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Thread: RCA - TOSlink?

  1. #1
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    I have an old Bose Acoustimass WaveGuide Powered Speaker System. It is currently connected to my G4 via a double RCA to stereo mini-jack adaptor. I don't know much about audio, but I would like to know the best way to connect RCA to a G5. The G5 appears to have 1x S/PDIF TOSlink out, and 1x S/PDIF analogue out, capable of 24bit play-back. Am I right?

    I'm wondering if, or what kind of TOSlink (digital) to double RCA (analogue) converter I should use, or if I should just buy an audio card such as M-audio's Audiophile 24/96 to plug the stereo RCA cables from my Bose directly to the stereo analogue S/PDIF jacks on the card.

    are their any advantages to converting TOSlink to RCA? Are their any advantages to connecting RCA to analogue S/PDIF, as opposed to the double RCA to stereo mini-jack connection I'm using now?

    Any insight/advice is much appreciated.

  2. #2
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    TOSLink is the type of connection for the S/PDIF in/out on the G5. S/PDIF can also be connected via BNC/RCA connectors with coax cable. S/PDIF is a digital signal, not analog.

    The advantage to using the digital out would be if you wanted to use an external D/A converter before your amp/speaker setup. You'd probably have to spend a fair amount of money to get external converters good enough to notice a difference in sound quality over the G5's analog out, and the Bose speaker setup probably wouldn't be able to reproduce the difference anyway.

    Unless you were to seriously upgrade your amp/speaker setup, stick with the analog out. I don't think there would be enough of a difference in sound quality to justify the expense. Hope this helps.

    ČÁ

  3. #3
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    Thanks for the schooling M.Brane. I thought that S/PDIF could be analogue since the Audiophile 24/96 appears to have S/PDIF ins and outs that connect directly to RCA. Is this due to a digital to analogue converter on the card?

    What about Sony MDR-V600 Studio head-phones? Would I notice the difference between analogue and digital on those?

    One more thing. Is the sound controller of the G5 capable of 24bit recording and playback, and is this only through TOSlink. Can the other ports play at 24bit as well? is the max on analogue 16bit?

    Thanks again for your help, and I'm sorry for the ignorance.

  4. #4
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    quote:
    Originally posted by littlegreyknight:
    Thanks for the schooling M.Brane. I thought that S/PDIF could be analogue since the Audiophile 24/96 appears to have S/PDIF ins and outs that connect directly to RCA. Is this due to a digital to analogue conve rter on the card?


    The M-Audio card uses RCA's instead of TOSLink. It's still a digital signal. Just because there are RCA jacks doesn't mean the signal is analog. Confusing, eh?

    quote:
    What about Sony MDR-V600 Studio head-phones? Would I notice the difference between analogue and digital on those?


    It's possible, though I've never personally heard those. Most of the studios I've been in use the high-end Sennheisers or AKG's. Grados are also quite good, but no good for isolation. Of course it depends on what you drive 'em with too....

    quote:
    One more thing. Is the sound controller of the G5 capable of 24bit recording and playback, and is this only through TOSlink. Can the other ports play at 24bit as well? is the max on analogue 16bit?

    Thanks again for your help, and I'm sorry for the ignorance.


    Acoording to this the G5's internal converters are capable of up to 24bits at 48K. The specs look pretty decent for built-in sound on a compu ter. Probably just as good or better than any current mid-fi stereo system (read: Sony, Technics, Pioneer, etc.). Of course the proof is in the listening. Always trust your ears.

    The S/PDIF in/out supports up to 24/96 with the internal clock, 24/48 ex ternal. That means as long as the internal clock is good, the sound quality should be quite good as well provided your external converters are good quality.

    From what I've read on digital audio (a lot!) my understanding is that bitrate is what gives you dynamic range, and samplerate gives you bandwidth. There are other factors that affect digital sound quality too like jitter (clock timing issues) and the quality of the analog components in converters. This is a huge can-o-worms to open my friend, and I certainly wouldn't claim to be an expert on the subject by any means.

    Here's a pretty good read on the basics. It gets way deeper from here.s

    [This message was edited by M.Brane on Tue July 22, 2003 PT at 19:47.]

  5. #5
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    Thanks for the info M.Brane; I really appreciate your help.

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