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Author Topic: Integrating Wii sound into the PC headset...  (Read 902 times)

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Offline Schprocket

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Integrating Wii sound into the PC headset...
« on: September 24, 2011, 10:28:22 AM »
This little episode wound up as more of a "D'Oh!" rather than a "Eureka!" moment.

If you're like me, it's annoying to have to wear a headset hooked up to a PC and still have the game sounds coming from the TV (or in my case, the computer monitor).

Tonight I actually applied myself to sorting out this issue and if Joom doesn't already do this, he'll be kicking himself as well.

So now I will give you a rough guide for being able to use a stereo headset with the Wii and integrating voice comms into it.




The disclaimer first - if you are not sure how to do this then don't do this.

You must read and understand that following this less-than-comprehensive-guide will be undertaken at your own risk.

Any resulting damage which may arise will be simply the bitter result of your own choice (and/or possibly bad luck with crappy components) and neither myself, this site, or your Momma will be held responsible for what is, like pooping in your own pants, truly your own doing.



Whilst it's highly unlikely that serious damage will result, because it is highly unlikely this doesn't mean the same thing as it won't ever.
That's a second warning. ;)


Ok, now that's out of the way, the brave ones may now carry on!


Most PCs nowadays have an integrated soundcard - some people have a separate card but it won't matter.

All you need is the right sort of adapter and maybe an audio extension lead, be able to locate your audio card's Line In socket, and - as long as you don't use the surround sound option if your soundcard has it - know how to bring up an application on your PC which you probably rarely use (because you normally mess with the volume and occasionally the Mic level, right?) called the Audio Mixer.


If by now you've already had the epiphany and you get how to do this already, then before you rip into it, just remember to go into the mixer and check that (a) the Wii and PC are turned on ( duuh! ) (b) open the mixer and check that the Line In is not muted and (c) the Line In level is turned way down before connecting the audio leads to the PC Line In



First you need something to convert the Wii's two RCA audio jacks to a 3.5mm Jack - that'll look something like this:



The one pictured above is one of the better type because you won't have to resort to trial-and-error to get the Left  & Right channels oriented correctly.

If you happen to have the PC close enough to the TV, once the Wii leads have been connected, you can then plug this straight into the Line In port. Most of us though will need some kind of audio extension lead.

Whether you find one of these:


or one of these:


it won't matter much as long as with the latter you prevent swapping channels by connecting red-to-red all the way through.


Next, locate the PC's Line In Socket. Again, with most modern PCs and their AC97 soundcard standard, the socket with the blue ring around it is the Line In when the card is being used as a standard 2-channel stereo card.

Most desktops will look similar to this:



and the blue socket, labelled B in the above image, is the Line In socket.



Now you have the parts list of sorts and where it plugs in, with the Wii switched off, connect up the Wii's audio RCA jacks to the adapter and extension lead.


Next comes the 'tricky' part mainly because I don't have a generic Windows mixer screenshot handy - this is one The J-man can help me with :)


BEFORE PLUGGING THE LEAD INTO THE PC's LINE IN SOCKET

You need to make sure that under the soundcard's Playback settings (aka "the Audio Mixer"),
(a) the Line In control is not set to Mute
(b) the Line In volume level is turned way down.
(c) the Master/Main control is not set to Mute
(d) the Master/Main audio volume level is set to a comfortable listening level

NOW plug the audio extension lead (which you connected to the Wii's leads previously) into the PC's Line In socket.

Turn on the Wii and press A on the Wii remote to show the Channels menu. This will generate that annoying chiming sound and makes for a good test sound.

Go back to your PC and slowly increase the volume level for the Line In.
As you do so, you should start to hear the Wii Channel menu sounds bing-bonging through your PC speakers or headphones.

The next step is to open up the Voxli voice chat page and adjust the Line In level to a point where you have a mix of audio from the voice chat to audio from the Wii which suits your taste.

If there is nobody in chat at the time, just click on the Voxli Microphone slider as if you are going to adjust the Mic level (but don't actually adjust it). As you speak into the Microphone, you'll get a rough idea of how the Voxli audio level will mix-in with the Wii audio.

That's basically it.
It's a longish post and might sound awfully compliacted but if I were to video this, it'd take all of about five minutes to show how it's done. I may take a photo of the lead I've patched together but I'm going to have to tidy up around my PC desk first.... ::)

Offline JoomX

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Re: Integrating Wii sound into the PC headset...
« Reply #1 on: September 24, 2011, 06:35:45 PM »
Nice walkthrough, S, and a great 'how to' tip.

Now if you just take all that, change the hardware a little bit and add something similar to the pic below, and use a VGA cable out from your laptop to your TV, you can not only get the sound on your laptop, but you get the video to record too.  And the video (and sound if you like) can still feed out to the TV for playing.

Direct recording ability of the game (using any video recording software), and sound through your headset, while still playing on the full screen TV.  Just keeps getting better. ;D

Great post... ;)
A computer once beat me at chess, but as it turns out it was no match for me at kickboxing... ;)

Offline Schprocket

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Re: Integrating Wii sound into the PC headset...
« Reply #2 on: September 24, 2011, 08:28:03 PM »
:) ... now the thought did very briefly cross my mind to do that but
(a) I was already on a roll with a regular headset which I thought most people would have and
(b) I have a video grabber (you and I are kindred gadget-freak spirits, remember?) but in Linux it's been a pain to get running and
(c) the cables are much cheaper, and despite the waffle, actually less complicated for most folks to set up.  :D
(d) one important point that I nearly forgot - this suits both composite video (three-lead) and component video (five-lead) hook-ups.

That said, where composite (three-lead) hook-up is used and you have a video-grabber dongle....

One piggy-back RCA plug and a male-female RCA cable fitted to the video (yellow) lead would do the trick if all you were running was component.

Wii video into the female side of this (below), one of the other ends plugs into the yellow lead of the grabber, and the remaining adapter plug connects to the composite video TV input (yellow socket)



with one of these






Unless of course you run the whole show in a non-recording video-grabbing session in the PC (i.e. play the Wii on the PC) but I found (with Linux anyways) that to get a decent frame-rate I needed a real tiny screen.



« Last Edit: September 25, 2011, 05:12:13 AM by Schprocket »

Offline JoomX

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Re: Integrating Wii sound into the PC headset...
« Reply #3 on: September 24, 2011, 09:12:37 PM »
(you and I are kindred gadget-freak spirits, remember?)

 :P :P :P

Yeah, I kinda keep forgetting most people don't have half the Amazon electronics department in their back room... 8) ;) ;D
A computer once beat me at chess, but as it turns out it was no match for me at kickboxing... ;)