Some cable boxes have the option to choose lpcm output. Get to your audio settings and give it a try with your dac.
You may not have the option.
You may not have the option.
Labtec, Thank you for your response. My cable box provides no option.
Having the digital cable from the cable box plugged in to my Dac gives me a static signal.
I guess you would say my cable box outputs Bitstream that requires it to be decoded into a PCM signal.
So far, I have not found any type of add on decoders.
First, the signals are stereo as Dolby 2.0, so the conversion needed is to PCM 2.0.
Second, it is questionable whether these signals will benefit much (if at all) from the use of a good external DAC.
Third, if your cable box has HDMI output, you can get one of these: http://www.ebay.com/itm/HDMI-Dolby-DTS-PCM-5-1-7-1-To-Optical-Digital-Audio-Converter-Decoder-/230840436904
I wouldn't bother.
Kr4, Thanks for your comments.
The HDMI signal is going to my TV.
I own a Tascam DA-300 recorder. With this recorder, I could record hours of uninterrupted music then edit what I would like to keep to an external hardrive.
So, I guess my question now becomes is there any way to convert the Dolby digital to stereo PCM?
Cable boxes have 2 menus for adjustment, a user menu and a service menu. Sometimes the adjustment mentioned by Labtec is in the service menu, and you will need a code to access it. Here is an example accessing a service menu. Your cable company will not likely give you the code to access the service menu, however, a search using your cable box name and model may find it.
My Comcast box will only output dolby bitstream, even if I set it to stereo in the main audio menu and in the setup menu that is invoked by pressing menu with the unit off....Comcast had no idea how to help me so fortunately my TV's dac downmixes to stereo pcm. Good luck, maybe you'll talk to a rep that's knowledgeable.
Give the tv optical output a try if so equipped. I am using optical to my NAD M51 dac and tv and netflix have never sounded better.
The cable box may have 2 channel analog outs that can feed the Tascam. Its DAC is not that good, but for the quality of the music, it is probably OK.
Is your cable box connected to a receiver? If so, you might be able to set the receiver to output 2 channel analog that could go to your Tascam. Given the low rez of the Cable signal, the receiver DAC would probably sound as good as you external DAC. It is also possible that the receiver will downmix the 5.1 Dolby to 2.0 PCM and output that over a digital out port.
The cable music signal is probably 128 kbps or lower. As Kal says, I would not stress over getting the signal to a good DAC.
Gefen makes a optical/S/PDIF DD to analog converter.
If you get it working, one trick, at least for non-classical music, is to use Sound Hound on your phone to develop a list of songs being played. It is a manual process but I use it when I get files that are not tagged.
Well guys, I tried the optical out from my Cable and the Denon Receiver and then through a converter to a RCA Coaxial and still I'm getting the static(Bitstream).
I guess I could try the TV optical out, but then I would have to have my 85" 4K Samsung on when I just want to play the music channels.
Oh well, I guess its just not worth the trouble.
Oddiofyl- Did you try a co-ax ground isolating transformer between your cable box and the incoming cable feed to see if you can get rid of the ground loop? You can get one cheap at Rat Shack (if they're still open) or in a pinch you can put two of those old 300 ohm to co-ax converters that came w VCRs (remember those?) back to back. Cable feed to coax converter-twin lead to twin lead-coax converter to cable box. If that seems like a good idea and you can't make sense of what I am trying to say, pm me through agon and I can send you a sketch.
Ozzy, on the Xfinity box you need to go to the menu and select 2 channel audio (PCM). Run an optical cable from the Xfinity box to your PS Audio DA converter - less jitter with the optical. I run this way through my Oppo BD-105 with good results. Some of the cable Paladia concerts are really nice. You may decide to stay with 2 channel after you do this. Good luck