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fajw

thinking about getting a sound card

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I got the ASUS Xonar Essence STX and am enjoying it.

Edited by fajw

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Good choice, how are you liking the features eg. using dobly headphone for games and such?

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Haven't played any games yet, but I prefer no DSP to the music option when listening to music. The difference in audio quality and clarity is VERY noticeable vs when I was using the on board sound, even in the Windows 7 startup sound.

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Quick Question.

 

Does one need to disable the Motherboard sound system after they install one of these cards? Is there any conflicts?

Or does the board "see" that there is a card for sound and turn it's stuff off.

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I'm pretty sure the board doesn't see that there is a card for sound and turn its stuff off. I am not sure whether or not it will work if you don't turn the motherboard sound off; maybe you can use both; but it's pretty easy to turn the motherboard sound off in the BIOS, which is what I did before I installed the card.

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Standard soundcards output sound at a 'power' that is able to drive earbuds (like for mp3 players) pretty easily, and some lower-end headphones. However when you start looking at more professional headphones, like audiophile-grade or even enthusiast grade (around $300, basically) the output of a standard soundcard isn't able to overcome the resistance of the headphone, which can either result in (unlikely) damage to the soundcard or merely inaudible sound.

This is generally true, but there are some studio quality headphones with low impedance, such as the AKG K240s (55 Ohms)

 

Still, even these and pretty much any other good sized headphones will benefit from a dedicated amp.

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I'm pretty sure the board doesn't see that there is a card for sound and turn its stuff off. I am not sure whether or not it will work if you don't turn the motherboard sound off; maybe you can use both; but it's pretty easy to turn the motherboard sound off in the BIOS, which is what I did before I installed the card.

 

Thanks for the help understanding.

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I'm pretty sure the board doesn't see that there is a card for sound and turn its stuff off. I am not sure whether or not it will work if you don't turn the motherboard sound off; maybe you can use both; but it's pretty easy to turn the motherboard sound off in the BIOS, which is what I did before I installed the card.

 

Thanks for the help understanding.

 

You shouldn't need to disable onboard sound in the BIOS, just select the new card as the playback and recording (if it has recording) device in Windows sound.

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I might have been wrong; it looks like Creative does support Windows XP.

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I have literally just now updated my old audio card to an SB Recon3D so I have a Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi (Xtreme Fidelity) Fatal1ty edition for sale if you are interest. Comes with the card, remote control, all the cables ad manuals as well as the X-Fi I/O drive. Looking at $100 +p. Let me know if you are interested.

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i use an external usb interface - m-audio fast track pro. but i also use it for recording. it never let me down!

 

 

--------------------

rather spiral knights than browser games!

Edited by domio

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Good heavens there's a lot of research to be done when it comes to improving one's aural experience, often raising more questions than it answers. Oh, we're on the air.. Ah HEM!

 

So it seems that there's a fair amount of conviction that a card adds significantly more than onboard sound provides. I'm convinced this needs to now be decisively implemented in my rig.

 

I've narrowed (?) it down to the ASUS STX, the SB Titanium HD, and the Recon3D.

 

Love my gaming and music. Mostly will be using cans like the ATH-AD700 or 900. Might go Audioengine in future.

 

What I gather from this forum is that the STX and Titanium HD are bees knees and either will do, though it seems the HD has an edge for gaming?

 

To further complicate matters, the Asus Phoebus is on its way, and I wonder whether it would be worth waiting... hmm! Or to look at this another way, would an external DAC be a better choice?

 

Any thoughts?

Edited by psychiatrik

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I guess it's pretty slow around here..

 

Oh well, in case future generations of humans are interested, I went for the Asus STX plus some brand spanking new ATH-AD700s!

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I just scored a SB Recon3D Fatal1ty Professional card......got it home, removed all traces of the SB X-Fi Ext Audio, plugged in the new one, and

nothing.

a pretty red light came on, installed the drivers etc plugged it into my amp

nothing

tested it with another amp/speakers (trying all possibilities)

nothing

plugged in my old card

music

a dud card, by all indications.

looks like I'm off into the city AGAIN

the red glow was so pretty, too......

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now that I've no longer got the assistance of alcohol, I enabled the device in Control Panel

lmao

shouldn't play with my computer whilst drinking.

the card sounds fantastic, twice the volume of the SB X-Fi Extreme Audio, much clearer, better bass and treble etc

I'm happy.

now it's time for a drink - hey, it's St Patrick's day, and I'm Irish......it's allowed.

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Creative Labs is the best option, I have one with a Intel Board and ATI graphics card and and a sound system AV Receivers .

 

the sound quality in games and music is great!

Edited by jhoncartem

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Thanks to all posters in this thread. I have been having a hard time with my X-fi both when using Vista and Win7 x64. Most times the PC will boot up with sound, somedays it doesn't. Getting sick of rebooting 3-4 times before the drivers finally report themselves installed. Creatives driver support, IMO, has been shitful, both in quality and frequency of updates. Considering the Asus and Azuntech cards at the moment. Not worried about headphone amps, as I have a plantronics 7.1 gaming headset which uses a USB dongle/sound card.

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Guest xyzzy frobozz

Thanks to all posters in this thread. I have been having a hard time with my X-fi both when using Vista and Win7 x64. Most times the PC will boot up with sound, somedays it doesn't. Getting sick of rebooting 3-4 times before the drivers finally report themselves installed. Creatives driver support, IMO, has been shitful, both in quality and frequency of updates. Considering the Asus and Azuntech cards at the moment. Not worried about headphone amps, as I have a plantronics 7.1 gaming headset which uses a USB dongle/sound card.

I had this problem too.

 

Go into your BIOS and disable on board sound. On mine I had to disable the "Azalia Codec". From there I've had no problems at all.

 

Give that a go.

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I had this problem too.

 

Go into your BIOS and disable on board sound. On mine I had to disable the "Azalia Codec". From there I've had no problems at all.

 

Give that a go.

That was the first thing I did when I built my current rig. To be honest, I'm a bit sick of the hoops I have to jump through to get a creative card to work, hence my search for a completly different brand of card. The only issue, I can't remember if my PCI-E slots are obscured by my video card. That'll be an after work job.

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Guest xyzzy frobozz

I had this problem too.

 

Go into your BIOS and disable on board sound. On mine I had to disable the "Azalia Codec". From there I've had no problems at all.

 

Give that a go.

That was the first thing I did when I built my current rig. To be honest, I'm a bit sick of the hoops I have to jump through to get a creative card to work, hence my search for a completly different brand of card. The only issue, I can't remember if my PCI-E slots are obscured by my video card. That'll be an after work job.

 

I agree that they are needlessly fiddly. I found that I've had issues with them at the start, but they seem to sort themselves out. The bundled Creative software is horrendous. Reports are that they have improved the software since the X-Fi Titanium cards.

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I've heard of people having no trouble with Creative, and just as many having heaps of issues. I used an Audigy 4, and an X-Fi XtremeMusic and both had issues with drivers from Vista onwards.

My old ASUS Esence STX worked perfectly in Vista and 7.

 

Currently using an AudioEngine D1 USB DAC in lieu of an internal sound card. Leaves my case with room to SLI, as well as getting my sound device out of my case which will be full of EMI I imagine.

The USB DAC needs no drivers, and is OS agnostic which appeals to me as a Mac and PC user. You do miss out on all the sound tech they put into sound cards like Dolby Headphone and CMSS, but to be honest, I never actually used them with my STX, or any prior sound card. I found they just changed music to make it sound unnatural to my ears.

That said, I never had any EMI issues with my Essence STX, I just thought I'd try something new when I broke it :P

Edited by ninjacatfish

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So after doing a bit of reading about the Xonar D2X and Essence STI, I'm still not sure if I will be able to use my (very) old Logitech X-620 speakers. Current set up is using 3 rca plugs, there is no optical or coax connecters. Speakers have been rock solid, hence why I still have them. Can't justify updating them.

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