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use SB Audigy or onboard Relatek ALC892 ?

scooper22

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#1
Hi folks,

I have a rather oldish Soundblaster Audigy lying around. I used the card in the days when onboard audio was not so widespread as it is today.
My current computer of course now has onboard audio, a Realtek ALC892 codec (is that the hardware chip or a layer on top?).

I plan to attach my computer to my home audio system (stereo amplifier Marantz PM7003 with analog cinch inputs). Which audio source should I use? The Audigy card or the onboard Realtek thing? Which produces a more crisp, a lesser distored signal for 16bit/44.1kHz lossless files?

The Audigy is quite old so maybe the technics have evolved with the Realtek. However it is onboard so crosstalking from CPU and other motherboard circuits might be possible?

Specs:
Audigy: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sound_Blaster_Audigy#First_generation
Realtek: http://www.realtek.com/products/productsView.aspx?Langid=1&PNid=24&PFid=28&Level=5&Conn=4&ProdID=284
 
Last edited:

tigger

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#2
If you are connecting via analogue, i would say the card, if you are using digital out from your board, then use the onboard.
 

scooper22

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#3
Both Audigy and onboard have optical out but the amp only has analog in as it's a stereo amplifier (not home cinema). If it would have I would have attached it by optical... :(

tigger: what is your reasoning?
 

tigger

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#4
The analogue section on the card will be better than it is on the onboard, the s/n ratio on the card will be lots better than on your onboard. Onboard is usually around 80-90DB s/n, the card will be easily 100+ s/n. If you was using digital, it makes no difference really quality wise.
 

scooper22

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#5
Audigy claims to have 100 dB, Realtek claims to have 95 dB.
Any insights on the specs I posted above?
 
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#6
Hi folks,

I have a rather oldish Soundblaster Audigy lying around. I used the card in the days when onboard audio was not so widespread as it is today.
My current computer of course now has onboard audio, a Realtek ALC892 codec (is that the hardware chip or a layer on top?).

I plan to attach my computer to my home audio system (stereo amplifier Marantz PM7003 with analog cinch inputs). Which audio source should I use? The Audigy card or the onboard Realtek thing? Which produces a more crisp, a lesser distored signal for 16bit/44.1kHz lossless files?

The Audigy is quite old so maybe the technics have evolved with the Realtek. However it is onboard so crosstalking from CPU and other motherboard circuits might be possible?

Specs:
Audigy: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sound_Blaster_Audigy#First_generation
Realtek: http://www.realtek.com/products/productsView.aspx?Langid=1&PNid=24&PFid=28&Level=5&Conn=4&ProdID=284
Hi,

I guess you may need to use the Realtek ALC892, since the official Audigy (emu10k2) series drivers by Creative Labs do not support more than 4 GB system memory (if I remember it correctly); with more than 4 GB ram you will get random crashes and mic issues. The only driver that support more than 4 GB ram are the last beta and newest alpha project KX drivers. Although, you can always try the other unofficial driver pack for the Audigy series that's made by Daniel_K; the latest Daniel_K Audigy driver pack is just released in January this year.
 

scooper22

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#7
I used the kX drivers back then on XP x86 and was happy with them. Seems like they are also compatible with x64, so I'd rather use them than broken and halfpatched CL drivers.

Back to sound quality... which one? :)
 
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scooper22

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#9
Plugged my Audigy in and, man!, this is such a great card. I'm using the kX drivers as they offer the most flexibiliy and tuning options and are compatible with 7x64.

Using the DSP routing I was able to route stereo sound to both the front and the back speakers as a surround copy and now have two output jacks playing the sound, one for my headphones and one for my amp.

This card is so freaking great ;) :twitch:


e.g. kX DSP (one of the many modules):








there's more than 50 or so effects that can be connected at heart's desire, all fully configurable and reusable multiple times... surround mixer, 10-band-eq and band pass, reverb, delays, compression... all at the hardware/driver level. Amazing! :twitch: :twitch:
 
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user21

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#10
if you'd ask me audigy does not perform well if you use it under windows 7 platform. if you are using XP go for it if not realtek is much better in windows 7. Driver architecture of realtek HD audio is much more superior to the old Audigy in windows 7. Using Windows XP iv even used Realtek 1200 but still went for xtreme music 0460, not just that SB audigy and above handle sound better if you have plugged in sound systems then any other on board.
 

scooper22

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#11
Hm,
- what exactly does not perform well under Windows 7?
- which driver architecture does the realtek have and which does the Audigy have and which of the first makes it better than the last?

Also the DSP of the Audigy does everything "by itself" and without the CPU, unlike e.g. soft modems do.

Example of a line-in-through-DSP-to-Speakers-setup without any computer input or output signal, running only on the card's DSP:

 
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#12
I am also using an Sb audigy in one of my systems and love it. Mine has the live drive.


 

JrRacinFan

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#13
My vote: Audigy. Just the driver level controls in itself are pretty good. Also you still have people experimenting with 3rd party development on them to make it even better.