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.

Step One: Your friend, Volume Control

Open up the Volume Control, usually located somewhere deep in the "Accessories" folder (not there? Search for the filename SNDVOL32.EXE):

This is the Volume Control

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.

Step Two: Setting up the SP-DIF

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.

There are no hidden messages here

Move the slider to maximum, now leave it alone.

I said no more touching!

Step Three: Winamp Configuration

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.

Pretty skin, good song too.

Step Four: Still not enough volume?

As a last resort you can dive in the the Registry. Start regedit then head for:


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!

Thanks Michael!

Step Five: Final Notes & Downloads

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