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Sound Card suggestions for my rig?

Discussion in 'General Hardware' started by Black Panther, Jun 22, 2007.

  1. Black Panther

    Black Panther Senior Moderator™ Staff Member

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    I use the rig in my system specs mainly to play Oblivion and other games, mp3 music and to watch dvds. I've got the Z5500 logitech as speakers but for now am using the onboard sound (soundmax) of my motherboard.

    I don't understand much about the specifications of soundcards, I would like to spend my money on a very good one but not one which would be overkill. Preferably one which doesn't use the cpu and ram (unless that would be overkill).

    Btw does Oblivion support OPENAL and EAX?

    Also, any idea on the price of the X-FI Prelude?

    Which card do you have and was it good value for money?

    Thanks for any feedback!
  2. Wile E

    Wile E Power User

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    What's your budget?
  3. Black Panther

    Black Panther Senior Moderator™ Staff Member

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    Around $150 but I'd consider up to $220 if it's really worth the money.

    Edit: Btw my mobo's a P5B with only one pci-e slot which is used for the graphics card.
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2007
  4. Wile E

    Wile E Power User

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    Black Panther says thanks.
  5. francis511

    francis511

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    i have x-fi extreme audio. its better than on board but its not worth like an extra hundred £s/$s
  6. Black Panther

    Black Panther Senior Moderator™ Staff Member

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    Is that one (X-Fi XtremeGamer Fatal1ty Professional) better than the Xtreme Fata1ity FPS and the Elite Pro?

    I checked a local online supplier http://www.scanmalta.com/pricelist.php?WebCategory=sound - they don't have the XtremeGamer Fatal1ty Professional but the Xtreme Fata1ilty FPS is $300 and the Elite Pro is $387 :wtf: :twitch: Definitely way out of budget for me...
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2007
  7. Wile E

    Wile E Power User

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    I believe the only true difference is the other 2 have the front panel breakout box. Not worth the money, imho.

    If you end up having to spend any more for a card than the Pro version, I would just hold out for the release of the Auzentech X-Fi.

    Where are you located, btw? Try eBay, maybe?
  8. Sovereign

    Sovereign New Member

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    Ah, once again a bunch of people who think creative is the way to go when it comes to sound...

    The fact is, there are quite a few sound cards out there to choose from that have better audio capabilities than most anything in the Creative stable. EAX is such a poor excuse to have to get a sound card. Anyone of the following will do quite nicely for you :

    HT OMEGA STRIKER 7.1 Channels PCI Interface Sound Card

    AuzenTech XPlosion 7.1 7.1 Channels PCI Interface Sound Card

    Sondigo inferno 7.1 Channels PCI Interface Sound Card

    HT OMEGA CLARO 7.1 Channels PCI Interface Sound Card

    AuzenTech AZT-XM71 7.1 Channels PCI Interface Auzen X-Meridian 7.1 Sound Card

    HT OMEGA CLARO Plus+ 7.1 Channels PCI Interface Sound Card

    And thats only a small sample of whats out there...
    Black Panther says thanks.
  9. Wile E

    Wile E Power User

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    Reread her first post. She wants a card that offloads from the cpu. None of those do that. C-Media chips still use the cpu to decode. Yes, they sound better than On-board, tho, and are very good cards.

    If you want a true DSP, Creative is your only option, atm.
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2007
  10. Black Panther

    Black Panther Senior Moderator™ Staff Member

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    I'm in Malta.

    I asked if those 2 cards were better because of the price. If they're lower quality cards then hell knows what I'd have to fork out for a Fata1ilty Pro...

    And yeah we do have very inflated prices. To buy the rig in my specs, as components not as a ready-built pc, it'd have cost me $2000. Buying the stuff brand new from other countries it cost me less than $1000.
  11. Wile E

    Wile E Power User

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    I think the Extreme Music would be your second best bet then.

    EDIT: Actually, it would've been my first choice, but I forgot about it.
  12. HellasVagabond New Member

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    We are waiting for the ASUS cards to get released...Until then Creative is a ONEWAY street for gamers.
  13. Wile E

    Wile E Power User

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    Even the ASUS has been speculated to use a C-Media chip. If that's the case, still no gamer love. lol
  14. Sovereign

    Sovereign New Member

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    Why? With most modern day systems and the advancement of chipsets, the amount of CPU usage that the C-Media chips use isn't going to really translate into much of any performance loss. We're talking maybe a few frames per second at the most here and I don't think it needs to be said that C-Media's upper end chipsets have better sound reproduction and clarity than creative's.
  15. Wile E

    Wile E Power User

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    No gaming support either.

    I'm well aware of their sound quality, but if I wanted my cpu to do the decoding, I would just use my onboard optical, and spend the money on a high quality out board DSP.
  16. Sovereign

    Sovereign New Member

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    Good point...
  17. Darren

    Darren New Member

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    BlackPanther, this guy knows what he is talking about avoid those creative cards, get an Auzentech one.
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  18. Darren

    Darren New Member

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    I own an Auzentech X-meridian, and I have not noticed any performance loss in comparison to previous creative cards and other onboard cards. Playing MP3's in DDL/DTS causes little to no cpu usage, about 2%, and BlackPanthers system specification is better than mine!
  19. Darren

    Darren New Member

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    Ignore the creative fanboys, unless you enjoy stereo sound, and a wasted AV reciever. Dont be complaining when you can't get your mp3s or video files to play in Dolby 5.1 or DTS. Type "creative" in our search facility and look at all the complaints related to creatives lies and driver problems. Get yourself an auzentech product, such as the X-plosion, X-meridian, or even the X-FI prelude if your prepared to wait a bit, however I don't believe the X-FI prelude will support DTS/DDL untill early 2008 with driver updates.

    read this forum full of happy Auzentech customers

    http://forums.guru3d.com/showthread.php?threadid=183439

    http://forums.guru3d.com/showthread.php?p=2113813#post2113813
  20. Darren

    Darren New Member

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    What are you talking about the performance hit is like 1-2% for me, and my system isn't exactly high end! secondly the encoding is done by the cpu, the decoding is done by your external AV reciever.

    "no gaming support", EAX has been supported by games for almost 10 years, C-media supports EAX. Certain C-media chips such as the Auzentech's range support DDL/DTS via Directsound, the last I heard Directsound is fully supported by the majority, if not all games. Even OpenAL is going to be fully supported by Auzentech. So when you say "no gaming support", I say do a bit of homework before implementing fanboyism.
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2007
  21. HellasVagabond New Member

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    Noone says that there aint cards out there that aint as good as the X-Fi cards, they just aint supported by Games not as much as Creative so for a Good Gamer Creative is a must.
    ( Some Games even Support ULTRA HIGH Quality for the X-Fi , one of these is BF2142)
  22. Black Panther

    Black Panther Senior Moderator™ Staff Member

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    Sovereign and Darren have good arguments, but I think support is of utmost importance for me.

    It'd be frustrating to buy a good game only to discover that your soundcard isn't supported!

    Btw, anyone knows of a reputable supplier who ships to Europe? I checked Newegg and a couple of others but they don't.
  23. HellasVagabond New Member

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    Panther you will have sound, you will have basic support but not the extras that creative gives and holds a secret from other sound card manufacturers.
    Black Panther says thanks.
  24. Darren

    Darren New Member

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    :banghead:

    As mentioned before I own an Auzentech card, and support has not been an issue, and i'm a gamer just like you appear to be.

    Games which I frequently play without issues, and on highest audio settings

    Ghost recon Advanced Warfighter
    Farcy
    Prey
    Ghost recon
    Need for speed carbon
    C&C3 (HD audio is selectable)

    Which part of europe do you live in? perhaps these links would be of help?


    http://www.overclockers.co.uk/showproduct.php?prodid=SC-004-HT&tool=3

    http://www.overclockers.co.uk/showproduct.php?prodid=SC-003-HT&tool=3

    http://amazon.co.uk/s/ref=nb_ss_w_h...as=aps&field-keywords=auzentech&tag=tec053-21
  25. HookeyStreet

    HookeyStreet Eat, sleep, game!

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