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Optical or Aux cable for speaker setup (z625+MSI gaming 970)

Hello!

 

I'm in need of some infomation, basically i wanted to upgrade to the logitech z625 2.1 computer speakers, i have the z506's and use them in a 3.1 setup, they sound great and work great. Had them for probably over 4 years now and they have yet to fail me. I am currently using an aux cable to connect to my motherboard.

 

Basically the z625 has an optical port, my question is. Should i set them up on my computer with an optical cable going to my motherboard? Or an Aux cable? what is the difference? My motherboard has a optical port for sound, but some forums say its for consoles only. Well if its for consoles only why does my motherboard have one? 

 

My motherboard is the msi gaming 970, i have the realtek audio drivers and everything is fully updated and all audio drivers are working great! Under the spec sheet for my motherboard this is all it has for audio, hopefully this helps! The main reason i wanna go from a 3.1 to a 2.1, is because my center channel acts like another speaker, my driver has no clue that its a center speaker, and when i set it up in TRUE 3.1 mode, it basically doesnt work unless the game/movie/music im playing/watching is built for 3.1 or whatever, it honestly sounds better to have it just act as another speaker. The z625 is much much louder for the speakers are thx certifed, they should be great for gaming and music! (Prove me if i am wrong please :))

 

Audio 

• Realtek® ALC1150 Codec
- 7.1-Channel High Definition Audio
- Supports S/PDIF output

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AUX and optical transmit different signals, AUX transmits analog audio, optical transmits digital audio.

 

If you use an AUX cable, the speakers will use the DAC (digital to analog converter) built into your motherboard, if you use an optical cable the speakers will use the DAC built into your speakers.

¯\_(ツ)_/¯

 

 

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1 minute ago, BobVonBob said:

AUX and optical transmit different signals, AUX transmits analog audio, optical transmits digital audio.

 

If you use an AUX cable, the speakers will use the DAC (digital to analog converter) built into your motherboard, if you use an optical cable the speakers will use the DAC built into your speakers.

Alright so what would be better in terms of sound quailty?

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9 minutes ago, Trist100 said:

Alright so what would be better in terms of sound quailty?

Not sure, it depends on the DAC used in each. My bet would be on the motherboard DAC (AUX) being better, but that will also get sent through your motherboard's amplifier before going to the speakers which might degrade the sound quality. If you have the option try both and see what you like better, or even if any difference is there at all.

¯\_(ツ)_/¯

 

 

Desktop:

Intel Core i7-3820 | Corsair H100i | ASUS P9X79-LE | 16GB Patriot Viper 3 1866MHz DDR3 | MSI GTX 970 Gaming 4G | 2TB WD Blue M.2 SATA SSD | 2TB Hitachi Deskstar HDD | 1TB WD Black HDD | Corsair CX750M Fractal Design Define R5 Windows 10 Pro / Linux Mint 20 Cinnamon

 

Laptop:

Dell XPS 15 9560 4K Touch | Intel Core i5-7300HQ | 12GB Generic (Crucial?) 2133MHz DDR4 | Nvidia GTX 1050 | 256GB Toshiba M.2 NVMe SSD | Windows 10

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1 hour ago, BobVonBob said:

Not sure, it depends on the DAC used in each. My bet would be on the motherboard DAC (AUX) being better, but that will also get sent through your motherboard's amplifier before going to the speakers which might degrade the sound quality. If you have the option try both and see what you like better, or even if any difference is there at all.

So is that really the only differences? I did so much research about this subject and nothing described it so simply. It was always "optical has different bitrates and you need a special decoder" and all that. And most people say that optical is used for consoles. But consoles also have aux. So why is optical apparently always used for console if they have aux to? 

 

Sorry for all the questions. I honestly am so thankful for you're help. I've been trying to figure this out for like 2 days now and found nothing! 

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On 8/10/2020 at 9:43 PM, Trist100 said:

So is that really the only differences? I did so much research about this subject and nothing described it so simply. It was always "optical has different bitrates and you need a special decoder" and all that. And most people say that optical is used for consoles. But consoles also have aux. So why is optical apparently always used for console if they have aux to? 

 

Sorry for all the questions. I honestly am so thankful for you're help. I've been trying to figure this out for like 2 days now and found nothing! 

The Optical port supports things like Dolby Digital 5.1, etc. Because you are using a 2.1 setup, there isn't much advantage to using Optical over AUX, since in both cases, the audio stream is going to be simple Stereo.

 

As suggested, try both and compare. the DAC in the speakers themselves might sound better if it's a higher quality DAC. But the difference may not be noticeable either. You'll have to try them and report back to us.

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