Creative Sound Blaster Z Series

Discussion in 'Soundcards, Speakers HiFI & File formats' started by IanM, Aug 15, 2012.

  1. ac252c

    ac252c New Member

    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    0
    Thanks, then I just need to wait until the new driver is reviewed.
     
  2. GenClaymore

    GenClaymore Ancient Guru

    Messages:
    6,070
    Likes Received:
    52
    GPU:
    XFX 5700 XT Thic II
    You could always use ASIo4All if you need asio function, even tho its not the real thing.
     
  3. Mkilbride2599

    Mkilbride2599 Banned

    Messages:
    17
    Likes Received:
    0
    GPU:
    GTX 670 SLI
    Maybe I'll wait til Rob reviews the Zx series, see how it is.
     
  4. RagDoll_Effect

    RagDoll_Effect Ancient Guru

    Messages:
    4,507
    Likes Received:
    0
    GPU:
    2x nvidia GTX 560 SLI

    That's great, I'm gonna wait to see if the ZxR has 7.1 analogue on the add on board :)

    regards,
    RagDoll.
     

  5. harkinsteven

    harkinsteven Ancient Guru

    Messages:
    2,942
    Likes Received:
    118
    GPU:
    RTX 3080
  6. Anarion

    Anarion Ancient Guru

    Messages:
    13,605
    Likes Received:
    380
    GPU:
    GeForce RTX 3060 Ti
    If I really need ASIO, I use this before getting proper native driver. No point in using this in Foobar, tho. In Cubase 6 Artist I use Generic low latency ASIO driver.
    [​IMG]

    With this, Cubase is the only software that can playback stuff (doesn't work in Foobar for some reason):
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2012
  7. ac252c

    ac252c New Member

    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    0
    Tried. asio4all doesn't support multiclient, I can't hear sound in youtube when sonar/foobar etc is in use, but when using the real Creative X-Fi ASIO driver there is no problem at all.

    Another example is that I can run Nuendo and Sonar together and both of them can output sound simultaneously when using Creative ASIO driver. ASIO4all can't do that.
     
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2012
  8. flimbo

    flimbo Master Guru

    Messages:
    759
    Likes Received:
    7
    GPU:
    MSI GTX 970
  9. Mufflore

    Mufflore Ancient Guru

    Messages:
    12,973
    Likes Received:
    1,430
    GPU:
    Aorus 3090 Xtreme
    lol, it says £71.94 for me.
     
  10. RagDoll_Effect

    RagDoll_Effect Ancient Guru

    Messages:
    4,507
    Likes Received:
    0
    GPU:
    2x nvidia GTX 560 SLI
    lol, I checked it 5 hrs ago and it was 47, now it's gone back to normal price... Just saying, even tho I'm in Australia lol.
     

  11. rincewind

    rincewind Member

    Messages:
    13
    Likes Received:
    0
    GPU:
    Nvidia GTX 680
  12. seizetheday4eva

    seizetheday4eva Member

    Messages:
    26
    Likes Received:
    0
    GPU:
    Geforce 680 4GB GTX
    Games (Software) gets reviewed usually a week prior to being released so that consumers are given the heads ups on whether or not it's worth purchasing but why with hardware it takes so long? The Sound Blaster Z has been out for a few weeks now but not a single review.

    Like many i'm waiting for a review for the ZXR but it would be nice to read one prior to the card being released to the public. Surely Creative send them out to hardware sites to be tested and reviewed prior to selling them on the open market.

    Anyway doesn't anyone else think it's a little strange that even though the Z has been out for a few weeks now that there isn't a single review apart from user reviews?
     
  13. rincewind

    rincewind Member

    Messages:
    13
    Likes Received:
    0
    GPU:
    Nvidia GTX 680
    there is one review on a russian site called personelaudio

    And yeah, it's amazing that nobody has done a review on these yet. The Z is out longer than you think, I got mine in October!! I was going to wait for a review but just decided to go for it based on specs alone. Lucky I didn't wait :) or I would still be waiting.
     
  14. seizetheday4eva

    seizetheday4eva Member

    Messages:
    26
    Likes Received:
    0
    GPU:
    Geforce 680 4GB GTX
    I'm in two mind myself on whether or not i should just bite the bullet and buy the Asus Xonar Phoebus which is probably at the moment the best high end gaming card on the market, sure it had some driver issues upon first release but that's all been sorted with a driver update. Also i've always only ever used Creative and it doesn't hurt to once in a while try out the competition.

    But then my gut tells me before splashing out that much money wait to see what goods the ZXR comes up with but as i'm the impatient type i'm not sure if i can hold out that long, especially as the card will probably be released a month or so before we even read a review.

    Also probably there won't be a huge difference between the 2 cards, i'll only be using it for games and movies. Hmmm what to do. Far Cry 3 is out at the end of the week and i really wanted to have a new sound card to try it out on.
     
  15. Meocene

    Meocene Master Guru

    Messages:
    209
    Likes Received:
    0
    GPU:
    GF570
    full legacy support in a modern soundcard... that's along makes it worth waiting for a few reviews.
     

  16. rincewind

    rincewind Member

    Messages:
    13
    Likes Received:
    0
    GPU:
    Nvidia GTX 680
    If you are only using the card for mainly gaming and some movies, why are you even considering changing the card you have now?

    I am presuming that the hardware in your profile is what you are using.
     
  17. seizetheday4eva

    seizetheday4eva Member

    Messages:
    26
    Likes Received:
    0
    GPU:
    Geforce 680 4GB GTX
    Because the X-Fi Titanium HD only does digital 5.1 which then uses the DAC on my speakers so i want to switch to analogue as the sound will be far superior and will then use the DAC on whatever sound card i end up purchasing whether it's the ZXR or Phoebus.
     
  18. Corvus.Corax

    Corvus.Corax Member

    Messages:
    16
    Likes Received:
    0
    GPU:
    Asus 7970 DirectCU 2
    Hi all, this is my first post here, been reading the forum for a few years now, I think.

    Anyway, back to the topic, the SB Z.

    I have had my Z now for a couple of days, so I will post my impressions with the card so far. The main reason I got the Z was that I have some older games using EAX and I wanted to be able to play them with their full audio capabilities, but on the other hand I wanted to get decent audio quality while listening to music. I’m no audiophile, so I won’t be able to make any really profound statements about the smaller details on the audio quality.

    When I listen to music, I use the front out. It uses the improved DAC, which I think is the same as in X-Fi Elite Pro and Auzentech Forte. Not surprisingly, the Z sounds pretty similar to those cards (I have used both of those, among others). Xonar DX uses the same DAC, but to my ears the Z isn’t as bright as the DX, and someone might describe the sound signature as “warm”. So, quality wise, the front out is really good.

    The HP out, however, isn’t that good. I’m not quite sure, but I suspect that the amplified out uses the Recon3D integrated DAC. It just seems less detailed at the low and high end. The head phones I use for both gaming and music are AKG 601s. Maybe it’s just me and/or my imagination, but I guess time will tell the truth, when we get some measurements in reviews.

    What else is new? The drivers have a couple more options. The optical out can output either DTS Connect or Dolby Digital. The THX options from the X-Fi are present too and clicking the tool button right the speaker drop down menu launches a speaker setup window. That window actually uses that black and blue X-Fi skin. The TruStudio Pro functions are renamed to SBX Studio Pro, but they seem to have the same functions as TruStudio and sound the same. Oh, and the driver panel color scheme is now red and black, as is the tray icon :p

    When it comes to gaming, the Z has the same specifications as the Recon3D. EAX is host based and seems to work with every game I tried. Actually, it works better that X-Fi in some cases. I don’t know if some of you have had the pleasure to stumble upon the X-Fi driver bug that caused BSODs in Vista/Win7 x64 while using UE2.5 engine games with EAX enabled. That bug is now gone, and this was actually the reason I got rid of my X-Fi in the first place. For the older titles with Direct3D I have used Alchemy and it has worked as it should.

    I think I have read someone saying that the Recon3D EAX doesn’t sound the same as with X-Fi. I can’t really comment on that, it’s been a couple of years since I used a X-Fi. But I can say that it sounds better than Asus’ GX, at least in Quake4, where the reverbations are better.

    However, the host based openal has manifested one bug. When I launch a game using openal, the driver disables all the SBX Studio Pro (TruSudio Pro) effects. I don’t use the bass thingy nor the crystallizer, but disabling the surround setting looses the HRTF functions. Getting them re-enabled can be tricky at times, since some games don’t like being alt-tabbed (Quake4, for example). I’m not sure if this only occurs on my system, but I think it’s worth mentioning, anyway. I use also a 5.1 system (I have an audio switch to “borrow” the front out for my head phones) and with it I have had no problems so far.

    As for the surround virtualization, the SBX surround sounds pretty good. I have read some comments on the net where some people say it has really good positioning and is better that CMMS-3D. I can’t really comment on that, for me it sounds very similar to the older CL tech. I have found that DH works better (or gives a more natural imagining) than CMMS-3D in same games, whereas the latter works better on some other titles, but I think this has more to do with personal preference. If you ask for my personal favourite, that would be Aureal3D :p

    So, there you have it. Hope this sheds some light on the Z. Basically it is a Recon3D with a better (front out) DAC and a few features added. The only thing I really miss is the possibility to configure the front out as head phones and keep the HRTF functions. But on the other hand, Asus is guilty of this too (Yes, I have owned a STX too and would have liked to use DH with the RCA out).
     
  19. rincewind

    rincewind Member

    Messages:
    13
    Likes Received:
    0
    GPU:
    Nvidia GTX 680
    Nice review Corvus. Just answering a few questions for you. I think it must be your imagination ;-) The dedicated headphone out on the rear of the card goes through the CS4398 DAC not the intergrated DAC on the core3d processor. If you connect your heapdhones to the front panel, then you lose the headphone amp.

    Just a question for you, what you mean when you say you would like to configure the front out as headphones? Why? Surely with a dedicated headphone socket you don't need it? But, you do know you can use the surround effects through the the speakers as well?
     
  20. Meocene

    Meocene Master Guru

    Messages:
    209
    Likes Received:
    0
    GPU:
    GF570
    try either renaming or removing any instances of openal.dll and *_oal.dll you find in the game folders. this will have the affect of forcing the game to use whatever openal driver is present in the Window's system folders (system32 and sysWOW64).

    the openal.dll file is just a router, so you may need to leave that untouched - try disabling it, test the game, re-enable if necessary.
    it's the *_oal.dll's that are the various implementations: wrap_oal.dll (generic software), ct_oal.dll (CL's), rapture3d_oal.dll (BRS), soft_oal.dll (openalsoft).

    may help. this is how i force rapture3D to be the system wide default driver on my pc anyways. most games that ship with openal tend to be using either old versions, openalsoft, or generic software.
     
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2012

Share This Page