Current options for gaming?

Discussion in 'Soundcards, Speakers HiFI & File formats' started by AMD4Life, Feb 10, 2017.

  1. Octopuss

    Octopuss Master Guru

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    I think the main problem is choosing such company that supports their products. Unfortunately, for some obscure reasons, sound cards seem to get nonexistant support from the manufacturers with long standing driver bugs being completely ignored and drivers being released once in two years if at all.
    Asus is especially bad with this. Creative generally doesn't release anything after the initial version.
    What else is there?
     
  2. AMD4Life

    AMD4Life Member Guru

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    Has anyone used the Sennheiser GSX 1000 or 1200 Pro? I'm considering buying an external DAC & amp to get rid of the Creative software & drivers since I barely even use any extra features (just some bass boost) with my X-Fi Titanium. Don't get me wrong, the X-Fi's sound quality is definitely adequate for my purposes, but I am considering other options. The Sennheiser GSX looks like a good choice for gaming and I was curious to know how it would compare to my X-Fi or other USB DAC & amp combos. I also like that the Sennheiser GSX has all the separate connections for speakers, microphone and headphones and requires no extra software.

    Edit: Decided to order the GSX 1000 and give it a try. Don't need the extra voice chat features of the GSX 1200 Pro. Should be here this evening since I ordered just in time for the free same day delivery. If I don't like it I'll just return it. This will be my first external DAC & amp so I'm curious to see the differences.

    Edit again: The GSX 1000 I received was defective. One of the preset buttons didn't work and I had plans for all of them. I was so pissed about the defective product that I didn't even bother playing any games with it and decided to return it for a refund. Sending it back tomorrow.
     
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2017
  3. sverek

    sverek Ancient Guru

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    FiiO E10K
    schiit fulla 2
    are basically most recommended dac/amp.

    Point of external amp/dac is having quality dac / amp components.
    Soundcards provides more features, but components quality will be weaker.
     
  4. yasamoka

    yasamoka Ancient Guru

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    The E10K is not close to being high-end however. I have a similar amp, the E12, and it's awesome for portable use. But, for example, the Audio-GD NFB-11.32 I have sounds better (it should, it's bigger, more expensive, wall-powered, and plain better).
     

  5. sverek

    sverek Ancient Guru

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    I am not sure if he needs power for headphones that can be somewhat powered by iphone. (23 Ohms)
    Purpose as he stated is for isolating static noise and independence from drivers. No need to rush for higher end without proper headphones to drive.
    I am just doing a favor to ruptured AMD4Life's wallet.

    If he gets HD800, he probably gonna need way better amp anyway.
     
  6. Hammie

    Hammie Master Guru

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    As long as you dont have Creatives famouse crackling and popping then stick with what you have. Klipsch pownz. THeir pro grade A speakers unlike Creatives or Logitechs pos.

    THe difference between onboard and a PCI sound card is the SnR DB levels. Onboard sound isi like 95 SnR Decibel Your Creative card is like 108db SnR. The higher the number the better quality sound you will get. Also the components on good sound cards are high fidelity. Onboard audio is a POS along with nvidia onboard. Stick with what you have. Klipsch speakers are what most theaters use. IT has excellent mids, the bass is solid and highs that arent too high. gl
     
  7. AMD4Life

    AMD4Life Member Guru

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    True, I don't need an amp that can drive high impedance cans at this time. I wouldn't mind buying something with that ability now to leave me that option in the future though.

    That said, I would really like a dac & amp setup that can handle headphones, speakers and a microphone at the same time. That was the main appeal with the GSX 1000, but receiving the defective unit left me questioning the overall quality of these units.

    I guess with everything I'm looking for and having gaming in mind, keeping the X-Fi is my best option. If/whenever I decide to upgrade to higher impedance cans, I can always buy a sound card with a built in amp.
     
  8. sverek

    sverek Ancient Guru

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    I wouldn't recommend buying another internal soundcard. You not gonna get rid of static noise caused by PSU and GPU interference.

    And as I said, soundcard have much worse components comparing to same price DAC/AMP.
    There no need for soundcard unless you need weird sound effects, dynamic sound volume or bogus Dolby Headphones. You can try those gimmicks, but nothing beats clean and true stereo sound.

    If you need mic, just connect it to motherboard and call it a day. You don't need soundcard for it nor will soundcard make your voice prettier.
     
  9. Noisiv

    Noisiv Ancient Guru

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    Not as high end as you might think.
    Wasnt there a challenge by nwavguy pitting his 100 bucks O2 amp against anyhting?

    People are forgetting whats the weakest link by far.
    Or they simply do not know that even the very best speakers/cans are few orders of magnitude less transparrent than any semi-recent onboard audio.

    Even knowing this, I almost pulled a flag yesterday on 1200 euro dac... And I am still mulling it over..jesus :bang:
     
  10. AMD4Life

    AMD4Life Member Guru

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    Does anyone have experience with the Audioengine D1? I really like that it has connections for headphones as well as speakers. Seems like a good way for me to ditch the Creative drivers/software. Then I can just use my onboard audio for my microphone.
     

  11. FatBoyNL

    FatBoyNL Maha Guru

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    Onboard sound is still out of the question, as others have said ;)
    I switched over from an X-Fi Titanium to a ZxR almost three years ago. But only because I needed 5.1 analogue outputs :)
    Very nice card. Also using half-open Beyerdynamic DT 880 Edition 250ohm cans with it.
    Please check http://www.guru3d.com/articles-pages/soundblaster-zxr-review,1.html

    EDIT: nvm, I just got by now that you're tired with Creative :D
     
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2017
  12. sverek

    sverek Ancient Guru

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    Setup wise it's very reasonable.

    Audioengine D1 seems solid. Check list below for most popular dac/amp around:
    https://www.reddit.com/r/Zeos/comments/5e62tu/guide_dacs_headphone_amps_combos_portables/
     
  13. AMD4Life

    AMD4Life Member Guru

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    I am now eyeballing the Schiit Fulla 2 since its is a nice compact unit and won't need any adapters for my headphones and speakers. Less wiring and clutter is always good! Getting paid in a couple days and I think the Fulla 2 might be the next purchase.

    Also, I decided to swap my HD 598 Cs for the HD 598 SE yesterday and couldn't be happier! A much cleaner and enjoyable listening experience. I thought I was a bass head and the HD 598 SE proved me wrong. I returned the Cs headphones this morning.
     
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2017
  14. sverek

    sverek Ancient Guru

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    I always prefer open headphone, if environments allows it. Nothing beat natural , wide and open sound for me.

    Regarding Fulla2, some output specs :
    [edit] source : http://schiit.com/products/fulla-2

    If I am not wrong, your speakers already have integrated amp. You just need clean sound of DAC from your Fulla 2.
    Connect your speakers to Fulla 2 fixed DAC output and adjust volume on speakers side, the one in bold text.
     
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2017
  15. AMD4Life

    AMD4Life Member Guru

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    I decided to order the Fulla 2 last night. Already got a tracking number so hopefully it will be here in the next 2-3 days. I will update when it arrives and I get a chance to hear how it sounds.
     

  16. AMD4Life

    AMD4Life Member Guru

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    The Schiit Fulla 2 arrived yesterday and I've been listening to it almost nonstop since plugging into my rig. Personally, I've found no major differences in sound quality compared to my old X-Fi Titanium, but the Fulla 2 is definitely able to drive my HD598s louder and with less distortion at high volumes. I did get rid of the sound interference from the video card and am now free of the buggy Creative X-Fi drivers & software. I can restart my PC again without losing my audio settings which is nice! I have uninstalled the X-Fi and am using my onboard ALC889 chip for the microphone input.

    I highly recommend the Fulla 2 (or any other high quality external DAC/amp) to anyone who wants a simple stereo audio solution. Especially for those who can't use their higher impedance and/or hard to drive headphones on their current onboard audio or sound cards.
     
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2017

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