Using four speakers


  1. Posts : 248
    Win 10 Pro 64
       #1

    Using four speakers


    To help my eyesight I have just bought a 34 inch curved monitor. It takes some getting used to but with the curve helping focus and the width allowing me to shuffle windows around ad lib it is a great help - again, it takes some getting used to! Its an Iiyama Red Eagle G-Master GB3466WQSU. It looks like they haven't yet been able to develop a specific driver, but the PnP MS generic driver seems to work fine.

    When checking through all the new features I realised that the monitor has inbuilt speakers that are larger than usual and further checking found that the Nvidea Geforce graphic card puts out audio on the HDMI and the Display Port connectors! I checked using Windows Sounds and lo and behold, the test sound can be heard, with no special configuration, on the monitor speakers.

    As poor eyesight can only be helped by better sound, I checked that my better quality external speakers could still be heard. Yes! (They are fed through the standard inbuilt Realtek unit.)

    But now comes the snag. The test sound can be heard on one set or the other, but never both together. I have tried all sorts of selections on the various boxes in Sounds but still can't get all four working at once. Even trying to setup Quadraphonic mode doesn't seem to help. (The configuration tab shows all four but using Test although all four get the animation symbol on the speaker icons only two speakers actually sound.)

    According to the "help" notes on Sounds it seems that I should be able to hear all four at once but the information is so vague that I can't work my way to a satisfactory result through the many selection boxes.

    So - HELP!

    Win 10 Pro 20H2 ver 19042.388 (don't ask!)
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  2. Posts : 26,987
    Windows 10 (Pro and Insider Pro)
       #2
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  3. Posts : 248
    Win 10 Pro 64
    Thread Starter
       #3

    AndreTen said:
    That looks useful. I will try it as a step by step tutorial and report back!
    (I missed it on the forum search!)

    Tony

    - - - Updated - - -

    I had a niggling feeling that there should be a nice configuration page somewhere but couldn't find it. I did find a nasty (the new ugly MS Win 10 look) called Realtek Audio Console which looks pretty useless. But on the other thread there is a screenshot of the one I remembered and instructions to get the real Realtek back. I have searched on my PC and the Realtek control panel is definitely not there.
    Its a big download from Realtek so it will be some time before I can (re)install the console and try it.

    Tony
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  4. Posts : 872
    11 Home
       #4

    Upmixing stereo sound to quadrophonic doesn't necessarily always help to improve sound quality, even though─technically─it can still be made possible. Even with good speakers, even if we can assume that the sound signature of both the front pair and the side speakers are matching in such a particular way that a homogenous sound field can be achieved through them, the acoustic properties of the room, furniture, and the speaker placement vs each other, vs the walls, floor and ceiling, and vs the listening position all are critically important. Room acoustic treatments like corner bass traps and panel absorbers are easy to DIY, and can also be designed to be portable if needed so they can temporarily be moved out of the way. For multi-channel sources like movies, going for a good quality quadrophonic setup can be a viable choice, as subwoofers can be boomy and they don't necessarily always integrate well with the rest of the setup in spite of the fact that this can still also be made possible (they're an additional challenge) and there can be circumstances where adding a center speaker to the two fronts sounds muffled compared to replacing the two fronts with better ones and keeping the total cost the same. It depends.

    There also exist other tools that can help to improve the sound. For example, the free Room EQ Wizard (REW) can be used with a measuring microphone to analyze the effects of room acoustic properties at the 'Main Listening Position (MLP)'─basically where you put your chair─so 1/ you gain the benefit of being able to experiment to get a handle on what's the ideal placement for the chair vs each one of the speakers vs the room and furniture (and where/how best to apply room acoustic treatments also in addition to this), and 2/ if either you can't or you don't want to consider these aforementioned options, sufficiently, i.e. in such a way that can produce adequate results to you, then individually EQ'ing each channel is still usually going to be much better than nothing, especially with cheap audio gear. (The free Equalizer APO and Peace can also be used together with REW.)

    Finally, although onboard sound has significantly improved over the years, it should nevertheless be noted, that investing in a strong quality outboard stereo DAC for stereo sources and/or a processor (such as the truly fantastic Emotiva XMC-2, for example) for multi-channel sources─or both─can, and does, seriously mop the floor with any 25 cent DAC chip that has been soldered to a motherboard. (Even the expensive AV Receivers use a cheap-ish internal DAC stage and a cheap-ish underpowered power amp section just to give you a nameplate on a box filled with a whole plethora of extra gimmicky features plus unneeded flexible-connectivity options that simply are incapable to improve the sound, bar only very few exceptions.) An audio chain is only as good as the weakest link, albeit you don't have to be a rich person to be able to get good sound. The primary key is knowledge gained from experiences, and a bit of actual science learned from those who do science for a living as opposed to are big experts in disinforming your average consumer with commercial mass-marketing tricks of course.
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  5. Posts : 248
    Win 10 Pro 64
    Thread Starter
       #5

    Snugglebugs said:
    That looks useful. I will try it as a step by step tutorial and report back!
    (I missed it on the forum search!)

    Tony

    - - - Updated - - -

    I had a niggling feeling that there should be a nice configuration page somewhere but couldn't find it. I did find a nasty (the new ugly MS Win 10 look) called Realtek Audio Console which looks pretty useless. But on the other thread there is a screenshot of the one I remembered and instructions to get the real Realtek back. I have searched on my PC and the Realtek control panel is definitely not there.
    Its a big download from Realtek so it will be some time before I can (re)install the console and try it.

    Tony
    Oh well. that was a total disaster! The Realtek download uninstalled the existing driver and restarted the computer. Then it went to the install page, but first had to uninstall the driver again! Every time I restarted it began the cycle again, and again, and.......

    I clicked on Cancel eventually and the cycling stopped.

    Ooops, while I was typing this a message popped up to say my hardware settings had changed and a restart is needed!

    I will do that and add to this later!

    - - - Updated - - -

    Thanks hdmi for your long message. I appreciate the intention, but I wasn't actually commenting about trying to improve the sound, merely being able to get the two speakers in my new monitor to work with my external pair which are slightly better. Working through the thread mentioned by AndreTen looked hopeful until the Realtek install programme went horribly wrong!

    Anyway, the OS managed to put everything back together so at least I can hear the warning bleeps etc again!

    For your information, my home office was originally a professional mastering and editing facility and the main speakers are a pair of Quad ESL 63 (Electrostatic monitors) which surpass in quality anything normally available. However, I don't need to use them to hear test bleeps and a Zoom conversation! The speakers in my monitor could do with a bit of a boost at the low end which my little nearfield pair can provide, if/when I can get Win10 to agree to feed all four at once.

    Thanks again
    I will keep trying!

    Tony
    Last edited by Snugglebugs; 26 Apr 2021 at 08:47.
      My Computers


  6. Posts : 26,987
    Windows 10 (Pro and Insider Pro)
       #6

    For Realtek stuff, open Control panel and search there, if it doesn't show in Taskbar
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