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Thread: Sound card for Gaming, Movies AND Music Production

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    Sound card for Gaming, Movies AND Music Production

    Hi all

    I'm in a bit of a hole at the moment. I've never really bothered with a sound card and always went with onboard sound rather than shelling out.

    But now i'm thinking its necessary as i'm also buying myself a Mixer and recording equipment.
    Could anyone suggest a sound card that would give me decent playback quality when producing/mixing music, but would also support my 5.1 surround system?

    I've been looking at the Creative Soundblaster X-Fi Xtreme Music. which seems like it might do the job. I've also been looking at an Alesis Multimix 8 for the mixer. this is a USB mixer and so would bypass the need for a card with the chunky great jacks.

    Anyone got any ideas?

    Cheers

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    Re: Sound card for Gaming, Movies AND Music Production

    What is your budget?

    The Asus Xonar HDAV Deluxe is very high end, with all sorts of connection types - HDMI, 7.1 analogue, sp/dif and stereo analogue.

    Azuntech probably have some very good high end options too, including an equivalent to the Xonar due at the end of Jan.

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    Re: Sound card for Gaming, Movies AND Music Production

    Will follow this thread with interest as my brother asked me about a soundcard for his music production not a few weeks back. Question, are you looking for something with ASIO driver support?

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    Re: Sound card for Gaming, Movies AND Music Production

    an X Fi music wont be as good for gaming as you may hope, you need the gamer or higher for full support.

    BUT thats only EAX style stuff, ie Creative's own software/hardware enviroments etc.

    M Audio have a good repuation for music cards, but they seemed to leave gaming alone long ago. I have an M Audio Revolution 7.1 which, while it doesn't support the latest EAX versions, DOES a great job of stereo and 3d from normal headphones AND has superb music clarity. It's worthy of looking for second hand.

    Quote Originally Posted by Advice Trinity by Knoxville
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    Re: Sound card for Gaming, Movies AND Music Production

    I use an M-Audio 2496 to connect my pc to my mixer

    http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/M-Aud...nd-Digital-I-O

    but that aint realy much help as you want 5.1
    Experience is something you don't get until just after you need it.

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    Re: Sound card for Gaming, Movies AND Music Production

    It depends how serious you are about music production and about gaming
    and what you mean by production - if this is only a downmix and postproduction where you have all your tracks already recorded elsewhere in studio you simply need a card with ASIO 2.0 support (think that's the latest version..) But if you gonna record sounds and need separate inputs then consider getting a 4, 8, 12 or 16 track interface, a USB or firewire mixer.

    I think it is hard to get a product that would be good for both gaming and music production. For gaming EAX does matter, makes audible difference and is the facto standard. Its hardware execution is essential, I do not care how many core a CPU has - I expect my sound card to process sounds and not the CPU. (This is by the way precisely the reason why I use E-mu for postproduction and not the Mackie desk) No cards or desks meant for recording can do EAX - they send it off for processing to CPU and only up to EAX 2.0. Anything above that is just gone if you do not have a proper gaming sound card.

    My friend used his X-Fi Fatality card for recording guitar with various samplers, in Cubase, and the effects were surprisingly good. That card is meant for gaming and not for music production but it seems to have worked fine for him. But if you are serious about recording audio you should get something with balanced inputs, phantom power for condenser mics and so on.

    At the moment I use:
    1. Firewire Onyx mixer from Mackie - 16 tracks and FW interface - for recording
    2. E-Mu 1616 - it is nice and portable (PCMCIA - good for a lappy) - for postproduction and occasionally for tracking
    3. X-Fi Gamer - for gaming

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    Re: Sound card for Gaming, Movies AND Music Production

    Tbh i was hoping to only spend up to £100.
    Also thinking that in buying the Alesis multimix 8 USB mixer (W/ phantom power) I would bypass the need for those inputs in the card itself.

    I'm pretty new on the recording thing so i'd probably stick with a decent 5.1 gaming card. As long as its useable. I'm probably gona be building a seperate pc soon neways with an Emu card and this mixer, all for recording.

    Just needed to know if it was possible to go both ways with a sound card... guess now

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    Re: Sound card for Gaming, Movies AND Music Production

    i've been using the x-fi music for years now,both on vista and xp, and i am an ardent gamer.
    Its perfect for gaming,the x-fi gamer is a watered down x-fi.
    Get it,you won't regret it.

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    Re: Sound card for Gaming, Movies AND Music Production

    All I'll say is that I changed from a Creative X-Fi Audio (the cheapie one) to an Asus Xonar D2X pci-e card and it's possibly the best computer component I've ever purchased.

    My games have taken on a new life and music and movie playback is really quite impressive.

    For 5.1 capability and games, I'd recommend it.

    As for music mixing, as long as the sound card doesn't have to be dedicated to the whole mixing process and all you need is an input and playback, it will give you excellent sound quality, from my experience.

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    Re: Sound card for Gaming, Movies AND Music Production

    Is it possible to have 2 sound cards installed and quickly switch between the two?
    It doesnt look like theres a single buy solution to my problem
    If i could get a good 5.1 Card and a decent production card (Lookin at the E-mu 0101) that I can plug a decent mixer into Phantom power doest really matter in the card if you have it in the mixer does it?

  11. #11
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    Re: Sound card for Gaming, Movies AND Music Production

    i have the bluegears b-enspirer: http://www.bgears.com/b-enspirer.html

    Its fantastic for gaming, music and for movies - great for dolby/dts dvds/hddvd, i use the spdif straight into my 7.1 amp. high recommendation from me

    Info below:

    Ultimate PCI sound solution for Gaming and Home Theater PCs. 8 Channels, 24-bit/192KHz, over 110 dB Oxygen 8788 PCI sound card.
    Bgears' b-Enspirer is a high quality PCI 8 channel sound that can be built into home audio electronics or personal computers to provide high fidelity sound playback and processing.
    b-Enspirer enables studio level audio performance. With support for 8 outbound streams, b-Enspirer can easily support the latest theater quality 5.1, 6.1 or even 7.1 surround sound systems. For enhanced playback, b-Enspirer enables the hardware that allows customers to experience the complete surround sound experience whether using four, or even two speakers.

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    Re: Sound card for Gaming, Movies AND Music Production

    I Think you may have just give me what i needed this looks sweet!
    This + usb/firewire mixer will do


    Thanks matey

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