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Need a new sound card for gaming/music

post #1 of 2
Thread Starter 
I've owned a Essence STX in the past but have only used it for music, not gaming.
I care very strongly about the quality of my music, but also want great directional audio.

I have been considering:
Xonar Phoebus
Xonar STX
Soundblaster Zx
Soundblaster Zxr

Which sound card will benefit me best? I'm curious about the noise canceling microphone software on the Phoebus and Zx/ZxR; how effective is it? Will it work with my Blue Snowball?

I have a 200$ budget.
Main Rig
(18 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i5 3570K MSI Z77 Mpower Asus GTX 980 8Gb Mushkin Redline 2133mhz 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
Intel 520 120gb WD Green 1tb slim slot load drive Noctua NHD14 
OSMonitorKeyboardCase
Windows 7 Ultimate QNIX Qx2710 @ 96hz Ducky Shine 3, MX Blacks, Magenta Silverstone RV04 
MouseMouse PadAudioAudio
Mionix Castor Glorious XXL Extended Mouse Mat AudioTechnica AD900 Xonar DSX 
AudioOther
Antlion ModMic 4.0 Vortex Doubleshot Backlit Keycaps 
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Main Rig
(18 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i5 3570K MSI Z77 Mpower Asus GTX 980 8Gb Mushkin Redline 2133mhz 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
Intel 520 120gb WD Green 1tb slim slot load drive Noctua NHD14 
OSMonitorKeyboardCase
Windows 7 Ultimate QNIX Qx2710 @ 96hz Ducky Shine 3, MX Blacks, Magenta Silverstone RV04 
MouseMouse PadAudioAudio
Mionix Castor Glorious XXL Extended Mouse Mat AudioTechnica AD900 Xonar DSX 
AudioOther
Antlion ModMic 4.0 Vortex Doubleshot Backlit Keycaps 
  hide details  
Reply
post #2 of 2
I would personally choose one of the Xonar's, I think they sound better in music than the Sound Blasters.
As for gaming the Sound Blasters might be a tad bit better, but nothing to worry about in my opinion.

Microphone use I can't comment on as I don't use one.
    
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
|AMD Phenom II X6 1100T @ 4ghz| |Asus Crosshair IV Formula| |EVGA 780TI Classified| |4x2gb Corsair XMS 1600mhz CL7| 
Hard DriveCoolingOSMonitor
|840 Pro 256gb| |WD Red 2tb| |Corsair H50| |Windows 10 Pro x64| |27" QNIX QX2710 @ 2560x1440 100hz| 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
|Logitech G810 Orion Spectrum RGB| |Cooler Master 700w Silent Pro Gold| |Antec 1200 Orange mod| |Logitech G502 Proteus Spectrum RGB|  
AudioAudioAudio
|JBL L890 speakers| |Emotiva XDA-2 receiver| |2x Advanced Acoustic mono amp @ 200w 8ohm| 
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Reply
    
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
|AMD Phenom II X6 1100T @ 4ghz| |Asus Crosshair IV Formula| |EVGA 780TI Classified| |4x2gb Corsair XMS 1600mhz CL7| 
Hard DriveCoolingOSMonitor
|840 Pro 256gb| |WD Red 2tb| |Corsair H50| |Windows 10 Pro x64| |27" QNIX QX2710 @ 2560x1440 100hz| 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
|Logitech G810 Orion Spectrum RGB| |Cooler Master 700w Silent Pro Gold| |Antec 1200 Orange mod| |Logitech G502 Proteus Spectrum RGB|  
AudioAudioAudio
|JBL L890 speakers| |Emotiva XDA-2 receiver| |2x Advanced Acoustic mono amp @ 200w 8ohm| 
  hide details  
Reply
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