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Help me pick a sound card please...

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
Alright so I just finished the build in my sig and because I have Astro Gaming A40 headphones and mixamp, I need a card that will do Dolby Digital Live. I started doing some research and now I am more lost than where I started.

I have heard, and can remember, that Creative cards can have whacky drivers. What is a good option for me? I am limited to about a $200-$250 dollar budget. This is mainly for gaming, but I do enjoy listening to tunes on a daily basis as well.
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post #2 of 12
ASUS Xonar D2
post #3 of 12
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the recommendation but I failed to mention that I need Fiber output on the card. I might be mistaken but I dont think that one has it.
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post #4 of 12
Actually the card does do digital out. Says so on the specs and it even has the TOSlink wire included.

Now at this point I would point out that you wouldn't need a sound card because the A40s mixamp/DAC is doing the decoding, but I see you want Dolby Digital Live for 5.1 on your headset. While your motherboard does DTS. The mixamp can't decode it.

Now I don't know if the A40s actually have more than two drivers, but if it doesn't then there would be no point in getting a sound card just for DDL.
    
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post #5 of 12
Thread Starter 
Good info mate, thanks for that. Actually, the DDL I seek has more to do with being able to lower game audio while keeping ventrillo audio high. In addition to wanting better audio while watching movies and listening to music.
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post #6 of 12
Asus sonar essence STX

This cards rocks on Headphone's and anolog outputs.
Also has a digital out and include's SPDIF and TOSlink. [it supports DDL to]
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post #7 of 12
What kind of gaming are we talking about here?

Sent from my Samsung Epic 4G
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post #8 of 12
Thread Starter 
@Farih: the Xonar Essence STX looks great but out of stock on the egg. I dont see the digital outs in the picture but it mentioned something about a combo digital out port in the description. How does this work? Sorry for the noob questions but Id hate to buy a card and not even be able to use it.


@RallyMaster: I play alot of everything really Total War:Shogun, Call of Duty, BFBC2, DC Universe and RIFT. Using ventrillo while playing alot of these games to stay in touch with friends. Alot of times the game volume is too loud that I cant hear ventrillo. My A40's have a mixamp that will allow me to twist a knob and lower the game audio while boosting the ventrillo volume. Catch is, I have to have Dolby Digital Live to use it that way. At least, that's the word Im getting from the ASTRO Gaming boards.
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post #9 of 12
Well, you could simple ALT+Tab, click the speaker icon, click mixer and then lower game volume manually and keep ventrilo volume loud. That'll solve your problems with or without a sound card.

But if you're looking for sound card anyway that has DDL, the D2X or the DX is a fine card. It's great for positioning for MW2, but not at all good for positioning in BFBC2. It'll be great for non-FPS games as it has a better DAC than almost all Creative cards (not as good as the E-MU 0404 I believe, but I don't know how well positioning is with that card). That and you can save a bunch of your money because the DX is only like 90 new, cheaper used.

Don't advise the ST/X unless you can get it for cheap. It's sort of overkill if you don't have headphones that benefit from the amping.

I think you'll be more happy with an Asus card rather than a Creative card. Asus cards also do music better so win win.
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post #10 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by doughboy32 View Post
@Farih: the Xonar Essence STX looks great but out of stock on the egg. I dont see the digital outs in the picture but it mentioned something about a combo digital out port in the description. How does this work? Sorry for the noob questions but Id hate to buy a card and not even be able to use it.


@RallyMaster: I play alot of everything really Total War:Shogun, Call of Duty, BFBC2, DC Universe and RIFT. Using ventrillo while playing alot of these games to stay in touch with friends. Alot of times the game volume is too loud that I cant hear ventrillo. My A40's have a mixamp that will allow me to twist a knob and lower the game audio while boosting the ventrillo volume. Catch is, I have to have Dolby Digital Live to use it that way. At least, that's the word Im getting from the ASTRO Gaming boards.
Up on the SPIF you can connect an optical cable. thats the combo
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