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Cable TV through Home Theater System

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todd    2

I got a home theater system today, but I don't know what I need so I can watch TV in surround sound. I have a few inputs, but none for a cable TV (coax) line. Here are my inputs: Composite, Component, Coax (for FM radio), AM Radio, and Digital In (coax)..

It is possible to watch TV in surround sound with such a unit, right? What do I need?

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Rob2687    72

I think the cable tv signal is only 2 speaker stereo....

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todd    2
I think the cable tv signal is only 2 speaker stereo....

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Normally that's probably what it is, but sometimes if you catch a movie on HBO or Cinemax, it'll say "Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound" or something similar.

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Rob2687    72

You'll probably have to get a cable box that has 5.1 sound.... Some times the cable signal is the same as digital or hd broadcasts. They just down sample and put it through cable. Alot of channels here now have "Broadcast in HDTV" or whatever but its definitely not HD.

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Pink Floyd    15

use coax digital in

it's like a RCA cable but way more expensive and gives you the best audio (same as optical plug)

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rmorris003    11

he is talking about the coax line for analog cable not digital. Analog cable cant decode 5.1 and therefore will not work on a theatre system. You will need to have a digital box and run the digital coax.

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bangbang023    31
he is talking about the coax line for analog cable not digital. Analog cable cant decode 5.1 and therefore will not work on a theatre system. You will need to have a digital box and run the digital coax.

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:yes: You will need a digital cable box, indeed.

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todd    2
:yes: You will need a digital cable box, indeed.

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I have one, but Comcast wants it back :/

I don't have the power cord for it anymore anyway..

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Pink Floyd    15

my english is too darn bad eh!

I thought he had digital cable so I asumed he had dogital box too :)

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bangbang023    31
I have one, but Comcast wants it back :/

I don't have the power cord for it anymore anyway..

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Well only the digital boxes have the chance of having the digital coax out (actually looks like a single RCA connection).

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Caboose447    0
use coax digital in

it's like a RCA cable but way more expensive and gives you the best audio (same as optical plug)

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Optical is the highest that you can go when it comes to audio connector. It goes like this:

Coax, Composite (RCA), Digital Coax, Optical!

Add your regular cable does not support 5.1DD or DTS. What you need to do is connect your cable to your TV, and then turn off the TV's speakers, and use the audio output on the back of your TV and connect it to the TV input on your home theater! Then you can get simulated 5.1 (called ProLogic) where the reciever take the stereo signal, and splits it up into what it things is 4.1 (Left, center, right, rear mono, sub). It sounds better than Stereo in that you can hear some things from behind you, but you won't get the full effect unless you can actually decode 5.1. Then it will sound amazing! The only way to beable to decode a show or movie that is being broadcasted in 5.1 or DTS, is to have a digital cable box that supports that feature. If you can, go with Optical audio. It is the clearest, and sharpest audio that a home user can get! And its affordable too. YOu don't need to get the $500 monstor THX cable, thats what we call over kill! If you had a professional setup with 10 channels and 5 subs and a 100' HD projector junda thing, then hell ya! Go for the most expensive stuff 'cause it'll be the best! But in your case, a $30 cable will be fine!

I can't wait to get my 7.2 setup (the .1 or .2 is your sub woofer)

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todd    2
Add your regular cable does not support 5.1DD or DTS. What you need to do is connect your cable to your TV, and then turn off the TV's speakers, and use the audio output on the back of your TV and connect it to the TV input on your home theater!

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Guess I should've said.. my TV doesn't have audio outputs.. that was the point of creating this thread..

To update you guys, my mom insists that it should just be a connector/converter :rolleyes: .. so we went to Radio Shack, the guy said an RF modulator would work (which obvisouly won't, so I didn't buy it). Went to ABC Warehouse, the guy said a VCR or Digital Cable box (exactly what I expected).

I tried a VCR and got the video to work, but nothing happened with the Audio.. I used RCA cables to go from the output of the VCR to the input of the receiver, and had my cable connected to the VCR. So then I tried my old DVD player to see if the sound would at least work, and again, the sound wouldn't work from the RCA jacks.. I tried different wires too.. Still didn't work. So does anyone know what usually has to be done to get sound to come through on the RCA jacks? I'm not talking about for cable, but anything I hook up (dvd player, 2 vcr's), the sound wont come through. I have a Samsung HT-DS610.

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todd    2

Forget about that, I got it working with a VCR.. but my next question is this.. is there something out there like a VCR, that doesn't actually play tapes? Because that's really all I need.. a coax to composite converter that allows me to select channels (some sort of box)..

Edit: Besides a digital cable box.. because those are expensive because they're for digital cable.

Edit 2: OK.. it seems I could pick up an external TV tuner at newegg and convert from vga to composite, and audio out to composite, but it's too expensive and too much hassle.. oh well.. i'll just listen through my tv's speakers..

Edited by todd`

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Pink Floyd    15

you need an external box to convert signal because your TV nor your vcr have converter built in

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todd    2
you need an external box to convert signal because your TV nor your vcr have converter built in

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Thanks, I knew that, but the VCR _did_ work through the surround speakers.. it was still only two channels though :p

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Joel    26
Optical is the highest that you can go when it comes to audio connector. It goes like this:

Coax, Composite (RCA), Digital Coax, Optical!

If you can, go with Optical audio. It is the clearest, and sharpest audio that a home user can get! And its affordable too.

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I take issue with this proclamation. Digital is digital. 0s and 1s are the same in light and in electric impulse, and they shouldn't even be compared to analog coax and and analog composite. The difference I have actually experienced is changing the sound quality by moving the optical cable. Don't ask me how it works (maybe changing the refraction of the light in the cable, who knows?), but I stay away from optical now. Layer changes and input changes on my receiver also used to interrupt the sound, but I now use D-Coax and have no problems.

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Snipe    0

I was going to say use a VCR, but then I see you have tried that. That is how I hooked up my fiance's speakers in her bedroom. I gave her an old receiver, VCR and a Bose Acoustimass 3 system, which only has 2 cubes and a bass module.

I did do something similar before I had digital cable and my HDTV. Like you said, just put the coax in the input of your VCR and use the audio outputs on the VCR to connect to the receiver, then make sure you have your receiver set to Dolby Pro Logic II or perhaps another simulated surround setting - this will force the sound to come out in more than 2 channels. As for any other way of doing this I have no idea.

She only uses the VCR to enable the sound to come out the Bose speakers :) It is nothing spectacular, but it is better than using the TV speakers.

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