Please help to decide which sound card!!!

Discussion in 'Computer Components' started by Tomaz25, Nov 2, 2005.

  1. Tomaz25

    Tomaz25
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    Hello all,

    I am buying a new sound card for my HIFI system, I have an amp. Marantz sr 5500 with Dali concept 2 speakers, and now I want to connect receiver
    to sound card. Now I have integrated one and I want a new one.
    I am using my PC only for music(mp3) and movies (divx,xvid). Now I am
    deciding between those cards:

    M-audio Revolution 5.1 100 eur
    Creative audigy 2 zs 60 eur
    X-fi XtremeMusic 120 eur
    Terratec Sky or Space 100 eur

    I heard that for music M-audio Revolution is the best, that it is better than Audigy 2 zs, now how about this new one, X-fi. Will I even notice the difference with my system?
    The difference in price is also quite big, the cheapes is audigy 2 Zs but I heard that it is not good for music, as it resamples 44.1 khz to 48 and most
    mp3 are in 44,1 since this is cd quality. Is that also with x-fi?

    The one I heard most good things is M-audio revolution so I am mainly deciding between this one and a new X-fi. Does anyone know if this x-fi
    is also resampling to 48 ?

    Which one would you buy in that situation?

    Thanks for help
     
  2. KraGorn

    KraGorn
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    Don't know about the X-Fi and 48k but I think I'd go for the M-Audio as a proven product with a good reputation and quality .. you're right about the 44->48 issue with the older Creative products, though I believe their new one doesn't do this.
     
  3. Tomaz25

    Tomaz25
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    I did order M-audio revolution 5.1, now I am waiting for it to arive. I heard that even this new one has not yet solved this problem with resampling. It just does that better but still resamples. Most people say that envy24 Ht chip is still the best for music and movies, and that is what I am looking for.
     
  4. boez

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    Hi

    I've just returned both a Creative X-Fi and a AudioTrack Prodigy7.1LT (with an envy24HT chipset) mainly due to this 48khz business...

    (For all my tests I created a dolby encoded CD (44.1khz/16bit) which when output from SPDIF to my receiver *should* decode and play the music normally. It really is an acid test for both kmixer and sound card resampling problems.)

    1. X-Fi - In "create mode" a global clock rate setting promised 44.1khz but not matter what other settings I tried, when I played the CD using many different players (WMP, foobar, WinAmp, etc) no music (only an awful 'static' sound) from the test CD.

    2. The Prodigy7.1 would play the test CD correctly indicating that it has a native 44.1khz processing mode (hurray!) BUT only with a player using kernel streaming or ASIO. I really want to use MCE2005 so sorry but no go.

    My solution was to buy an M-Audio Transit a USB device which allows 44.1khz output no matter what the software player being used. Check opinions elsewhere in this forum if this route is of interest to you...

    HTH
    Boez
     
  5. Tomaz25

    Tomaz25
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    Well did you try with M-audio revolution? I read some test and they said that it does not resample. How could I test that?
     
  6. The Dude

    The Dude
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    I'm 99.9% certain your MAudio Revo will be fine at 44.1, they make proper soundcards.

    Do you want multichannel analogue from the soundcard, or just 2Ch with SPDIF for a surround amp...

    If it's just the 2Ch with SDDIF you want, get the MAudio 2496 instead.
    This certainly does 44.1khz regardless of player used, though as with everything you'll get much nicer sound using ASIO to bypass the dreaded kmixer.. :)
     
  7. BenW

    BenW
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    The X-Fi does resample to 48.

    But, i've got the X-Fi hooked up to some logitech z2200 and i can't fault it. Having used onboard sound aswell i can say that the processing power on the card itself even makes a difference in windows xp.

    I doubt you'd notice the difference between m-audio and the creative so get the cheapest one unless you're playing games (If so it has to be the creative)

    Also, no hiss coming from my X-Fi :S and i mean no hiss until neighbour upsetting volumes
     
  8. james.miller

    james.miller
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    the HDA x-mystique does a damn good job in analogue and it does bit perfect as well. Its on par with a revo 7.1 in my books, and well worth the money.
     
  9. Tomaz25

    Tomaz25
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    Ok, so how can I bypass this windows kmixer? For example by using Foobar with kernel passing sound? Is this kmixer still active even with spdif out? Becouse when I use spdif I can no longer control volume and other things with windows, but only with receiver, so my guess would be that audio stream goes directly to receiver without kmixer and other stuff. Is that correct?
     
  10. Eraserhead

    Eraserhead
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    &
    I do not know about yours, but my X-Fi does not resample :rotfl:

    Now seriously, all the reviews I saw so far emphasize that X-Fi does not resample @ fixed rate. It can resample if you set the clock to 48 or 96 but if you want to have intact 44.1 kHz audio stream just set the master clock to 44.1 and this does the trick. I have just tried that and I have no problem playing music back from CD at 44.1 master clock setting. This has been corrected since Audigy then :thumbsup:

    @Tomaz25 : sorry for hijacking your thread ;) I guess you are right in saying SPDIF bypasses the soundcard alltogether. I do not have any receiver to test that with my soundcard.
     
  11. Tomaz25

    Tomaz25
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    Heh no problem, I just want to know what options to use to get rid of kmixker. On the other hand I dont know if spdif really bypasses soundcard, becouse with spdif I can still use many different options like Waveout, directoutput, kernel streaming.
    Now I really dont know how this thing works.
     

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