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Surround Sound for the Ultimate Gaming Experience. Which move do I make?

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
So, my set up is as follows, I have an Optical Cable running from my onboard Realtek ALC892 to my Denon AVR-488 Receiver. The Denon then powers 1x Definitive Technology Mythos Gem 7 (Center Channel Speaker), 2x Bose 701 Floor Standing Towers (Front L+R )and then 2x Bose 301 speakers (Rear L+R). I bought the Denon AVR-488 without researching it first because it seemed like a great deal at the time (bought it for only $50), but then come to find out it only does HDMI Pass-Through.

Now, I do get full surround sound when gaming, I use Dolby PLII and Neo 6 decoders on the receiver, but only at 96k and the sound coming from the rear does sound a bit 'artifical'. Now, I use the term 'artificial' because it doesn't have the same depth as sound that comes from the rear when playing a movie using the DTS or Dolby Digital decoder.

So, my options moving forward. I have an opportunity to get my hands on an Onkyo SR-TX608 HD receiver. I don't know if it would be a better move for me to upgrade the receiver and run the audio and video all through one HDMI cable coming out of my 6970 or am I better off just buying a full on discrete Sound Card? I can get the Onkyo SR-TX608 for $200.

TL;DR
I have aN ALC892 optical cable out to Denon AVR-488. Should I upgrade to Onkyo TX-SR608 and use HDMI from 6970 to receiver or should I buy a discrete sound card and keep my current Denon AVR-488?

SOUND PROCESSING: ALC892 OR ATI HDMI OR DISCRETE SOUND CARD
RECEIVER: DENON AVR-488 OR ONKYO TX-SR608
CENTER CHANNEL: DEFINITIVE TECHNOLOGY MYTHOS GEM 7
FRONT LEFT+RIGHT: BOSE 701 FLOOR STANDING SPEAKERS
REAR LEFT+RIGHT: BOSE 301

MY MAIN OBJECTIVE IS TO GET THE BEST POSSIBLE 5.1 QUALITY SURROUND SOUND FOR GAMING!
Edited by dade_kash_xD - 10/6/11 at 7:28pm
Miami Heat
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[Intel] i5-2500k @ 4.7ghz 24/7 5.2ghz MAX stable [Asus] P8P67-EVO [XFX] 6970 x 2 CrossfireX [G. Skill] Ripjaws X 4GB C7 Kingston HyperX Cooler 
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[Kingston] 2x V+ SNVP325 128GB Raid 0 NONE! xD [Corsair] H100 Push/Pull 4x TT Blue-Eye 94 CFM ... Windows 7 Ultimate 64 Bit 
MonitorKeyboardPowerCase
[LG] 47"47LG90 120hz 1080p [Corsair] K60 [Corsair] HX1000 [Cooler Master] HAF 932 Black w/ 12 Fans 
MouseMouse PadAudioOther
[Logitech] G9X [Razer] Vespula [Creative] Titanium Fatal1ty -> [Denon] AVR-488... Beats By Dre Beats PRO powered by Denon AVR 488 
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Miami Heat
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[Intel] i5-2500k @ 4.7ghz 24/7 5.2ghz MAX stable [Asus] P8P67-EVO [XFX] 6970 x 2 CrossfireX [G. Skill] Ripjaws X 4GB C7 Kingston HyperX Cooler 
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[Kingston] 2x V+ SNVP325 128GB Raid 0 NONE! xD [Corsair] H100 Push/Pull 4x TT Blue-Eye 94 CFM ... Windows 7 Ultimate 64 Bit 
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[LG] 47"47LG90 120hz 1080p [Corsair] K60 [Corsair] HX1000 [Cooler Master] HAF 932 Black w/ 12 Fans 
MouseMouse PadAudioOther
[Logitech] G9X [Razer] Vespula [Creative] Titanium Fatal1ty -> [Denon] AVR-488... Beats By Dre Beats PRO powered by Denon AVR 488 
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post #2 of 8
EDIT: nvm
Edited by MasterCheese99 - 10/6/11 at 7:39pm
post #3 of 8
Master, actually read what they're asking. Anyway, upgrade the receiver and go HDMI out.
post #4 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by dade_kash_xD View Post
So, my set up is as follows, I have an Optical Cable running from my onboard Realtek ALC892 to my Denon AVR-488 Receiver. The Denon then powers 1x Definitive Technology Mythos Gem 7 (Center Channel Speaker), 2x Bose 701 Floor Standing Towers (Front L+R )and then 2x Bose 301 speakers (Rear L+R). I bought the Denon AVR-488 without researching it first because it seemed like a great deal at the time (bought it for only $50), but then come to find out it only does HDMI Pass-Through.

Now, I do get full surround sound when gaming, I use Dolby PLII and Neo 6 decoders on the receiver, but only at 96k and the sound coming from the rear does sound a bit 'artifical'. Now, I use the term 'artificial' because it doesn't have the same depth as sound that comes from the rear when playing a movie using the DTS or Dolby Digital decoder.

So, my options moving forward. I have an opportunity to get my hands on an Onkyo SR-TX608 HD receiver. I don't know if it would be a better move for me to upgrade the receiver and run the audio and video all through one HDMI cable coming out of my 6970 or am I better off just buying a full on discrete Sound Card? I can get the Onkyo SR-TX608 for $200.

TL;DR
I have aN ALC892 optical cable out to Denon AVR-488. Should I upgrade to Onkyo TX-SR608 and use HDMI from 6970 to receiver or should I buy a discrete sound card and keep my current Denon AVR-488?

SOUND PROCESSING: ALC892 OR ATI HDMI OR DISCRETE SOUND CARD
RECEIVER: DENON AVR-488 OR ONKYO TX-SR608
CENTER CHANNEL: DEFINITIVE TECHNOLOGY MYTHOS GEM 7
FRONT LEFT+RIGHT: BOSE 701 FLOOR STANDING SPEAKERS
REAR LEFT+RIGHT: BOSE 301

MY MAIN OBJECTIVE IS TO GET THE BEST POSSIBLE 5.1 QUALITY SURROUND SOUND FOR GAMING!
That's because you aren't getting real surround sound (You're getting matrixed sound - 2 channels expanded to surround via the receiver's DSP). You need to get a sound card that supports Dolby Digital Live.

After that replace the Bose
AMD, I give up.
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AMD, I give up.
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post #5 of 8
checkmate.
post #6 of 8
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nugu View Post
That's because you aren't getting real surround sound (You're getting matrixed sound - 2 channels expanded to surround via the receiver's DSP). You need to get a sound card that supports Dolby Digital Live.

After that replace the Bose
I figured as much because the only way I can get "surround sound" when gaming is if I set my receiver to PCM. From what I understand, PCM is a 2.0 audio. So, yes it's just giving me matrixed sound which isn't TRUE 5.1 surround.

So, it is safe to assume from what I've read so far and one of the responses in here, if I have my 6970 deliver the Audio + Video signal directly to the Onkyo TX-SR608, I will get 100% lossless audio that the receiver can then decode into whatever setting I choose -- i.e. Master DTS, Dolby TrueHD, etc.? Or do I have to make sure that the Onkyo TX-SR608 supports the audio codecs being delivered by my Realtek ALC892 for surround sound?
Miami Heat
(21 items)
 
   
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
[Intel] i5-2500k @ 4.7ghz 24/7 5.2ghz MAX stable [Asus] P8P67-EVO [XFX] 6970 x 2 CrossfireX [G. Skill] Ripjaws X 4GB C7 Kingston HyperX Cooler 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
[Kingston] 2x V+ SNVP325 128GB Raid 0 NONE! xD [Corsair] H100 Push/Pull 4x TT Blue-Eye 94 CFM ... Windows 7 Ultimate 64 Bit 
MonitorKeyboardPowerCase
[LG] 47"47LG90 120hz 1080p [Corsair] K60 [Corsair] HX1000 [Cooler Master] HAF 932 Black w/ 12 Fans 
MouseMouse PadAudioOther
[Logitech] G9X [Razer] Vespula [Creative] Titanium Fatal1ty -> [Denon] AVR-488... Beats By Dre Beats PRO powered by Denon AVR 488 
  hide details  
Reply
Miami Heat
(21 items)
 
   
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
[Intel] i5-2500k @ 4.7ghz 24/7 5.2ghz MAX stable [Asus] P8P67-EVO [XFX] 6970 x 2 CrossfireX [G. Skill] Ripjaws X 4GB C7 Kingston HyperX Cooler 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
[Kingston] 2x V+ SNVP325 128GB Raid 0 NONE! xD [Corsair] H100 Push/Pull 4x TT Blue-Eye 94 CFM ... Windows 7 Ultimate 64 Bit 
MonitorKeyboardPowerCase
[LG] 47"47LG90 120hz 1080p [Corsair] K60 [Corsair] HX1000 [Cooler Master] HAF 932 Black w/ 12 Fans 
MouseMouse PadAudioOther
[Logitech] G9X [Razer] Vespula [Creative] Titanium Fatal1ty -> [Denon] AVR-488... Beats By Dre Beats PRO powered by Denon AVR 488 
  hide details  
Reply
post #7 of 8
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nugu View Post

After that replace the Bose
Kind've hard to say no to the Bose speakers I got. I got my Bose 701 Floor Standing speakers for $60 (for the pair) and my Bose 301 speakers for $10 (for the pair)!
Miami Heat
(21 items)
 
   
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
[Intel] i5-2500k @ 4.7ghz 24/7 5.2ghz MAX stable [Asus] P8P67-EVO [XFX] 6970 x 2 CrossfireX [G. Skill] Ripjaws X 4GB C7 Kingston HyperX Cooler 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
[Kingston] 2x V+ SNVP325 128GB Raid 0 NONE! xD [Corsair] H100 Push/Pull 4x TT Blue-Eye 94 CFM ... Windows 7 Ultimate 64 Bit 
MonitorKeyboardPowerCase
[LG] 47"47LG90 120hz 1080p [Corsair] K60 [Corsair] HX1000 [Cooler Master] HAF 932 Black w/ 12 Fans 
MouseMouse PadAudioOther
[Logitech] G9X [Razer] Vespula [Creative] Titanium Fatal1ty -> [Denon] AVR-488... Beats By Dre Beats PRO powered by Denon AVR 488 
  hide details  
Reply
Miami Heat
(21 items)
 
   
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
[Intel] i5-2500k @ 4.7ghz 24/7 5.2ghz MAX stable [Asus] P8P67-EVO [XFX] 6970 x 2 CrossfireX [G. Skill] Ripjaws X 4GB C7 Kingston HyperX Cooler 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
[Kingston] 2x V+ SNVP325 128GB Raid 0 NONE! xD [Corsair] H100 Push/Pull 4x TT Blue-Eye 94 CFM ... Windows 7 Ultimate 64 Bit 
MonitorKeyboardPowerCase
[LG] 47"47LG90 120hz 1080p [Corsair] K60 [Corsair] HX1000 [Cooler Master] HAF 932 Black w/ 12 Fans 
MouseMouse PadAudioOther
[Logitech] G9X [Razer] Vespula [Creative] Titanium Fatal1ty -> [Denon] AVR-488... Beats By Dre Beats PRO powered by Denon AVR 488 
  hide details  
Reply
post #8 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by dade_kash_xD View Post
I figured as much because the only way I can get "surround sound" when gaming is if I set my receiver to PCM. From what I understand, PCM is a 2.0 audio. So, yes it's just giving me matrixed sound which isn't TRUE 5.1 surround.

So, it is safe to assume from what I've read so far and one of the responses in here, if I have my 6970 deliver the Audio + Video signal directly to the Onkyo TX-SR608, I will get 100% lossless audio that the receiver can then decode into whatever setting I choose -- i.e. Master DTS, Dolby TrueHD, etc.? Or do I have to make sure that the Onkyo TX-SR608 supports the audio codecs being delivered by my Realtek ALC892 for surround sound?
HDMI will pass the exact same signal being passed by the optical cable. There isn't enough bandwidth to pass multichannel PCM. If you want real multichannel surround you need a sound card that supports Dolby Digital Live (or the DTS version) for real time PCM -> Dolby conversion.
AMD, I give up.
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Intel I5 3570k (4.5ghz) ASROCK Z77 Extreme6 gtx 680 (1254/1782) Samsung 16gb (1866) 
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Corsair 650w Antec 300 Deathadder 3.5 
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AMD, I give up.
(14 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel I5 3570k (4.5ghz) ASROCK Z77 Extreme6 gtx 680 (1254/1782) Samsung 16gb (1866) 
Hard DriveCoolingOSKeyboard
60gb Force3 + 3TB 7200 Corsair H80 W7 Blackwidow 
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Corsair 650w Antec 300 Deathadder 3.5 
  hide details  
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