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PostPosted: Mon Aug 30, 2010 12:43 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jun 25, 2009 1:23 pm
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Location: USA
Just got the new soundcard installed (Xonar DS)! Instead of using the CD, which only has XP and Vista drivers, I downloaded the proper Windows 7 driver from online.

It works great so far!! I've been testing it with music so far (Chicago, Peter Cetera, Phil Collins). Through the speakers (Creative T3100), everything is nice and clear, and a certain flat harshness (which is the best way I can describe it) that the Realtek audio had is completely gone, making listening much more pleasant. And with headphones (Sennheiser HD280Pro), everything sounds much more full, and has actual depth. :D Plus, the program has an adjustable equalizer, so the sound output can be adjusted to my preference. You can also save different sound profiles for the equalizer, so the setup can be different for speakers, headphones, or whatever else you might plug in. :D All that's left to test is games.

I love my new sound card!! :D And it's low profile, so it barely even blocks my video card's airflow! :D

EDIT: I just checked my video card's temperature with Speedfan, and it's only gone up a couple degrees with the sound card blocking it (idling at 52C). Nothing to worry about at all! :D


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 30, 2010 10:35 pm 
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Joined: Sun May 04, 2008 2:57 pm
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Location: England
Word of warning: If an EAX game crashes the card will be left looping the last fragment of audio. Simply close anything using it and disable and re-enable it in device manager to fix.


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 01, 2010 7:20 pm 
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Joined: Mon Feb 28, 2005 4:21 pm
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Location: NEW YORK WORD AND STUFF YEAH OK
does OpenAL use creative hardware acceleration?


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 04, 2010 9:08 am 
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Joined: Tue May 15, 2007 1:39 am
Posts: 1924
Location: Finland
If onboard audio fails to recreate sound direction properly (see sig for mobo), isn't this a property of the chip and not something optical connection can fix?

Onboard audio has been AWFUL after a long run with the Creative X-Fi Xtrememusic. I keep spinning around in Bad Company 2 because I just can't locate where the gunfire is coming from (headphones). With the Creative card there was no such confusion, ever. The sound is also flat, which leads to dulling of awareness, so I get stabbed a lot because I can't pick out footsteps anymore, nor distinguish between all the gun types so I turn corners into machine guns I thought were assault rifles. I've even lost some audio cues I could previously use for swap-reloading my guns.

In FPS gaming, it's definitely Creative 1 - 0 Realtek for this round.

_________________
Case: FD Define Mini
Parts: P8Z77-M Pro µATX, i5-3570K @stock, N650Ti-1GD5/OC, G.Skill 2x4/1600/CL9 DDR3U, Xonar DX, WD G 1 TB, m4 128 GB, RX-5300 PSU
Cooling: Noctua NH-U12P SE2 + Scythe SS PWM, 2x Noctua NF-P12
Extras: Eaton UPS, Dell 24" EIPS, Ducky kb, SteelSeries m, Synology DS213j NAS
idle & load: CPU 32 °C & 44 °C @ 300/600 & 600/800 RPM, GPU 35-65 °C @ 1200-1650 RPM


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 05, 2010 1:41 am 
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Location: Sweden
I play some FPS (online mostly Urban Terror) and sound is really important in such games, for the reasons you mention. I use headphones but I've never heard any real difference between the sound cards I've been using now and in the past. I've never really used any onboard sound besides Soundstorm though, and perhaps the games I play (nothing more modern than HL2 really) don't implement the most resent version of EAX and such.

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PostPosted: Sun Sep 05, 2010 3:31 am 
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Location: Finland
When it comes to sound, Bad Company 2 is breathtaking for me. The explosions are EXPLOSIONS, gunfire sounds as atmospheric as it does in a good war movie and the radio traffic has just the right feel to it. It's just immensely engaging - and precise. I just played some rounds now for comparison, and whereas previously there was an immediate sense of direction regarding sound, now it's just a left/right distinction, and not even that is 100% accurate if the sound is higher or lower than character eye level. Whatever witchcraft was previously used, I want it back.

I also used SoundStorm back in... early 2000s? It was good, but since the only option in an update would've been Realtek integrated (no optical yet), I went with sound cards that served me for the rest of the decade.

I do not like Creative's software. I always end up disabling a few redundant services they insist on running and don't care for their fancy control panel (I use the barebones one you can install separately). It's just typical bloatware, though it seems to work well (i.e. no errors, looping, everything gets recognised properly).

The Live! 1024 I owned before the Xtrememusic came with such garbled software that installation was a pain, yes. Had to reinstall it the first time around to get it working in the first place, and most updates ended up in a need to reinstall as well. I skipped Vista, so I did not have those bad experiences nor installed Creative ALchemy at any point.

The Xtrememusic software, while still bloatware, at least worked properly and would update obediently. Never a fuss with it - but I don't count having to uninstall extra components those updates left behind. :P

We'll see how things are with the X-Fi Titanium that is due to arrive tomorrow.

Edit1: Games back to optimal, but this software is... broken. The device insists on using Microsoft drivers, making it impossible for the Creative Audio Console and Diagnostics to detect it. Creative Autoupdate and System Information detect it fine, however. Crap, crap, crap. :evil:

Edit2: Went onto Windows Update to check if OS needed something (Creative patch for detection problems was no help), turns out Windows Update is the only way I could get the device to be correctly recognised. Wow. :roll:

_________________
Case: FD Define Mini
Parts: P8Z77-M Pro µATX, i5-3570K @stock, N650Ti-1GD5/OC, G.Skill 2x4/1600/CL9 DDR3U, Xonar DX, WD G 1 TB, m4 128 GB, RX-5300 PSU
Cooling: Noctua NH-U12P SE2 + Scythe SS PWM, 2x Noctua NF-P12
Extras: Eaton UPS, Dell 24" EIPS, Ducky kb, SteelSeries m, Synology DS213j NAS
idle & load: CPU 32 °C & 44 °C @ 300/600 & 600/800 RPM, GPU 35-65 °C @ 1200-1650 RPM


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 09, 2010 9:16 am 
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Joined: Tue May 15, 2007 1:39 am
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Location: Finland
This is big enough to make a new post for: http://support.creative.com/kb/ShowArticle.aspx?sid=60806

... EVEN MY REALTEK INTEGRATED HAS MIC BOOST! #¤%&#¤&!#

Result: voicecomm has become muted and unusable in a few games. DO NOT BUY THESE CARDS.

_________________
Case: FD Define Mini
Parts: P8Z77-M Pro µATX, i5-3570K @stock, N650Ti-1GD5/OC, G.Skill 2x4/1600/CL9 DDR3U, Xonar DX, WD G 1 TB, m4 128 GB, RX-5300 PSU
Cooling: Noctua NH-U12P SE2 + Scythe SS PWM, 2x Noctua NF-P12
Extras: Eaton UPS, Dell 24" EIPS, Ducky kb, SteelSeries m, Synology DS213j NAS
idle & load: CPU 32 °C & 44 °C @ 300/600 & 600/800 RPM, GPU 35-65 °C @ 1200-1650 RPM


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 09, 2010 10:17 am 
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Joined: Sun May 04, 2008 2:57 pm
Posts: 507
Location: England
People still use analogue mics?


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 09, 2010 11:33 am 
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Joined: Tue May 15, 2007 1:39 am
Posts: 1924
Location: Finland
The mic on my Steelseries Siberias has worked just fine so far, so yes, why fix what ain't broken. And I sure as ¤!"¤ am not buying a new mic just because Creative messed up - back to the integrated we go...

_________________
Case: FD Define Mini
Parts: P8Z77-M Pro µATX, i5-3570K @stock, N650Ti-1GD5/OC, G.Skill 2x4/1600/CL9 DDR3U, Xonar DX, WD G 1 TB, m4 128 GB, RX-5300 PSU
Cooling: Noctua NH-U12P SE2 + Scythe SS PWM, 2x Noctua NF-P12
Extras: Eaton UPS, Dell 24" EIPS, Ducky kb, SteelSeries m, Synology DS213j NAS
idle & load: CPU 32 °C & 44 °C @ 300/600 & 600/800 RPM, GPU 35-65 °C @ 1200-1650 RPM


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