Mr. Fixit's PC Upgrade and Repair
Audio Sound cards
  Front
L/R
Rear
L/R
Center
Side
L/R
Subwoofer
Stereo
X
       
2.1
X
      X
4
X
X
     
4.1
X
X
    X
5.1
X
X
X
  X
7.1
X
X
X
X
X
Aux In can connect to other audio sources like a TV tuner card or an external analog audio device.

I²S In connects to other external digital audio sources that provide 2-channel decoded AC-3 audio from DVD decoders and MPEG-Z
Zoom Video.

USB port allows audio cards to connect to USB speakers, game controllers, etc.

IEEE 1394 (FireWire) allows audio cards to connect to DV camcorders, scanners, hard drives, etc.

These advanced connectors can be found on the card itself, a breakout box, a daughter board, or an external rack.

Using Multiple Audio cards:

You can have more than one audio device installed, however, the OS will default to the most recent card installed. The OS will allow you
to switch between the cards as needed. You can also set them so one card will record audio while the other plays audio.
This is handy when the primary audio device only provides 2 channels. Install another Audio device that provides surround sound disable
the on-board audio device to provide additional features the on-board audio lacks..

Digital Signal Processor (DSP):

You may notice DSP mentioned with the audio card. DSP is a specialized microprocessor with an architecture optimized for the fast
operational needs of digital signal processing. It allows the audio card to do all of the processing of sounds freeing up the CPU to
perform more important tasks.


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Rear Line out is found on surround-capable audio cards to connect rear speakers.

Center/Subwoofer is found on audio cards providing 2.1 (subwoofer only), 4.1 (subwoofer only), 5.1, 6.1, and 7.1 surround sound that connects to a center
speaker and/or a subwoofer.

Side Line out is only found on 7.1 audio cards to connect side speakers.

CD Audio IN connects the CD-ROM drive's analog output to the audio card using a 4-wire audio cable. This is often found in older computers.
Advanced Connectors:

Sony/Phillips Digital Interconnect Format (SPDIF or S/PDIF) transmits/receives digital data to/from any external digital source without converting digital to
analog. This connection uses a 75 ohm coaxial RCA cable, the same that's used to transmit composite video. Some manufacturers call this Dolby Digital
interface. When using this interface be sure to use RCA coaxial with an impedance of 75 ohms. Regular audio RCA cables do not provide the desirable
performance.

CD SPDIF connects to compatible CD drives with a digital output. These look similar to the CD Audio connector except it only uses 2 wires.

TAD IN connects to an internal modem that provides Telephone Answering Device (TAD) support to process voice messages.

Digital DIN out is used on multi-speaker digital systems.

Optical SPDIF uses a fiber optic cable connecting to Home Theater Systems and other digital systems that provide a optical input.