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Topic: audio help
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Joined: Jul 20, 2020
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Hello all, I am seeking some help for the most optimal audio solution to my set up before I snake wires through the ceiling and walls. It isn't something I want to do twice.

I have provided a poorly drawn sketch of the wiring to better illustrate what I have going on.

The questions is, what is the best way to connect my sound bar that has 1x3.5mm input and 1xoptical input for audio to two devides. The way I see it I have two choices

1) 3.5mm from the projector to the soundbar
2) Optical connection from the soundbar to some form of splitter that can be connected to both Xbox and Cable box

Maybe there is a better solution someone can recommend

Thanks,
Steve

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poorly drawn sketch

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For wiring, you should not be looking at the projector as your audio switch and controller. It is just not what they are designed to do.

I would get a HDMI switcher with audio extractor and put it up front with the sound bar.

Something like this:
https://www.amazon.com/J-Tech-Digital-HDMI-Audio-Extractor/dp/B083WVFZBP/ref=sr_1_3

That will allow for up to 4K 18Gb/s HDMI connectivity and should give you a proper 5.1 audio output to the sound bar.

From the switcher, you run a single HDMI cable up to the projector.
I strongly recommend you put in conduit (1.25" or larger) between the equipment location and the projector so that when (not if) you need to upgrade the HDMI cable you can do so easily.

All this said, soundbars, while better than speakers built into projectors... well, they suck.

If you are doing a dedicated room AND you have the walls open pre construction, you should go ahead and wire for a 5.1 or 7.1 audio system. Maybe more. You don't have to buy anything yet, but the audio quality of good speakers makes a huge difference to the entire experience.

This is a conversation that can be had, and I'm not sure of your room setup/construction to know if that's all feasible, and certainly I approve of a soundbar over speakers in a projector by a mile. But, would rather see a good pair of floor standing speakers and a subwoofer over a soundbar any day of the week. Fake soundbar surround sound is just not very good.

Also, full surround systems can be had for just a few hundred bucks. Good in-wall cabling from Monoprice can be about $150.
AV Integrated - Theater, whole house audio, and technology consultation during the build and installation process in the Washington, DC metropolitan area.
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Quote (AV_Integrated on Jul 20, 2020 10:37 AM):
For wiring, you should not be looking at the projector as your audio switch and controller. It is just not what they are designed to do.

I would get a HDMI switcher with audio extractor and put it up front with the sound bar.

Something like this:
https://www.amazon.com/J-Tech-Digital-HDMI-Audio-Extractor/dp/B083WVFZBP/ref=sr_1_3

That will allow for up to 4K 18Gb/s HDMI connectivity and should give you a proper 5.1 audio output to the sound bar.

From the switcher, you run a single HDMI cable up to the projector.
I strongly recommend you put in conduit (1.25" or larger) between the equipment location and the projector so that when (not if) you need to upgrade the HDMI cable you can do so easily.

All this said, soundbars, while better than speakers built into projectors... well, they suck.

If you are doing a dedicated room AND you have the walls open pre construction, you should go ahead and wire for a 5.1 or 7.1 audio system. Maybe more. You don't have to buy anything yet, but the audio quality of good speakers makes a huge difference to the entire experience.

This is a conversation that can be had, and I'm not sure of your room setup/construction to know if that's all feasible, and certainly I approve of a soundbar over speakers in a projector by a mile. But, would rather see a good pair of floor standing speakers and a subwoofer over a soundbar any day of the week. Fake soundbar surround sound is just not very good.

Also, full surround systems can be had for just a few hundred bucks. Good in-wall cabling from Monoprice can be about $150.

Thank you for the help, that looks perfect for what I am trying to accomplish. Will definitely give that a shot. Already on order from Amazon