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Hueyness

Sound cards?

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After 2 seconds of googling, I guess I have to ask why?

What exactly are you doing with your system that would require much beyond a 2.1 system. Your motherboard BTW has TERRIFIC sound hardware, and with the right software, can be AS good, if not better than a sub 100$ sound card. SQ (sound quality) is heavily driven on frequency, and quality of the original content.

For gaming, you're not going to get much, you won't take a step back and be amazed by a $300 sound card and a $1000 7.1 system. I would recommend spending ~$250 on a 2.1 setup, and never look back. A good sub and speaker combo will last you YEARS.

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[quote name='s0ck37' timestamp='1344875140' post='41478']
After 2 seconds of googling, I guess I have to ask why?

What exactly are you doing with your system that would require much beyond a 2.1 system. Your motherboard BTW has TERRIFIC sound hardware, and with the right software, can be AS good, if not better than a sub 100$ sound card. SQ (sound quality) is heavily driven on frequency, and quality of the original content.

For gaming, you're not going to get much, you won't take a step back and be amazed by a $300 sound card and a $1000 7.1 system. I would recommend spending ~$250 on a 2.1 setup, and never look back. A good sub and speaker combo will last you YEARS.
[/quote]

Generally speaking the sound cards have taken a step back/not improving and as stated in the quote, not worth the cash unless you HAVE it. But Creative cards are getting shitty reviews, and ASUS ones are okay reviews, but expensive. I use to run them, but my mobo doesn't have a PCI slot. Takes some time to cfg it and a good speaker and/or headset and just fine.

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[font=comic sans ms,cursive][color=#FFA500][size=4]I have a Creative X-fi Titanium that uses a pci-e 1x slot and it works pretty well and will fit into any modern mobo. [/size][/color][/font]

[font=comic sans ms,cursive][color=#FFA500][size=4]The good: It sounds significantly better than the sound chip on my Asus P9X79 Pro board. It has better op-amps, so it provides a bigger output signal to my headset and speakers. Music sounds really awesome on my PC. PCI-e 1x will fit into modern mobos for some time to come.[/size][/color][/font]

[font=comic sans ms,cursive][color=#FFA500][size=4]The bad: Bromance is right, Creative really sucks at building good drivers. While music sounds really awesome, games maybe no so much... at least to me, it's hard to tell the difference. There isn't a software Equalizer for this sound card! Even crappy onboard sound (Realtek, etc.) at least gives you some EQ capability so that you can shape the sound to your liking. What do I get for the ~ $100 I spent? Base and Treble. Grrrr! Also, some of the audio from BF3 (I'm thinking some of the missile/rocket sounds) is actually clipped (sounds overdriven and distorted). Just unacceptable for a "gaming" sound card.[/size][/color][/font]

[font=comic sans ms,cursive][size=4][color=#FFA500]I was thinking about getting a new sound card b/c the sound stage is one of the things I really enjoy about gaming... it's just one more thing that makes games immersive and enjoyable to me. The new [/color][url="http://www.amazon.com/Xonar-Phoebus-Gaming-Soundcard-Sound/dp/B007ZT1Q3E/ref=wl_it_dp_o_pC_S_nC?ie=UTF8&colid=D0U4R5ODCY9H&coliid=I2AQMVM8MPAZDB"][color=#FFA500]ASUS Xonar Phoebos[/color][/url][color=#FFA500] gaming sound card looked promising, but again with the freaking driver issues! It looks like the biggest complaint against it now (may have resolved, will keep checking) is that its drivers will get you kicked from any server using PunkBuster. Seriously! A ROG Gaming sound card that gets you kicked by PB!? That's just shit, no matter how you slice it. Shame on you ASUS! The price is also a little on the rich side as well... it simply shouldn't cost THAT much for what it is.[/color][/size][/font]

[font=comic sans ms,cursive][color=#FFA500][size=4]I think sound cards, done right with good drivers, can add a lot to a gaming system. A good sound system paired with quality (not over the top, but quality) headphones can really add to the immersion of a good game. I'm just not aware of any that are out right now that justify the cost and merit an upgrade over what I have now. [/size][/color][/font]

[font=comic sans ms,cursive][color=#FFA500][size=4]So, I will keep looking. [/size][/color][/font]

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[quote name='-Grimreaperx2-' timestamp='1344986252' post='41761']
We had this discussion before when Warspite posted. My overall post was, dont waste your time with them.
[/quote]

Yeah, better off using onboard sound and a decent headset.

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Few years ago Xfi was awesome, but as the competition (think one of their patents expired?) and a few other company's came to the market, instead of getting better, or (IMO) the same it went back a few steps. I was reading when i built my PC few months ago Creative (Xfi) was charging for some of the software too. Asus right now has the better product but the price (as stated) doesn't out way the lack of improvement that you MIGHT notice. I don't know what happened, and even a lot of OEM company's (HP, Dell, etc) don't offer sound cards on a lot of systems anymore.

In my research I found the USB sound cards reviewed better, and let us face it, almost anything will help a laptop sound. BUT a big issue with USB CAN be sound lag while in game.

@War, took me a good 4-6 hours of set up to cfg the onboard sound to be good enough, where my old Xfi Gamer would take a few minutes.

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[quote name='Bromance' timestamp='1345056214' post='41870']
Few years ago Xfi was awesome, but as the competition (think one of their patents expired?) and a few other company's came to the market, instead of getting better, or (IMO) the same it went back a few steps. I was reading when i built my PC few months ago Creative (Xfi) was charging for some of the software too. Asus right now has the better product but the price (as stated) doesn't out way the lack of improvement that you MIGHT notice. I don't know what happened, and even a lot of OEM company's (HP, Dell, etc) don't offer sound cards on a lot of systems anymore.

In my research I found the USB sound cards reviewed better, and let us face it, almost anything will help a laptop sound. BUT a big issue with USB CAN be sound lag while in game.

@War, took me a good 4-6 hours of set up to cfg the onboard sound to be good enough, where my old Xfi Gamer would take a few minutes.
[/quote]

Your comments make me think about taking another look at my onboard sound....

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[quote name='=ADK= warspite' timestamp='1345139840' post='42072']
Your comments make me think about taking another look at my onboard sound....
[/quote]

I think your Xfi may sound better, but it might be worth a shot to try. Like I said, be prepared to spend a few hours messing around with the settings and EQ to get it right.

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You can not go wrong with "Ht Omega - Claro S/c i have one and love it !

[url="http://www.htomega.com/"]http://www.htomega.com/[/url]

My card : [url="http://www.htomega.com/claro.html"]http://www.htomega.com/claro.html[/url]

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I'll stick with on board and spend $100 or a bit more, on a awesome headset.

Nice card, never seen it before. $200 is a bit high unless you use 7.1 and have some good speakers!!!!

Thank you for sharing, learned about a new company today!

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[quote name='Bromance' timestamp='1345151657' post='42109']
I think your Xfi may sound better, but it might be worth a shot to try. Like I said, be prepared to spend a few hours messing around with the settings and EQ to get it right.
[/quote]

[font=comic sans ms,cursive][color=#FFA500][size=4]Quick question to those playing BF3... I'm noticing that several sound effects are getting clipped and/or overdriven to the point that they sound like squeaks or some other kind of high-pitched distorted sound... are you guys hearing things like that? What you say will bear on whether or not I explore my onboard sound more... Could it be an in-game setting I'm using?[/size][/color][/font] Edited by =ADK= warspite

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[quote name='Bromance' timestamp='1345475305' post='42559']
i get clipping too. but a lack of sound like it turns off.
[/quote]

I get that, too, but forgot to mention it. Apparently, the game inherently overdrives the input to the audio card. :(

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I've been using onboard sound with no issues. I do have an older, but perfectly working card, but see no reason to use it that and the mic connection is a homo!

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I recently (3 days ago) upgraded my Asus Maximus V Extreme sound (Realtek HD onboard) to [font="Times New Roman"][size="3"][color="#000000"] [/color][/size][/font]

[font="Verdana","sans-serif"][size=2]Creative Sound Blaster Recon3D THX PCIE Fatal1ty Pro Sound Card SB1356 [/size][/font][font="Times New Roman"][/font][font="Times New Roman"][size="3"][color="#000000"] [/color][/size][/font]
[font="Verdana","sans-serif"][size=2]Sennheiser PC 360 Headset for Pro Gaming[/size][/font]

[font="Verdana","sans-serif"][size=2][color=#FFF0F5]mainly because I needed a new headset and Creative's maturity with EAX, Directsound 3D, and Alchemy. HD suround is extremely crystal clear and 360 degree. I am extremely pleased with this combination. It works great on Windows 7 Ultimate 64 bit. No issues.[/color][/size][/font]

[font="Verdana","sans-serif"][size=2][color=#FFF0F5]Sincerely,[/color][/size][/font]

[font="Verdana","sans-serif"][size=2][color=#FFF0F5]Major Snafu[/color][/size][/font]

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imo sound cards are a complete waste of money unless you're a serious audiophile like a music producer or something that needs your pc to output/record extremely high quality audio but... having said that... I'm glad to see someone suggested a HT Omega card. They're, in my own personal experience, much better cards than any Creative/Sound Blaster card you'll ever lay your hands on. (Tho my old Audigy 2 ZS comes a close 2nd... Creative SB's best card ever, imo)

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Yeah since windows Vista and creative blaming MS about how Windows does audio with DX, and creatives patent expiring or selling to ASUS (can't remember which). Creative has been worthless. Yeah my gamer pro was cool, but I agree the Audigy series was pretty awesome.

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so here is something interesting for this thread...and everyone who is thinking about getting a sound card. Unless you're an audiophile and want one to blast out 5.1 music through some expensive speakers to match...DONT. Games made after windows 7 was released only use the API's that windows made for DirectAudio. Meaning? Well it means that even if you have a dedicated audio card, the game will not use it to process sound and you will see no real improvement at all....your CPU will still be doing all of the work. The only difference you may see is from the 100 dollar drivers you bought and installed. Why do they do this? Well windows didn't include some people in the development process because they didn't want to help monetarily with the development of the new current drivers. (Sourced from SOE's audio engineer)

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You most likely won't even be able to tell any real difference in the sound unless ur listening to studio grade sound, although if you have a decent set of cans an amp can be useful. A cheap xonar dgx or similar would work fine.

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Actually Creative has released a new series under XFI. I picked one up on sale awhile back. It came with a headphone dongle with a volume control and built in amp. Huge upgrade. They seem to have gotten their act together. The only con I have is switching from speakers to headphones can be a pain.

IMO well worth the $100.

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It/s a 50/50 Shot with sound counts. Half people like it, other half don't like it or say it doesn't do anything. Just depends on what your going to pair it up with.

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Sound Cards really aren't much of an improvement (generally speaking) over integrated sound on your MOBO. My opinion is that they are not worth the money as long as you have a good MOBO but if you're going to spend the money on a sound card perhaps instead plan ahead a little bit and put that towards getting a better MOBO. Nothing but respect for differing opinions I am only a gamer so I can't speak for the practicality of a sound card in other uses.

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If you really care about sound, it's best to do your homework on the Realtek chipsets (to see which is the best) and your prospective mobo (to see which chipset it contains).  Differences can be significant, and you want to make sure you are getting the level of performance you want (or are paying for).

 

Myself, I have a Creative Soundblaster Z (most basic version) and I'm pretty happy with it.  I think it provides pretty good sound quality and it drives my headphones significantly better than my onboard sound chipset did.  I also like the Z's "Scout Mode" which somehow discerns and amplifies weaker, subtler sounds so that you can hear things like footsteps far sooner than you otherwise would be able to.  Scout mode works great in TDM-like matches where hearing things like footsteps can make a big difference.  

 

war

Edited by =ADK= warspite

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Sound Cards really aren't much of an improvement (generally speaking) over integrated sound on your MOBO. My opinion is that they are not worth the money as long as you have a good MOBO but if you're going to spend the money on a sound card perhaps instead plan ahead a little bit and put that towards getting a better MOBO. Nothing but respect for differing opinions I am only a gamer so I can't speak for the practicality of a sound card in other uses.

There for a long while I would agree with you. But as I mentioned I upgraded mine to the next step about Wars, added a headphone amp, and the difference was pretty significant. @[member='HKRage'] had a good point, it all depends on what your setup is. $20 headset of PC speakers are going to sound bad no matter what.

 

I have a Bose speaker system and a Steelseries headset, so for me (been working around planes for a long time, so hearing isn't great) I heard a profound quality upgrade. I am very happy with the purchase and the wife made me buy her one too.

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Yeah since windows Vista and creative blaming MS about how Windows does audio with DX, and creatives patent expiring or selling to ASUS (can't remember which). Creative has been worthless. Yeah my gamer pro was cool, but I agree the Audigy series was pretty awesome.

I have a Audigy 2 ZS notebook and a Audigy 2 ZS that are good for what I use them for....I now use a M-AUDIO Firewire Solo for Playback and gaming. I use the on-board for my headset mic (I can hook my headset mic to the  M-Audio Firewire solo but this way works better).

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