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Topic # 25065 11-Aug-2008 11:15
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I am building a home with multi zone capability within the sound system.  I want to drive the system is driven from my PC (all music is on it) and I was wondering if anybody knows how to get for example music playing in one zone and a movie playing in another?  

Is there a sound card that can handle multiple outputs?  



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  Reply # 155860 11-Aug-2008 12:28
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Found this:

Consumers also want the ability to play back two different audio tracks
, such as a CD and a DVD simultaneously, which can't be done using current audio solutions. Intel HD Audio features multi-streaming capabilities that give users the ability to send two or more different audio streams to different locations at the same time, from the same PC.

Send a game's sound through 5.1 speakers while the Internet chatting audio is sent through your headset
Send a game's sound through 5.1 speakers while the Internet chatting audio is sent through your headset.
A DVD movie with 5.1 audio can be sent to a surround sound system in the living room, while you listen to digital music on the PC.
Send a DVD movie with 5.1 audio to a surround sound system in the living room, while you listen to digital music and surf the Web on the PC. Intel HD Audio handles these and other applications with ease, which is attractive to users as multiple, simmultaneous applications become more commonplace in the digital home.

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  Reply # 155880 11-Aug-2008 13:21
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The only issue with this is that Vista's DRM imposes limits on simultaneous SPDIF and analog usage. While the hardware is capable of many things DRM does impose restictions.

It's easy to use multiple sound cards and direct output to each card as required, just be aware that these may have to be analog outputs.

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  Reply # 155889 11-Aug-2008 13:45
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If I install a second sound card into my machine will that cause conflicts or is Windows (XP Pro) intelligent to work this out?

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  Reply # 155892 11-Aug-2008 13:49
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Depending on what you want to do, I use VLC (VideoLan client) to play my movies, and it will let me select the audio output I want to use, as opposed to using the 'default'.

That way the GF can watch movies on the TV, and listen to it through the surround sound system, while I use my USB headset to play games :D

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  Reply # 155896 11-Aug-2008 14:00
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This may not work if you want to use Windows, but have you considered PulseAudio?. Have look at this blog for some discussion on this, and in fact read the entire blog to see a full blown audio hardware switching system. Very interesting stuff.

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  Reply # 155942 11-Aug-2008 16:25
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louian: If I install a second sound card into my machine will that cause conflicts or is Windows (XP Pro) intelligent to work this out?

I have used this for Multi-track recording and playback.

Yes it is very possible.

I would have either an instance of an application (VideoLAN instance 1 for Lounge, VideoLAN instance 2 for Family room etc) or an application (Winamp for lounge, WMP for Family room etc) for each zone.


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