSP" DAC seems nice if I put a Mac with my A/V system, but would the Mac read files from my Windows (as a file server) and then output them to the co-located A/V system?

 

With regard to silent movies, they mostly have sound tracks (see The First Woman On The Moon and the most recent restoration of Metropolis and listen for the Dies Irae in both Metropolis and the theatrical version of Star Trek: Into Darkness]), but I'm talking about multi-channel music; I am most definitely not a videophile.

 

If you already have multiple Mch systems set up using AVRs or prepros, direct HDMI hookup should be workable with some limitations. First, there is usually a single HDMI output port on most modern PCs, usually with additional other graphics output ports. It is associated with video/graphics output, and it may be on a GPU card or on the mother board depending on the PC. Note that there is no such thing as an HDMI sound card, but it carries sound in conjunction with video, and it can be used purely for audio up to 7.1 @ 192k or DSD64, depending on what the receiving device supports.

 

The HDMI connection must first be configured and turned on under Windows Display, because it is firstly a graphics output. It should then also be visible as one of the devices under Windows Sound. But, it is a bidirectional connection involving a handshake between the PC and the receiving device. The receiving device must be on and connected to that input of the receiving device. Handshake issues can be tricky sometimes until you master them. The HDMI connection might disappear from or be Disabled in Windows Sound if the receiving device is not on and connected. It is usually best to have the receiving device on and ready to go before attempting to use player software in the PC.

 

Incidentally, I solved much frustration with HDMI handshake issues with a Geffen HDMI Detective+ between the PC and my prepro. That device is always on, so the handshake is never lost, even if the output device is turned off. That requires two HDMI cables, of course. Not sure if it extends the useable cable length - see below.

 

It is usually best to make the HDMI output the Default output in Windows Sound before connecting the PC player software to it.

 

HDMI is technically limited to 15 feet of cable, but some cables are able to go longer. It varies. There are also HDMI extenders, some converting to a dedicated CT5/6 cable and back to HDMI again. I have not used any.

 

Also, there is normally only one HDMI port on the PC. If you wish to connect more than one processor, an external HDMI 1-2 switch (minimum) will likely be necessary. So, only one processor at a time could be used. Not sure about using HDMI adapters with the DVI or DisplayPort outputs on the PC and using them with hi rez Mch audio to multiple processors concurrently, assuming your PC has those in addition to HDMI. I have not investigated those outputs. Also, I have no idea what would happen if you connected the aux display HDMI output of one processor to an input on a second one.

 

You do not need an Oppo player if you already have HDMI-capable HT processors. An Oppo could serve in place of a processor with HDMI in and Mch analog out. I would also avoid DLNA via your home network, even if your processors support it. There may be additional limitations imposed by DLNA.

 

I have used HDMI successfully for PC-to-Integra 80.2 prepro using JRiver as the player for 7.1 PCM up to 192k and 5.1 DSD from SACD rips. Several friends also use HDMI from the PC and JRiver to a Marantz 8801 or Anthem D2V prepros. Mch audio works fine, and video quality is excellent, depending on the PC graphics capability and video player software. JRiver is excellent on video.

 

One footnote. NVidia GeForce GPUs did not support 88 or 176k audio sampling rates when I tried them several years ago. Not sure if they do now. AMD Radeon GPUs and integrated Intel Graphics above 4000 do support those sampling rates. Those two sampling rates are optimal for conversion to PCM from DSD. There are relatively few hi rez recordings natively in PCM that use those sampling rates, but I do have some.

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HDMI is technically limited to 15 feet of cable, but some cables are able to go longer.

 

That's not quite accurate. The HDMI spec makes no mention of cable length. There are requirements for the signal quality at the far end, that's all. How you meet them is of no concern. In practice, it turns out that making a compliant cable longer than about 15 feet is difficult, which is why that's the longest you'll normally come across.

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Thanks to all - this is the kind of discussion I had hoped for. "Newbie" only for the computer-to-A/V system aspects; I'm a full-time software developer and long-time musician and / or audiophile.

 

.

 

@ConsnTheIowan: apologies for me presuming you were a newbie from the tone of your question. If you are a SW Dev guy then all this should be straightforward :-)

 

This site has a search option to find out more about HDMI, DAC etc. etc. Very useful site. Also worth researching on I2S protocol and HDMI.

Let every eye ear negotiate for itself and trust no agent. (Shakespeare)

The things that we love tell us what we are. (Aquinas)

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  • 2 years later...

Old post I know but ran across it while doing a bit of searching. I've got a 10 yo computer I built using a Gigabyte EP45-UD3P motherboard. It's been my main music server all that time but I only had need for 2 channels out. I'd now like to update to a HDMI video card to be able to output multich audio to my pre/pro.  I don't want to spend a bundle here, lord only knows how many more reboots this ole MB has left in it. Can someone recommend a good CHEAP (prefer under $100) video card with HDMI outs? I don't do anything video intensive, no gaming, etc; my cpu is a Intel quad core Q9550 2.83 g and 8  gb of memory. This old box should still have enough muscle to handle anything I need to do if I can just pick up a low cost pci-e 2.0 x16  video card to do the HDMI thing for me.

Any recommendations would be appreciated.

TIA,  Sal

 

"The gullibility of audiophiles is what astonishes me the most, even after all these years. How is it possible, how did it ever happen, that they trust fairy-tale purveyors and mystic gurus more than reliable sources of scientific information?"

Peter Aczel - The Audio Critic

no-mqa-sm.jpg

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Just a bit of an update. My status after posting on boards like this was that Microsoft DLNA didn't work, JRiver didn't work and the JRiver diagnostics program (WhiteBear?) didn't help me get connected either.  Apparently because HDMI is a video standard you have to in some cases "fool" the video card into believing that video is present.

 

Since that time, probably due to some obsure fix buried deep in Windows, DLNA has "come to life" on my main computer system with no help from me, but it's clear that the computerphile and expensive audio people are focused almost exclusively on stereo (stereo started when, the 1950s ???).

 

There was an expensive multi-channel streaming device that I didn't pursue and another reasonably price unit on the horizon, but wouldn't work for some other reason that I don't recall clearly.

 

I would still love to hear of software that would work on my systems and especially work with multi-channel sound.  I'll settle for 5.1, though Dolby Atmos would be cool.

 

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1 hour ago, CornanTheIowan said:

Just a bit of an update. My status after posting on boards like this was that Microsoft DLNA didn't work, JRiver didn't work and the JRiver diagnostics program (WhiteBear?) didn't help me get connected either.  Apparently because HDMI is a video standard you have to in some cases "fool" the video card into believing that video is present.

 

Since that time, probably due to some obsure fix buried deep in Windows, DLNA has "come to life" on my main computer system with no help from me, but it's clear that the computerphile and expensive audio people are focused almost exclusively on stereo (stereo started when, the 1950s ???).

 

There was an expensive multi-channel streaming device that I didn't pursue and another reasonably price unit on the horizon, but wouldn't work for some other reason that I don't recall clearly.

 

I would still love to hear of software that would work on my systems and especially work with multi-channel sound.  I'll settle for 5.1, though Dolby Atmos would be cool.

 

 

My setup (2014 MacMini > HDMI > Pioneer Elite receiver) "just works" - I know that's not helpful, but just some encouragement that it's certainly possible to get 5.1 (probably higher if you have the speakers / receiver that supports it) surround output from bog-standard equipment and standard software (JRiver, Audirvana, Roon, HQPlayer, etc. - all work with this setup).

 

In this case, I'm using the Pioneer's internal DAC (which sounds just fine) instead of some fancy outboard DAC ;) but that's the "price" I pay for saving several thousand dollars on a standalone multichannel DAC.

John Walker - IT Executive

Headphone - MacMini running Roon Server > Netgear Orbi wireless > Blue Jeans Cable Ethernet > mRendu Roon endpoint > iFi Audio xDSD + iFi Audio xCAN > Focal Elegia

Home Theater - Mac Mini running Roon Server > Blue Jeans Cable HDMI > Pioneer Elite SC-81 > MartinLogan Motion series home theater speakers + M&K subwoofer

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On 12/14/2018 at 9:03 PM, Sal1950 said:

Old post I know but ran across it while doing a bit of searching. I've got a 10 yo computer I built using a Gigabyte EP45-UD3P motherboard. It's been my main music server all that time but I only had need for 2 channels out. I'd now like to update to a HDMI video card to be able to output multich audio to my pre/pro.  I don't want to spend a bundle here, lord only knows how many more reboots this ole MB has left in it. Can someone recommend a good CHEAP (prefer under $100) video card with HDMI outs? I don't do anything video intensive, no gaming, etc; my cpu is a Intel quad core Q9550 2.83 g and 8  gb of memory. This old box should still have enough muscle to handle anything I need to do if I can just pick up a low cost pci-e 2.0 x16  video card to do the HDMI thing for me.

Any recommendations would be appreciated.

TIA,  Sal

 

Bump, TIA

"The gullibility of audiophiles is what astonishes me the most, even after all these years. How is it possible, how did it ever happen, that they trust fairy-tale purveyors and mystic gurus more than reliable sources of scientific information?"

Peter Aczel - The Audio Critic

no-mqa-sm.jpg

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