High Quality Soundcard ?

Discussion in 'polls' started by CloneRanger, Sep 19, 2011.

  1. CloneRanger

    CloneRanger Registered Member

    Jan 4, 2006
    As the questions require more than just ticking a box, there is no box ;)

    It doesn't have to be more then 16 Bits, can be though, just good AD converters etc :)

    Wondered how many people have one, or ever have ?


    1 - Is/was it internal or external ?

    1 - The make/model ?

    2 - Ever have problems with it and/or software, if so ?

    3 - Is it hooked up to a HiFi etc, or just PC speakers ?

    4 - If HiFi etc, via Analog cables, or Digital/Optical ?

    5 - How much difference did you notice from a standard one ?

    6 - What format are the files you play with it, CD/WAV/mp3 etc ?

    TIA :)
  2. Noob

    Noob Registered Member

    Nov 6, 2009
    1. Internal (Onboard Motherboard)

    2. Realtek ACL888

    3. No, never had any kind of conflicts or problems EVER

    4. Analog to a 5.1 Home Theater Amp and the rest is plugged into the Amp

    5. I have never compared them :rolleyes: But compared to my lame desktop 5$ speaker to my 5.1 real home theater setup a lot better :D

    6. .wav - .mp3 - .flac - .ogg

    That was too easy maaan :D
    Forgot to mention it is NOT high quality
  3. clayieee

    clayieee Registered Member

    Apr 14, 2011
    Creative Soundcard.
    But my laptop has a THX TruStudio Pro(by Creative) in it, And the sound is much better that realtek and SAS
  4. linuxforall

    linuxforall Registered Member

    Feb 6, 2010
    Best sound card I have is my ancient Yamaha WaveForce DXG, amazing natural sound. I also have M-Audio and my newly acquired ASUS Xonar. The ASUS is one heck of a card.
  5. NRProia

    NRProia Registered Member

    Sep 11, 2011
    Lowell, MA

    I have a ASUS P5N32-SLI Deluxe motherboard with built-in Realtek AC'97 Audio.


  6. Sully

    Sully Registered Member

    Dec 23, 2005
    Currently use HTOmega Claro+.


    No problems at all with hardware or software.

    Used computer speakers, headsets and input to home stereo.

    Used optical and cable. Optical is preferred but nothing on my pc needs it, so don't use it much. Only for cranking it up on the home stereo ;)

    I love this card. There are others in the same class. I won't buy creative, I boycott that crap for years. Anyway, I wanted a card I could take with me across any build. This card is much better than any onboard IMO, and much better than those creative and horrible drivers/software.

    Sound is one of those things that some people can't quantify the "quality" of. To some, it all sounds the same, to others, there are vast differences. For me, this card simply is the best that I have heard yet.

  7. Firecat

    Firecat Registered Member

    Jan 2, 2005
    The land of no identity :D
    Note that sound quality is actually influenced by human perception, i.e. your brain is involved in determining how good it sounds. There are two things to consider here technically: Wave motion and electronics.

    What is physically and scientifically correct may not sound very good at all to some ears!

    Many of these sound cards perform A/D and D/A conversion, but they also perform processing on the signal at both the hardware and software level. This is done to boost certain frequencies (harmonics) that makes the audio feel better to the human ear (note that our ear cannot find *all* frequencies as pleasant to hear).

    So what should one look for in a sound card? Signal to noise (SNR) ratio, and gain. Anything else is purely extra.

    There are some sound cards which come with "replaceable op-amps". Changing those op-amps seem to result in a "different sound". This is only because of changes in the gain and filter circuits that modify the waveform.

    Just note this: What sounds good is not necessarily scientifically accurate. Scientifically, SNR is the only measure of quality, along with Fourier and Harmonic analysis (but that is going way too far!). Practically, signal processing matters.

    That's why a lot of people claim their X-Fi cards sound better than any onboard (Integrated audio also suffers from more electromagnetic interference and noise due to it being located on a large motherboard with many more components).

    Personally, I think it's hard to beat good HD audio these days. The old Analog Devices codecs were the best, but ADI is no longer in this market.
  8. cozumel

    cozumel Registered Member

    May 23, 2009
    London, UK
    1. Have used both internal and external
    2. Various Creative cards, Auzentech Prelude and Realtek AC97. May switch to Asus Xonar for next rig.
    3. No real problems with either hardware or software. Onboard gives occasional crackles & pops etc
    4. Have been setup to PC speakers and to HiFis and recievers
    5. Used both analog and digital connections
    6. It's like comparing economy class with business or first - economy gets you there okay but business or first gives you so much more legroom, reclining seats and you get pampered. Whilst onboard is functional, a separate card gives so much more depth, clarity, better channel separation and frequency response. I could never go back to onboard as it would destroy the enjoyment factor.
    7. I've probably played most filetypes over the last 30 years.
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