Apple TV 3 via a stereo amp

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by cappers, Apr 19, 2012.

  1. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2011
    #1
    Has anyone ever run their Apple TV through a Stereo Amp from the optical out, either direct into the amp or via a DAC, and does it work?
    If not, anyone found a work round?
     
  2. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2012
    #2
    That works for me

    HDMI to TV, optical to receiver
     
  3. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2011
    #3
    I also have this setup. I have my ATV 2 plugged into my TV via HDMI and into my stereo amp via optical. The first is for TV programmes and films, the second for music.
     
  4. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2009
    #4
    Works perfectly for me too.

    But I use HDMI from Apple TV to TV....

    then optical to DAC.....

    then DAC to Stereo Amp.

    This way you get better sound from your TV as well.

    ----------

    Powered speakers also work and mean you have one less box.
     
  5. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2012
    #5
    AppleTV3 with Denon AVR-1912

    Just hooked up my atv3 to my Denon AVR-1912 using HDMI only no optical,
    the Dolby Surround 5.1 sounds great no real need for optical as far as I can hear. I was worried that this might not work because the atv2 didnt. The so called experts at Mac Warehouse said I needed the optical. but the new aptv3 works great with the HDMI only.
    I have had a fun time with the Denon AVR using AirPlay with my iPad & iPhone
    The Denon sounds great and works fine for my switcher for Blueray and my other accessories.
    Other fun stuff is to mirror your iPad or Phone to your bigscreen using atv3
    try turning on the camera and point it to the TV. you soon will falling down the rabbit hole.
    Have Fun,
    Topcat
     
  6. macrumors 6502

    Roy G Biv

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2010
    #6
  7. macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2006
    Location:
    Oregon
    #7
    Exactly how I have mine setup, except the TV also outputs to the receiver via optical. I've tried switching between the two and can't tell a difference in quality.
     
  8. macrumors 68000

    steve-p

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2008
    Location:
    Newbury, UK
    #8
    Actually 5.1 over HDMI did work fine with ATV2. I was already doing it that way with my current AVR months before I got ATV3. I don't use optical or coaxial for anything anymore. All my sources are HDMI only including 5.1 audio which makes cabling and setup simple. There is no difference in audio quality. HDMI is the future for multichannel audio because it can carry much more bandwidth than optical or coaxial could so supports more channels and higher bitrates and sample sizes.
     
  9. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2011
    #9
    I do exactly the same thing! My amp doesn't have any HDMI ports, and if I have the ATV2 display the picture on the TV via HDMI and output the audio to the amp via optical, the two are not in sync (I guess due to HDMI signals taking longer to process, as I think the ATV outputs audio as LCPM over optical). So, like T5BRICK, when I want to watch a film and have the audio played by my amp, the chain goes ATV - (HDMI) - TV - (TOSLINK) - amp.
     
  10. davidoloan, Apr 20, 2012
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2012

    macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2009
    #10
    Just out of interest what stereo amps are you all using with digital inputs?

    They seem pretty rare to me other than a few Denon's.

    I have to use an external DAC to be able to use the stereo amp I like.

    Saw this review to day for speakers with optical / usb inputs, with internal stereo amplifier and internally amplified wireless speakers with internal DAC. http://www.whathifi.com/review/dynaudio-xeo-3

    This is what I would like to get to someday ..... Apple TV > HDMI > TV > Optical (or other digital) > Wireless Speakers.

    I think this area is going to see a lot of interesting products over the next few years.
     
  11. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2009
    Location:
    New Mexico
    #11
    I just bought a Denon AVR-1912 from Crutchfield. I've only had it a couple of days and love it so far! Good to know the ATV3 will hook up direct to the Receiver. I have an ATV2 in my study hooked to my smaller Sony Bravia, but I was planning to get an ATV3 for the new Denon and Sony XBR 929 TV I just bought.
     
  12. macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2006
    Location:
    Oregon
    #12
    I've got a Harman/Kardon AVR210 I bought about 12 years ago, it's got optical and coax digital inputs. My parents have a Sony receiver from about the same time period with optical.

    I didn't think they were rare, but I haven't shopped around for a long time.
     
  13. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2009
    #13
    Are those not home theatre receivers rather than dedicated stereo amps for music?

    Maybe you are right, but I didn't come across many stereo amps with optical. I think its only now that music based systems NEED a digital input. I am using a music based stereo amp with my Apple TV and TV as I like music quality and it works well with Movies and TV without having to switch inputs etc.
     
  14. macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2006
    Location:
    Oregon
    #14
    You're correct, those are just home theater receivers, I've never really shopped around for dedicated stereo amps. Anyway, I've always had my stereo near my TV and limited space, so the home theater receivers always made the most sense.
     
  15. macrumors 68000

    steve-p

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2008
    Location:
    Newbury, UK
    #15
    I guess with the explosion of big TVs and 5.1 in the home many people don't have the space for a dedicated 2.0 system too so AVRs are kind of taking over in the living room. I had both for a long time, but after remodelling, decided to use the 5.1 system for music too, and using left/right front speakers only plus the sub makes a pretty decent job of it. Modern AVRs have various modes for 2.0 sources but that one I like. It would also be possible to drive existing L/R stereo speakers instead for music, either as the only speakers, or in conjunction with the sub and rear speakers as part of a 5.1 system. Modern AVRs have a calibration mic to automatically balance up the sound for 5.1 so it's no longer necessary to have everything matching. So there are lots of options for 2.0, even with AVRs. I agree that it's long past time that stereo amps had multiple digital inputs and onboard DAC though. I can't really see why none seem to offer that. A friend had a Technics amp 20 years ago that did, but it was phased out.
     
  16. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2009
    #16
    It is starting now. Denon make a few, several companies are starting to make powered stereo speakers with digital inputs and internal dac and products like the Zepplein Air have an internal dac and a gigabit ethernet port.

    It seems most people go the 5.1 route you did and it also seems that companies are working towards making them music friendly too. Much more so than 5 years ago.
     
  17. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2012
    #17
    I run my ATV2 through my Rega DAC to my rega setup. Used to have a dedicated 5.1 system but the receivers I went through (Rotel, Arcam, etc) could never do 2-channel justice.
     
  18. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2011
    #18
    I have a Harman Kardon 3490, which is a true stereo amp with an internal DAC. I have no interest in surround sound, and so decided to go for a stereo amp instead of spending the same (or more) money on a 5.1 AV receiver that I didn't want, and which would likely produce an inferior sound. When I came to make my purchase, I spent a lot of time researching to try to find something that fitted my requirements, and I seem to remember that the HK 3490 was the only unit I could find that did so.

    It's a fantastic amp, with the only drawback being that it only has one optical digital and one coaxial optical port. I don't have anything that uses coax outputs, but have an ATV2 and a TV that both make use of optical. I bought an optical switch to remedy this, which is inexpensive but is really quite big and ugly. I'm able to hide it behind my TV whilst still having it easily reachable to select the input, so it's not too bad.
     
  19. thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2011
    #19
     
  20. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2009
    #20
    Why not just run the hdmi from the apple tv into the TV and the optical from the TV into the Amp?

    The HDMI will carry the audio to the TV and the TV will pass it on.
     
  21. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2011
    #21
    This does indeed work when watching films/TV programmes with the sound outputted through the stereo amp, but when I'm listening to music I prefer to keep the TV out of the equation.

    It doesn't touch the signals, but is instead a (plastic) unit with a number of optical digital inputs, and one optical digital output. Depending on which source I want outputted into my stereo amp's sole TOSLINK input, I use a control on the switch to select the relevant input.
     
  22. thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2011
    #22
    Ah ok, my amp does not have any digital in
     
  23. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2011
    #23
    This works a treat with my Sony amp.

    I use have mine configured with two input selections using the same optical input. One for films, this has a 90ms delay to match the processing delay of my TV. The other has zero delay to ensure that the sound is in sync with other air play devices.
     
  24. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2012
    #24
    I run an HDMI to the TV and from the TV I run Stereo L-R jacks to the back of my Onkyo Stereo Receiver.
    I bought the receiver specifically for 2.0 channel and it's not used as my main 'theatre' television. I wanted it more for music and to enhance regular TV and movie watching for the kids.
     
  25. thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2011
    #25
    I have tried this but makes no difference. I assume whatever is input into the TV from ATV flows through the optical out. Does not seem to change the signal and the same problem occurs. The DAC just wants a stereo signal I think to work properly
     

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