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Soundcard

Discussion in 'Hi-Fi Stereo Systems & Separates' started by Gullanian, Oct 31, 2005.

  1. Gullanian

    Gullanian
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    Hi,

    Some of you know I just got a hi fi from PJ's Hi Fi's. See the 'what hi fi?' thread. At current I have a low end card which is good, but I don't want to drag my system down with it if there will be a quality improvement from a better card which would cost a small fraction of my hi fi.

    Question 1, with a souncard what's a 'Breakout Box'? Is it just to adjust treble/bass? Or more? I can't find much information on them.

    Anyway, to complete the system now I need a better sound card. Any recommendations?

    Budget would be anything around £300.

    At moment my PC has a creative 24bit card which cost me around £25.

    Here are what items I have been looking at:

    Creative X-Fi
    http://www.dabs.com/productview.asp...11140&PageMode=1&NavigationKey=11140,50450,14

    RME HammerFall
    http://www.dolphinmusic.co.uk/page/shop/flypage/product_id/3180

    Also some of the pictures of these cards are concerning me.... How do I plug the amp in to them? I'm assuming just one normal lead? Some of the plugs in those cards look strange.

    Thanks for any info, you guys are great!
     
  2. koshatnik

    koshatnik
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    I dont know if this is within your budget, but check out Turtle Beach soundcards, they are stunning. They might be a little specialist for your needs, but worth a look anyway. Also, Yamaha used to make some pretty amazing PC soundcards, not sure if they still do.

    Turtle Beach
     
  3. Pezerinno

    Pezerinno
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    I vote for the RME9632 - I'm bias though as I have one. Could check our M-audio cards and save a bit of money as I know you're going for that cyrus player in the future.
     
  4. iSix

    iSix
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    Don't go for anything from creative because all their cards after the SB live! 5.1 are crap.

    Like Nick25 said, check out M-Audio, great cards at a modest price.
     
  5. deaf cat

    deaf cat
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  6. Knightshade

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    About 2 years ago there was a test done between a couple of high end CDP's and RME, Lynx and M-Audio sound cards. I remember at the time thinking there was very little in it. I seem to remember there was a pretty much fifty - fifty split on who prefered the RME, Lynx cards to the CDP's. The M-Audio fell behind slightly but would still hold it's own against most 4K CDP's. I think the RME was the 9632 if memory serves.
    The thing for me that let sound cards down was the noise from the power supplies/other components. Clearly audible at full volume. I'd imagine if you had a custom power supply and top of the range components this may be reduced. Overall sound quality was comparable to the CDP's. Some thought it to be superior.
    There was a discussion on hear a long time ago but I can't find the thread.:(
     
  7. The Dude

    The Dude
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    I've been using the MAudio 2496 for quite a while, it's an excellent card for 2ch music, with SPDIF passthrough for movies as well.

    For <£65, you get a card with analogue output of the same standard as a MF XDAC.. I had the XDAC for years and sold it soon after.

    I've recently upgraded to the MAudio FW410, it's an external FW card with it's own DC power supply :), has 8x 1/4" analogue outputs, 2x 1/4" analogue inputs (TRS/XLR switchable), MIDI I/O, and SPDIF I/O, oh, and 2xFW interfaces which is :thumbsup:.... the volume knob is always a nice touch too..

    Its awesome, streets ahead of the 2496 in terms of sound reproduction.
    You can pick one up for c£250, if you don't fancy the RME 9632 etc
     
  8. Pezerinno

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    As this has now been brought up (I was going to say it but didn't for some reason) - Gullanian you sure you want to buy a cdp in the future? I think you said in your other thread it was around £1000, if you plan to keep your computer near your hifi setup then you could invest in something like a Lynx two or the like and save a bit of money in the process?
     
  9. andy malcolm

    andy malcolm
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  10. Gullanian

    Gullanian
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    I want a CD player in the future just for convenience and not having to have my PC noise on all the time, but in the meanwhile I am happy with a good PC setup, and want to make it as good as I can so in the future I can run it in conjunction with the CD player.

    Thanks for all the other info guys!
     
  11. Gullanian

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    I'm having trouble finding a card I want, i've been told by a sound engineer that the Creative is better for games than sound quality as the converters aren't very good or something.

    Anyway, also what is a breakout box and why would I need one?
     
  12. deaf cat

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    If your thinking of illiminating pc noise, have a little read here:
    http://www.slimdevices.com/index.html
    and the pc can be in another room.

    PS have a read in the forum - Audiphile section intresting stuff - I think anyway.
     
  13. Gullanian

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    I went for the EM-U 1820 in the end on recommendation of a sound engineer I know.
     
  14. Knightshade

    Knightshade
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    Haven't heard that one so I'd be interested to hear your opinions and how you go about the PC.
    Good Luck.
     

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