Not a very big problem. Some Samsung home theatre systems use the same connectors. I have bought ready to use cables with plugs in my country (Poland, Europe) about half a year ago and I think they are still available. It could be even possible that someone could take this cables to the USA and send them there. E-mail me at email@example.com
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Basic checks first. Have you checked they are connected properly? Maybe used a different cable to check whether the rear cables are faulty? You may just have turned your system to 2.1 surrououn sound by accident or be playing a format that only supports 2.1. Check that in the system menu under dec. mode that if it is set to AFD STD that you are playing a DVD which shows can support 5.1 on the back of its cover. Also try running the setup manually and choosing your speaker configuration. Hope this helps.
If your alternate DVD player has digital audio out you can make this connection via the 'optical digital in' port on the rear of the unit which corresponds to the Video 2 function. I have done this myself because the inbuilt DVD function in the Sony unit is dead (fixed once under warranty, problem recurred about a year later, same issue as other unsolved posts on this board, DVD function hangs, system won't switch off, etc. common problem with this unit, crap product).