Saturday, April 08, 2006

Creative DTS-610


Creative DTS-610

- I picked this up on ebay for $100 (sold by creative).
- Why you might need one: This comes in very handy when you want to hook up a high end gaming PC to an HDTV. The problem with most sound cards and built in sound the digital 5.1 out (either optical or coax) is only a pass through for pre-recorded 5.1 material like DVD's or other video files. Games that generate 5.1 sound in real time DO NOT get encoded into DD 5.1 and sent through the digital out. Instead the only 5.1 sound output is through the 3 stereo 1/8 mini audio plugs which most home theater receivers don't accept. There is only ONE exception to this rule and that is the nforce 2 soundstorm based motherboards. These do real time encoding into 5.1. But if you are gaming on an nf2 still then that really isn't next gen gaming.
- Ok in steps the DTS 610. It's an external box that takes the 3 stereo 1/8 mini audio inputs, encodes these 6 analog channels into DTS 5.1 in real time, and then outputs it in optical and coax. It's simple, it works, and obviously no software to install. You can also use it to convert an optical to coax and coax to optical if you wish but there are other devices that do that for much less.
- It works great and sounds great. If you get some crackle and pop during loud moments then the problem is you are over saturating the analog levels. Drop your volume in the mixer on your pc down to 50-75% instead of 100% and increase the volume on your receiver and that should fix the problem.

It's a very niche product that I see becoming more important as HTPC and PC gaming on HDTV becoming more prevalent. I don't know of any other similar device that does this. It works great and the price isn't too bad. Highly recommended if you find you need one.

Post a Comment