Bluegears b-Enspirer (CMI8788) sound card review!!!

Discussion in 'Soundcards, Speakers HiFI & File formats' started by CTman, Jan 5, 2007.

  1. CTman

    CTman Ancient Guru

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  2. Donnie27

    Donnie27 Banned

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    First I cracked up that anyone would pick a Xtreme Audio and call it X-Fi. Then I laughed at the Ding Bats at Creative for calling it a X-Fi. See Creative, this is what you get when you cheat;)
     
  3. CTman

    CTman Ancient Guru

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    And best of all is the Bluegears b-Enspirer got linux driver support, while the X-fi (EMU20K1) doesn't have linux driver support; The X-fi is launched in august 2005! That's a big let-down for the linux users!

    Anyway, the X-fi Xteme Audio is not that bad (better than most onboard sound), despite it's not a real EMU20K1 card. It's a quite nice soundcard for music and casual gaming! It is a budget/value soundcard afterall!

    For the more dedicated gamers who want some serious surround sound gaming with EAX HD, the X-fi Xtreme Music would be a better choice; for the real enthusiasts the X-fi Fatality.
     
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2007
  4. ROBSCIX

    ROBSCIX Ancient Guru

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    I wonder if any member of this forum has this card yet? I heard they are decent cards according to various people.
     

  5. GenClaymore

    GenClaymore Ancient Guru

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    Yea on other forums I read people liked it. it is a good choice for a budget non creative card.
     
  6. daedalus351

    daedalus351 Master Guru

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    I have one on order. It should arrive on Tuesday or Wednesday. I'll let you know how things go once I've played with it a bit.
     
  7. daedalus351

    daedalus351 Master Guru

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    I'm not sure I'd call it a budget card, at least not In Australia. It's the same price as an X-Fi ExtremeMusic and the X-Plosion. They are all about $180AUS.
     
  8. GenClaymore

    GenClaymore Ancient Guru

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    oh then i guess I was thinking of the Theatron DTS it has the same chip. thats the ones budget.
     
  9. daedalus351

    daedalus351 Master Guru

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    I got my b-Enspirer today. I uninstalled my SB Live and used driver cleaner to remove anything left over. I then removed the SB Live and inserted the Enspirer. Started up the computer installed the latest drivers and it works great. I've only tried it in headphone and 2 speaker mode. I was dubious about whether I would hear an improvement in sound quality but I was quickly impressed. I'm amazed at how much clearer the sound is. I can hear every instrument clearly and I'm noticing things like subtle echoes on the vocals and other effects used by artists that I've never noticed before. I've only got two speakers hooked up at the moment so I haven't had chance to try games with surround. The one major problem I am having is in Guild Wars. If hardware sound is enabled, when I move my character, every half a second or so the are clicking/popping noises. There was a post on the C-Media forum from a guy who is having the same problem with his X-Plosion. Hopefully it can be fixed fairly soon.

    Overall I'm pretty impressed, but I still have to try out some more features.
     
  10. alg7_munif

    alg7_munif Master Guru

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    Have you tried the drivers from Auzentech or C-Media?
     

  11. daedalus351

    daedalus351 Master Guru

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    No only the latest from Bluegears. Might try tomorrow. Don't like my chances though since the other guy having problems has an Auzentech card.
     
  12. ROBSCIX

    ROBSCIX Ancient Guru

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    DId you try disabling hardware sound?
    Glad you enjoy it.
     
  13. daedalus351

    daedalus351 Master Guru

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    Yeah that fixes it but I lose hardware sound :p. For now I'm going to have to leave it off until a solution is found.
     
  14. sillysighbean

    sillysighbean Member

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    great card, i've already posted comments about it!


    not a budget card at all, just not overhyped and overpriced!
     
  15. ROBSCIX

    ROBSCIX Ancient Guru

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    What differences do you notice with it on and off?
    I think this is the whole issue.
     

  16. daedalus351

    daedalus351 Master Guru

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    Performance wise I didn't notice any difference. With hardware sound on, and this is only using stereo speakers I haven't tried GW through my HT setup yet, stereo separation seems to be better. Ambient noises are more prominent.
     
  17. soulrider4ever

    soulrider4ever Member

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    Just picked up this sound card as I'm converting my system to a HTPC, and I'd have to say it sounds a lot better than the onboard sound output even via spdif, and analog, well, lol yea worlds better.

    Everything is crisp and clean, just about as perfect as you could imagine. magic voice is fun.

    I got the drivers working in Vista RTM 6000 by letting windows search the CD packaged. I can't however download the latest drivers for XP and install them, but no biggie.

    Definitly better than x-fi sound for gaming, but you lose a few fps, but hell now adays, c2d and 8800gtx, you'll never notice any difference w/ 1-2 fps when your getting over 100fps in most games as it is.
     
  18. ROBSCIX

    ROBSCIX Ancient Guru

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    Glad you enjoy it. The 8788 based cards are very nice.
     
  19. daedalus351

    daedalus351 Master Guru

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    I am less than happy with my card now.

    After much experimentation I've found that hardware sound causes bad audio problems in GW, UT2004, BF1942 and BF Vietnam. I'm talking really bad popping and buzzing noises when attempting to play some sounds. I've tried the two drivers off the Bluegears website and the latest one from C-Media none of which make a difference. A guy on the C-Media forum who owns an X-Plosion was having exactly the same problem as me. He had a socket A based system so I thought it may be a hardware platform issue. He upgraded to a C2D and the problem still exists just not as bad. The other thing we had in common was we both owned Creative cards prior to C-Media based ones. I uninstalled the Creative software prior to installing my new card as well as using Driver Cleaner Pro but I thought just in case I'll install a fresh install of Windows XP. No improvement.

    And then there is performance. In UT2004 using software 3D sound on my SB Live, the frame rate rarely drops below 50fps on Antalus in 1280x1024. With the 8788 with the same settings using just 2 speaker analogue output, most of the time there is some noticable drop in frame rate and often it drops as low as 30fps which is very noticable. I ran a timedemo of Quake III. The 8788 was about 20fps slower which is about 8% slower. Doom3 yields similar results. All these tests are done in 2 speaker analogue with software sound and no other features of either card enabled. This to me seems like a pretty unjustified performance discrepancy and I wonder if its related to the glitching audio?

    I've posted on the C-Media forum, where I met the guy who is having the same problem, and I have sent Bluegears an email so we'll see what happens.

    Could it be that the card is defective?
     
  20. GenClaymore

    GenClaymore Ancient Guru

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    I dont know what the problem could be I dont think its the creative drivers , because theres people here who are using both.

    I not having any of your problems and I play those same games,And I do have the same oxygen HD chipset. I sure some one esle could give you a idea on what you could try.

    I dont know if this will work, you could try uninstalling the OpenAl if you have it installed.
     
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2007

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