Sound Cards Dolby 5.1

I have been trying to find an external (USB or FW) sound “card” that can enable me to compose/arrange music using Cubase 4 with a Dolby 5.1 output.

I use a Macintosh.

I see lots of sound cards out there but none of them ever show Dolby 5.1 output. I know Cubase is capable of surround sound (5.1) but can’t make a buy decision until I’m sure I can get that Dolby 5.1 output I’m looking for.

What works for Cubase and what doesn’t?

Any 6 or more output channel card will let you mix 5.1 surround.

The Dolby 5.1 bit refers to the encoding thereafter of the 5.1 or basically 6 channels of sound you will create.
Look up AC-3 codec, as once you have produced your mix as a 6 channel surround track you will need an encoder to convert those 6 channels to Dolby AC-3.

I see, though I clearly need to read up some more. Can you give me a couple of examples? If I have some kind of starting point, I think I can go the rest of the way. And Thank you!

You will need a multi out soundcard, and 6 speakers, setup correctly for 5.1, you can then set Cubase output to mix into 5.1 surround.

After you have mixed and finalised your 5.1 mix you can then convert into Dolby 5.1

Cubase cannot do the 6 channel to Dolby 5.1 conversion, you will need to find a program that can do that for you.

Although I think it can export surround MP3?

Forgot to mention, I had already bought an internal sound card (Delta 1010LT), and although it boasts 10 in and 10 out, It couldn’t output any more than 2 channels with Cubase’s VST Connections Device.

What version of Cubase?

The 1010lt can output 8 analogue and 2/stereo digital. have used one myself and it works as expected.

Cubase 4.5.2. I’ve applied to return the Delta 1010LT but it would be great if I could figure out how to make it work with Cubase for surround. I’d be interested how you got the Delta to work as expected, that is, for 6 outputs in the VST connections dialogue.

The problem may partially be related to my older Macintosh model, a G4 1.25 GHz with dual booting (OS9 or OSX).

As to the software to convert to 5.1, would that be Perian, for example?

Well, I just set up in the vst connections dialog, right click and select 5.1 and any other child busses you may need.

I don’t use surround so have never needed to use any software to convert, so you’re on your own there I’m afraid.

OK, when I do that (Set up a 5.1 bus), I do get six ports, but I only get two active channels (built in Audio 1 & 2), and the others are greyed out (disconnected). If I then set Center channel to Audio 1 or 2 (the only two options) I can get Right and Center but not Left. It’s like I ought to be able to set Cubase’s preferences somewhere to be able to see and use the Delta card, but I can’t find any preference settings to do that. How do you activate your Delta card to get 6 simultaneous channels in Cubase?

How about reading the “getting started” manual - “setting up your system”…!? It´s all explained there…

The getting started and operations manual simply tell you what to do, not what to do when what you do doesn’t work. There are no references in either manual to the phrase"sound card.", unfortunately. So that puts me right back where I started. That is, no way to access more than 2 audio outputs. And no way to get the other four which the Delta 1010LT should provide.

Maybe I’ll have to seek support from M-Audio, which makes the sound card I have.

You have to select the correct ASIO Driver, it should be M-Audio.

OK, I think I’m good. The “ASIO” was the missing clue I needed. Found what I needed in the Operations Manual by searchingg for “ASIO.”

I had to use a setting I’ve never seen before - VST Audio System in Device Setup. All Delta 6 OUTPUT channels are now finally active.I need to educate myself about ASIO, never grasped that in the past because never used it. Basically a MIDI guy.

The reason I said I “think” I’m good is that I don’t yet have a 6-channel speaker system yet. Now I can get one knowing it will need analog input that the Delta provides.

In case anyone out there knows of a good speaker system with analog inputs, I’d love to get your “INPUT!”

Thank you to everyone