Thursday, April 16th 2020
Creative rolled out the Sound BlasterX AE-5 Plus, a discrete internal sound card with PCIe interface. The card is a step up from the Sound BlasterX AE-5, and is positioned below the AE-7 the company debuted in June 2019. The new AE-5 Plus uses the same Sound Core 3D audio processor as the rest of the AE series, but with an ESS Sabre Ultra DAC carried over from the AE-5, which offers 122 dB SNR, sound resolution of 32-bit 384 kHz, and 0.00032% total harmonic distortion. Much like the AE-5, it lacks user-replaceable OPAMPs. What sets the AE-5 Plus apart is support for Dolby Digital Live and DTS encoding, just like the AE-7 and AE-9, which is something the original AE-5 lacks. It also only comes in a black color-scheme, unlike the AE-5. The company didn't reveal pricing, although we expect it to be around 10-15% pricier than the $149 AE-5.