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Am I missing out on affordable sound quality?

post #1 of 26
Thread Starter 
I have been using my Creative 5.1 speakers with these three line in/ line outs on my motherboard:


However, now I am thinking about purchasing this ESI Juli@ PCI sound card. If I purchase 5.1 or 7.1 speakers should I be using the optical connection on the bottom of the card and if so will I get better sound than line in/line out? Or is optical just an easier input than line in/line out to hook up, with the exact same sound quality as line in/line out?


Thanks,
Edited by revlimiter - 4/1/13 at 9:47pm
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post #2 of 26

This sound card would be a huge waste of money because it is for professional recording studios, not for people like us. You'd never use all of its capabilities., and so most of your money would be wasted on stuff that you'll never use or take advantage of or be able to enjoy.

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post #3 of 26
Optical and Coax both send out a digital signal. Technically one should sound as good as the other However, there is the ever lasting argument that one is better than the other.

Personally, I use the optical connection. I just like the idea of fiber optics and think the signal will be a lot cleaner than it would be traveling along a wire. However, think of your satalite or cable feed. These are all done on coax wire and provide crisp clear images.

So, I think that it really will not matter either way you go. Digital is digital.
post #4 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by TwoCables View Post

This sound card would be a huge waste of money because it is for professional recording studios, not for people like us. You'd never use all of its capabilities., and so most of your money would be wasted on stuff that you'll never use or take advantage of or be able to enjoy.

That is another good point. Just pick up a 100.00 asus or creative sound card. You will see a huge difference with just that.
post #5 of 26
You'll definitely get a huge improvement, but first tell us what speakers you have? I'd only recommend that card if you have reference grade speakers.
Edited by sepiashimmer - 4/1/13 at 9:57pm
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post #6 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by sepiashimmer View Post

You'll definitely get a huge improvement, but first tell us what speakers do you have? I'd only recommend that card if you have reference grade speakers.

 

Not to mention if he's running a professional recording studio.

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post #7 of 26
Thread Starter 
I have Creative Inspire 5200 5.1 surround sound speakers. Even if I go with a better sound card would I even get any better sound quality out of them or would I need to also pick up better speakers? My speakers are close to ten years old now and don't seem to do digital, just line/in and line/out on them.
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post #8 of 26
+1

Don't waste your money. And if you do wanna waste your money get a REAL card like a LYNX Audio card. Coax and Optical sound the same, Coax is more susceptible to interference from power cables/internet cables etc, however optical connection plugs are sometimes loose, not durable, and basically they suck (made of plastic, no surprises here). I use a little of both and prefer optical - however it took me a long time to find good cables that fit everything well.
Edited by FEAST - 4/1/13 at 10:05pm
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post #9 of 26
Thread Starter 
How about HDMI audio? Or is this primarily used for HDTV's, should I stay away from it for computer sound setups?

Thanks,
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post #10 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by revlimiter View Post

I have Creative Inspire 5200 5.1 surround sound speakers. Even if I go with a better sound card would I even get any better sound quality out of them or would I need to also pick up better speakers? My speakers are close to ten years old now and don't seem to do digital, just line/in and line/out on them.

 

A better sound card (not the white one you're looking at) would definitely provide a very noticeable improvement. At least it did for me.

 

I was using the Sound Blaster Audigy 2 ZS which was a pretty good sound card for its time. One day I upgraded to better speakers and I got a slightly noticeable sound increase. I bought this 2.1 system:

 

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16836113138

 

Then in March of 2008 I built my first computer. A week or two before I did, my Audigy 2 ZS started dying. So, I ordered this X-Fi XtremeGamer:

 

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16829102006

 

I noticed a fairly big difference. It's like I bought much better speakers even though all I did was get a better sound card. The low end was deeper and had a much higher quality to it, and my VS4121's subwoofer was no longer distorting. My mids and highs were noticeably clearer and cleaner as well. I didn't think that was possible.

 

I'm not saying that I think you should get the XtremeGamer, however I will say that you'd be wasting your money if you bought that white sound card. Most of your money would be going towards things you'd never be able to use.

It's a computer!
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i5-2500K @ 4.5GHz (1.368-1.384V fixed voltage) ASUS P8P67 EVO B3 (UEFI ver. 1850) GTX 780 ASUS DirectCU II (1228 / 6300, 1.180V) G.SKILL Ripjaws X 8GB (2 x 4GB) 1866MHz, CL9 
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250 GB Samsung 840 EVO (C:\) 250 GB Samsung 840 EVO (D:\) 150 GB WD VelociRaptor Samsung SH-S243N 24x DVD Burner 
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Filco Majestouch 104-key Cherry MX Blues w/NKRO Corsair HX650 (Bronze, ordered on 12-12-2009) CM 690 Intellimouse Optical (1.1A) 1000Hz polling rate 
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Basic, but premium round X-Fi Titanium HD Klipsch ProMedia 2.1 (with 16 AWG Monster Cable... 
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It's a computer!
(19 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i5-2500K @ 4.5GHz (1.368-1.384V fixed voltage) ASUS P8P67 EVO B3 (UEFI ver. 1850) GTX 780 ASUS DirectCU II (1228 / 6300, 1.180V) G.SKILL Ripjaws X 8GB (2 x 4GB) 1866MHz, CL9 
Hard DriveHard DriveHard DriveOptical Drive
250 GB Samsung 840 EVO (C:\) 250 GB Samsung 840 EVO (D:\) 150 GB WD VelociRaptor Samsung SH-S243N 24x DVD Burner 
Optical DriveCoolingOSMonitor
Samsung SH-S203N 20X DVD Burner Thermaltake Frio Win 7 Home Premium x64 SP1 Retail AOC G2460PG (24" 1920 x 1080 144Hz G-SYNC) 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Filco Majestouch 104-key Cherry MX Blues w/NKRO Corsair HX650 (Bronze, ordered on 12-12-2009) CM 690 Intellimouse Optical (1.1A) 1000Hz polling rate 
Mouse PadAudioAudio
Basic, but premium round X-Fi Titanium HD Klipsch ProMedia 2.1 (with 16 AWG Monster Cable... 
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