Q I have a PlayStation 3 and just got a new TV that supports 3D. I’d like to use the PS3 to play 3D content, but it’s hooked into my old surround-sound receiver, which I assume doesn’t support 3D. Is there any way to get a 3D signal from my PS3 to my TV without losing surround sound?
A The PlayStation 3 can indeed support 3D, and to get it to your TV, you’ll need an HDMI cable (in fact, HDMI 1.3 or better) because no other video connection has the bandwidth to carry a digital 3D signal. The great thing about HDMI is that it is also a one-cable solution for both video and multi-channel audio. So if you have an AV receiver with HDMI inputs, you can route one cable from each of your devices (PS3, decoder, etc) into the receiver, then route a single cable from the receiver to the TV. The receiver separates out the multi-channel audio and acts as a switch between video sources. The problem is, most receivers more than two years old won’t pass a 3D signal to your new TV. But there is a work-around.
The PS3 allows you to split the audio and the video signal, sending the video directly to the TV over HDMI and sending multi-channel audio to your receiver over a fi bre optic (sometimes called Toslink) cable. After you set up the cable, go into the PS3’s Settings menu. Under Video Settings, leave the HDMI as your output. In Audio Settings, select Digital Out (Optical). (Don’t turn on the multiaudio-output feature found in the main audio settings menu; enabling it downgrades and locks the digital output sampling rate to 44,1 kHz.)
You’ll have to change the inputs on your TV and receiver to
watch a movie or play a game on the PS3, but the upside is surround sound and 3D without a new audio system.