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Xonar DX sample rate

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
Is there any benefit to choose another sample rate other than 48KHz/16bits for my Xonar DX in it's control panel ? As far as I know games and DVDs don't go over that and I don't watch Blu-Rays on my PC.

Does the sample rate I choose in the Windows sound settings override those I choose in the Xonar control panel (I both put them at 48KHz/16bit)s ?

And last question, I have a Corsair SP2500 speakers kit, should I select full-range speakers in the Windows sound settings or not ? And for my Sennheiser HD598 headphones ?

Thanks a lot smile.gif (and sorry for the bad English)
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post #2 of 6
44.1KHz/24bit is generally the best option.

44.1KHz because 90% of the source material is 44.1KHz, 24bit because the windows volume control works better that way and there are no drawbacks (it's how the volume reduction works).

As for full-range speakers, it shouldn't matter what setting you use. In stereo mode the front speakers should always be in full-range mode whatever you do with the settings.
Edited by Tiihokatti - 5/25/15 at 12:36am
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post #3 of 6
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tiihokatti View Post

44.1KHz/24bit is generally the best option.

44.1KHz because 90% of the source material is 44.1KHz, 24bit because the windows volume control works better that way and there are no drawbacks (it's how the volume reduction works).
Tiihokatti is spot on correct..

Copying or playing digital files is a lot like taking a picture of a picture. If the original picture is blurry (low bit rate) then no matter what the resolution (bit rate) of the copying camera is the resultant image will be blurry. But if the resolution of the copying camera is less that the resolution of the original, the the copying camera will add blur.

CD bit rate is 16 / 44.1, so anything above that is pretty much OK.
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post #4 of 6
Thread Starter 
Thanks to both of you, but why 44.1 instead of 48, I very rarely listen to music and movies (and I think games, might be wrong) are pretty much all in 48KHz as far as I know. Also how exactly would choosing 24bit make the volume "work better", in what way ?
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post #5 of 6
I think this article sums it up.
Sample rate should be set to the rate that you use the most. So if you have loads of 48KHz stuff then by all means use it.

TL;DR
Using 16bit stuff in 24bit mode has no drawbacks and it actually helps a tiny bit with digital volume control. Sample rate should be set to the same rate as the source file (but generally doesn't matter).
Edited by Tiihokatti - 5/26/15 at 4:17am
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post #6 of 6
Quote:
Originally Posted by Telimektar View Post

Thanks to both of you, but why 44.1 instead of 48,
Ther ya go, gettin' all up on us and askin' technical questions....

While everything in the article on the Windows Sound Mixer is well and good as is the advice to use 24 bit there are many other considerations to be taken into account to improve playback sound quality. Not the least of which is one's sound reproduction system actually being able play the differences between differing sample rates and bit rates so you can hear them.

The sampling rate of all digital sounds (music) is established by a "clock". When a digital file is streamed to a DAC (Digital to Analogue Converter) a clock in the computer sets the sampling rate (and bit depth) of the stream it is sending and a clock in the DAC accepts the digital stream for conversion to an analogue signal (so it can be sent to am amplifier), which is done at the DACs sampling rate / bit depth.

Above and beyond the Sound Mixer and pretty much anything else affecting sound quality is a form of distortion called "jitter". Jitter is basically errors introduced into the digital stream due to sending and receiving "clocks" not being synchronized. jitter is also increased if the sampling rate and/or bit depth of the original file has to be changed by the computer and/or DAC to match it's settings (It's called up-sampling and down-sampling).

Ideally the sample rate and bit depth of the original file should exactly match what the DAC needs. And further, the streaming should be controlled by the DAC's clock, bypassing the windows clock completely. And that's only possible with USB DACs as USB is an asynchronous (two way) transfer system.

So, ideally, the sampling rate / bit depth of the original file should not be changed and all digital transfers and manipulations should be done at the files "native" sample rate and bit depth.

But.... You have and play digital sounds that have a myriad of differing sample rates and bit depths, so that's where 24/44.1 comes in. For a typical computer sound system it's the best compromise. Of course the best thing to do it to try different sample rates and bit depths and see with which you can actually hear an improvement.
Edited by billbartuska - 5/26/15 at 5:31am
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