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Onboard sound card VS PCI sound card

Discussion in 'General Hardware' started by Tan DJ, Jan 1, 2007.

  1. AshenSugar

    AshenSugar New Member

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    ofcorse there are alot of complaints, check any companys forums, and i have beenthere recently, yeah some dont get responces, but alot of them ask really stupid questions, or ask questions that are already answered, every time i have posted there with clear and polite requests i have gotten a FAST responce(within 5days)

    as to creative quility, if you can get the drivers to work properly sall good, but check creative forums, they are nothing but complaints about problems that have PLAUGED their cards for years!!!!

    ms is trying to do away with "eax" as it is now, moving to use OpenAL based sound in vista, most game makers are starting to see that eax3/4/5 arent getting them any extra sales but causting them extra on game dev, most off the shelf avrage gamers dont buy an addin sound card or if they do its a cheapo one with via,cmi,Crystal (cirus logic) or an old cheap creative card that only supports eax2 and lower.

    i work at a computer shop, we sell i would say 50:1 other brands:creative cards because honestly, people dont want to spend the extra$ to get a creative card when its not gonna give them any real benifit and likely will cause them problems.

    lets see i will take the first 2 pages of creatives soundblaser forums and post images of them, how many of the posts are gonna be complaints?
    how many will be left without a responce?

    check their forums i found 3 responces from admins/creative staff out of all the posts i checked(not the stickys)

    read the 2nd to the last responce in the last image(creative_support_again2) thats how anybody whos delt with creative support feels!!!!
     

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  2. AshenSugar

    AshenSugar New Member

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    AFIK creative dosnt do eather!!!

    AFIK only cmi8768/8768+/8787/8788(the best) do all that

    http://reviews.cnet.com/Creative_So...essageSiteID=9&messageID=1788237&cval=1788237

    think that reviewer says it all for what your asking, and to be clear, cmi 8768 and up can ENCODE DDL audio not just decode/play it!!!!

    http://www.cmedia.com.tw/?q=en/pci_audio


    as to comments about cmedia forums, i was just reading, most of the responces i saw about cmedia not making products just being a card maker where from people who arent employed by cmedia.

    and alot of the problemes listed are easly fixed if you fully remove the drivers that came with the card b4 you install the latest ones.

    oh and ktr, show me a creative driver update for the sblive 5.1 thats fairly recent, the newest ones i could find where around 3 years old!!!!!

    cmedia has updated drivers for the 8738, a chip that hasnt been made for years!!!!
    i had one in 2001/2002 when 4ch audio was a new thing, and cmedia is updating its drivers, even making vista drivers for it!!!!!
    does creative had working vista drivers for the orignal sblive cards? even beta?
     
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2007
  3. Grings

    Grings New Member

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    The creative might be slightly better in games through cheapie speakers, but them auzentechs are in a different league when it comes to signal quality, over the past few months ive seen a lot of bad press about the output of x-fi's when plugged into proper audio equipment like £700 amplifiers with £1200 speakers and such, which is what im more interested in, with equipment like this the 24 bit crystaliser makes a mockery of music. im looking for something to play through my co-ax input in my dd/dts amp, but have tried an x-fi through my other amp ( a creek with no bass or treble knobs, theyre designed for a pure, balanced sound) and it sounded awful and overblown with the crystaliser, and weak and flat without it

    please note that i am fully aware the chip in the x-fi is far superior, but a ferrari on 165/13 tyres isnt gonna be able to get all its power down is it, especially with a crap driver lol
     
  4. AshenSugar

    AshenSugar New Member

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    Grings i duno if i would agree that x-fi has a better chip, because if you check the forums(creatives) you will see that there are alot of people with alot of hardware and software related problems with x-fi.
    also x-fi dosnt support DDL or DTS, so i would say the 8788 is superior, specly if its on that auzentech card http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16829156002
    sure theres no eax3-4-5 support, but thats just a software thing, if creative would add eax 3-4-5 to their OpenAL project you would see alot of companys takeing advantage of it, some better then others, but as i understand it from a buddy whos a game programer, the cmi8768 and up all have the hardware to beable to run EAX3+, its just that creative wont allow it because its the only selling point they have for the x-fi now days.

    ms is pretty much forcing their hand tho with vista, because they are FORCING OpenAL as the primary standred and making EAX run thru OpenAL.
    as i read it this may even come into a dx9 update(openal support) at a later date.

    your correct tho, x-fi sounds poor even on cheap headphones you can hear the diffrance between the xmystek(sp) my buddy kenny bought and the x-fi his bother went for(they each had XXX$ to build a pc, kenny went with the bluegears/auzentech card and an x1800gto his bother got a 6800le and x-fi card, the bord and chip are the same, i could tell the diffrance even with my old crappy altechlancing headphones(26bucks on clearance at target) and with kennys zalman headphones(5.1ch) OMFG, movies sound so nice, kills his bothers x-fi, specly with its clicking and poping that comes and goes ;)
     
  5. tigger

    tigger I'm the only one

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    grings,x-fi does do dts.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    upto now i am quite impressed with this x-fi extreme music.i have had no problems with it as yet.
    my music sounds better,and my games sound fantastic.

    you pays yer money,you takes yer choice.
     
  6. Tan DJ

    Tan DJ New Member

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    Wow! Never thought a simple question could create so much lively debate! It's been fun to read it all though.

    I guess when I get around to upgrading my speakers, I'll also think about upgrading my sound card. So the question is: Will the CT4740 stop the stuttering in Theme Park world? Or is that a different problem? Like running a win95 game on winXP?

    Ashensugar suggested to set the PCI latencey to 64.

    I've got "PCI Latency Tool", so do I just set the "Sound, video and game controlers" class to 64? Current value is 32.

    If this fixes Theme Park World to work properley, I won't bother using the CT4740 (except maybe just to make sure it works. Then maybe try selling it on e-bay. Although with all the reports of new cards being available so cheaply, I don't know that there would be that many buyers for an old card.

    Cheers,
    Tan DJ
     
  7. ktr

    ktr

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    people only post to complain...same goes at the c-media forum. Also I would say that there is a much...much...much higher population of Creative sound card owners than cmedia...therefore more posts. :pimp:

    Welcome to TPU forums...lol.

    So much brand loyalty in this forum, heck! what can you say... people has their choices. But this in all spreads more knowledge when doing these "lively debates"...


    really i have no care for the c-media nor xfi sound cards...its all about the audigy series...hands down. I have used multiple cards, but i havent see any issues or mass complaints on these cards. Being a old, popular card now, the drivers and software are almost (biting my tongue) perfect...
     
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2007
  8. xvi

    xvi

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    I'm quite happy with my Turtle Beach Montego DDL. Games seem to like it. Music sounds amazing. Features to boot.

    Creative's cards are made for gaming. They're going to have more memory, support more streams, etc.. They're going to be more compatible and they're more popular.

    I'm pretty bummed out about Creative's card quality, though. When my Sound Blaster Live 7.1 MP3 fried, I bought an Audigy 2 ZS. A few weeks later when my Audigy 2 ZS fried, I bought a Montego DDL. The Montego DDL has been running for a few years now and works well with every game I've come across. Windows Vista has drivers for the CMX series chipsets, so you won't have to worry there.

    Anyways, back to what this topic is about.. Onboard sound will take CPU power. ANY PCI sound card will take the load off the CPU. Yes, the performance difference is only 2-5 FPS, but you also get better sound quality, more input/output ports, better features, etc.. If you ask me, it's worth it.

    When the Audigy card worked, it was pretty cool. I'll agree to that. Good quality sound that was backed up by Creative's compatibility.
     
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2007
    Crunching for Team TPU
  9. AshenSugar

    AshenSugar New Member

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    kte you should NEVER say such a thing, you do realise you just made urself a target for some evil force to cause ur card to explode in flames in ur system due to a driver error :p

    and yes try 64 latancy, if that dosnt work try higher, if that dosnt work u can try the 4740, if that studders get a non creative card(creative cards studder bad on some boards/systems due to creative not properly testing their stuff for compatability with a wide range of hardware) i have never had a problem with my turtle beach card thats CMI based doing that, but my live and audigy cards have done that to me,hence they dont get used unless i have to use them anymore!!!!!
     
  10. AshenSugar

    AshenSugar New Member

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    this is nolonger true, infact some/many older pci cards will use MORE power then current HD audio or even some(non realtek) ac97 codecs, for example my sblive uses more cpu then my ADI1988 (hd audio) or my cmi9761a(ac97 5.1, on a vnf3)

    newer or better addin cards can be good, BUT you gotta look at what you board comes with b4 you assume you need/want an addin card.

    Montego DDL which uses the Cmedia 8768+ same as the "low end" auzentech card, but the auzentech card is higher quility ;)

    the Turtle Beach Riviera uses chipset: C-Media CMI8738-MC6 and this is still a good card, just use the latest drivers from c-media forums, they are even working on vista Xear for it!!!!(what they use for their newer cards)

    i have yet to hear anybody diss the Turtle Beach Riviera or montego cards for audio quility!!!!

    alot of it is that some people dont check for updated drivers for their cards, with cmedia and via and such you need to NOT use the ones on the cd, get the latest versions from the chip maker!!!!!
     
  11. tkpenalty New Member

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    If you ask me, Even the Audigy Value blows away the AC 97', then I experience Fat1lity and my life has changed....
     
  12. xvi

    xvi

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    More capacitors. Slightly cleaner audio. Yeah, I know.. I'm using X-Plosion 7.1 DTS drivers (Well.. I do when I boot into XP). I know the drivers don't do as much as the card, but..

    The Montego's price fit in to my starving-college-student-budget, too. Auzentech didn't quite make it.
     
    Crunching for Team TPU
  13. Grings

    Grings New Member

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    anyone know of anything higher range than either the auzentech OR x-fi? yes theyre both high end to a degree, but with some proper cd players the preamp can be £500 worth of electronics alone, yet both these cards cost less than the cable im gonna plug into them! ideally id like something with proper rca jacks(analog) AND a co-ax(digital) so it can go into both amps (receiver for movies, 2 channel amp for music)
     
  14. AshenSugar

    AshenSugar New Member

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    tkpenalty, it depends on the chip used and if you have updated the drivers, honestly, realtek chips below HD audio versions(anything nforce4 or older for example) is gonna suck because realteks older offerings sucked arse, their hd audio is quite decent, not great, but kills ac97.

    cmedia 9761 and up with current drivers(from cmi forums) easly sound as good as your audigy cards when setup with a decent set of speekers, this ADI1988 tho, damn, its just kickass now that ket made that driver kit for it!!!, spec wise its acctualy better then x-fi in many ways, read about it at analogdevices or the soundmax website(the datasheet/whitepapers)

    i agree, alot of old ac97 sucked hard, but then again back when it was orignaly made it was only really ment for basick pc sound for office work and such, and IMHO even the more recent 8ch realtek chips(pre hd audio) are blah at best.
    but you gotta remmber just because most makers use realtek dosnt mean that all ac97/onboard sound is bad, alot of it is drivers and checking what ur board has on it b4 you buy the damn thing.

    its like my buddy who got a 180$ board but didnt look the audio chip or the 3rd party raid controler or firewire chip maker b4 choosing it, he assumed it would be good, turned out the raaid chip had POOR perf, you had to dissable NCQ to beable to use it with sata2 drives, it was just crap, the board also had the 8ch realtek chip on it with some kinda booster card/addin thing, POS, sounded worse then my old OLD compaq 233mmx with an awe64 in it!!!!!
    the firewire chip had poor perf and had driver issues, all in all the board was crap, but he thought it must be good because it was 180bucks after all(120 more then i spent)
    the funniest part was that my vfn3-250(nforce3 with cmi9761a audio) sounded better and tho i didnt have firewire or extra sata ports it worked flawless, and the onboard sound acctualy worked great in games(when somebodys walking up behing you you hear it correctly) and the sound quility is extreamly good compared to even my sblive5.1plat or audigy3 card( weird fooking card i got from a client who never even opened it!!!!)

    i cant stress this enought tho DRIVERS MAKE ALL THE DIFFRANCE, i was forced to install the drivers from the cd on that same system once(net was down and i had to find an audio file for a wake(friends father died of cancer and they needed some stupid "free as a bird" song off an external hd, but all the files where labled with numbers not names) and OMFG, it was BAD, i had to dissable 5.1, and tweak the EQ because it sounded really pathetic(almost as bad as the drivers that come with 8ch realtech based mobos :p )

    honestly even i couldnt belive it, the diffrance was shocking, i even tryed to game, it was weird, with 5.1 enabled i could hear walking "above" me whenever something was walking around in the room with me!!!!, my own foot steps sounded like they where behing my head ROFL.


    this audio i have now, well Asus dosnt update the win9x drivers properly!!!, ADI makes good hardware, but it took KET hacking up the drivers to fix the problems with the EQ(if it was enabled u got cracklin and poping) its working great now!!!! im acctualy gonna get new wires for my 5.1 speeker set today and rewire it because the old ones are frayed and chewed up(damn kittens and puppys) if there was a way i could recorde how this sounds i would ;)
     
  15. AshenSugar

    AshenSugar New Member

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    honestly that new auzentech card is the best i think ur gonna find for pc audio, there are options that have more in/out plugs but they are based on older chips with lesser abilities mostly made for people who record music and such.

    most expencive isnt alwase best, the auzentech cards cheaper then the x-fi and its audio quiltiy is heads and sholders better.

    this is the most expencive audio unti they have at the egg
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16829110003
    but its not really what ur looking for ;)


    theres this
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16829153001
    Razer Barracuda AC-1 7.1Gaming Soundcard its cmi8788 based to :) and i challenge anybody to say its not a great gaming soundcard!!!!!(read the reviews, people replace x-fi's with it and are quite happy to do so!!!)
     
  16. Casheti

    Casheti New Member

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    I have spare Soundblaster 128 :D Never tried it tbh...
     
  17. xvi

    xvi

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    Crunching for Team TPU
  18. Grings

    Grings New Member

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    that razer certainly looks cool, but hell why cant someone like mark levison, musical fidelity or rotel make something uberquality, with an external dac with valve preamps and such

    and id love to see a new high end yamaha chipset turn up
     
  19. Solaris17

    Solaris17 Creator Solaris Utility DVD

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    since this thread seems as if we are reccomending cards may i recmmend something out of the box that i tried for a while? turtlebeach catalina sound card those cards come very close or in my case better in sound quality than creative and their far cheaper. drivers are a little bit more of a pain in the ass to find but they operate better much better iv had install issues and the like with my creative drivers "no sound card detected" WTF do you mean its right their i can see it! "you must have a sound card to be able to download the creative driver" i cant because their isnt a driver to begin with which means you dont know i have one...........................ya i was pissed but i like turtle beach if my cousine didnt steal it id still have it id give them a look.
     
  20. AshenSugar

    AshenSugar New Member

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    http://www.newegg.com/Product/CustratingReview.asp?item=N82E16829153001
    read the user reviews then

    http://forumz.tomshardware.com/hardware/Razer-Barracuda-review-ftopict214090.html
    i like reviews by users who can test with real world systems and side by side, this just echos what the reviews i have found say, and what te newegg reviews say.

    the thing is that this razor uses the EXECT same chip as the high end auzentech card, but i would guess that the auzentech card is acctualy a little better due to the quility of filters and such they use(look at the card!!!!)

    i wont be buying one till they price drop drasticly since this boards onboard audio is excelent!!!!

    Grings, yahama stoped the pc chipset buisness many years back, mainly because it wasnt making them much$ and creative had a strangle hold on the market.

    and your board(just looked it up) has the NASTY realtek chip, driver updates could help some but honestly i see why u want a better card, after what you have now even the 20% 8768 card on newegg would blow you away!!!!
     
  21. AshenSugar

    AshenSugar New Member

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    hard to find now, and its cmi8768 based, this is the current equivlant!!!
    its 18.99+shiping
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16829130002

    its agreat buy, as long as you get the drivers from cmedia forums!!!!

    i know 12 people who got them recently, nobodys had anything but good to say about them!!!!
    infact my buddy sent his x-fi in for rma(it totaly died) got one as a hold me over because creative said it would be a minimum of 4-6 weeks for rma, up to 8 weeks(eww) hes now desided to sell his brother the x-fi and buy a higher end CMI card from auzentech(found them on his own after ipointed out this card and he liked it)

    really i think hes just tired of the problems hes had with the x-fi he spent neerly 350for, its had the crackling, the poping, the slow downs in windows, the card redetect every reboot, all that and more, and hes worked around it, hacked his own driver sets, and then the card dies.....and its gonna take a minium of 4-6 weeks to get a new or fixed one!!!!

    his only complaint about this card has been over and over bitching that its red!!!!(he thinks reds a girly color)
     
  22. Solaris17

    Solaris17 Creator Solaris Utility DVD

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    thats the thing i got cmedia drivers and my catalina worked fine i cant say much for the standard drivers i skipped those and whent stright for the cmedia ones. i think im going to get a montego here pretty quick its good stuff with the right drivers.
     
  23. AshenSugar

    AshenSugar New Member

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    go for the auzentech version, its a few bucks more and has beter audio quility(better filters and such)

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16829127001

    they use the same chip, just that the auzentech is made for better audio quility.

    the card listed above(up a post or 2) uses almost the same chip, im gonna grab one pretty soon to keep around, then im gonna give away some of these other cards i have, tired of having a little box of extra cards i dont use ever!!!!
     
  24. Grings

    Grings New Member

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    yes its well shit, a friends got an a8n sli dlx and even though its same crappy realtek it still sounded a lot better than my dirt cheap asrock

    however for music ( as mentioned earlier) im still using the coaxial dolby digital live output from an asus a7n8x deluxe which while it has a good clean sound, is getting old and my mate keeps bugging me to sell it to him
     
  25. AshenSugar

    AshenSugar New Member

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    lol, friends who want ur old stuff hehe.

    try updating the drivers on that card, use driver cleaner pro in safe mode to fully remove the old dirvers first, then install the latest ones from realtek, that may help alot.

    if not, try that 18$ card see what u think, i bet you will be shocked at the quility over even the a7n8x audio!!! and the auzentech cards, well u would poo urself :p

    http://www.cmedia.com.tw/?q=en/pci_audio
    that has a chart showing what chips support what fetures!!!
     

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