: How to wire my HTPC to 2 amps

2009-11-11, 10:38 PM
I use a 2 channel amp to run my 2 main speakers, and want to run the center and rears to my surround sound amp. The problem is my surround sound amp does not have separate inputs for centers and rear speakers. So somehow I need to rig the orange and black mini jacks (center and rear) from my PC to a single input on the amp, and have the amp decode to the right channels. Can I just merge the 2 mini jacks into 1 RCA cable into my amp?

PS The reason I use a separate amp for my fronts is my 2 channel is a very high quality, high power integrated amp and is needed to properly drive my 2 front speakers. I had been using just the surround sound amp with a TOSLINK connecting it from the PC and having all my speakers plugged into it, but it can't drive the speakers at high volume.

any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks


2009-11-12, 11:14 AM
Don't think this is going to work, nor is it necessarily a good idea to run multiple amps.

For starters, the 1/8" mini jacks on the back of the htpc are only sending a signal to their respective speakers, while your amp would be expecting some kind of dolby/surround signal on a pair of RCA inputs. There's no way to bring the split signals back together.

You can't use TOSLINK into one amp and analog into the other, because the decoding etc... will create phase problems. Even going analog into both is probably not going to work well. This wouldn't be a problem if the amps were in different rooms, but not together.

You could try to 'trick' the second amp into giving you the rear speakers by running it in 2-channel mode, using a 1/8" to stero rca cable to connect the pc's rear output to the L/R jacks on the amp and then hooking the rear speakers up to the amp's main jacks. This would give you 4.0 channels via a pair of 2-channel amps (or 4.1, if you added a subwoofer to your main amp or ran a powered subwoofer from the pc's subwoofer jack). However, doubt you'll be happy with the result.

2009-11-12, 11:27 AM
jimmcquade65, It would help a lot if you gave us more details (model numbers) of the amps and PC sound card/motherboard. If the 5.1 amp has analog outputs, the LF and RF can be fed to the stereo amp. That way Toslink can be used between the PC and receiver. I wouldn't use analog outputs on the PC unless it has a very high quality sound card. Most standard sound cards don't provide very good analog output. You might end up going with a dedicated A/V preamp and surround sound amp anyway. It looks like that A/V receiver is not up to the task. At the least, you need an audiophile quality sound card and/or an A/V receiver that has analog 5.1 inputs and/or outputs.

2009-11-12, 09:27 PM
This is a pic of the back of my Denon surround sound receiver


The 2 channel amp is a rotel RA-1070 (2x100watt)


My sound card as a X-FI Titanium Fatality Pro

The Denon surround sound amp has VCR and Tape out. Will those connections supply the L/R front out or will they feed all channels split into 2 output feeds?

Thanks for the help