Originally Posted by xstarscream
Not to derail or anything... But I doubt you will enjoy those 701s for gaming.
Why's that? Which headphones do you recommend for gaming? I currently have the ad700's.
I looked at this: http://www.head-fi.org/t/534479/mad-lust-envys-headphone-gaming-guide-updated-1-9-2014-shure-srh1840-added
And this: www.overclock.net/t/1014902/ocns-most-recommended-audio-products/0_50
And a whole bunch of other threads and it seemed like that was the best option. I listen to music and movies as well but I don't notice any poor experience with my ad700 + xfi extreme gamer. I have a strong preference towards competitive FPS games.
Also, I didn't consider the Sennheisers because I've tried the HD555's before and they squeezed my head WAY too much. It was painful.
Originally Posted by deepor
Ditch the sound card at first. Only buy it if you are not satisfied with what you get through the board. You might want to see what the cheapest still recommended USB DAC is you can get instead of a sound card.
I might be biased as seeing those $200 for the card gives me a headache as you are obviously trying to save money with that very cheap Hyper 212+ cooler for example. Choosing a Thermalright HR-02 Macho for $50 might make you happier as its fan is a lot better and running slower, might be helping with the audio experience around the PC when trying to overclock a good amount. The fans on the Noctua NH-U12S or NH-U14S coolers do not have any PWM ticking, so you might also want to take a look at those.
Ehh, I could downgrade to the SB Z for $100, but I read that there's definitely a noticeable difference between the two. Also, I switch back and forth between 2 speakers and my headphones daily, so the Audio Control Module would come in handy for that. Also, the SB Z has a lot of features I like such as customizing the directional mic so that it doesn't pick up speaker noise, keyboard noise, or even if you move your head a foot to the side it will stop picking up your voice.
From what I've read in the past I never really considered a USB sound card over an internal one. You can tell by the areas I do and don't compromise that I have a strong preference towards competitive FPS games. I'm a long time competitive CS 1.6 player.
As far as the cooler, I'm using the 212 with my current PC and I can't hear it at all. If the HR 02 isn't at least 10c cooler than the 212 for $20 more then I don't think it's worth it. I just tried looking up a comparison but I couldn't find any.
I'm only looking to do the basic 4.4 overclock.