Well, I'm not going to be doing any dubbing between PC's, but I plan on converting vinal LP's to CD in the near future using my 9300. I had found most of the freeware I needed to do so, hiss, snap & pop filtering etc... But to answer your questions...
1. No, S-Video does not carry any audio. It's just what it says, video. S-Video pin out is as follows, without exception & is universal. Pin 1 = Ground (Y), Pin 2 = Ground (C), Pin 3 = (Y) or Intensity (Luminance) @ 75ohms, Pin 4 = (C) or Color (Chrominance) @ 75ohms, Pin 5 = (VGND) or Composite Ground, Pin 6 = Not Connected, Pin 7 = (V) or Composite Video and the metal shell is nothing more than a sheild (for interference). It's not a great video source either. Better than compsite video out, but worse than componant video out. But then thats your only choice on this system unless you can find a DVI to Componant Video out adapter. You should have a DVI connector right next to your S-Video out. It's ment for another monitor but I suppose it might work for an adaptor. Just guessing there. I never looked into it. As for the link to that S-Video video/audio splitter/adapter goes, it's balogna, there is no audio component to S-Video.
For Hi-Fi, it's not gonna happen with a headphone jack & the onboard sound that came with our systems. If you want high quality sound, you'll need a 24bit sound card. The only option is either the Creative Labs Audigy 2 ZS NoteBook PCMCIA card($90 - $110), an Echo Indigo PCMCIA sound card(Very expensive, $180 - $220), or an external usb sound card(haven't looked to hard because they are not nearly as good a solution as the above choices, but they do have the most diverse outputs). However, be aware, that the PCMCIA controller in the 9300(as well as other models) have a Ricoh R/RL/5c476(II) chipset, that is known to have issues with PCMCIA sound cards. Creative as well as Echo. Check out the Forum Home > Home and Home Office Systems > Inspiron > Audio and the Forum Home > Home and Home Office Systems > Inspiron > External Peripherals forums.
As far as video transfer goes, I haven't done much. I have transferred one of my old super 8's to DVD(Sony Camcorder --> Firewire --> 9300 --> DVD) using all the software that came on my 9300 & had the best luck/quality using Microsofts built-in stuff.
As for Dell Reps monitoring these forums, I personally haven't seen much evidence of it. Of course, that doesn't mean much because I have not been looking very hard to see if they do.
Message Edited by rogerw99 on 01-15-2006 03:32 PM
Warning!!! Tech Support will refuse warranty service for speaker problems if the VLC media player is installed on the laptop. This exclusion is NOT disclosed in the laptop warranty! Remove all players before contacting Tech Support, leaving only Windows Media Player.
I stand corrected. I should have researched my own system more closely.
To Agentman, my apologies for misinforming you on this issue.
After doing a little more digging I found that there are some non-standard S-Video setups out there. They must be using pin 6 for the digital audio out, if they are preserving an S-Video output through the use of an adapter. However, I cannot find a pinout for the 9300 S-Video output connector to verify this. Anyway, I should have looked for more up to date info before spouting off. That TV/Digital Audio Adapter Cable that Dell shows in the 9300 manual does not seem to be available anymore, at Dell, that I can find. The TV/Digital Audio Adapter Cable that you found will probably work for what you want to do. The receiving pc must be able to receive & process SPDIF digital audio. The output of the Sigma Tel STAC 9750 chip is a 2 channel device. The chip is capable of 6 channel AC-3 playback with the right codecs installed. What they are I couldn't say. It is also an 18 bit ADC/ 20bit DAC chip. Here is a link to the specifics if you are interested.
So I don't know if you'll get surround or not. All you can do is experiment and see what you get. Dell is not very specific about what you can & can't do whith their audio solution. And motherboard manufacturers don't nessessarily include all the possible functions of an onboard audio chip. And from what I can see, it doesn't look as if Dell included the 6 channel playback. But then, it may work only through the SPDIF connection. You'll just have to try it and find out. I would be interested to hear about your results.
In response to your Part 3, How have you phisically connected the 9300 & XPS for audio?
Agentman & Jimco,
I found the Sevice Manuals for both the 9300 & the XPS notebooks (9300/M140/M170 are the same where the S-Video is concerned). It appears that there is some conflict between what the Service Manuals say & what the Owners Manuals say about the output of the S-Video connector on all three laptops. According to the SM's the pinouts do not include SPDIF Digital Audio as claimed by the Owners Manuals. Agentman, if you were trying to get audio from that S-Video connector, then this may be why you failed to get your audio. The pinout isn't even the same as I stated earlier. According to the SM pins 5, 6 & 7 are 5 = Not Connected, 6 = Composite Video & 7 = Ground. Thats quite a bit different from what I've known to be the standard. Anyway, it doesn't show any audio. Here's the link to the M170...
I don't know which is the more correct, owners manual or service manual. You'll have to contact tech support to find out. In any case, there is one other affordable choice for for an external USB Audio Card. I'd go for the Audigy 2 NX. Creative doesn't make them anymore but there are still plenty of them available & I believe a better choice then the Live! edition for about $90. Try pricegrabber.com or pricewatch.com to see what you can get. As for myself, I'll probably be getting the Audigy 2 NX to transfer my Vinyl LPs to CD. It would give me the least amount of trouble in hooking up a turntable to do the transfer.
Sorry, but I had to ask.
I have some questions.
1. What brand/model camcorder do you have & is it the same one you did the Hi8 recordings with?
2. Does the camcorder have a USB2 or Firewire(IEEE-1394) connector for connecting it to another device, usually a PC?
3. Did the camcorder come with video editing/transfer/encoding sofware and if so what?
4. At what resolution were the Hi8 tapes recorded?
I ask all this because it will be easier to have it all in one short response than digging through all the previous entries.
1) The camcorder is like a 1994-5 model TRV-101, Hi-8mm, Sony
2) No - It does not have either USB style or Firewire connector. Sucs having a nice camera
that technology quickly makes it outdated.
3) No software came with this camera, and I think that probably started occuring as the newer DV
cameras came out with features, software could be of use.
4) Resolution: No reviews I could find even mentions what the camera's resolutions are.
Athough the camera is an excellant choice, it's based on what was available around 1995. It sure makes it stuff to set it aside and go buy a new DV format camera. Same goes for my Pioneer receiver I paid $1895.00 for. The very next models they released added eccentially one more feature...........IEEE-1394, which mine doesn't have. Go figure - you can NEVER when this battle.