Ok, so 2pins is better huh? Well then why doesn't my fancy expensive GTXP have the 2pin connector on the board? can the 2pin connector fit inside the 4 pin connect? Because it kinda looks like it will fit...
yep, 4 pin is analog, and 2 pin is digital. Digital is "supposedly" better, but I guarantee you won't be able to see the difference. If you use win2k or media player 7.1 (some other programs do it also), cd-audio sound is all passed through the IDE cable anyways, so you don't need either.
sorry, didn't read the entire question. I also have the GTXP. I'm not sure if you can use the "digital" input for cd-audio, but my guess is yes. But like I said, there really is no difference... I use the 4-pin because my Pioneer DVD only has that.
First, Sugardaddy? was right, you probably won't notice the difference in sound by using 2 vs 4 pin connector. And even though like 99% of cd/cdrw/dvd drives have the 2 pin on them, they don't all send signal thru it. Some mfgrs use that as a diagnostics port. Read your drive specs. BUT!, what is nice is that if your drive supports it and your card supports it, it is another input for those of us who have not fully migrated to w2k yet and using the IDE signal (which to me sounds ucky).
As to the CD being "designed" to only play thru the front channel, that is bunk. What is on the CD has nothing to do with that. The number of channels your sound comes from depends on your card and/or amp. I don't know didly about the herc card, but look in your settings for the card AND windows and set things to the apporpriate number of channels. Oh, and no, using the 2 vs 4 pin does not affect how many channels play either.