07-22-2009 03:29 PM
My rear and center Z-5500 speakers are silent when playing music or games. I do not have a discrete audio sound card; I use the generic Integrated digital HD audio SoundMAX that comes with my motherboard. My system is a CG5290 ASUS
(full specs here http://www.bestbuy.com/site/olspage.jsp?skuId=9366
Home Premium. I have the speaker system on 6 Ch Direct and never touched the volume settings for the sub, surround, and center. They are all defaults. Vista settings are to 5.1 Speakers (Playback Devices--> Speakers--> Configure --> 5.1 Surround-->Next-->Spkrs present in the surround config: Ticking Center, Sub, Rear pair--> Next--> Select full-range spkrs: untick all-->Confirm).
When I do the corresponding audio test, each speaker makes the dinging sounds and they all sound perfect. But the music (e.g. I tried playback with Windows Player/VLC player etc. on music channels from www.di.fm), game sound/music etc. all come out of the FR and FL speakers only. Sound out of the other speakers isn't present at all even when I put my ear next to them.
I tried the test button from the remote and it is successful. I also checked to ensure that the volume is not turned down by mistake in the rear (surround) or center speakers.
Any ideas would be greatly appreciated!
07-22-2009 06:17 PM
Hi, as mentioned may times before on this forum, the source you are playing needs to be in 5.1. Music and some games are not 5.1.
What you are experiencing here is normal.
Change the effect to prologic music or movie on the control pod to get simulated surround sound.
07-22-2009 07:35 PM
Hi thanks a lot for the reply.
I am new to the forums and I apologize if I missed something similar; I did look but I did not find an answer to the problem.
Unfortunately, what you said about music and games -- while true many times -- is not the case here because my old Viewsonic system across the room equipped with a cheap Creative 7.1 speaker system plays both music from di.fm and the same games on all 8 channels (games that fully support 7.1). Sound comes from every single speaker, as it should (unless I ask it to switch to stereo or headphones etc.).
The only thing that differs for these issues from that system (apart from it running windows XP) in terms of sound is that it has a cheap Soundblaster card and I do not use its integrated audio (again soundmax). So is the the integrated audio that is causing this? Hardly; the card has 7.1 support, so clearly 5.1 too.
Windows Vista here says I am running a 5.1 setup and yet only the front two speakers and the sub play on applications that I know do support 5.1 and even 7.1. So I don't think this is normal at all.
However, I'm going to try your suggestion, see if that does anything! Thanks for the help! Any other suggestions would also be appreciated!
07-22-2009 08:08 PM
07-22-2009 08:20 PM
Okay, so the music part is partially sorted with your suggestion as simulated surround is good enough; it simply shares it out over all speakers. However, this is only a workaround and it does not sound very good.
With games it's a different story. I thought I'd try out my favorite "chicken test" with an online game (LOTRO). LOTRO uses the settings on your windows system. I went to a farm with a couple of chickens, I went around them at different positions (FR, FL, next to them, BL, BR) and I could hear chicken sounds from all speakers at the same time instead of the corresponding speaker only (e.g. FR, FL, center, BL, BR respectively). On my Creative system the sound would appear only from the proper speaker (e.g. if the chicken was BL wrt to your position it would be heard from the BL speaker etc.).
So since I have my windows settings on 5.1 and I use applications that use 5.1 how can I have a proper 5.1 surround with my integrated audio soundmax card? Do I need a discrete audio card to do that? Is it a Vista issue? Any help would be appreciated!
07-22-2009 08:23 PM
Hi, the answer is no. As regards the game fx the answer is also no. They would each play what corresponded to their geo-location wrt to me (cf. the "chicken" test). I'm gonna go ahead and put out the full specs of the two systems for comparison in a few, see if that helps at all!
Again thanks, your effort is much appreciated.
07-22-2009 08:26 PM
Hi, about the music issue, what you are getting is actually close what real surround sound is, where there are channels dedicated for its purpose.
From before im guessing that you just had the same sound from every speaker?
About the game issue, is that with the pod on 6 channel direct?
07-22-2009 08:27 PM
07-22-2009 09:03 PM
Hi again Pat and thanks for the help and the nicely placed counter-questions!
Before I give out the specs let me answer to your question first.
About the music issue, you are most likely right. The game issue (the game fx) were not with the pod on 6 channel direct, as that only gives me the front two speakers and the sub working; i.e. no matter what I do on the PC, no matter what game, program, sound fx, music station I try it treats it as a (very nice despite the integrated audio) 2.1 system and the center and rear speakers are totally "dead" (although been tested and work fine, and individually the "ding" OK; windows vista btw thinks I have a 5.1 surroun system, not a 2.1). The game issue (i.e. the game fx appearing from all channels and not by the associated dedicated speaker each moment wrt my location) happened when I used your suggestion and instead of using the Direct channel 6 (which would essentially give me a decent 2.1) I tried the PLII Music effect instead.
Anyway, here are the specs:
Old Viewsonic system
Win XP SP3 Home Edition
AMD Athlon 64 3800+ 2.42GHz
NVIDIA Geforce 7600GT
Creative SB AUdigy 4 (WDM)
Creative speakers Inspire P7800
The Creative Audio Console has the following settings that matter; on the left of the collon are the tab titles and to the right the settings:
Device info: Wave Dev= SB Audigy [A000], MIDI Dev= SB Audigy 4 Synth A [A000], Mixer Dev=SB Audigy 4 Mixer [A000]
Speakers: 7.1 speakers (Synchronize with Microsoft Control Panel is ticked)
EAX: No effects (Sometimes I use various effects if the application supports it or to make music sound better; but this is irrelevant here)
CMSS 3D: CMSS (or sometimes I will use CMSS2; both work fine with LOTRO giving "dedicated" 7.1 output)
Decoder: Use built-in decoder
New Asus system
Windows Vista 64 Home Premium
Intel i7-920 2.66GHz L2 8MB
RAM 9GB DDR3 (1033)
Nvidia GeForce GTX260 896MB
High-definition audio (7.1-channel support) (SoundMAX)
07-22-2009 09:14 PM
Going through the older PC's settings I realized that it does NOT have integrated audio at all; it only has the sound blaster support. I know this because I looked at the settings on the control panel and playback, recording etc. only show one device,the Audigy 4, and do not give a second option from the drop-down menu. Also I forgot to add that soundblaster runs with hardware fully accelerated while the Control Panel (as it is synchronized with the Creative Console) is on a "7.1 home theater speakers setting".
I hope this is of some use! Thanks