Need Help or Recommendations for PC Audio Issues

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reedfoot

Member
Joined
May 8, 2010
Messages
12
I recently was forced to upgrade my PC when my old motherboard failed, and I replaced it with a new Asus TUF Gaming Z690-plus Wi-Fi D4, which I selected partially because it offered DTS and had an optical out. My home office rig is connected via optical to an old Yamaha HTR-5490, and I am running a Yamaha sub, three Cambridge SoundWorks PC speakers for center and rear channels, and (as of today) some B&W LM1s for the fronts. For the last three months I have been engaged with Asus tech support trying to get the sound working properly - I only get stereo settings in the Realtek Audio Console. After multiple reinstalls of the drivers (latest and older) they finally threw up their hands and suggested it was a Windows 11 issue and sent me to Microsoft. Now, after a week of similar conversations on the Microsoft Community page, I am turning to this esteemed crowd to see if I am overlooking something or if I should forget about the onboard audio and move to an external sound card. (It doesn't help when I try to explain that I don't watch movies on the PC, but listen to multichannel music instead...they don't understand this.)

My current situation: Some of my discs won't play a center channel. This makes Robert Fripp's Exposure album even more inscrutable when there are no vocals. I thought it was the DTS codec that was tripping me up, but I was able to get Steven Wilson's The Future Bites to play with a center channel on both LPCM 5.1 (receiver decodes as Dolby Digital) and DTS-HD (receiver decodes as DTS). This tells me I am overlooking something somewhere. I am using a trial version of Cyberlink PowerDVD 22 as my player, but I am open to another solution. Another interesting tidbit - I also am unable to control the volume on the PC at all - the volume slider is either full mute (0) or full volume (1-100) when I use PowerDVD. And, of course, I have zero visibility on the PC to what my speaker configuration is - it happily assumes I am running two channel and that's all I get (although that obviously isn't true).

Any thoughts? What do others use to play their music on PC? Out of frustration, I started looking at new sound cards, but I fear that I am going to jump into a larger mess finding something that will handle all the various codecs and be able to plug into a non-HDMI receiver (although it does have 6 channel inputs). Thanks in advance for any suggestions!

Reed
 
I recently was forced to upgrade my PC when my old motherboard failed, and I replaced it with a new Asus TUF Gaming Z690-plus Wi-Fi D4, which I selected partially because it offered DTS and had an optical out. My home office rig is connected via optical to an old Yamaha HTR-5490, and I am running a Yamaha sub, three Cambridge SoundWorks PC speakers for center and rear channels, and (as of today) some B&W LM1s for the fronts. For the last three months I have been engaged with Asus tech support trying to get the sound working properly - I only get stereo settings in the Realtek Audio Console. After multiple reinstalls of the drivers (latest and older) they finally threw up their hands and suggested it was a Windows 11 issue and sent me to Microsoft. Now, after a week of similar conversations on the Microsoft Community page, I am turning to this esteemed crowd to see if I am overlooking something or if I should forget about the onboard audio and move to an external sound card. (It doesn't help when I try to explain that I don't watch movies on the PC, but listen to multichannel music instead...they don't understand this.)

My current situation: Some of my discs won't play a center channel. This makes Robert Fripp's Exposure album even more inscrutable when there are no vocals. I thought it was the DTS codec that was tripping me up, but I was able to get Steven Wilson's The Future Bites to play with a center channel on both LPCM 5.1 (receiver decodes as Dolby Digital) and DTS-HD (receiver decodes as DTS). This tells me I am overlooking something somewhere. I am using a trial version of Cyberlink PowerDVD 22 as my player, but I am open to another solution. Another interesting tidbit - I also am unable to control the volume on the PC at all - the volume slider is either full mute (0) or full volume (1-100) when I use PowerDVD. And, of course, I have zero visibility on the PC to what my speaker configuration is - it happily assumes I am running two channel and that's all I get (although that obviously isn't true).

Any thoughts? What do others use to play their music on PC? Out of frustration, I started looking at new sound cards, but I fear that I am going to jump into a larger mess finding something that will handle all the various codecs and be able to plug into a non-HDMI receiver (although it does have 6 channel inputs). Thanks in advance for any suggestions!

Reed
I no longer use a soundcard, or built in motherboard sound at all, though I did for years. I now use HDMI out to my AVR, but I understand you can't do that with the motherboard sound and a non-HDMI AVR. (I also own three Asus boards, newest is a Prime Z590A)

The problem, at least with HDMI, and Windows, is that several factors can influence what Windows "thinks" is the proper sound capabilities. What Windows shows in the Sound Applet will also affect PowerDVD (which I use, but I bitstream via HDMI).

When the sound in Windows goes wonky, the very first thing to check is that the Sound Applet shows the correct device, and that it does not show the capabilities as only stereo (although if you are using toslink out it may well show stereo)

Let me give an example from my pc. Just to illustrate, although not specific to your problem.
As I said I use HDMI from the motherboard, or from the graphics card.
I also use the DP out from the graphics card to my 4K monitor.

I often have Windows switch devices on me. Sometimes it has to do with the order hardware is switched on.
Often if my AVR is off and the monitor on, Windows thinks the monitor is the sound device, even after I switch on the AVR.
In my case, I sometimes have to switch both devices off, then repower the AVR then the monitor, after that it will correctly show the AVR as the sound device and will revert to 5.1/7.1 capability.
Then PowerDVD will play correctly for me, that is it will offer to bitstream non-decoded via HDMI. But the option could be for you to let PowerDVD decode to pcm.

(my setup is actually more complicated, since I use an HDMI switch that has two pc's connected)

Why you would not be able to get a center channel to play, yet all others in a 5.1/7.1 from the mobo sound is a mystery to me, otherwise, if the Applet shows the correct device and mch sound in the configuration of the applet. Do you use a sub? Does it work? Could be the cable / cables out from the mobo sound are bad. sometimes they get twisted or bent a little and quit working. Happened to me several times.

TOO LONG, DIDN'T READ
Make sure the Windows Sound Applet is displaying the proper audio device and in the configuration window shows mch capability.

Sorry I did not see your post at the time, you may have it all working now, or this post of mine is no help to you.
 
Thanks for the reply. It isn't working as I would expect, but I am getting 5.1 sound out of the AVR, even if Windows doesn't think it is. But you've given me some more things to consider. I have some time off at the end of the year, and I may mess with it some more then. Thank you and have a great holiday season!
 
I recently was forced to upgrade my PC when my old motherboard failed, and I replaced it with a new Asus TUF Gaming Z690-plus Wi-Fi D4, which I selected partially because it offered DTS and had an optical out. My home office rig is connected via optical to an old Yamaha HTR-5490, and I am running a Yamaha sub, three Cambridge SoundWorks PC speakers for center and rear channels, and (as of today) some B&W LM1s for the fronts. For the last three months I have been engaged with Asus tech support trying to get the sound working properly - I only get stereo settings in the Realtek Audio Console. After multiple reinstalls of the drivers (latest and older) they finally threw up their hands and suggested it was a Windows 11 issue and sent me to Microsoft. Now, after a week of similar conversations on the Microsoft Community page, I am turning to this esteemed crowd to see if I am overlooking something or if I should forget about the onboard audio and move to an external sound card. (It doesn't help when I try to explain that I don't watch movies on the PC, but listen to multichannel music instead...they don't understand this.)

My current situation: Some of my discs won't play a center channel. This makes Robert Fripp's Exposure album even more inscrutable when there are no vocals. I thought it was the DTS codec that was tripping me up, but I was able to get Steven Wilson's The Future Bites to play with a center channel on both LPCM 5.1 (receiver decodes as Dolby Digital) and DTS-HD (receiver decodes as DTS). This tells me I am overlooking something somewhere. I am using a trial version of Cyberlink PowerDVD 22 as my player, but I am open to another solution. Another interesting tidbit - I also am unable to control the volume on the PC at all - the volume slider is either full mute (0) or full volume (1-100) when I use PowerDVD. And, of course, I have zero visibility on the PC to what my speaker configuration is - it happily assumes I am running two channel and that's all I get (although that obviously isn't true).

Any thoughts? What do others use to play their music on PC? Out of frustration, I started looking at new sound cards, but I fear that I am going to jump into a larger mess finding something that will handle all the various codecs and be able to plug into a non-HDMI receiver (although it does have 6 channel inputs). Thanks in advance for any suggestions!

Reed
I would consider a USB connecting audio interface. It maybe used to be recommended to get a pci connecting 'card' vs USB connecting external but not so much anymore. You'll find more choices with USB and up to the highest quality you could want.

I avoid HDMI connecting devices especially for audio. Copy protection gone wild leads to this stuff failing safe by muting the audio. (Slightly cheap cable and a little RF noise? Better mute the audio! etc etc)

The ringer right now for decoding is Atmos. Literally everything else is easier to handle on the computer. There's a software dance with Atmos at present but it's not insurmountable. The hardware devices with the decoder hidden inside seem like the more risky choice.

An audio interface like a UMC-1820 is frugal and likely has better quality DACs than most consumer AV receivers. 'Boutique or bust' for DACs is more a thing of the past too.

Some of the more expensive pci connecting card interfaces or thunderbolt connecting external interfaces are all about low latency with the inputs for live sound applications. You don't need any of that expense for playback only.

Computer -> Audio interface -> amps -> speakers
All modular. Feels more like an old school separate component system.
 
If your Asus TUF Gaming Z690-plus motherboard offers 3.5mm multi-channel analogue outputs like these: -

Capture.PNG


The you should be able to connect from them directly to your Yamaha HTR-5490 AVR's analogue RCA/phono inputs.

Can you take a photo for us?


Cheers
 
If your Asus TUF Gaming Z690-plus motherboard offers 3.5mm multi-channel analogue outputs like these: -

View attachment 99021

The you should be able to connect from them directly to your Yamaha HTR-5490 AVR's analogue RCA/phono inputs.

Can you take a photo for us?


Cheers
For sure. Just need 3.5mm > stereo RCA jacks. Can pick them up on the Amazon.
 
I would consider a USB connecting audio interface. It maybe used to be recommended to get a pci connecting 'card' vs USB connecting external but not so much anymore. You'll find more choices with USB and up to the highest quality you could want.

I avoid HDMI connecting devices especially for audio. Copy protection gone wild leads to this stuff failing safe by muting the audio. (Slightly cheap cable and a little RF noise? Better mute the audio! etc etc)

The ringer right now for decoding is Atmos. Literally everything else is easier to handle on the computer. There's a software dance with Atmos at present but it's not insurmountable. The hardware devices with the decoder hidden inside seem like the more risky choice.

An audio interface like a UMC-1820 is frugal and likely has better quality DACs than most consumer AV receivers. 'Boutique or bust' for DACs is more a thing of the past too.

Some of the more expensive pci connecting card interfaces or thunderbolt connecting external interfaces are all about low latency with the inputs for live sound applications. You don't need any of that expense for playback only.

Computer -> Audio interface -> amps -> speakers
All modular. Feels more like an old school separate component system.
Nothing wrong with either HDMI out or the mobo speaker outs. I've done both for years.
 
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