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PC to AVR connections - DAC between for music?

conqueeftador

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Looking at picking up an SR8015. Have an early 7015 at the moment.

I can't see any other way, but is there anything to note or issue/improvement to be had with games/films with any other method than with graphics card to AVR via HDMI?

For music from the PC, would there be any improvement in SQ in some sort of DAC rather than the HDMI? Where can I look for options per price point on these if so?

Thanks
 

ThatM1key

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In terms of GPU Card to AVR, could be a bit unstable depending on non-active cable length (If were talking about 4K 60hz HDR with Dolby Atmos using 1 cable). I used to have a Monoprice active HDMI cable, the end broke but many few months later, I gotten a ONN active cable, it zapped my HDMI port on my GPU, fried my Motherboard and Power Supply. What I like to do is (It's a bit janky) but I found using 2 separate cables, 1 to the AVR (Audio), 2 to the TV (Video), is a lot more stable.

In terms of "bit-perfect" music playback and devices. It really depends on personal preference and device choice. . Your "old style" digital inputs could sound better than HDMI. Amirm did some tests with HDMI, you check it here: https://www.audiosciencereview.com/forum/index.php?threads/a-deep-dive-into-hdmi-audio-performance.56/ . If I personally listened to music critically on my AVR, I would pick an outside USB DAC (via Analog) and use the "Pure Direct" mode. Maybe you prefer a digital-to-digital connection, you could get a outside USB DAC still. The best bang (for an outside USB DAC) would be the Topping D10S, it's got analog out and digital outs. In terms of improvement, technically, using an Outside DAC (Digital/Analog) is better than using the HDMI (Motherboard/ GPU) & Motherboard Digital outputs for audio. Would you notice the difference?, it depends on your ears. Maybe the HDMI audio sounds the same as the outside DAC to you.

If you got a GTX 10 series or newer video card, your HDMI goes out & have DVI still. DVI Dual link (Via DVI Dual-link to HDMI) can do 4k 60hz (YCbCr420 only I think). I found this out after I bought an expensive DisplayPort to HDMI adapter. I still use that adapter for video and use the DVI for audio.
 
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conqueeftador

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Thanks for the advice. Fortunately a short cable length. What is with HDMI zapping things and generally blowing? I've had a few shocks over the years and any storms it is always the HDMI circuit that goes.

I'll give the Topping a go.

Would be nice to have an audio only output for atmos and surround sound, but I have to use the HDMI out for that as far as I know which in turn causes the phantom screen issue and forced a working hdmi2.1 upgrade.
 

ThatM1key

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Thanks for the advice. Fortunately a short cable length. What is with HDMI zapping things and generally blowing? I've had a few shocks over the years and any storms it is always the HDMI circuit that goes.

I'll give the Topping a go.

Would be nice to have an audio only output for atmos and surround sound, but I have to use the HDMI out for that as far as I know which in turn causes the phantom screen issue and forced a working hdmi2.1 upgrade.
I would to like to note that the Topping D10S is stereo only, so if your into surround sound music, there is other DACs out there. Active HDMI sucks power from your source, so that you can have a long cable (Over 15ft). My ONN Active HDMI simply just short circuited. Normal HDMI cables are safe, unless like you mentioned storms. Yeah for right now, you have to use HDMI for anything above DD and DTS.
 
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conqueeftador

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Indeed. Not into surround music, can use the HDMI for that if I have to.

I do have a long hdmi cable from gpu to monitor which in turn actually never worked. Never good to hear about issues like yours. Shouldn't be able to happen.
 

Katji

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Thanks for the advice. Fortunately a short cable length. What is with HDMI zapping things and generally blowing? I've had a few shocks over the years and any storms it is always the HDMI circuit that goes.
Apparently often caused by plugging in when power is on. And, a few years ago, Onkyo got a reputation for blowing HDMI,...very sensitive to minor fluctuations, many reports of it being the only thing that was damaged.
 
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