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Thread: Sound suggestions

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    Sound suggestions

    Any comments on a soundcard that won't cost me as much as my graphics card?

    Definitely not made by Creative!

    Many thanks.
    Every little helps!

  2. #2
    Banhammer in peace PeterB kalniel's Avatar
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    Re: Sound suggestions

    Get a motherboard with a realtek HD chip. Will work better for just about anything as it's the most supported now.

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    Re: Sound suggestions

    Yep, onboard HD sound is perfect with a decent set of speakers, spending the money you save on a sound card on a better set of speakers will be a better choice if you have decent onboard sound

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    Re: Sound suggestions

    That looks tidy (bloody-well should be for more than half the price of my graphics card ---->whingemoangripe ) : PCI-E 1x for the first time maybe? Bookmarked. Thanks to the land of Mancastrians.
    Every little helps!

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    Re: Sound suggestions

    Having played with an Asus Xonar for a bit now, I can say that they are really really nice cards.
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    Re: Sound suggestions

    I'm hearing the comments for onboard sound, but a new motherboard is quite an upheaval. Any suggestions for what would house an AM2 5600+ Brisbane and 2G of OCZ DDR2 for the same price as the Asus Xonar DX/XD? The board should also have the capacity to run 64bit Vista: 8 or 16GB RAM. (EDit: I should add, that this is one {probably the most powerful} of the integrated systems I will be working towards running.)

    Needless to say, I would expect it to run the sound for all applications including any games: I have Tannoy 100W PBM 6.5 II's and a Yamaha 230W stereo amp.

    Must be ATX, no SLI, no Xfire.
    Last edited by edjay; 27-06-2008 at 01:07 PM.
    Every little helps!

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    Re: Sound suggestions

    Depends what you are looking for really. Under XP, I do find Creative to be good all-rounders. I've never used the Xonar, so can't comment there (I'd probably give it a shot if I went Vista for my desktop some day). If you care more about sound quality and don't care about multimedia features, the EMU 0404 or an entry level M-Audio would serve you well. Or you could even go for an entry level DAC (either USB or via the optical-out of your onboard sound card).

    I am not a fan of onboard sound personally, I've yet to find one that doesn't sound bad with my Westone UM2 or sound good on an Beyerdynamic DT880. Even an upper end MM speakers sound better with a modern discrete card IMO.

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    Re: Sound suggestions

    If your toying with the idea of a soundcard OR a new motherboard.....unless the motherboard you have is bad, then a soundcard sounds like a no-brainer to me.

    Your never going to get a motherboard with the sound quality of a half-decent add-in card.
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    Re: Sound suggestions

    i have always liked discrete sound cards. the sound quailty tends to be alot better than onboard and you tend to only need to buy 1 good sound card then you can continuously transfer them from computer to computer as you upgrade.

    My X-Fi has been in 3 computers and is still as good as ever dispite what people say about creative XD (and i have never had any driver problems dispite being on vista, so ha)

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    Re: Sound suggestions

    I followed a review of the Xonar DX/XD here:

    http://www.hardwarecanucks.com/forum/hardware-canucks-reviews/

    ....and the only thing I can find that gives me more to think about is this:

    Quote Originally Posted by www.hardwarecanucks.com
    RM 3D CPU Testing.

    I decided to compare this card to the Prelude to show the contrast between a hardware card and a card that renders effects in software.
    The Xonar uses more CPU processing power than the Prelude all across the board and in every buffer setting. This makes the Xonar harder on your system than hardware based cards. Software based cards off load all gaming effects and audio routines to your CPU making the card hard on the system. Hardware based cards have a onboard audio processor to handle effects and audio routines making the CPU processing load lighter on the system.(My emphasis)
    So now the idea is to look for a "hardware based" soundcard: I bet these are the ones that cost twice as much?

    I was going to say "could you go any further on that Infinite" which would be difficult.

    (Infinite: The idea is to boycott CREATIVE by getting rid of my soundblaster! )
    Last edited by edjay; 27-06-2008 at 03:17 PM.
    Every little helps!

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    Banhammer in peace PeterB kalniel's Avatar
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    Re: Sound suggestions

    Aren't the ideas of boycotting Creative and using hardware accelerated sound mutually exclusive?

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    Re: Sound suggestions

    I've seen some of the older auzentech cards go on ebay for around 30 notes.
    Might be worth checking if you don't mind second hand.
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    DDY
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    Re: Sound suggestions

    The only cheap "hardware based" gaming option is the X-Fi, in fact that's probably the only proper hardware based card out there since Creative have been a tight so-and-so over EAX technology.

    I find my Asus Xonar DX hardly puts any load on the CPU when processing EAX5 via the CPU, plus hardly any games are fully dual/quad core optimised meaning the sound processing is of loaded the core least loaded by the game anyway so there is minimal difference either way.

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    Re: Sound suggestions

    Quote Originally Posted by kalniel View Post
    Aren't the ideas of boycotting Creative and using hardware accelerated sound mutually exclusive?
    .....err, I'm not sure? I heard about the Vista drivers scenario several months ago:

    http://forums.creative.com/creativel...read.id=116332

    I already own an Audigy soundcard; I just thought that next time around it would be nice to try and escape such a blatant "lockin" monopoly.
    Every little helps!

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    Re: Sound suggestions

    Quote Originally Posted by DDY View Post
    The only cheap "hardware based" gaming option is the X-Fi....
    Could you explain the bit about the loading on the CPU again please?
    Every little helps!

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