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Is a soundcard worth buying..? - Page 2

post #11 of 13
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Originally Posted by Kirus2012 View Post
Wow, these are not the replies I was expecting!!!

Anyways, if you don't mind me asking, why do you guys send over 100 dollars on amazing (looking) soundcards lol...
Not everyone uses a sony surround sound setup. I just use a headset.
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post #12 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kirus2012 View Post
Wow, these are not the replies I was expecting!!!

Anyways, if you don't mind me asking, why do you guys send over 100 dollars on amazing (looking) soundcards lol...
Some use the features the cards have built in and some (like me) use the analogue part of the card too. But if you are using a digital connection you bypass the most of what the soundcard is built for
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post #13 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by Grobinov View Post
Some use the features the cards have built in and some (like me) use the analogue part of the card too. But if you are using a digital connection you bypass the most of what the soundcard is built for
This isn't necessarily true.

I don't usually trust on-board sound for gaming for the simple fact that mobo manufactured dont Give out any information about what is actually powering their on-board sound.

Yes, most on board sound can output to multi-speaker configs, but that its the key thing that dedicated soundcards did. The Major benefit to hardware accelerated soundcards, is that (in the high end models) they can produce more voices than onboard sound cards can.

For an explination, ill quote..

Quote:
An important characteristic of sound cards is polyphony, which is more than one distinct voice or sound playable simultaneously and independently, and the number of simultaneous channels...

... Today, a sound card providing actual hardware polyphony, regardless of the number of output channels, is typically referred to as a "hardware audio accelerator", although actual voice polyphony is not the sole (or even a necessary) prerequisite, with other aspects such as hardware acceleration of 3D sound, positional audio and real-time DSP effects being more important.
Basically its referring to the degree of how many simultaneous sounds it can produce. In my experience, even tho on-board sound cards Can and Do work for gaming, they can easily be taxed if you have too many sounds trying to be played at the same time. A good indication of this, is if you hear sounds 'muting' or going quieter than they should be when another sound plays. This means your on-board sound is taxed and has to reduce its work playing one sound, in favor of playing another. This happens to me alot if im playing something like an mmo with spells casts going off, and have music playing from WMP. I can easly tell when ive run out of voice channels.

Ive never had this issue with my SB Audigy. So its not just the speaker setup. As someone said before, you can hear alot more sounds with a hardware accelerated soundcard. (plus it takes bit of load off your cpu, cause as far as i know, even todays on-board processors still hit the cpu)

Of course, sound is generally the last thing people seem to think about. Most just setting for on-board sound and don't really know any better. But i know my next build, ill either grandfather my Audigy into, or ill get a new one for it.

{for the record, my example of the audio issues i described was not with my audigy, but with my build in sound on my Toshiba x205 laptop}

After doing some more digging, it seems Microsoft has disabled DirectSound 3D, which essentially neuters the sound for any gaming running it. Creative has made a workaround for this with their ALchemy software however. Key thing is, on games that support OpenAL and EAX, its great. But it appears MS doesnt care about sound performance, as many others do not either. Sad times.
Edited by lyian - 2/25/11 at 5:54pm
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