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 Post subject: Revolution 5.1 or Audigy2 ZS?
PostPosted: Sat Nov 27, 2004 4:00 pm 
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Location: Boston, MA
If I manage to get to build my new system, I'm going to need another sound card. Should I get a Revolution 5.1 or an Audigy2 ZS? Most of the sound-intensive load on the system is gaming, and the Revolution 5.1 appears to have somewhat high CPU usage. On the other hand, I've heard that the Revolution 5.1 is much better than the Revolution 7.1 (I can't find any benchmarks, though :?), and it supposedly has better sound quality than the Audigy2 ZS. On the other, other hand (:P), the Audigy2 ZS seems to have better EAX support. On the other, other, other hand (yarr!), the Revolution 5.1 seems to have a somewhat better software package... They're both about the same price on Newegg, so that doesn't help... So, ummm... Help! :P


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Nov 27, 2004 4:11 pm 
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What speakers and/or headphones will you be pairing with the soundcard? Any particular games going to be more often played than others?

-Ed

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Nov 27, 2004 4:30 pm 
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Right now I'm using Creative T5400's, but I might try to sell them and go digital (e.g., T5700's, or whatever's good and reasonably cheap). As for games... Final Fantasy XI, Shattered Galaxy, Counterstrike (and various mods), and Halo probably make up the bulk of what I play. I'll probably be listening to a bit of music, too (lossless encoding, mostly classical and anime OSTs).


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Nov 27, 2004 4:36 pm 
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The Creative Labs speakers (usually; the occasional set supports standard Dolby Digital AC3 surround) require the proprietary Digital DIN hookup to work in digital; only Creative Labs' speakers have Digtal DIN support, and only Creative Labs' sound cards have Digital DIN support.

You could always use analogue hookup with the other brand cards for surround, but you'll get a bit more hiss and possible clipping distortion if the output level is maxed out in Windows.

-Ed

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Nov 27, 2004 4:38 pm 
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I'd probably blow out my eardrums if I turned my speakers all the way up... :P

Anywho, the T5700's were basically just an example; I don't really know what I should get, since the only research I've done is for analog-only speakers, and that was a good 6 months ago.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Nov 27, 2004 4:42 pm 
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Tyrdium wrote:
I'd probably blow out my eardrums if I turned my speakers all the way up... :P

Anywho, the T5700's were basically just an example; I don't really know what I should get, since the only research I've done is for analog-only speakers, and that was a good 6 months ago.


The CL speakers tend to have their own volume controls; best sound quality normally is achieved by relying on the speakers'/receiver's attenuator, rather than software gain control (i.e. using the volume knob on your speakers or surround amp while leaving Windows' mixer maxed out).

For situations where you get clipping distortion, like with analogue output, then setting Windows' mixer to ~85% is always a good bet.

-Ed

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Nov 27, 2004 7:57 pm 
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Ahhhh, I see what you're saying. Actually, that would explain the (extremely quiet) hiss I can hear when I turn my speakers on...


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