This is a follow-up to my previous post regarding connecting your PS3 to a computer monitor. I received a lot of comments and emails regarding a (surround) sound system setup, so I'll try to answer them here.
- Trying to play sound directly through the speakers on your monitor (if you have that feature)
If you are using the setup I outlined in my original post, you unfortunately can't do this. Even though we are connecting the HDMI cable (that carries Audio and Video), changing it to DVI (which only conveys video) discards the audio data. Unless you buy an expensive HDMI Audio/Video splitter, you cannot split the sound right out of the HDMI cable.
- Connecting the basic sound setup - 2.1
This is a simple process. Your PS3 should have come with a component cable (Red, White and Yellow connectors). The other end of that cable will be a special connector that will go into the back of your PS3 (called AV Multi Out). You can ignore the Yellow cable (which is video). You can connect the Red and White cable into an amplifier or a component to headphone connector. From here, you can connect speakers and get 2.1 channels of sound.
Another way is to output that audio through your computer speakers.
- What about enjoying 5.1 or 7.1 Surround Sound?
This is simple, but the sky is the limit when it comes to the amount of money you spend on the overall system. There are a ton of different solutions out there, and the only way you will figure out which one suites you (and your wallet) is by going to the store and reading online review about various systems. There is a simple solution where you can output surround sound audio using your PC, so check that out.
When shopping around for an audio system, don't be fooled by the 'Watt' rating. It is more of a sales gimmick than anything else. Read the reviews and go to the showrooms to listen to the sound, but keep in mind that everything is well tuned to sound just right in that setting, and you may not get the exact same experience when you take the system home. Everything from the furniture to the type of carpet to the drapes on your windows affect sound quality...but you can always tune the system to suite your ears.
Here is my setup: The PS3 connected to a Yamaha amplifier via HDMI cable. Amp feeds the speakers as well as controls the output to the TV. The amp is capable of 7.1 channels of surround sound, but I don't have 7 speakers. 5.1 does the trick for me.This can be an expensive endeavor, but like a lot of things (such as camera lenses), a quality amplifier and good speaker will last you years, if not decades. Some people attest that the sound quality of the speakers made in the late 1980s and early 1990s is unmatched even by the newest speakers line-up. Take your time and buy a pair of speakers at a time, as your budget allows, don't have to have the 5.1 setup over night...that's what I did.