This answers one of the very important questions which is how to connect multimedia computer speakers to Set Top Box. The answer is they cannot be connected as the STB is not equipped with sufficient hardware to provide ports / jack for connectivity. A workaround to this situation is to connect the speakers with RCA pins Red and White. to the Set top Box. This connection will provide the speakers system 2 Channel stereo input. Then using the functionality of your multimedia speaker system convert it to 5.1 / 7.1. But this is not the Dolby Digital sound which you actually want to listen too but a cheap workaround. You will never be able to enjoy the sound which content producers wanted you to experience.
The STB which you have at home has only 2 ports at the back, the optical out and the HDMI out. Optical out supports only audio of up to 5.1 channels (Dolby Digital) whereas the HDMI supports Video as well as audio of up to 7.1 channels (Dolby Digital +). Here are the steps to enjoy surround sound at your home.
- A High Definition (HD) Set Top Box that supports 5.1 / 7.1 Dolby Digital sound.
- HD Channels like Star Movies HD, Discovery HD, Nat Geo HD.
- A Full HD Television to enjoy HD Video.
- AVR / DAC i.e Audio Video Receiver or Digital to Analog Converter.
- A Speaker system set compatible as per the specifications of AVR.
You very well know about all the above items except for the last 2. AVR is a device which takes as input the optical / HDMI out provided by the set top box and gives as output one HDMI for going to TV and 14 analog outs to connect 7 speakers (Each speaker needs 2 to get connected) It also provides a special port to connect the sub woofer(.1 output). The job of AVR is to separate Video and Audio from the HDMI cable coming from STB, and send the video through a different HDMI cable to TV and then process the Audio before sending it out to speakers. The processing involves decoding / decompressing the audio to the format which can be understood by normal speakers. The technology of Dolby Digital ends at AVR and what you get as output is the analog signal for speakers. The normal multimedia speakers can now be connected to AVR, which previously were unable to get connected to the STB directly. But unfortunately the power of signal generated by the AVR is extremely high for the multimedia speakers of the computer and if you try to connect them to AVR, result will be a blast. To be clear the speakers will blast and this may also damage your AVR, if you connect small multimedia speakers to AVR. The solution to this problem is to buy a Speaker Set which is compatible with your AVR. Go through the specification of the AVR before purchase of speakers and buy only those speakers which are compatible with your AVR.
This complete Set of AVR with Speakers and a HD TV / Projector makes, what we call as the Home Theater System. A small piece of advice to Indians, Prefer not to buy from local market as the local shops charge a huge amount. Its better to get the AVR and speaker systems imported from USA and pay import duty. You have to pay less this way. Click next for a summary of steps required to connect home theater system to DTH and to know about some of the best and cheap Home Theater / AVR systems available in market