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Windows 7: Windows 7 cannot auto-detect audio I/O


18 Aug 2010   #1

Windows 7
 
 
Windows 7 cannot auto-detect audio I/O

My HP e9280t has a built-in Realtek sound chip with multiple i/o ports. The digital port is a toslink. The analog ports are mini-ports.
The problem is that Windows 7 Ultimate x64 won't auto-select which audio port to use. Realtek tech support told me that Windows specifications allow their driver to output to audio xor digital audio ports. The hardware can do it, but Microsoft won't allow it. Microsoft sounds, TV stations with analog audio tracks, and optical disks with analog audio tracks will play only through the audio output. TV stations with digital audio tracks and DVDs with digital audio tracks can output to the digital toslink port to my Dolby 5.1 receiver/amplifier with up to 5 discrete audio channels. The big problem is that you must manually configure either analog or digiral audio outpout in Windows 7 to match the audio or digital sound track of the source media each time you switch from one to another.

I use media center with a hauppauge 2550 dual tuner. If I watch channel 7 (local ABC analog feed) and switch to channel 7.1 (local ABC digital feed), I must manually reconfigure the Windows sound system to output to the appropriate audio output. At the same time I lose all other windows sounds which will only work through the analog outputs. If I tune back to channel 7, I must again reconfigure windows sound system back to analog. True, I could leave Windows configured for analog audio and not hear the discrete 5.1 audio channels.

The rub is that it's no longer a stereo world. 5.1 and 7.1 is the norm. My old receiver/amplifier doesn't have 7.1, but it can detect whether it is to output mono, stereo, matrixed dolby surround, or digital dolby 5.1. Why can't Windows 7? Why would Microsoft dictate to Realtek that it cannot autodetect and switch outputs, or just output to all outputs so that the external receiver/amplifier select the desired sound source?

I expect a new Microsoft Media Center machine with Windows 7 Ultimate should be able to auto-select audio outputs.

Recommendations are desired.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

18 Aug 2010   #2

Windows 7 Home Premium
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by mfaklis View Post
My HP e9280t has a built-in Realtek sound chip with multiple i/o ports. The digital port is a toslink. The analog ports are mini-ports.
The problem is that Windows 7 Ultimate x64 won't auto-select which audio port to use. Realtek tech support told me that Windows specifications allow their driver to output to audio xor digital audio ports. The hardware can do it, but Microsoft won't allow it. Microsoft sounds, TV stations with analog audio tracks, and optical disks with analog audio tracks will play only through the audio output. TV stations with digital audio tracks and DVDs with digital audio tracks can output to the digital toslink port to my Dolby 5.1 receiver/amplifier with up to 5 discrete audio channels. The big problem is that you must manually configure either analog or digiral audio outpout in Windows 7 to match the audio or digital sound track of the source media each time you switch from one to another.
What's an optical disk with an analog audio track?

A CD? A CD does not have analog tracks, it has digital tracks except that they are encoded in Stereo.

For it to come out the digital port has nothing to do with anything else except for the fact it's "encoded" at 5.1. The other sources you mentioned are encoded Stereo so they are coming out of the analog output.

Using the Realtek control panel under the Speaker Configuration.... have you tried selecting "Speaker Fill".

This enables Stereo sound to output on a 5.1 system.

Also, make sure you're using a recent Realtek driver.

Ap
My System SpecsSystem Spec
18 Aug 2010   #3

Windows 7
 
 

Good clarification of terminology. Thank you. I have the latest driver HP posted on their site for this machine. Yes, speaker fill is set on, however ...
Stereo CD's, DVD's, MP3's, TV stations, web streams, insist on coming out of the analog stereo mini-plug only. 5.1 encoded DVD's and TV stations insist on coming out of the toslink only. It would appear that speaker fill doesn't send stereo sources to 5.1 speakers on my machine.

I must reconfigure Windows 7 audio with the Realtek HD Audio Manager applet and restart media center and/or media player whenver I switch from/to stereo and 5.1 sources.

My receiver's speaker test hits all 6 speakers, but the Realtek applet for 5.1 speaker configuration only hits the front left and front right speakers. The other four remain quiet. When playing a 5.1 source with Realtek's applet using the digital output as the default actually uses all 6 speakers.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.


18 Aug 2010   #4

Windows 7 Home Premium
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by mfaklis View Post
Good clarification of terminology. Thank you. I have the latest driver HP posted on their site for this machine. Yes, speaker fill is set on, however ...
Stereo CD's, DVD's, MP3's, TV stations, web streams, insist on coming out of the analog stereo mini-plug only. 5.1 encoded DVD's and TV stations insist on coming out of the toslink only. It would appear that speaker fill doesn't send stereo sources to 5.1 speakers on my machine.
Ok, you might try the latest driver from Realtek, there's been several improvements I'm sure.

Realtek

Most users are using the drivers directly from the manufacturer. It might take a double install as the first one usually uninstalls the previous driver.

Ap
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Windows 7 cannot auto-detect audio I/O




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