1. Welcome to TechPowerUp Forums, Guest! Please check out our forum guidelines for info related to our community.

Is dedicated audio worth it?

Discussion in 'Audio, Video & Home Theater' started by CrAsHnBuRnXp, Dec 25, 2013.

  1. CrAsHnBuRnXp

    CrAsHnBuRnXp

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2007
    Messages:
    5,530 (2.16/day)
    Thanks Received:
    659
    I need a new pair of headphones but i dont want to spend a godly amount of money for professional headphones.

    Rigth now im using a $30 pair of Plantronics headphones that have served me well over the last few years. I was going through a game informer magazine and came across these headphones and I really like the looks of them and all the reviews say that they are an epic headset. However the problem is that it is USB. There is also a wireless version

    I currently have an X-Fi Xtremegamer sound card by Creative. Sound card has served me really well and honestly i think ive been using it since the S939 days. (i dont remember when exactly but ive had it forever)

    So basically im looking to you guys for help. I havent used anything but dedicated audio in all of my computers as onboard used to be complete garbage a few years back and i dont know if it still is or not.

    If I got those headphones I linked earlier, would it be worth it getting rid of my X-Fi sound card?

    Thanks.
     
  2. Mussels

    Mussels Moderprator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2004
    Messages:
    42,377 (11.55/day)
    Thanks Received:
    9,682
    my realtek was 'good enough' but on my mid-range PC speakers (z5500) there was a serious lack of bass. music sounded crap, but came out fine via my phone.

    on my auzentech card, audio is much, much better for bass and quality.

    USB headsets bypass your soundcard, so the dedicated wont be needed.
     
  3. CrAsHnBuRnXp

    CrAsHnBuRnXp

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2007
    Messages:
    5,530 (2.16/day)
    Thanks Received:
    659
    Edit: Scratch that. I misread what you said.

    Im aware of the USB headsets bypassing the soundcard. What im trying to figure out is if the USB headsets will sound like shit, good, great, or better than what im using now with my soundcard.
     
    Last edited: Dec 25, 2013
  4. Melvis

    Melvis

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2008
    Messages:
    3,587 (1.49/day)
    Thanks Received:
    528
    Location:
    Australia
    This will answer your question

     
    CrAsHnBuRnXp says thanks.
  5. Mussels

    Mussels Moderprator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2004
    Messages:
    42,377 (11.55/day)
    Thanks Received:
    9,682
    that is 100% upto the device you're buying.
     
  6. micropage7

    micropage7

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2010
    Messages:
    5,949 (3.56/day)
    Thanks Received:
    1,380
    Location:
    Jakarta, Indonesia
    sometimes headphones is very subjective, like someone like bass much, the other like clear sound or dolby effect
    and from the headphone, it looks pretty cool but for quality, i dunno
    searching through google or maybe one of your friend ever use that could give information for you better
     
  7. james888

    james888

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2011
    Messages:
    4,541 (3.74/day)
    Thanks Received:
    1,693
    I wanted some nicer headphones awhile back, ended up choosing the jvc rx700 for $30. An upgrade from my $5 pair. While doing this I decided to try dedicated audio with a budget sound card, a xonar DG for $10. The headphones alone made things sound better. The DG alone made a significant difference. Combined it was a lot better than my onboard. My subjective opinion is yes.

    For gaming, the headphones made a big difference. I could not tell the difference with the sound card or onboard, even with my current azuntech sound card.
     
    Crunching for Team TPU
  8. LightningJR

    LightningJR

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2010
    Messages:
    268 (0.17/day)
    Thanks Received:
    61
    I have the Superlux HD668B's, they are nice and cheap and will show you how well the X-FI you have shines with a great pair of headphones.


    My first foray into quality headphones were the Koss PortaPros, it literally brought tears to my eyes, I didn't realize how much better the sound could be. The Superlux are sleeper headphones that are worth 3X their price or more. It's arguably the best bang for buck headphones you can buy.

    I have an X-FI XtremeGamer PCI card and it was as good as my Receiver for output, my Realtek onboad audio could not match it in any way when using quality cans.
     
  9. CrAsHnBuRnXp

    CrAsHnBuRnXp

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2007
    Messages:
    5,530 (2.16/day)
    Thanks Received:
    659
    I dunno. The whole audio universe really confuses me. Even after watching that vid that was posted above, i was lost listening to them talk about w/e it was they were talking about. A lot of it went over my head.
     
  10. micropage7

    micropage7

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2010
    Messages:
    5,949 (3.56/day)
    Thanks Received:
    1,380
    Location:
    Jakarta, Indonesia
    yeah, audio is not like processor that benchmark is matter
    sometimes it has better result but you feel the other meet your ear

    i use cheap headphone, its just $4 he he he..
    but so far i cant complain since its nice for the price, the only one that kinda uncomfortable is the earcup if i use it for long time
    but its ok for $4 :toast::toast:
     
  11. Jetster

    Jetster

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2010
    Messages:
    5,107 (2.93/day)
    Thanks Received:
    2,090
    Location:
    Oregon
    Headphones just like speakers are very subjective as micropage stated. You have to test drive them. However I have never heard a desent pair under $80. I tend to like Sony's $100 sets but I like the high tones. But I would keep your sound card over a USB DAC set. But even better would be to bitstream from your GPU to a AVR/AMP DAC and then to headphones.

    Audio is confusing. Way more then monitors. The cheapest nice set up is the ASUS Xonar DG5.1 sound card and a nice set of headphones. Way better than onboard sound and a cheap set
     
    Last edited: Dec 25, 2013
  12. Mussels

    Mussels Moderprator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2004
    Messages:
    42,377 (11.55/day)
    Thanks Received:
    9,682
    because i'm FREAKING DEDICATED i went out and borrowed a pair of USB headphones, turtle beach P11's.


    short version: from googling and testing these, USB headsets are prone to static background noise due to interference. most noticeable at idle with no sound playing, but lowering volume often reduces it.

    these USB headphones sound the same on USB and on my auzentech, but quality is reduced on my onboard realtek (on my AMD system anyway, havent tested on my new intel setup).


    conclusion: USB is cheaper than buying a soundcard + headphones with slightly inferior quality, but hey... its also one free PCI/PCI-E slot, and portable to another PC or laptop with ease.
     
    Kursah and CrAsHnBuRnXp say thanks.
  13. CrAsHnBuRnXp

    CrAsHnBuRnXp

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2007
    Messages:
    5,530 (2.16/day)
    Thanks Received:
    659
    Wow man you didn't have to do that! I very much appreciate you doing that though and thank you for putting forth the effort to give me the very best possible answer. Beween you and everyone else I have a pretty good idea between what I should do. :)
     
  14. BumbleBee

    BumbleBee

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2009
    Messages:
    4,894 (2.38/day)
    Thanks Received:
    1,320
    Location:
    Cybertron aka Canada
    night and day difference. I could easily spend several thousand dollars on speakers, stands, integrated amplifier or monoblocks and a pre-amplifier, D/A converter, cables, SPL meter, carpeting, electrician, Owens Corning 703/705 Fiberglass to make absorption panels, bass traps and cloud.

    there is a value proposition, something like the Jolida Glass FX or Musical Paradise MP-D1 ($480) D/A converter, Bottlehead Crack ($280) or La Figaro 332C ($400) headphone amplifier and Sennheiser HD650 ($499 or less) headphones will give you that kind of fidelity at a much lower cost because headphones have certain advantages over speakers.
     
    Last edited: Dec 26, 2013

Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guest)

Share This Page