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Bensam123
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Surround Sound Capture

Thu Mar 15, 2018 6:46 am

So as the title implies, there is a lot of different formats for surround sound, I'm looking to capture surround sound really in any format to get it from one PC to another PC in real time. I already have a capture card, but apparently they haven't implemented LPCM capture for more then stereo (they leave it up to developers to work with their API - Magewell HDMI 4k Plus). It also supports encoded formats including DTS, DDP, DTS-HD, D-THD, and DD... yet trying to find something that will encode on the fly and send it over the HDMI interface is extremely messy. That's one solution.

Other more obvious solution is to output via digital coaxial or optical and have the other computer receive it. Once again finding a spdif input that supports surround sound is really a toss up. There are sound cards with optical inputs, however that's almost always a stereo input for PCM, which doesn't help me. You usually have to contact the company to get clarification. I know one card which supports 5.1 PCM and that's my old X-Fi Forte with the breakout bay, however, that card is like 15 years old and only supports PCI (my capture PC only has PCI-E). It honestly shouldn't be difficult to do, but it seems like in all the audio mess today they didn't really get PC-PC surround sound transfer down. Anyone have any ideas or have something already working?

TLDR - LF PC-PC surround sound solution
 
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Re: Surround Sound Capture

Thu Mar 15, 2018 7:25 am

I suspect that the reason it is so difficult is related to piracy concerns and DRM. I would not expect an easy solution.
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ludi
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Re: Surround Sound Capture

Thu Mar 15, 2018 11:52 am

Yeah, HDCP is a huge thorn in the side of legitimate DIY audio enthusiasts et al. The closest I've come to finding something off-the-shelf just for breaking surround out of an HDMI signal is something like the Atlona AT-HD570, and I'm not sure if that actually handles HDCP correctly or not. I'm thinking of picking up a used one sometime just to find out, as it would enable me to separately amp my mains while letting the receiver continue to handle the surround channels and video stream switching.

@OP: You might need to start digging through possible hardware middleman devices. I don't think this solves your problem but it gives you an idea what's out there:
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morphine
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Re: Surround Sound Capture

Thu Mar 15, 2018 12:01 pm

Can you offer some context on what the end goal of this is, meaning what do you want to do with the captured signal? I think the task is currently looking more complicated than it needs to be.
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Usacomp2k3
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Re: Surround Sound Capture

Thu Mar 15, 2018 12:01 pm

Your best bet is going to be something like Dolby Digital Live/DTS Connect for the on-the-fly encoding.
 
Bensam123
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Re: Surround Sound Capture

Thu Mar 15, 2018 10:47 pm

Surround sound capture for live encoding, video games. Getting a surround sound signal from one PC to another.

Yes, DD encoding is an option, it seems as though finding a card that supports optical input and encoded formats (or LPCM 8 channel) is extremely rare and not something that is noted very well. A lot of cards will output optical surround or encoded formats though.
 
the
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Re: Surround Sound Capture

Fri Mar 16, 2018 1:53 am

There are several professional solutions for this.

If all you want is to move multiple PCM streams from one system to another, I'd recommend Dante virtual sound card that'll transport 16 channels between systems over an Ethernet network. It maybe possible to tunnel decoded Dolby and DTS using this by first using a software decoder that outputs directly to the virtual sound card. However, I have no experience with this as I've never had the proper setup to try. On the plus side, it is relatively inexpensive.

As far as hardware solutions, there is the Arvus H2-UDMA that will accept an HDMI audio signal an decode Dolby/DTS to a collection of digital outputs. It is expensive floating between $3k and $4k but will likely work.

Junger Audio I thought at one point had a version of the D*AP8 with an HDMI input which could do the same thing as the H2-UDMA. Due to the modular nature of the Junger D*AP8, it ends up being even more expensive.

All of the above solutions also presume you have proper multichannel input software and recording capabilities on the other PC. There are also dedicated Dante audio recording systems which will capture directly to SD card/bulk storage.
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Re: Surround Sound Capture

Fri Mar 16, 2018 7:31 am

OP, I may be missing something, but I still don't get it. :) You say you want to do real-time encoding on the fly, but what's your ultimate goal? Is it connecting to an HT receiver and/or a set of speakers with DTS/DDL? It just sounds what whatever you're trying to accomplish in the end is probably far simpler than it looks, even if it's just connecting to a receiver with pre outs and hooking up your capture device there. But again, this sounds fairly silly unless there's a good reason.
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Bensam123
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Re: Surround Sound Capture

Fri Mar 16, 2018 11:24 pm

I will take a look at Dante, that looks promising not just for surround, but other mixing. I love the idea of using ethernet.

The weird issue is finding hardware that does both encoding and decoding. Right now it's very possible to find capture cards that support encoded inputs that are much cheaper (Magewell has some), but I haven't found software that will encode it on the sending end. Vice versa sound cards seem to always encode for over optical. You can get sound cards that encode the signal on the sending end, but almost none that do the decoding on the receiving end. I talked to a Creative rep and they said only one of their sound cards does decoding and that's the X7, that's pretty ridiculous. Whether or not that actually works is another question.

With raw signals, such as PCM, a lot of Magewell cards and some Blackmagic cards do 6 or 8 channels over HDMI, however their drivers aren't developed or it's not implemented properly so it doesn't work on the receiving end. Magewell hardware can do it, but their drivers aren't developed and I got the 'Sorry it doesn't work in Windows, the hardware supports it, use the API' answer. I'm currently in the middle of figuring out if BM cards work.
 
Bensam123
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Re: Surround Sound Capture

Sun Mar 18, 2018 5:59 am

Update to this, Dante appears to only work with stereo sources. When attempting to work with Dante Virtual Sound card in WDM it only displays stereo pairs, in ASIO it's not available as a device. Dante VIA wont recognize any input device with more then two channels. The moment you change a device from stereo to 2+ channels it disappears. It looks like it should be able to do it. Devices on the receiving end display surround sound capabilities, but you can't transmit them.

I looked for some way to configure the number of channels or mode, but didn't find anything. So some sort of weird licensing or limitation on their software. Not sure exactly what is going there. Just something else that should work right and doesn't with surround sound.
 
the
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Re: Surround Sound Capture

Sun Mar 18, 2018 11:08 pm

Have you tried ASIO mode with the ASIO4ALL shim to route WDM audio to the virtual sound card?
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