Outputting Stereo (MP3, Web streams) to Digital Channel (5 ch. stereo)
#1
Question 
Hey guys,

I am a complete noob to both Ubuntu as well as XBMC.

I got everything working brilliantly but I have one issue: MP3s and YouTube (Video Plugin) output sound through the Analog channel (the PC's headphones jack). When I play DVDs everything works great - I get 5.1 digital over the optical cable.

Searching the web for a long time I couldn't find how to figure this out. Also tried fiddling with XBMC Audio Hardware settings, but still couldn't get it to work.

Ultimately I'd like is to get all streams that would natively go to Analog stereo output to instead go to digital output (5-channel stereo for would be great).

I've provided below all relevant technical info on the system. Hopefully someone could advise how to resolve, and I'm sure this will help other noobs as well.

Thanks in advance!

========================
Technical Details:
========================
* Hardware: INNO3D ION ATOM 330 DUAL CORE (NVIDIA sound card on board)

* Receiver (if that matters): Harman Kardon AVR-635

* Operating System: Ubuntu 9.04

* XBMC version: not really sure where I can see the version, but I believe it should be 9.0.4 or 9.0.41 as I've just installed it.

* XBMC Settings --> System --> Audio Hardware configuration:
+ Audio output device: default
+ Passthrough output device: iec958

* NVIDIA Drivers: upgraded to version 185.18.36 [if anyone's interested to know how pls see here: http://www.xbmc.org/forum/showthread.php?t=52259 ]

* ALSA: upgraded to 1.0.20 [here are the instructions I used to upgrade: http://monespaceperso.org/blog-en/2009/0...jaunty-904 ]

========================
ALSA aplay Output
========================

Running "aplay -L" provides the following output:

default:CARD=NVidia
HDA NVidia, ALC662 Analog
Default Audio Device
front:CARD=NVidia,DEV=0
HDA NVidia, ALC662 Analog
Front speakers
surround40:CARD=NVidia,DEV=0
HDA NVidia, ALC662 Analog
4.0 Surround output to Front and Rear speakers
surround41:CARD=NVidia,DEV=0
HDA NVidia, ALC662 Analog
4.1 Surround output to Front, Rear and Subwoofer speakers
surround50:CARD=NVidia,DEV=0
HDA NVidia, ALC662 Analog
5.0 Surround output to Front, Center and Rear speakers
surround51:CARD=NVidia,DEV=0
HDA NVidia, ALC662 Analog
5.1 Surround output to Front, Center, Rear and Subwoofer speakers
surround71:CARD=NVidia,DEV=0
HDA NVidia, ALC662 Analog
7.1 Surround output to Front, Center, Side, Rear and Woofer speakers
iec958:CARD=NVidia,DEV=0
HDA NVidia, ALC662 Digital
IEC958 (S/PDIF) Digital Audio Output
hdmi:CARD=NVidia,DEV=0
HDA NVidia, NVIDIA HDMI
HDMI Audio Output
null:
Discard all samples (playback) or generate zero samples (capture)
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#2
You're also missing a Debug log from XBMC which is the most important part.

The issue, I believe, is that the sources you mentioned are Analog, and you're trying to output to Digital.

It should be possible to set XBMC to output Analog to the Digital device. On the Audio hardware settings page, set the Analog device to whatever the Digital device is. Essentially set them both to the same device and XBMC should output both Analog and Digital signals to the same device (Digital).
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#3
Hello Maxim,

Thanks for your response! I did try to set both settings to the "default" value which seems to work fine for DVD to output 5.1, but that did not do the trick :-(

+ Audio output device: default
+ Passthrough output device: default

Also - please can you explain how I can create the debug log and what to do next in order to fill it with relevant info, and where to grab it from (i.e. which folder)?

Thanks!!
Reply
#4
Check out this thread for information about creating a debug log:

http://forum.xbmc.org/showthread.php?tid=34655

It can also be found wiki (Online Manual).

Before that you should try and set both the devices to iec958. That will be the optical out. Also there should be a setting "Audio Output," make sure that's set to Digital.
Reply
#5
Got it! found this thread here: https://bugs.launchpad.net/ubuntu/+sourc...+bug/25632

The solution is to simply run: "iecset audio on" and violla! you get stereo out of the digital channel. Still not outputting 5 channel stereo, but that can be handled by the receiver (unless someone knows how to force stereo to be outputted to 5 channel stereo on non XBOX machines?)

Thanks!
Reply
#6
Thanks for posting your solution, i'm sure others will find it useful!

zackyp Wrote:Still not outputting 5 channel stereo

You can upmix it using ALSA, but that can be a complicated process. I'm not sure of specifics. I believe they have some examples on their wiki:

http://alsa.opensrc.org/index.php/Dmix

It can be vary complicated, i'd rather just stick to having the receiver upmix it. Smile
Reply
#7
zackyp Wrote:Got it! found this thread here: https://bugs.launchpad.net/ubuntu/+sourc...+bug/25632

The solution is to simply run: "iecset audio on" and violla! you get stereo out of the digital channel. Still not outputting 5 channel stereo, but that can be handled by the receiver (unless someone knows how to force stereo to be outputted to 5 channel stereo on non XBOX machines?)

Thanks!

Thanks mate "iecset audio on" worked a treat for my problem
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Outputting Stereo (MP3, Web streams) to Digital Channel (5 ch. stereo)00