Using an HDMI cable to connect Dell studio 1555 laptop and Vizio tv.

Laptop HDMI out plus 5.1 surround sound?
Alright so here’s my setup, I am using my Dell studio 1555 laptop and using an HDMI cable to connect to my Vizio tv. From my tv I have a optical (toslink w/e) cable connected from the Vizio’s audio out to my surround sound receiver. With this setup I feel that I should be achieving 5.1 surround sound when I play a movie with 5.1, but when I test it out, I get: Center, Left and Right playing individual sounds but Rear Left and Right play the same sounds. So it’s like simulated 5.1 with stereo in the front speakers, I’m wanting true 5.1.

So I have ruled out that the problem lies with the videos I’m playing because in their details the audio is listed as 5.1
I know my receiver is working perfectly because I can get true 5.1 with my PS3 and 360. (I don’t have enough capacity on either console to transfer my video files to them, all my videos are stored on my 1 TB external hard drive.)

So I believe it has to do with my TV. I feel that my laptop is outputting the 5.1 to my TV but my TV won’t output the 5.1 to my stereo. (the stereo is a bit old so it doesn’t have HDMI inputs, just optical [toslink], and rca. My Dell cannot be connected using the optical cables either)

Any advice on this would be awesome.

If any specific information such as tv, receiver or laptop model numbers are needed I will provide them.

The tv’s model number is: xvt323sv
And I’ve got a Dell Studio 1555.

Best Answer

To clarify, you have connected the Laptop to the TV and then an Optical Cable from the TV to the Sound System?

If this is how you have this setup, then that would be where the problem is. Most TV’s will only output stereo from their Optical output except for inbuilt TV channels where 5.1 will work in this case.

You need to connect the Laptop directly to the Sound System. If your Laptop does not have an Optical output then you may need to seek some kind of audio breakout type device which extracts the digital audio from the HDMI output on your Laptop.

Here is an example of a product from Gefen:

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