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Thread: Vintage Audio Hi-Fi Equipment/Setup Thread

  1. #31
    Master of Shinobi Segadream's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Baloo View Post
    Anyone have any recommendations for games and movies that sound better in Dolby Pro Logic?
    King Aurthurs World SNES...

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    The Gentleman Thief Baloo's Avatar
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    So I finally got true 5.1-channel surround sound while still using my current vintage stereo speakers! Here is my current setup:

    • Luxman R-115 Stereo with Klipsch KG4 speakers. ($50, given to me effectively by a good friend.
    • Luxman F-114 Surround Sound amp with Klipsch KV-1 and KG .5 speakers for center and rear
    • Technics SA-500D surround sound digital processor decoder to decode Dolby Digital and DTS streams from optical output. - This was the most important piece.
    • An iArkPower 3-in-1 HDMI audio extractor to extract the 5.1 surround sound DTS and Dolby Digital signals from streaming boxes that I have.
    • An Apple TV 2013 (older one that we still use) that outputs Dolby Digital/AC3.
    • My computer custom built running Kodi that passes through DTS and AC3 (DD) signals to the HDMI extractor and the Technics decoder.


    Now I basically just need to get rid of my older Roku and buy an NVidia Shield 2019, which seems to be one of the few streaming boxes with the Dolby license to downmix Dolby Digital and DTS-HD to plain old AC3 and DTS from streaming services that only output higher formats these days. I also need to get a subwoofer to add to my setup. This entire process has just cemented my belief that HDMI is the complete and total devil, used to make old hardware that is perfectly usable obsolete for no good reason, and to simultaneously prevent piracy of people ripping the audio from DVDs, Blu-Rays, and SACDs in a reasonable manner for playback on older hardware. It took me so long to figure out, I was reading all kinds of hardware manuals for devices I didn't even own prior to buying them so I could figure it out. It's a mess of RCA cables, but I now have a setup that can play 5.1 channel surround sound and simultaneously play audio from old VHS players, video game systems with composite audio output (like my Model 1 Sega Genesis) and new streaming boxes that only do HDMI output through the HDMI Audio extractor.

    Quote Originally Posted by cleeg View Post
    So this where I get a bit confused... Eventually I want to get an AV HDMI receiver with surround sound. I don't want anything too fancy, and might not even go for 7.1, staying with 5.1 if the price is better, but if I watch say, a Blu Ray with a 7.1 or Atmos soundtrack, will I miss anything? Or would the receiver / Blu Ray player do some magic to ensure the sound is distributed throughout the setup accordingly?

    Any recommendations / tips? I also have a vintage B&O quodrophonic hifi, which I think I'll just use for music, though I'm still thinking of integrating it somehow into the gaming setup...
    I just went through this adding surround sound to my vintage stereo equipment. It is so dependent on so many factors and overly difficult to add surround sound to an existing stereo speaker. I have a Luxman R-115 and a Luxman F-114, two separate amps that also serve as receivers. I lucked out that the company that made my stereo also made a separate high end surround sound amp with main ins and pre-outs so I could add a digital sound decoder for dolby digital and dts feeds and simply use my existing stereo and surround sound as pure amps for surround sound, while still being able to use my stereo to play back music.

    Cleeg, first what is the brand and model of your Quadrophonic stereo? Take a picture of the back of it and see if it has "Pre-outs" and "Main in" ports. If it has both (arguably RCA) then you can add a surround sound processor to it to send a direct surround sound signal to your powered speakers.

    The first problem is that even with a quadrophonic speaker you will need an amp something to power the center speaker in any surround sound setup.

    The second problem is most streaming boxes do not support plain old AC3, they only output dolby digital+ and DTS-HD, or some even newer funky format. These cannot be translated over optical cables or extracted by audio cables. Dont use TV Digital Audio outputs as they only outpur HDMI sound in stereo generally, and almost never DTS.

    Cleeg: Do you mainly use your stereo for music or games? What kind of games? Do you mainly watch Blu-Rays or DVDs? Do you own them or rent them, what do you play them on? Does the device have RCA outputs for video and audio or does it output HDMI? Do you care about 4K or are you fine with 1080p? What about Streaming Boxes? Be prepared to potentially upgrade all or some of your hardware in order to properly play surround sound. In order to get surround sound with my existing stereo speakers, I needed to get a surround sound amp with pre-outs and main ins, a digital sound decoder that decoded optical cable to RCA output, an HDMI extractor to extract the 5.1 signal, and have a streaming box that output dolby digital (NOT +) in order to get a decodable signal to the processor. I am currently using an older Apple TV from 2013 and Kodi on my Linux PC to play Dolby Digital and DTS streams. I use my computer and Kodi to play back Blu Rays and DVDs.

    What is frustrating is that new receivers that are able to decode Atmos, Dolby Digital+, DTS-HD and the like are expensive, and not all have HDCP 2.2 or 2.3 to passthrough 4K video if that is your thing. And to top it off, most all in one stereo and AVR receivers sound like crap for music. Theyre mainly used for games and surround sound. The receivers that are older dont have the right HDMI decoding for video signals and may leave you with no video.

    In sum, it is extremely difficult to get a right setup with existing hardware. I managed to get the best of both worlds with my setup that supports old video game systems and newer streaming hardware. But read up on everything you can find before you buy anything to see if it is compatible with your equipment. There are a lot of cheap decoders out there and hardware that won't properly passthrough video or audio signals. If your quadrophonic stereo that powers your speakers does not have pre-out and main-in inputs, then you're best off just buying a new cheap AVR with support for 4k and all of the proper formats with HDMI inputs.
    Last edited by Baloo; 01-13-2021 at 05:54 PM.
    Quote Originally Posted by j_factor View Post
    The Sega Saturn was God's gift to humanity. This is inarguable fact!



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  3. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Baloo View Post
    Nice, thanks Barone and gamevet! This is super helpful. I saw in other places Sonic CD was mentioned, and I noticed that Mario Kart Double Dash and Star Wars Rogue Squadron supported Dolby Pro Logic II, so I am definitely looking forward to seeing how both of those sound on the receiver I am getting, even if it is a little older. I don't mind that since I mainly play retro games anyway, I am not too worried about the latest and greatest technology in the first place.
    Here’s a list of SNES games that support surround. Super Castlevania IV sounds awesome in surround.

    https://www.reddit.com/r/miniSNESmod...tent=post_body
    A Black Falcon: no, computer games and video games are NOT the same thing. Video games are on consoles, computer games are on PC. The two kinds of games are different, and have significantly different design styles, distribution methods, and game genre selections. Computer gaming and console (video) gaming are NOT the same thing."



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    The Gentleman Thief Baloo's Avatar
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    Interestingly, I cant seem to get Dolby Pro Logic/Dolby Surround from any of the supported games on my SNES Classic Mini. Seems to only support stereo. Guess just another reason to get the official hardware.
    Quote Originally Posted by j_factor View Post
    The Sega Saturn was God's gift to humanity. This is inarguable fact!



    Feedback Thread: http://www.sega-16.com/forum/showthr...ack&highlight=

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    Quote Originally Posted by Baloo View Post
    Interestingly, I cant seem to get Dolby Pro Logic/Dolby Surround from any of the supported games on my SNES Classic Mini. Seems to only support stereo. Guess just another reason to get the official hardware.
    It's all in an emulation shell. They probably have it outputting everything to stereo. Pro-logic should do some delayed processing to simulate surround.
    A Black Falcon: no, computer games and video games are NOT the same thing. Video games are on consoles, computer games are on PC. The two kinds of games are different, and have significantly different design styles, distribution methods, and game genre selections. Computer gaming and console (video) gaming are NOT the same thing."



  6. #36
    The Gentleman Thief Baloo's Avatar
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    I picked up a Nintendo Wii with OEM component cables a week ago. The Wii of course has Dolby Pro Logic II support for quite a few games, including Mario Kart, Wii Sports Resort, Wii Sports, and many others. Since my TV supports outputting dolby digital and DTS through its optical out port, I am for the first time able to enjoy video games in surround sound, even if it just matrixed currently. Even though it is not "true discrete" surround sound in 5.1 channels, I think Dolby Pro Logic II still sounds great on the Wii. Wii Bowling sounds like the crowd is behind you cheering you on. Mario Kart is a cacophany of different sounds from behind that feels more like a race. Also picked up Star Wars Rogue Squadron II which has Dolby Pro Logic II support and while that does not sound quite as good in surround sound mode, it definitely enhances the gameplay experience.

    Overall, very cool stuff for anyone who hasn't tried it with any retro games. I haven't tried anything older yet as I don't have original hardware to do it on, but it definitely is cool playing Wii games in surround sound. Even many of the Wiiware games like Bust-A-Move and Tetris Party support surround sound, which is neat.
    Quote Originally Posted by j_factor View Post
    The Sega Saturn was God's gift to humanity. This is inarguable fact!



    Feedback Thread: http://www.sega-16.com/forum/showthr...ack&highlight=

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    Quote Originally Posted by Baloo View Post
    I picked up a Nintendo Wii with OEM component cables a week ago. The Wii of course has Dolby Pro Logic II support for quite a few games, including Mario Kart, Wii Sports Resort, Wii Sports, and many others. Since my TV supports outputting dolby digital and DTS through its optical out port, I am for the first time able to enjoy video games in surround sound, even if it just matrixed currently. Even though it is not "true discrete" surround sound in 5.1 channels, I think Dolby Pro Logic II still sounds great on the Wii. Wii Bowling sounds like the crowd is behind you cheering you on. Mario Kart is a cacophany of different sounds from behind that feels more like a race. Also picked up Star Wars Rogue Squadron II which has Dolby Pro Logic II support and while that does not sound quite as good in surround sound mode, it definitely enhances the gameplay experience.

    Overall, very cool stuff for anyone who hasn't tried it with any retro games. I haven't tried anything older yet as I don't have original hardware to do it on, but it definitely is cool playing Wii games in surround sound. Even many of the Wiiware games like Bust-A-Move and Tetris Party support surround sound, which is neat.
    For most older games try looking for Dolby Pro Logic logo or something like that on the packaging or media itself as those are sure bet they'll support it. I've played Wii Sports with Dolby Pro Logic II and the experience was amazing. Surround sound really adds something special with the motion controls that I haven't really experienced with other kinds of games that use traditional controllers.
    Last edited by Chibisteven; 02-18-2021 at 12:29 AM.

  8. #38
    Master of Shinobi Segadream's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Baloo View Post
    I picked up a Nintendo Wii with OEM component cables a week ago.
    It would appear you have every retro emu that will run coming at you in camponent quality signal.
    🤓
    You gotta play Crossbow Training.
    That would be a go to for audio visual engorgemnt.

  9. #39
    Wildside Expert vexatious's Avatar
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    Can't say but the Gemini record player looks great! Looks like I could use something like that. Looks professional and less tacky compared to common black 1990's era consoles. What about the speakers? 2 way or three way?

  10. #40
    Master of Shinobi Segadream's Avatar
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    Some jack just put a pair of SENTRY IV B BY ELECTRO VOICE on the curb t
    this morning.
    Needless to say I'll be dismantling them,
    as they are ugly and I want the 12's for amother project.
    I only need 2 and these come with
    2 each.
    I'm stoked bros!...

  11. #41
    ♥Konomi Yuzuhara♥ Outrunner Tasuke's Avatar
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    PIONEER 1990 TOTL VSX-D1S A/V Receiver and POLK AUDIO 199? R10 two-way mini-monitors have proven a magical combination. best sound i've ever had by far...













    Konomi Yuzuhara

  12. #42
    The Gentleman Thief Baloo's Avatar
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    I have heard that the Pioneer VXS-D1S is a great AV Receiver and AMP from what I have been told, even better than the Luxman R-117. Plus it can serve as a power amp for 5 speakers which is great if you can find a surround sound digital to analog converter. My rig has been serving me great for the few months now that I have everything set up. Having new relays installed was expensive but overal I ended up with a Dolby Digital and DTS capable surround sound system for about $600 including speakers. With so much media only mixed up to DTS-HD and Dolby Digital+ at best, there is honestly no point to try to achieve anything greater in my opinion. I hope that my current setup will be able to serve me for as long as possible. Now though if I want to upgrade my TV I'll need something with both Component in and Digital Optical Audio out, neither of which are frequently available these days.

    Right now I play DVDs and Blu-Rays through my Linux Desktop PC on Kodi or VLC (Though be warned, Blu-Rays are extremely difficult to get native playback and decryption, and it can only be done on Linux.) Both are able to downmix DTS-HD and DD+ signals to regular DTS and DD, which are able to be decoded by my Technics AC-500D Surround Sound decoder. This is the ONLY model of surround sound decoder that I have been able to find that supports BOTH DTS and DD and outputs into analog for older receivers and amps. Why throw your old equipment away?

    For streaming services, I use the Apple TV 4K for AC3 5.1 DD Surround Sound support, though I am not as impressed with its functionality overall compared to the NVidia Shield, which is the only other capable streaming box that is able to downmix. But if you want a good streaming box, those I think are the only two worthwhile for any audiophiles. Both are able to downmix Dolby Digital+ to original Dolby Digital AC3 5.1. I watched Into the Spiderverse rented from apple in Surround Sound and that sounded really good, best movie yet. Most other movies and TV shows only have a minimal amount of surround sound If you're a cordcutting nerd like I am, you can also get surround sound signals alongside your regular channels through your antenna!
    Last edited by Baloo; 06-15-2021 at 02:52 PM.
    Quote Originally Posted by j_factor View Post
    The Sega Saturn was God's gift to humanity. This is inarguable fact!



    Feedback Thread: http://www.sega-16.com/forum/showthr...ack&highlight=

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    I'd posted a single picture of my old 1991 RCA 2.1 surround boom box on the other page. Well, I took that thing down (it needed a good cleaning), and didn't realize just how big the thing was, since it's been sitting on the top shelf over my desk for over a decade. It's even portable, if you want to destroy the environment with the required 10 D batteries, plus 3 AA batteries for the clock. It would probably wear out those D batteries in a couple of hours, as this thing can put out 35 watts of sound.

    This thing is wider than my seat area of the recliner. It also weighs near 35 pounds.




    Here's the dual cassettes on the top. I had to give the right player a thorough cleaning of the tape head. It wasn't playing very clean.




    Looks like I need to get something to clean between the cracks. My canned air wasn't cutting it, and neither was a Q-Tip.




    Here's where it resides in my man cave/office. It's wider than the 28" desktop display for my PC.

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    A Black Falcon: no, computer games and video games are NOT the same thing. Video games are on consoles, computer games are on PC. The two kinds of games are different, and have significantly different design styles, distribution methods, and game genre selections. Computer gaming and console (video) gaming are NOT the same thing."



  14. #44
    Master of Shinobi JCU's Avatar
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    Back when RCA made a good product.....

    Nipper would be rolling in his grave if he could see what became of RCA.

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    End of line.. Shining Hero gamevet's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JCU View Post
    Back when RCA made a good product.....

    Nipper would be rolling in his grave if he could see what became of RCA.
    I don't if they are much better, but Toshiba actually built it for RCA.
    A Black Falcon: no, computer games and video games are NOT the same thing. Video games are on consoles, computer games are on PC. The two kinds of games are different, and have significantly different design styles, distribution methods, and game genre selections. Computer gaming and console (video) gaming are NOT the same thing."



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