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Tips for DVD-Audio Playback on PC

By seanp789
Feb 17, 2006
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  1. Tips for DVD-Audio Playback on PC

    search Keywords: ctdvda2k.sys , dualcore, Windvd , powerdvd


    After a very very frustrating experience using my first dvd-audio discs I am posting this mini help guide.

    You must use the analog outs on your card. The Creative Audigy 2 ZS or greater such as X-Fi are the only soundcards that can playback true DVD-Audio in PCM or MLP @ 24/96 and not just DD or DTS tracks. There is hardware DRM protection required by the DVD-Audio standard that is the reason for this.

    If you have a problem with BSOD errors on dualcore or hypethreaded systems caused by ctdvda2k.sys there is a simple but annoying fix. Disable the autoplay function of the player. Then goto your task manager and make sure CTDVDA.exe is using only 1 CPU by right clicking on it and making sure only 1 cpu is checkboxed. You will have to do this every time you start the player!

    More information can be found here:
    http://forums.creative.com/creativelabs/board/message?board.id=soundblaster&message.id=38962&query.id=19970#M38962

    DVD-A players:
    1) WINDVD7: Works by using the creative driver ctdvda2k.sys (no advantage to just using Creative player)
    2) POWERDVD6: does not work on protected content, will only play DD and DTS for hybrid discs or downsample 96Khz to 48Khz
    3) Creative Mediasource DVD-AUDIO PLAYER: comes with installion CD

    On X-Fi cards you will want to to switch to audio creation mode and and enable bit-match playback for the best sound quality.

    I will answer any additional questions in this thread.



    **added**
    Sources for DVD-AUDIO discs
    Amazon.com : limited selection, difficult to search for.
    Dvdempire.com : decent selection, easy search
    cduniverse.com : decent selection, easy search
  2. hewybo

    hewybo TS Maniac Posts: 570

    how about-

    I have the X-Fi Xtreme Music. What happens if I just disable HT for the time period I'm using these DVD's? And are you saying PowerDVD6 WILL NOT play these under ANY circumstances? :)
  3. seanp789

    seanp789 TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 113

    PowerDVD6 deluxe is "supposed to" be able to decrypt the CPPM protection on DVD-AUDIO discs and additionally decompress the MLP format. (a analogy to DVD video would be CSS protection and mpeg2 compression) If a disc has no CPPM then powerdvd will run it fine, otherwise its limited.

    Generally what PowerDVD6 will do is you wll get a message that says "updating CPPM key" and then it will give you a video menu and start playing music. That video menu is in fact a DD5.1 or DTS soundtrack and not the MLP losseless audio that generally defines the DVD-AUDIO spec.

    You can confirm this by inserting your dvd. Look at you player control bar. It will either have a DVD-Video logo or a DVD-Audio logo. What you want is the DVD-Audio logo. Everyone I have talked to so far has had zero success, they can only access video or only playback at 48Khz as opposed to 96Khz. I confirmed that PowerDVD will switch to a DVD-Audio logo when trying to play DVD-Audio. If powerdvd can't verify the CPPM key then it wont even try to play the real DVD-AUDIO, it will go straight to the DVD-Video portion of the disc. In Video mode you can look at the current audio format icon and it will tell you what its actually playing. Usually DD or DTS.

    So to answer your question Heybo, Powerdvd6 will only play the dvd-Video portion of a disc and the dualcore issue would not apply to you. That problem only applies if you you are getting BSODs with the ctdvda2k.sys driver, and yes disabling hyperthreading would also stop the problem.

    If you are able to get powerdvd to show the dvd-Audio when you play your discs, please let me know.
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