Windows 10 - Surround Sound - Optical - Not Functioning Correctly

Discussion in 'Home Theater PCs & Equipment' started by Grayflag, Jun 14, 2017.

  1. Grayflag

    Grayflag n00bie

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    Since upgrading to Windows 10, my surround sound has not worked.

    My audio receiver has 2 inputs, optical & stereo phono, so my only option is using the optical for surround sound.

    What I don't get is that Dolby Digital tests fine (see below).

    This has dogged me for a long time and I cannot find a solution. Any help would be much appreciated.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  2. pendragon1

    pendragon1 [H]ardness Supreme

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  3. SirMaster

    SirMaster 2[H]4U

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    What program are you trying to play surround sound from? I haven't had any problems bitstreaming DD or DTS surround sound on my Windows 10 via HDMI or Optical.
     
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  4. pendragon1

    pendragon1 [H]ardness Supreme

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    yeah sorry I forgot to mention that too. DD and DTS will work for movies but you cant use them for games/windows sounds anymore. prior to the AU you could have DD or DTS for all sound output. if you have something other than realtek that might just work fine, like onboard or stand alone SB. I just turned on my amps "neo 6" sim-surround and it works good enough for now.
     
  5. Grayflag

    Grayflag n00bie

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    Thanks, that's about what I had concluded as well--it is just pretty unbelievable. This was an issue in the pre-release Technical Preview of Windows 10, which was almost 3 years ago...crazy that I've had to use simulated surround sound this entire time.

    Each time I've come to this conclusion I think, "Well, I guess I'll get a sound card." I just can't actually accept that I will have to spend money because of this complete failure by Microsoft.

    I'll look around for some sound cards and if you have any recommendations, I'll take them.
     
  6. Grayflag

    Grayflag n00bie

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    Chrome YouTube, VLC, Witcher 3
     
  7. SirMaster

    SirMaster 2[H]4U

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    Well, Youtube doesn't have surround sound audio in the first place, only stereo.

    VLC works for DD/DTS for me when I enable the use S/PDIF option:
    [​IMG]

    Witcher 3 doesn't output DD or DTS audio so it wouldn't normally be surround sound over S/PDIF. It will work in surround just fine over HDMI audio out though.

    I guess I was confused by when you said you did the DD and DTS tests which worked fine because those tests are simply bit-streaming DD and DTS clips which really has nothing to do with how you would do surround sound from a video game like Witcher 3.

    You are not so much talking about outputting DD or DTS but you are talking about converting PCM audio into DD or DTS.

    Your Optical is functioning correctly if the DD and DTS tests work and if you can play a movie in surround sound which has a DD or DTs audio track inside it.

    What isn't working for you is DD or DTS encoding, which is a different issue entirely.
     
  8. pendragon1

    pendragon1 [H]ardness Supreme

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    I don't know the details but it came down to a licensing issue between dolby and ms. sound blaster cards with optical work fine though, from what ive read, I guess they paid up.
     
  9. Grayflag

    Grayflag n00bie

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    Thanks, I tried enabling this option, but still could not get surround to play in VLC. The mp4 test file plays the rear L R in front and doesn't play the SUB at all.

    The reason I brought up the test in Windows' sound playback preferences was because I'm really confused on how it recognizes 5.1 surround with the test tones, but no other program I have tried will play surround audio. I keep rounding back to maybe having the receiver setup wrong, but that DD and DTS test tells me I'm setup correctly on that end. Also, in Windows 7, where surround worked fine, I could actually select Dolby 5.1 as a default output, but this seems to have been replaced by the below 2 channel selections and menu.

    Unfortunately, I am unable to test my GPU's HDMI out because my receiver only has an ARC HDMI out and no in.

    [​IMG]
     
  10. Grayflag

    Grayflag n00bie

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    Could this have anything to do with the Dolby Access app in the Microsoft Store? https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/store/p/dolby-access/9n0866fs04w8
     
  11. pendragon1

    pendragon1 [H]ardness Supreme

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    umm prob not since that's just for atmos support, avr and headphone. I played with it a bit and windows virtual 7.1 surround combined with my amps neo6 sounds better to me, even on headphones.
     
  12. Grayflag

    Grayflag n00bie

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  13. pendragon1

    pendragon1 [H]ardness Supreme

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  14. Grayflag

    Grayflag n00bie

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    Good point--the whole deal is a bit messy. If I put this in, I have 2 cables, a spitter, and a power adapter + potential latency vs. 1 cable; if I put a sound card in, I have a clutter of audio outputs from my MB, GPU, and then sound card; or I buy another surround system with an HDMI input, which I really just won't do.

    Well, the splitter is cheaper but messier then the sound card, so I guess I just need to decide between the two.
     
  15. pendragon1

    pendragon1 [H]ardness Supreme

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  16. SirMaster

    SirMaster 2[H]4U

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    I've never had anything other than 2 channel options in that drop down list. But when you are playing surround sound DD or DTS, those options don't matter at all. Those options are only for PCM audio output and when you are using the Windows sound mixer, but DD and DTS are bit-streamed formats. Imagine them as like sending a zip file to your reciever, and your reciever extracts it and understands it. When you are bit-streaming DD or DTS from the PC, Windows can't alter, mix, or do anything to that signal.

    Are you sure the file you were playing in VLC had a DD or DTS audio track?

    I tried the Optical out from my onboard Realtek and it's working fine for surround in the latest W10 build and worked fine in all previous builds as well so I really don't think it's W10 itself causing the issue.
     
  17. pendragon1

    pendragon1 [H]ardness Supreme

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    the issue is that you used to be able to select DD or DTS from the sound format menu and windows would output DD or DTS for everything, games, youtube, windows sounds etc. now it doesn't, it only has the 2 channel options. trust me, ive been fighting/dealing with it since win10 first came out. you were able to use a hacked driver until the AU in august, now nothing work except new hardware. if I reload my system to win 7/8 and install the newest realtek drivers DD and DTS show up.
     
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  18. SirMaster

    SirMaster 2[H]4U

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    Ah, well that's a different issue IMO than surround sound optical not functioning correctly. I mean the only thing that you would have add surround sound is games. Windows sounds and Youtube are stereo and even if you encoded them into DD or DTS format they would still be stereo. Movies will still always bitstream surround sound even without the DD or DTS options to pick in windows sound settings. So yeah this is really just about surround sound video games over S/PDIF.

    In fact, you don't really want to encode windows sounds and youtube into DD or DTS as that would actually lower the quality from their original stereo PCM formats (though I doubt anyone would actually notice).
     
  19. Grayflag

    Grayflag n00bie

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    Thanks for the feedback. I'm not sure if this is the case with my problem though. Here is the file I am using to test in VLC: https://ia800406.us.archive.org/7/i...CAC3MP4DTSWAV/5.1 Surround Sound AAC Test.mp4

    and here is the properties of the file, but perhaps the file is not a good test? This is why I keep coming back to the playback device sounds properties, because it is the only way I can anything to correctly test my 5.1 surround.

    [​IMG]
     
  20. Grayflag

    Grayflag n00bie

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    Yes, exactly. I struggled for a long time in determining whether this was a Realtek driver issue or Windows 10 issue or Dolby licensing issue. And thanks for the internal sound blaster card recommendation. It seems the cleanest fix. Still sad that a fix seems necessary.
     
  21. Grayflag

    Grayflag n00bie

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    On an unrelated note, are my screenshots insanely large? I'm using Jing/screencast to post, but I am new to using 4k as my desktop resolution and the screenshots look crazy big...
     
  22. SirMaster

    SirMaster 2[H]4U

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    Yep, that file is a problem. It's AAC 5.1 audio which is not bit-streamable because your audio reciever does not support it. You need to test with a file that has DD or DTS audio.

    Like this: https://nicko88.com:5001/fbsharing/bK7FZI4N

    Play that in VLC and enable S/PDIF output.
     
  23. sharknice

    sharknice [H]ard|Gawd

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    You probably have windows scaling on. The scaling makes the things you're screenshotting bigger. Then when you look at the screenshot file it's scaling that so it's bigger too.
     
  24. DeathFromBelow

    DeathFromBelow [H]ardForum Junkie

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    I don't remember Windows ever doing DD/DTS encoding on it's own, just passthrough. Was that a Windows 10 thing?

    For games I've always used a Creative Sound card and the bundled encoder to get DD/DTS 5.1 over TOSLINK.
     
  25. sybreeder

    sybreeder Limp Gawd

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    Windows 10 will not passthrough 5.1 sound from windows itself. Only when encoded to DD/DTS.And only if decode is set to passthrough DD/DTS
    I use Asus Xonar DX with Dolby Digital Live and 5.1 works on windows and games fine.
    AAC 5.1 will be played as PCM Stereo
     
  26. pendragon1

    pendragon1 [H]ardness Supreme

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    yes realtek over optical used to be able to live encode to DD and DTS. maybe it wasn't true DD and DTS but an up-mix(idk) but it worked quite well for everything, games, windows sounds, youtube, twitch, stereo movies, etc etc. the key words is USED to and REALTEK. you guys have creative cards so thanks for chiming in but you don't have the problem we do, realtek.