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Sound Blaster Z/ZX sound cards.

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by JohnDoe641, Dec 1, 2014.

  1. JohnDoe641

    JohnDoe641 Killer Fools Pro Staff Member

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    I'm still using a SB Audigy 2 ZS, it works really well for most things but there's issues with games: sounds looping, clicks and other artifacts. Even on the desktop there's some odd sound issues that I think a newer sound card with drivers made for Win7 should fix.

    Basically I'd like to know if there's any noticeable sound improvements or degradation going from an Audigy 2 ZS to a Z series card in both gaming and music/general audio. When I eventually upgrade my mobo/cpu/ram I'll need a new card anyway since the new mobo probably won't have any PCI slots.

    I use Sennheiser HD 558's 95% of the time and they're very good at picking up minute sound errors so I'm hoping that the Z would be a better overall card since it's been more than 10 years since the ZS was released.
     
  2. Big-Al

    Big-Al amateur de bière

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    1st: Do you have the most recent drivers and are your sounds correctly configured?
     
  3. Jackal

    Jackal Crapass

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    Why even bother with a soundcard. These days, mobos have perfectly good sound. Just make sure you buy the $2 one instead of the $0.50 chip. They can be rated quite highly for audio output. No sense is using up a PCI slot and resources scrub.
     
  4. DarkED

    DarkED The Great Oppression

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    I have to agree. On-board sound quality is really good these days, and it's not even worth the very tiny amount of extra CPU cycles you gain from offloading it.

    The only thing better is a USB audio interface intended for production. With those, it's more about processing power (handling multiple incoming and outgoing 24-bit 192khz channels simultaneously) than signal quality. The difference in perceived audio quality vs. your average Realtek chip is not noticeable unless you're using high-end studio monitors that can accurately re-create a 192khz signal.
     
  5. Big-Al

    Big-Al amateur de bière

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    well i'm still using my Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi Platinum Fatal1ty Champion.

    And a 7.1 speaker set up.
     
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2014
  6. Al

    Al Reaper

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    :tup:
     
  7. klasnic

    klasnic ra ra rat Putin!

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    Aye jd I'm using a Xonar Phoebus atm but don't honestly notice much difference between that and an onboard Realtek, except when using headphones perhaps ;)

    For the next mobo upgrade I'll be perfectly happy to stick with onboard myself rather than shelling out more money for little benefit :)
     
  8. JohnDoe641

    JohnDoe641 Killer Fools Pro Staff Member

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    My current mobo is ancient, so the onboard quality is terrible and the hissing from the SNR being pathetic is what made me put my old SB A2 zs back in. I probably could just stick with onboard sound for my next build but can they drive sennheiser hd 558's? Do most new mobos have high quality DACs built in?
     
  9. BillyBadAss

    BillyBadAss Strong Cock of The North

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    I use an external because I'm headphone only, so having the DAC outside the case equals zero interference from all the RF chaos inside the case. The amp that is in it is really nice and will drive nearly any headphone except electrostatic ones. Shit is awesome sounding and a very clean and powerful amp.

    http://www.jdslabs.com/products/48/o2-odac-combo/
     
  10. dotnetbeast

    dotnetbeast Mood Muzik

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    I personally use a Steinberg Audio UR22 myself.

    Perfect for making music.
     

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