NUC+ROCK: Any way to use more than one of the HDA Intel PCH HDMI Zones..?

I’ve just set up a NUC8i7BEH with ROCK. It’s physically connected via HDMI to a Marantz Pre/Pro.

As others have noted, even though there is only one HDMI output on the NUC, there are multiple HDMI audio zones that show up in Settings>Audio. Prior threads I found are HDA Intel PCH HDMI Zone, Enabling Audio Options on the NUC, and An HDMI Curiosity Question. In my case, the zones look like this:

When I ran my Core on a Windows 10 laptop (until just a few days ago), I ended up finding it very it useful that there were two audio zones, “System Output”, and “Intel Wasapi”. This is because I could use “System Output” for my DSD multichannel music and set the Marantz to use Auro-3D upmixing, and use “Intel Wasapi” for non-multichannel music, and set the Marantz to use Auro-2D upmixing. The Marantz would (as far as I can tell) treat System Output and Intel WASAPI as different sources – even though there was only one HDMI connection from laptop to Marantz) – and would therefore remember which type of upmixing to do for each one. This was very convenient.

Is there any way to use more than one of the NUC’s HDA Intel PCH HDMI Zones in this way? I have HDA Intel PCH HDMI Zone 0 playing fine to the Marantz. If I switch the zone to, say, HDA Intel PCH HDMI Zone 1 in Roon, Roon appears to be playing, but no sound comes out of the Marantz.

Any ideas on this would be much appreciated – thanks!

the usb-c port should allow a double hdmi splitout – I’ve not tested it however.

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@danny — Thank you very much for this information.

Just to make sure I understand — this means that a USB-C to HDMI cable or adapter should (in principle) enable the NUC to support a second HDMI output, is that right? Many thanks again.

There are devices that can split out two hdmi out of one display port on usb-c.

The NUC manual implies you can use one to get two more hdmi ports. That should give you two more audio zones.

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@danny — thank you very much again. Ive ordered one of these and will test. Your help greatly appreciated!

Hello @danny – I thought I’d provide an update for you and anyone else who may be interested. I have been able to get one additional output to work on the NUC (but not two outputs). This gives me what I wanted, so thank you for the suggestion!

To provide more information: I’ve tested three different USB-C --> Dual HDMI adapters, and there’s a lot of variability between what they seem to enable. One of them allowed me to output any format of music (2-channel, multichannel, PCM, DSF) on either of the two HDMI outputs, but only one at a time. (i.e. if an HDMI cable was plugged into one output, the other would not work). Another allowed me to output only 2-channel music, on either of the two HDMI outputs, but only one at a time, like the first adapter. A third one seemed to work on only one specific output (and not on the other output at all), but it was flaky, and sometimes allowed multi-channel, and sometimes only 2-channel. (The first one mentioned above, that worked best, was the cheapest one. The third one, that worked least well, was the most expensive one!)