2011 MacBook Pro w/ Logitech Z-5500 5.1 Surround

Xscapes

macrumors regular
Original poster
Oct 16, 2011
166
9
New York
I got the logitech Z-5500 speaker plugged to my MBP with a toslink cable, but i can't get 5.1 surround from it. Before i had the speaker plug in to my PC with creative sound card it show Digital on the control pod, but now it only show Stereo. I tried to select 5.1 in Audio MIDI Setup but it only allow me to select Stereo.

Please give me advice to fix this.
 

bdodds1985

macrumors 6502a
Jul 18, 2011
867
0
Tartarus
the control center doesnt give you any options for this setting? is the sound only coming out of the two stereo left and right speakers? i think unless there is a driver for it or some kind of program to be installed with the speakers that the 3.5mm is only a stereo input. you might be able to use a usb optical sound card and get better sound that way.
 
Last edited:

snaky69

macrumors 603
Mar 14, 2008
5,904
481
the control center doesnt give you any options for this setting? is the sound only coming out of the two stereo left and right speakers? i think unless there is a driver for it or some kind of program to be installed with the speakers that the 3.5mm to optical is only a stereo output.
The MBP can do surround sound via optical cable without any issues. Check for yourself in the MIDI setup.

Edit: OP, you may want to try a restart. Perhaps an SMC reset is also in order.
 

Dark Dragoon

macrumors 6502a
Jul 28, 2006
843
3
UK
Are you playing audio encoded using DTS or Dolby Digital (AC-3)?

I have the Logitech Z-5500 speakers connected via toslink, when I say play a movie DVD with a surround soundtrack the speaker pod should switch to DTS or Digital and I get surround sound.

The rest of the time it's just stereo or unmixed to 4.1 or 5.1 depending on what effect you have it set to. This is due to OSX and/or the hardware not supporting on the fly encoding (Dolby Digital Live or DTS Connect) of surround sound to DTS/DD so it just streams raw PCM (stereo) to the speakers.
 

Xscapes

macrumors regular
Original poster
Oct 16, 2011
166
9
New York
the control center doesnt give you any options for this setting? is the sound only coming out of the two stereo left and right speakers? i think unless there is a driver for it or some kind of program to be installed with the speakers that the 3.5mm is only a stereo input. you might be able to use a usb optical sound card and get better sound that way.
I can change the effect to Stereo, Stereo x2, PLC Movie and PLC Music.
But when i connect it to PC its auto set to Digital.
 

Xscapes

macrumors regular
Original poster
Oct 16, 2011
166
9
New York
The MBP can do surround sound via optical cable without any issues. Check for yourself in the MIDI setup.

Edit: OP, you may want to try a restart. Perhaps an SMC reset is also in order.
I tried many time in MIDI, nothing allow me to select 5.1.
I tried SMC reset also.

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Are you playing audio encoded using DTS or Dolby Digital (AC-3)?

I have the Logitech Z-5500 speakers connected via toslink, when I say play a movie DVD with a surround soundtrack the speaker pod should switch to DTS or Digital and I get surround sound.

The rest of the time it's just stereo or unmixed to 4.1 or 5.1 depending on what effect you have it set to. This is due to OSX and/or the hardware not supporting on the fly encoding (Dolby Digital Live or DTS Connect) of surround sound to DTS/DD so it just streams raw PCM (stereo) to the speakers.
When i watch a Blu-ray movie it does change it to Digital, but other than that its Stereo or whatever i set in control pod.

----------

Anyone here tried the Bose Companion 5, it can be set to 5.1 in MIDI.
 

Dark Dragoon

macrumors 6502a
Jul 28, 2006
843
3
UK
When i watch a Blu-ray movie it does change it to Digital, but other than that its Stereo or whatever i set in control pod.
Then it's working as expected, this is how any speakers connected to the Mac via TOSLINK will work. To get surround sound at other times, for example when playing games you would need another soundcard (USB, Firewire) which has the three audio out jacks (left/right, rear left/rear right, sub/centre).

The Audio MIDI Setup will only show two channels (left and right) when connected via TOSLINK. This should be the same for any speakers connected this way.

The PC also likely has a sound card capable of Dolby Digital Live or DTS Connect. Which is why it does do surround sound at other times and shows Digital on the control pod.
 

BitterMelon

macrumors newbie
Feb 24, 2011
19
0
1. If you play DD/DTS material, you can bitstream that to the speakers over toslink and get surround sound. This is done by the respective player.
2. If you are expecting the computer sounds to play in surround, you are out of luck. Toslink only supports uncompressed stereo (that's why you can only select stereo in MIDI setup), not surround (you need HDMI for that).
3. To get surround for other sounds than DD/DTS movies, you will need to encode the sound on the fly. It may be possible, but I have not found a way to get that to work. You'll probably need to use a virtual sound card of some sort (like Soundflower) in combination with a codec.
 

Xscapes

macrumors regular
Original poster
Oct 16, 2011
166
9
New York
Thanks for all the replies, I may just get a new speaker then.
I may get the Bose Companion 5 or 20.
 

Dark Dragoon

macrumors 6502a
Jul 28, 2006
843
3
UK
It would be a lot cheaper to just buy yourself a usb sound card with the 3 outputs, unless you really want to buy new USB speakers.

Uhm... How is that supposed to help you in any shape or form? :confused:
Well the Bose Companion 5 and 20 both connect via USB, they basically have a USB sound card integrated into them so they should work. Though the Companion 5 appears to only be 2.1 anyway.
 

Xscapes

macrumors regular
Original poster
Oct 16, 2011
166
9
New York
I think the Bose Companion 20 is my solution because my room is smaller now so I don't need a very powerful speaker like the Z-5500 but if it work like before then it's fantastic.
 

Dark Dragoon

macrumors 6502a
Jul 28, 2006
843
3
UK
What audio do you have in surround sound?
You mention Blu-Ray, and I would assume other movies/DVD's etc... but what else do you have that supports surround sound outputs?
 

Dark Dragoon

macrumors 6502a
Jul 28, 2006
843
3
UK
I only tried Blu-ray. I use iTune for music, most of my movie are in rmvb.
If you don't have much in surround sound then it shouldn't really matter that you are only getting true surround sound out of Blu-ray/DVD etc... the rest are only stereo so it won't make any difference.

If you had said games or something else with surround sound but not Dolby Digital/DTS then it would be different.

The only difference when you see Digital on the control pod in this instance is that the computer is handling up mixing the audio to 5.1, versus when connected to the Mac it's the speakers up mixing to whatever you tell it to use (effects setting).
 

nawazsumar

macrumors newbie
Jun 27, 2011
13
0
The bose companion 20 do not connect via USB, its regular line in.

I have a pair on delivery due to arrive in two hours. I am not sure whether to open the box or return them so I can upgrade to something with a DAC.