The critical piece for Mac Min audio integration

The critical piece for Mac Mini audio integration

How could something so cheap provide so much value?  These toslink to mini adapters plug into the headphone jack of the Mac Mini and enable the optical digital audio out from the Mac Mini.  This is the only way (that I know of) to get Dolby Digital and DTS audio from your DVDs.  It also gives you an excellent audio signal for your iTunes collection or any other audio source on the Mac without having to worry about analog audio sound degradation.  You’ll also need a standard toslink/optical cable which you then plug into your receiver (you are using a digital receiver, right??).  That’s it!  Now you’re sending out pristine digital audio from your Mac.

Every recent Mac comes with this capability, yet I’m amazed by how little is made about this feature.  I wouldn’t have even know it was possible to get digital audio until I was looking through the documents on my laptop and I found that the headphone jack was also labelled as digital audio out.  When you plug in this toslink adapater, the computer automatically switches to digital out.  This is perhaps the single greatest reason to use a Mac as a Home Theater PC.  The audio connection is so simple, yet it works perfectly.  You can grab one of these adapters from Amazon or Monoprice for less that $2 (although, I’m sure they get you with the shipping).  In any case, it’s a worthwhile investment, and probably worth grabbing a handful to have around for when your friend tries to bum one off you.