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Audigy 2 value or DS3L onboard audio?

donimo

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Oct 17, 2007
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Vancouver Island
I have both, but if I put in the audigy I lose my front headphone jacks, which are nice to have.

If the difference is negligible than I wont bother, anyone know firsthand?

I know I could just try it and see, but install and drivers etc will take more time than a quick answer here so I thought Id try asking, plus I am stuck at work anways, working hard obviously ;)
 

sam101p5

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Aug 2, 2007
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I have both... I did the Audigy 2 value with my new computer build but ended pulling it because it seemed to crackle a bit... Creative does sound better, but I think newer on-board sound has come a long way. Creative software seems fairly 'bloaty' compared to realtek of course and the creative card seemed to getting warm in my case.

In a nutshell I'm just using on-board with a $30 set of headphones and am pleased for gaming.
 

donimo

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Oct 17, 2007
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Vancouver Island
Kinda what I was thinking, I bought the audigy 2 value to replace the onboard on a p4 machine that was brutal, but the one on the ds3L sounds decent.

Do onboard chips still suck up CPU usage?

I am going to be using it for HTPC use as well, so the onboard optical out on the mobo is also a bonus...
 

sam101p5

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Aug 2, 2007
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I bought the audigy 2 value to replace the onboard on a p4 machine that was brutal, but the one on the ds3L sounds decent.

I got my audigy 2 value because my crappy P4 onboard sound too!

Not sure about CPU usage for your on-board.. I looked around and it seems a chipset like the ALC888 (which I've got too) in your board doesn't take CPU power since it has it's own DACs.

For Home Theatre you may want a better card with better software to manage sound, or use the digital out to a receiver and let the receiver do the processing.

.. I think I'll stop there though and let somebody else answer that for you!
 

donimo

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Does the digital out output ALL sound, or just digital sound as in AC# or PCM from a movie?

I would need it to output everything...
 

sam101p5

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Aug 2, 2007
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Not too sure about the technical details, but from my own 2 channel home stereo adventures -- a cd player hooked to a outboard DAC meant the DAC did all the work for processing to give a different 'quality' of sound. I could start with a nice home CD player and then buy a DAC to get better sound still, but the DAC in the CD player would then be unused.

How did the x800xl work out?
 

donimo

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Oct 17, 2007
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Location
Vancouver Island
Fine so far, I should update that post...

it reduced the BS windows experience 3d score from 5.9 to 4.9, but the 2d stuff stayed the same.

I loaded 3 seperate divx files and did the aero "flip folder" thingy and it did it just fine, a good test as it appears to make a 3d texture out of each window...

either way it worked out great, plus the 1950pro at 1280x1024 (vs 1900x1200 upstairs) runs bioshock at full everything and is great.
 

sam101p5

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Aug 2, 2007
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Good news about the old ATI card -- still has some life in it!

Anyway, now that I've seen your direction here, I think the on-board with the digital out directly to the receiver would be the most painless provided you got the full sound stream you're looking for. I don't think the Audigy 2 value is that easy to hook right up digitally -- uses mini plugs and I think needs a special cable for digital use. They made it real easy for connection to their own speaker systmes. I ran 3 sets of plugs (left/right centre/sub surrounds) to different amps to and really liked the sound -- I used the sound blaster's processor for all the work but had 3 sets of cables running to different components. I used my Arcam amp for the fronts and a pioneer receiver for the centre and surrounds, and then directly to the sub. Gaming was fun!
 

donimo

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Oct 17, 2007
Messages
832
Location
Vancouver Island
Kinda my plan too, but in a different way.

I am hooking it up as an HTPC AND a gaming rig, so I was hoping to hook the digi out to the HT amp, and the analog (or the other digi out, if both can output at the same time) to a gaming speaker setup...

we'll see, I may try it both ways, thanks!
 

sswilson

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Dec 9, 2006
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Location
Moncton NB
You can hook up coax Spdif from the audigy card with a standard mini-rca adapter plugged into the upper port on the back of the card (white).

Works well, but for some reason the "bit accurate playback" will not stay selected and must be reset every time the computer is re-booted.

This is the setting in the creative software that allows the first digital source played on the computer (such as your media player) to be output to an amp at a steady line-out without hearing the other sounds (such as MSN beeps, games, etc...) through the amp.

Having tried both onboard (both from my "Dark" and from the DQ6) I'd go with the audigy2 for the ease of digital out.... I haven't had a hell of a lot of luck outputting coax spdif from an onboard audio chipset.
 

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