How do I send audio via 3.5mm or RCA from an Apple TV?

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by alexjholland, Sep 18, 2017.

  1. alexjholland macrumors 6502


    May 3, 2011
    Bali, Cambridge, Sydney.. anywhere.
    How do I route Apple TV audio to a home stereo with only 3.5mm or red/white RCA inputs?

    I'm planning to buy an Apple TV 4K as my primary entertainment device, as we travel constantly (digital nomads). I'm getting the 4K model in case we stay anywhere with a 4K TV.

    We're currently in Australia and have a 10 year old Optoma 720p projector and use a large Sony HiFi for sound, which together perform surprisingly well. My 2011 MacBook Pro sends video via an HDMI to DVI cable to the Optoma (which has DVI-in, but not HDMI-in) and audio is sent over a long 3.5mm to red/white cable.

    However, the new Apple TVs don't appear to have a 3.5mm audio output?

    Moreover, it's not like the projector can take audio and send it on, as (unlike HDMI), DVI doesn't carry any sound.

    Any ideas?

    Obviously for screen-sharing I could just keep the sound coming from the MacBook Pro, but my only concern is whether the video going MacBook->Apple TV->Projector could induce slightly delay and therefore the video would lag behind the audio?

    This still wouldn't allow me to play Apple TV audio natively though?
  2. dwfaust macrumors 601


    Jul 3, 2011
    You don't. Audio is sent via HDMI only. You would need to feed the audio to an AVR and from there, with an AVR with the proper ports, you could split the audio off to a separate device... but the only way to get audio out of the gen 4 or later AppleTV is via HDMI.
  3. xylitol, Sep 19, 2017
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2017
  4. alexjholland thread starter macrumors 6502


    May 3, 2011
    Bali, Cambridge, Sydney.. anywhere.
  5. boston04and07 macrumors 65816


    May 13, 2008
    I just found this thread because I’m looking to do the same thing - use my bedroom Apple TV 4 with my 2.1 bookshelf speakers, which sound great but use an RCA cable. I’ve tried various Bluetooth adapters, but frequent dropouts and connection issue have made me want to find a wired solution.

    As it is now, I can do everything via my Apple TV remote or my iPad and iPhone Remote app as my tv supports hdmi cec, including volume control when my speakers were connected via Bluetooth. How has everyones’ experiences been with CEC volume control when using an audio extractor? I’m hoping it works, otherwise I might want to find another solution as it’s so nice being able to control everything via my iOS devices...
  6. Tech198 macrumors G5

    Mar 21, 2011
    Australia, Perth
    Kinda puts Airport express out of the picture now-days doesn't it .... In the old days, you could route audio from devices via AUX input to your stereo, but today with going over one cable HDMI, probably not possible

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6 September 18, 2017