How to Increase the Volume of the TOSLINK
The Xitel Storm Platnium is a favorite in the MiniDisc world for its optical output. However, a bit of tweaking is necessary to coax the card into outputting sound at a usable volume. This guide will probably work for all Vortex 2 based soundcards.
Open up the Volume Control, usually located somewhere deep in the "Accessories" folder (not there? Search for the filename SNDVOL32.EXE):
Note that the "Wave Out" slider is set to maximum. The TOSLINK is controlled in part by this slider, interesting fact (or maybe not): the main "Volume Control" slider has no effect on the TOSLINK.
The other slider that controls the TOSLINK is (for some reason) hidden deep within the Volume Control. Start by clicking OPTIONS on the menu bar then selecting PROPERTIES. Now select the OTHER radio button and change the box to AC97 Controls.
Move the slider to maximum, now leave it alone.
Remember to push Winamp's volume slider to the maximum setting. Since everything in Volume Control is set properly, this slider can be used instead.
As a last resort you can dive in the the Registry. Start
regedit then head for:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Aureal\Vortex\AU8830\Customization The keys to look for are near the top, "AC97Mixer" and "AC97PCM". There four keys in all, try bumping up the numbers till you get an acceptable volume. I've gone up to 18 without a major blowup, but of course, I accept zero responsibility for your registry hacking mishaps.
Michael Conner discovered some addidional registry keys, this time for recording:
Go to the following registry key:
Change the setting to "8" (like it is on all other RecVolGain settings.) With a low output MD like the Sony MZ-R70, you can now get up to -2dB or so with the mixer. Not bad!
- Xitel has a page on this topic, no pictures though.
- Magic will teach you how to get mp3's on an MD.
- 1 second silent mp3 - 2 second silent mp3 - 3 second silent mp3 - 4 second silent mp3
- The 1 second mp3 is great for instances where you're manually trackmarking. Use the 2-4 second files for unattended trackmarking.
- This Winamp plugin that automagically inserts gaps.
- People have reported success using WinCue, "The ultimate WinAMP plug-in for plalyst management and MiniDisc recording"
- Audiostocker evens out the volume of mp3s so you won't have to use the volume control as often. Don't expect a miracle however, stop the problem at the source by normalizing before encoding.
- Aureal 2048 reference drivers for Win9x. If you get a lockup during the install process (SB Pro section) try setting IRQ 5 in the BIOS to non-PnP/ISA. This driver build causes the TOSLINK at 44.1Khz to sound terrible. Either change to 48Khz (causing your MD to downconvert to 44.1, no big deal) or use an older build.
- MiniDiscussion - General and specific MD topics, a good place to hang out.
- MiniDisc.org - The central hub for all things MiniDisc.