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I have a box with a AsRock z77 extreme4 motherboard. Just got a new headset, which is a Razer Tiamat 7.1. Both devices state they support 7.1 channel surround. There is however a mismatch between the 5 cables from my headset and the 5 audio ports on my motherboard.

Headset:

  • Out
  • Mic
  • c/sub
  • rear
  • side

Motherboard:

  • Out
  • Mic
  • c/sub
  • rear
  • in

Does this mean I cannot connect this headset to my box without getting new hardware? I tried connecting it with the 4 matching connections which results in bad sound. Since I don't know if this is a hardware problem or not, I'm not sure on how to fix this. The information out there on 7.1 surround support is somewhat contradictory at places :/

I'm running Kubuntu 13.04 x64 as OS.

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1 Answer

You will need at least one more stereo output channel. Fortunately ALSA will allow you to combine multiple sinks to create a single multi-channel device so you don't have to go out and get a new 7.1 sound card.

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Is the information on this that is understandable for someone that does not know the ALSA internals? :) –  Jeroen De Dauw Jun 21 '13 at 16:13
    
You don't need to know ALSA internals, you just need to understand how it enumerates/describes sound cards. –  Ignacio Vazquez-Abrams Jun 22 '13 at 4:22
    
It's quite possible that the motherboard only supports 7.1 output through HDMI or Optical. –  Michael Frank Jun 26 '13 at 22:03
    
@MichaelFrank: ALSA doesn't require all the channels to be carried by a single sound card. You can create a 7.1 output from four 2.0 cards. –  Ignacio Vazquez-Abrams Jun 27 '13 at 2:43
    
Right, sorry. I meant to respond to the fact that @JeroenDeDauw stated that both the headset and the motherboard support 7.1 audio. –  Michael Frank Jun 27 '13 at 3:57
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