Optical Audio-analog converter for the iMac's optical digital audio output port?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by quagmire, Nov 11, 2009.

  1. quagmire macrumors 603


    Apr 19, 2004
    My friend is looking into buying the new 27" iMac Core i7 to replace his PC desktop. The only thing holding him back is that he has an analog surround sound system he uses for his speakers. I am having a hard time myself finding a converter that can make his speakers work in the iMac's optical digital output port. Any products out there that will do that?
  2. flopticalcube macrumors G4


    Sep 7, 2006
    In the velcro closure of America's Hat
  3. avihappy macrumors 6502


    Nov 15, 2006
    Here is a Firewire analog surround box from griffin: http://www.amazon.com/Griffin-4019-FIRESS-FireWave-Surround-Sound/dp/B000A09IUS

    I would use this because it is specifically targeted at Macs (so you know it'll work), it's cheaper, and because it's firewire so it won't use up any USB ports (it also passes the firewire through, so you can still use another Firewire device if you want.)
  4. ViViDboarder macrumors 68040


    Jun 25, 2008
    If you can find a used Creative Extigy you can use that as a reciever. :D

    I gave my old one to my little brother so he could use his analog speakers with his PS3 and Xbox360.
  5. 300D macrumors 65816


    May 2, 2009
    You're going to have a REALLY hard time since the iMac doesn't have an optical port.

    The only way to get surround sound out of the iMac, for applications that support surround sound, is through USB or FireWire.
  6. MacDuff2000 macrumors member

    Nov 10, 2009
    Plano, TX
    Are you sure? My Mac Mini has optical in/out, if you plug in some of these adapters:


    I get 5.1 digital sound from my Mac Mini.

    I assumed the iMacs and MacBook Pros had the same feature.
  7. Cave Man macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    Feb 12, 2007
    Neander Valley, Germany; just outside Duesseldorf
    The iMacs have dual-purpose optical/analog audio ports. A mini-Toslink to Toslink cable is all that's needed. They've had optical audio since the switch to Intel processors.

    You can get digital audio (5.1 DD or DTS) through optical and analog surround (Dolby Pro Logic II 5-channel) by analog.
  8. fa8362 macrumors 65816

    Jul 7, 2008
    That is not correct. The iMac has an optical port. It's a combo analog/optical port, just like on the Mini, MacBook, etc.

  9. 300D macrumors 65816


    May 2, 2009
    I kind of figured that out after the second post, thanks for pointlessly repeating though. :)
  10. quagmire thread starter macrumors 603


    Apr 19, 2004
    Thanks for the help guys. He ordered the 27" iMac with the Core i5. He at the last minute could not justify the i7. Either way, he got a sick machine. :cool:

    Now to get my parents to replace their aging 20" iMac G5 2 Ghz with the i7 model. :cool:
  11. RexTraverse macrumors 6502

    Feb 10, 2008
    I've used the Firewave for almost 3 years and I would discourage using this if at all possible. Griffin, as usual, has not released any updates to the software in years. There are problems that can occur, depending on application.

    It does work decently, and if there is no other alternative, sure... but I would avoid Firewave if you can.
  12. robmay macrumors newbie

    Nov 19, 2010
    using analog audio and optical at the same time?

    Has anyone figured a way to use the optical and analog audio at the same time?
    I am going to use a toslink splitter, then use a toslink to analog audio converter. it will cost about $80, I would love to find a cheaper alternative.

    In case you are wondering why I would want to do this. My Amplifier Receiver has a zone2 and zone2 will not play digital. so I want to feed digital to my 5.1 system and analog to my zone 2.


  13. QuarterSwede macrumors G3


    Oct 1, 2005
    Colorado Springs, CO
    I don't think it's possible and honestly for that price you may as well buy an Airport Express for digital out and use your computer for analog.

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