When it comes to gaming consoles, in most cases, the best way to connect them to a TV is via HDMI because HDMI carries video and audio. On the other hand, there are some cases where you will want to separate those two, for example, video on the TV and audio from other speakers. To do this, utilizing the Xbox One’s optical cable port is recommended.
There are a number of reasons to use an optical audio cable (also known as a TOSLINK) with your Xbox One. Maybe you want to connect the Xbox to a soundbar or other audio device or just want to know if it’s possible for future reference. Continue reading to learn how to use coaxial audio cables with the Xbox One.
Rumor has it that the new generation of Xbox, Xbox Series X, won’t have an optical cable port, in which case this information will only be relevant to the older models.
First, we’ll mention some of our favorite cables and the cover some practical tips on how to use them with the Xbox one and other audio devices.
Best Optical Cables for Xbox One:
Here’s a list of our best optical cables that offer rich audio for Xbox One.
How to Connect Xbox One to a Surround Sound System:
The easiest (and cheapest) way to connect Xbox One to a surround sound system is by using an optical audio cable. Locate the TOSLINK port on the rear of your Xbox, insert the cable, and then insert the other end into an available port on your surround sound system.
Note: If the Xbox doesn’t configure the new audio automatically, then you might have to change the audio output manually inside the settings menu, it should be labeled as “Optical Audio”.
In most cases, everything will be plug-and-play and the surround sound should work. Using an optical cable is the best way to connect the Xbox One to a surround sound system. The alternative would be buying multiple HDMI cables, which is a hassle.
The Difference Between HDMI and Optical Cables:
The main difference between HDMI and Optical cables is HDMI is an all-in-one cable that supports video, audio, and even other signals. The optical cable is only designed for audio, so it does not support video at all. It can only be used to send the audio to separate speakers. Don’t worry, it’s possible to use both cables at the same time, the HDMI for video, and the optical for audio.
To get everything working correctly, you might have to play around with some audio settings on your Xbox, TV, and sound system, but it should be fairly straightforward. You can check the manuals of each device for specific instructions.
So now you know how to connect your Xbox One to a separate audio device, such as a soundbar or surround sound system. The advantage here is the audio from those devices will be much richer than the audio from your TV which will greatly enhance your gaming experience. Optical cables are super cheap too, so there’s no reason to not connect the console to your audio system.