Sound Cards in Macs

Discussion in 'Macintosh Computers' started by dotdotdot, May 29, 2005.

  1. macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    #1
    I am so excited - today I actually had my first conversation with my dad about buying a Mac that he didn't say "You're never getting one!" instead he said, "oh, thats interesting..." (non sarcastically.)

    Anyway, if I get a Mac I'm getting the Logitech Z-5500 speakers... 5.1 Digital. I was thinking about getting an iMac or a 12" PowerBook, but I want to take full advantage of these speakers.

    If I get a Mac, which one has the best sound card? Also, do they sell external sound cards for the Mac which provide Digital 5.1 Surround sound?
     
  2. macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2004
    Location:
    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    #2
    If you get a Mac with an optical digital output (any of the PowerMac G5's, the iMac G5, 17" Powerbook) then you can take 5.1 digitally to the Logitech Z-5500 Digital with a Toslink cable.
    http://www.logitech.com/index.cfm/products/details/US/EN,CRID=2177,CONTENTID=9486

    Otherwise, you can look at the M-Audio Sonica Theater (which has analog outs for 7.1 + optical out) or the Transit (which has an optical out for DTS passthrough only) http://www.m-audio.com/index.php?do=products.list&ID=mobileinterfaces

    5.1 operation depends on the source material being 5.1, and the software you are playing it through supporting 5.1
     
  3. thread starter macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    #3
    So Basically, an iMac G5 would 100% support the Logitech Z-5500??

    If so, I know which computer I'm going to buy!!
     
  4. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2004
    Location:
    Huntington, Utah
    #4
    I have the logitech z-680's ( very similar to the 5500 ) and the M-audi Revolutions 5.1 card and I could never be more pleased... these speakers are kick-ass!! and so is the sound card!..
     
  5. macrumors 68000

    MoparShaha

    Joined:
    May 15, 2003
    Location:
    San Francisco
    #5
    No, only the Power Mac G5's and the 17" have built-in optical digital outputs. With the iMac G5, you'd have to get one of the adaptors CanadaRAM mentioned.
     
  6. macrumors 6502a

    aethier

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2003
    Location:
    Montréal, Canada
    #6
    i have the sonica theater

    i like the digital out, i have not used it since installing tiger as M-audio has yet to get around to producing tiger drivers.
     
  7. macrumors 68010

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2003
    #7
    The iMac has digital audio output.
     
  8. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2004
    Location:
    Huntington, Utah
    #8
    Tiger should have support for your Sonica card... tiger worked right away with my Revo 5.1
     
  9. macrumors 601

    ITASOR

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2005
    Location:
    Oneida, NY
    #9
    Is digital out the port that is powered like on the QuickSilver to work with the Apple Pro Speakers. I don't think so, but I'm not sure what digital audio out is...anyone care to explain? :p
     
  10. macrumors regular

    Ti_Poussin

    Joined:
    May 6, 2005
    #10
    I have a Logitech Z-680 with a m-audio Sonica Theater, take care of m-audio driver, don't install them they totally suck. But since Tiger support the card directly it's ok. I have seen people using the creative audigy external sound card and they are support, no special driver through.
     
  11. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2004
    #11
    wait what is this about a toslink cable? I just bought x-530 speakers, and right now have it going to my computer through two headphone splitters, which i feel is a crappy way to do it. Can anyone send me a link to what i would need?
     
  12. macrumors 6502a

    aethier

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2003
    Location:
    Montréal, Canada
    #12
    i'll try again, but the first time i tried in tiger, the drivers did not work and tiger did not detect (wasn't listed as a sound output option)
     
  13. macrumors 6502a

    aethier

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2003
    Location:
    Montréal, Canada
    #13
    tried again, doesn't work :(
     
  14. thread starter macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    #14
    So for an iMac I would need:

    -An iMac G5
    -Logitech Z-5500s
    -An M-Audio thing

    So, what is the best M-Audio thing for under $150?
     
  15. macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2002
    Location:
    USA
    #15
    Your speakers ship with a Toslink cable in the box. If you buy a Mac with optical digital output, you don't need to buy anything else. It's a Mac. It just works.
     
  16. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2004
    Location:
    here.
    #16
    UNDER $150?! ROFLMAO!!!

    You're kidding, right?

    5.1 is overrated anyway.
     
  17. thread starter macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    #17
    PHEW!! So I save money!!!!

    I thought I needed the M-Audio thing for $120... yes JonMaker, $120!... instead, I just need the speakers and the included toslink cable!

    !!! I'm so happy now! I mean, if I don't get an iMac G5 I'll be really upset, but if I do, this is GREAT!
     
  18. macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2004
    Location:
    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    #18
  19. macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2004
    Location:
    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    #19
    A Toslink cable is an optical cable for digital audio signals. It is a fibre-optic connection, rather than an electrical conductor.

    To use it, you have to have a receiver, amplifier or powered speakers that has an optical digital input, and a decoder for decoding surround sound. Your x-530 speakers do not have digital input, so this is not an option for you.

    For better sound, you could investigate one of the USB audio solutions, from the Griffin iMic or Powerwave, the M-Audio Sonica Theater (for surround) or the Transit (for stereo only)

    Erm... no it's not. It's a digital audio port (as opposed to analog audio, which is what is on speakers, headphones and RCA jacks that go to stereos).
     
  20. thread starter macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    #20
    Do I need to buy a Mini-Toslink to Toslink cable to connect it to the back of the iMac G5?
     
  21. Moderator emeritus

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2002
    Location:
    Gone but not forgotten.
    #21
    It should but it doesn't support my sonica either. There is a new download for Revolution 7.1 cards, even though the 5.1 driver seems to work. The following is from their drivers area:

     
  22. macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2004
    Location:
    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    #22
    Yes
     

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