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Realtek Audio Codecs Not Rendering True EAX

Discussion in 'News' started by malware, Sep 27, 2006.

  1. malware New Member

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    Todays DailyTech top story says that Realtek Audio Codecs do not render true EAX, at least Analog Devices and Creative Labs claim that. Analog Devices and Creative Labs have made claims that Realtek’s high definition audio solutions do not render EAX or EAX2 audio - at least not very well. While Realtek’s audio drivers have the proper driver flags to enable EAX and EAX2 in supported games, the listening experience presents a different story. Listening tests demonstrated by Analog Devices and Creative Labs show that Realtek’s high definition audio solutions render EAX and EAX2 incorrectly, removing the 3D positional audio aspects and immersion of EAX and EAX2 completely. There’s also an issue with some motherboard reviews that use Rightmark 3D Sound for CPU utilization tests and award the onboard audio solution with the lowest utilization the superior solution when the onboard audio solution isn’t fully rendering EAX/EAX2 audio. Analog Devices and Creative Labs testing show the Realtek high definition onboard audio showing very little CPU utilization in Rightmark 3D Sound’s EAX2 CPU utilization test because it’s not applying any EAX2 effects. Currently Realtek is the only known high definition codec manufacturer to render EAX and EAX2 incorrectly as IDT/Sigmatel does not support EAX or EAX2. It is unknown if previous C-Media audio solutions produced before it was acquired by Realtek produce similar results. Analog Devices and Creative Labs made no mention if add-in sound cards such as the recent Dolby Digital Live equipped C-Media CMI8768+ or CMI8778 are affected. Various manufacturers including ASUS, Universal abit, DFI, Gigabyte, MSI and others use Realtek audio solutions.

    Source: DailyTech
     
  2. b1lk1

    b1lk1 New Member

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    LOL! Like we should really believe Creative especially when they are just pimping the standards they created and refuse to share? This borders on slander if you ask me and Creative should not only release EAX 3/4/5 standards so other makers can implement them, but they should stop trying to monopolize the sound market in PC's. If Creative could ever have decent driver support and learn to make their cards not be complete bus hogs, more people would probably happily run them. Personally, I prefer not to run a sound card as the onboard on my motherboard sounds as good as the Audigy 2 ZS and as for EAX, well I don't play games where that matters, and even if I did I would just adapt around it. This just sounds like Creative is getting scared because onboard sound has reached a point where it is about to be better than an add on card. Even with onboard using the CPU a touch, the latest CPU's can easily take the extra load without us ever knowing it is doing it.
     
  3. DaMulta

    DaMulta My stars went supernova

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    lol again X-FI gives a sound that night and day difference in Movies, Mp3's and Games when compared for Audigy 2. On-board is crap, its better than it used to be, but its still crap. When Creative's hardwear works right, it will work wonders with your ears. I hate on-board, and I have given Creative cards to my friends for free, because when I'm at there house and watching them play a game. No EAX is just horrible, and will hurt the ears after hearing the truth.
     
  4. Ketxxx

    Ketxxx Heedless Psychic

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    actually ill disagree with that. ive listened to stuff on a x-fi like music and movies then heard the same stuff on my own soundmax 7.1, sonicfury, and a realtek codec, apart from the realtek, your hard pressed to hear any difference. decent speakers by far make a larger impact.
     
  5. Ketxxx

    Ketxxx Heedless Psychic

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    not just that, but look at the soundmax 7.1, the newer driver i found for it adds a graphics equaliser which is very good, has HD audio support (rocks) and with a few driver updates could add a whole hoast of other decent stuff to help the onboard chip out. from there, driver tweaks ahoy for games and your set - i think we have a winner, and its not creative :D
     
  6. Jimmy 2004

    Jimmy 2004 New Member

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    My Audigy 4 is nice, but I think that most people don't have the speakers to listen to their sound card at its best anyway.
     
  7. Nyte New Member

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    What all of you fail to realize is...

    The Sound Card and the Speaker System are directly related to each other in the bottlenecked department.

    You can buy a crapass Logitech X-230 speaker system and use an X-Fi VS Onboard and you will hear no difference.

    Or you can buy a Logitech Z-5500 Digital speaker system and actually hear the difference.

    If you go on Creative's forums, you will see all these complainers with their system specs as:
    ...
    Creative X-Fi Fatality
    ...
    (Some unknown company) 2.1 speakers


    I can't believe those users have the audacity to complain when it's clearly the speaker system that is the bottleneck.
     
  8. Ketxxx

    Ketxxx Heedless Psychic

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    erm, so your saying im deaf and my Logitech Z-5450s are crap? :wtf: with speakers like that, i think im quite capable and in a good position to comment on individual audio chips thanks.
     
  9. wazzledoozle

    wazzledoozle New Member

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    Going from my onboard to this Audigy 2 was like night and day, onboard simply cant compete with their lack of a DSP and offloading all the actual processing to the cpu.
     
  10. Ketxxx

    Ketxxx Heedless Psychic

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    cpu utilisation is actually very low for onboard sound. right now even using hd audio my cpu utilisation sits at 11 - 16% and thats with 3 tabs in firefox open, mp10 and msn running, taking them out the equation your probably looking at 4 - 6% for onboard, very healthy. if u noticed such a difference with the audigy, i suspect you never set your equalizer up with your onboard, it makes the world of difference and is a must if u use onboard to get the most from it ;)
     
  11. wazzledoozle

    wazzledoozle New Member

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    None of those things except mp10 are going to be using any cpu power, so the 11-16% is your onboard. Ive got 2-5% cpu usage with mp10, xfire, trillian, firefox, IE, and 3 chat windows open. Onboard is the SUV of sound processing. Also note I am on a 1.9 Ghz Sempron 2600 with 128k of L2 :p
     
  12. Ketxxx

    Ketxxx Heedless Psychic

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    lol, ff certainly does use cpu power, as does msn. ill take a before and after screenshot later, right now im watching silent hill :p
     
  13. wazzledoozle

    wazzledoozle New Member

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    [​IMG]
     
  14. b1lk1

    b1lk1 New Member

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    I have Logitech Z-680's and my onboard actually runs them in Digital mode and the Audigy and ANY other Creative piece of junk card cannot. I listen to ALOT of music and this onboard my motherboard has is almost indistinguishable in sound quality than the Creative offerings. EAX is not a good enough reason for me as it makes little difference in games when you have quality speakers. Older onboard is not even comparible to the one on the board I have, the Realtek AL888DD. It outputs in true digital sound and Creative cards do not. And even if it used 20% of the CPU while gaming, I still wouldn't feel the difference considering how little the CPU matters in most games anyways.

    [​IMG]

    That is while playing music too.
     
  15. wazzledoozle

    wazzledoozle New Member

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    Yes well it is quite easy to capture the screenshot when the cpu usage has fluctuated to 0%-

    [​IMG]

    And FYI, all Audigy/X-Fi cards have a digital out, you just have to buy an extender with S/PDIF optical and coaxial outputs.
     
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2006
  16. DaMulta

    DaMulta My stars went supernova

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    X-Fi comes with those outputs right out of the box, I love to play with headphones and Cmss-3d on the X-Fi is simply amazing. It gives you the feeling of true 7.1 surround sound with headphones on. Plus I can tell the difference on on-board, audigy 2 and the new X-Fi series.
     
  17. overcast New Member

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    Actually I'll say it. Logitech speakers are crap, but don't feel bad. All the rest of the computer branded speakers are garbage as well.
     
  18. Steevo

    Steevo

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    How about a true digital rendered source? Onboard vs DVD audio DTS both via filber optic SPDIF? Or onboard VS a CD player with filber optic SPDIF?



    I simply cannot hear the difference in audio quality when comparing them, if you have a high bitrate and a clean bus the specifications are so close, it is only that last few Db of sound that you MIGHT get with a sound card.
     
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  19. Ketxxx

    Ketxxx Heedless Psychic

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    Here you go sonny. Theres the proof onboard solutions are not terrible, in fact, far from it.

    and overcast, pc speakers arent crap, you have to make full use of the soundcard as well to get a half decent sound, namely, playing with things like the graphics equalizer. its there for a reason, so use it ;)
     

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  20. DaMulta

    DaMulta My stars went supernova

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  21. Ketxxx

    Ketxxx Heedless Psychic

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    i just skipped to cpu utilisation, and although its nice reading, things like that can never be accurate for systems, too many factors. it does highlight the point that onboard solutions dont have terrible cpu utilisation though.
     
  22. wazzledoozle

    wazzledoozle New Member

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    Actually I would say this is pretty bad-

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    17% at 64 buffers probably has a noticable impact on gaming performance. Turn on EAX and its even worse.
     
  23. DaMulta

    DaMulta My stars went supernova

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    RightMark 3D Sound measures CPU utilization with a variable number of hardware voices for 2D, 3D, and EAX audio. The ALC880 doesn't support more than 32 voices, so you won't find scores for it at 64 and 127. There are scores for the Audigy2 ZS and Revolution 7.1 at 64 voices, but we should note that the Audigy2 actually maxes out at 63 voices

    The advantages of hardware acceleration are readily apparent in RightMark 3D Sound, with the Creative cards easily consuming fewer CPU resources than the competition. Note that the X-Fi uses less CPU power with 127 voices than the M-Audio Revolution 7.1 does with just 64.
    .
     
  24. Steevo

    Steevo

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    1 or 2 % difference?
    Hw many voices can a human hear, comprehend and react to?
    How much has your hearing dulled?
    Cristaaaallllllll ?


    Looks like a remapped graphic curve to me. As a fact that looks alot like the equlizer curve on my two channel ten band overdrive capable equlizer in the living room. Huh. Imagine that.[​IMG]
     
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  25. Ketxxx

    Ketxxx Heedless Psychic

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    just what the hell are you looking at? the only onboard solution those graphs show is the realtek 880 codec. i can only assume your looking at the results for the m-audio revolution, and thats certainly not an onboard solution lol. and ive already proved the soundmax onboard solution is far from terrible with a screen of mp10 open playing some music and accompanied it with a cpu utilisation % with task manager.
     

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