Help, i need a good soundcard for win7x64

Discussion in 'Soundcards, Speakers HiFI & File formats' started by Legendary_Agent, Aug 26, 2010.

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  1. Legendary_Agent

    Legendary_Agent Master Guru

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    hey, im thinking of buying a new soundcard as my audigy 2 zs is getting rly old and the driver support is garbage on windows 7, i would like to know the best soundcard for windows 7 in sound quality (im using a 2.1 system) and the best that is for latest EAX and sound quality.

    Im thinking about the following:
    Auzentech Prelude
    ?which is best?
    Auzentech Forte 7.1


    Asus Xonar Essence STX
    ?which is best?
    Asus Xonar Essence ST

    NOTE: Please note i really need one which can connect my ps3 optic cable audio to the soundcard so i wont have to use my crappy quality sound monitor... SPDIF IN (i need the ps3 to transfer the sound to the soundcard not the other way around)
    IF any of the soundcards listed above by me does not support SPDIF in Optic Fibre then please tell me


    If theres better cards than here listed in sound quality and EAX feel free to include them.

    Thank you in advance!
     
  2. Th3_Edge

    Th3_Edge Master Guru

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    I have the Forte 7.1 and I am happy with it. However, I mainly use it for headphones. I like the amplified headphone jack.
     
  3. GenClaymore

    GenClaymore Ancient Guru

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    The Auzentech Forte if you want EAX 3-5 and dont want emulated EAX5, The Xonar ST/X if you want the highest sound quailty but dont mind emulated EAX5 which is not perfect but works good enough. If you have any plans for getting Headphones in the future, then I would suggest the Xonar ST/X. Sure Forte has a HP amp too but its HP amp cant power all headphones, Headphones like what I have AKG 701/2 is not powered fully thru the bravura. Both Forte and Bravura HP amp doesnt have enough Power output thru there amps to Power my headphones. A Xonar ST/X would have just enough to power them. Tho I only mention this incase you look at headphones in the near future. Remember this Dont just look at the Ohm of the headphone, If you can Look at its Mw output.

    The MW output on the HPs is the power that the HP needs at its rated ohm to be fully powered. Of course a standalone amp with the req specs will remedy this, But a Xonar ST/X will to depending on the headphones. Of course a standalone amp would be better. I just giving you a heads up. Incase you do go looking for headphones. I know Ultrasones will be drive able off Fortes HP amp as well as certain models of Senns. I sure there are low models of AKGs that can to and maybe some models of Denons.

    Also If you ever have to RMA something to auzentech in the future call them.Dont email them as it goes into there junk box for some unknown reason.
     
    Last edited: Aug 27, 2010
  4. Legendary_Agent

    Legendary_Agent Master Guru

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    im going to buy the next week new headphones yes, this is 1 of the reasons why im buying a new soundcard too: SONY MDR-XB700, its hard to find them in portugal for some retarded reason... but i certainly could not find better anywhere so im going to keep looking at the stores xD

    Also can anyone tell me if i will suffer sound quality if im going to buy the Xonar STX instead of the Xonar ST?

    thats why im having a hard time choosing between prelude and forte 7.1 too...
     

  5. Scorch666

    Scorch666 Ancient Guru

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    As far as am aware theres no sound difference between the STX/ST. The only difference is that the ST model is PCI and can accommodate a H6 board for 8 channel speakers. The STX is PCI-e.
     
  6. Legendary_Agent

    Legendary_Agent Master Guru

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    Thx alot for information mates, 2 last things i need to know, which of the following supports spdif in (optic fibre cable) i want to make my ps3 output its sound to my soundcard.

    And which you think its best, pci or pci-e for soundcards?

    Auzentech Prelude
    Auzentech Forte 7.1

    Asus Xonar Essence STX
    Asus Xonar Essence ST
     
  7. GenClaymore

    GenClaymore Ancient Guru

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    Most cards dont have Decodering in digital in, incase you was planning on having the sound card decide the console Digital signal you would need to set the PS3 to PCM or so to get sound thru the Digital in from the PS3 Digital ins.

    PCIe let you plug it into any PCIe slots no matter the speeds. it just based on your mobo setup and where your pci and pcie slots is.

    I wouldnt suggest the prelude with the forte existing. also besides the H6 board for the ST, the ST has jitter protection. But other then that just get the chapest between the Two, if you see a Xonar ST cheaper then the STX then get that, if its the other way around then the Xonar STX.

    Since you getting those sonys then a forte is more then enough. Tho I would suggest if you can to get something better like some Sennishers,Ultrasone HFI-450s or whatever.
     
    Last edited: Aug 27, 2010
  8. Legendary_Agent

    Legendary_Agent Master Guru

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    Sorry but i havent seen any good shneizer that does 3hz-28000hz like the sony do, and those only costs 100€, im not into headphones with low bass.

    So, none of the above can do spdif in? (outputing my ps3 to the soundcard.
     
  9. GenClaymore

    GenClaymore Ancient Guru

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    They can but you have to make your ps3 digital audio pcm. It just no card on the market can decode Spdif in. Also dont look at hz of the headphones. Theres more to that then just that.
     
  10. Legendary_Agent

    Legendary_Agent Master Guru

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    I know that, but that does indicate the sound lows, mids and highs capacity, besides Sony is Sony, 85 years in sound experience isnt rly that easy to beat, the HZ range indicate what the headphone is capable off, as i said shneizzer might be good, but not for bass.
     

  11. Legendary_Agent

    Legendary_Agent Master Guru

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    i am fine if i can find a way to make the ps3 output 2.1 or stereo if theres even a difference lol, how can i make my ps3 to do pcm or whatever its called, will i loose sound quality by doing so? i do not have a surround system and im not planning to buy 1.

    sorry for so many questions but im dying to find out a way to end my nightmare with horrible sound quality coming from my monitor :(
     
  12. GenClaymore

    GenClaymore Ancient Guru

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    You change the sound settings thru where the ps3 system settings are. PCM is uncompressed audio, while Digital is compressed audio. The Ultrasone HFI 580s would be your better option if you want bass. I dont know how much they are in your country. They good for those that are bassheads. They do req atleast 300 hours burn in. Tho They dont out power low mids or highs. Just because sony has 85 years in the market dont make them the best you can get. 85s means nothing when their other headphones in the market under 100s that are better choice or even a bit over 100.

    Your limiting your self if your gonna stick to sony and not look at other headphones just because of that. Since your a bass head the HFi-580 would be a good choice for you,If you can find them cheap in your area.the HFI 450 would be another good choice for you as they are under $100. I suggest you check out other headphones even going on head-fi.org Tho you better hide your wallet. I really suggesting you open your options. Tho if you really it just because its sony then by all means go for it.
     
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2010
  13. Legendary_Agent

    Legendary_Agent Master Guru

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    thx alot for your help, i do not understand why ppl insist so much into sennheizer... ive been with sony headphones for quite a while, tried philips, sennheizer and some other weird french brands aswell, found sennheizer not that great as ppl are trying to make me think they are.

    As for your recomendation thx but there is a huge difference between:

    Sennheizer Ultrasone HFI 580: 10 - 22000 Hz 101 dB 32 Ohm
    Sony MDR-XB700: 3 - 28000 Hz 110 db 24 Ohm


    Ive been to Worten, Fnac and other Stores with alot of ppl crazy for that brand ure talking about, none had the sony mdr-xb700 so i asked them to search for something that is at least as good in quality than sony, they showed me 400€ headphones with dissapointing specs, the Sony MDR-xb700 can be turned to the max volume without distortion, what more can i ask of sound?
    Im sorry but im gonna keep with the Sony ones and try to find them if i can, as for your answear, yes 85 years of experience in sound means something, if u like that brand to a point that it makes u bash all other brands then its best to not talk about it, im sure Sennheizer is a great brand too, its just not made for that kind of sound.
     
  14. GenClaymore

    GenClaymore Ancient Guru

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    I will say this last thing since you clearly have your mind set on them. You cant look at headphones specs and assume how they sound like. You have to put the headphones on. As Specs can be misleading. I wasn't bashing sony I was just trying to help you.

    Or if you cant read what other people think about them. Specs dont tell you every thing. Only thing that you really need to look at is the Ohm and the Mws so you know if the amp can supply the voltage at there ohms.So if you know if the amp is powering them or not powering them.

    btw HFi-580 are ultrasones not sennishers,
     
  15. ROBSCIX

    ROBSCIX Ancient Guru

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    Sennheiser and ultrasone are two different companies...which are you talking about?
    Which sennheiser did you try using what source?
    The Sony's can be turned to max volume? -From what source, what are you misunderstanding that suggest to you there will be no distortion?
    If you are shopping for cans using specs instead of your ears you are going to be very dissapointed in the end.
    Why do you think there is so much difference between those two cans based on those arbitrary numbers?
    BTW, if you are NOT into headphones with low bass, then you should look at those numbers again...
     
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2010

  16. Legendary_Agent

    Legendary_Agent Master Guru

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    Oh ic, my bad then sorry, i tought that one was a model from sennheizer, at Worten they showed me both brands (sennheizer and ultrasone) i there tought also that it was the same brand just different category of headphones.

    I fully understand that i need to try them on first, so far i keep with Sony because i always liked their Sound and did never have a complaint, 1 day i will give Sennheizer another chance but probably not this time tough, the Sennheizer i tried were those weird nerdish ones that look like speakers coming out your ears.

    As i said im not here to bash Sennheizer, but for me when i tried at Worten they were overpriced for a flat sound, who knows maybe they changed now.
     
  17. Legendary_Agent

    Legendary_Agent Master Guru

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    When i say put the volume to the max im talking about sound card and mp3 without overloading them obviously... the bass will keep like bass and the mids and highs will not distort thats what i mean with it and thats what it says on most reviews.

    As for the bass i meant i want noticeable bass not that i didnt want bass, else i wouldnt go for those crazy specs.
     
  18. ROBSCIX

    ROBSCIX Ancient Guru

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    Almost any headphones will distort if overpowered. This also has as much to do with the source powering the headphones then the headphones themselves.

    As for the Bass, you do understand that model is made to be a "extra heavy bass" model right? Hence the lower end specs? A great deal of that extra bass is going to be subsonic rumble and vibrations with no sound.
    Humans can hear roughly to 20Hz to 20Khz...Bass below that point will be perceived as shake and rumbles with no sound.
    A note about your testing of the sennheisers, all models sound different.

    Nobody is saying don't buy what you want, just be carful judging quality by arbitrary numbers. Try and listen to as many sets as you can.
    Enjoy your new headphones.
     
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2010
  19. Legendary_Agent

    Legendary_Agent Master Guru

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    i followed your and the Genclaymore suggestion and tested them again at Worten, the most expensive i could find for testing was some 90€ ones Sennheizer, and again they sounded flat... truth be told i didnt try the cheaper ones.
     
  20. GenClaymore

    GenClaymore Ancient Guru

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    The source that is used to test the headphones is very important, if the source cant power them. Then they will not sound right. Did worten plug them into a portable mp3 player or a ipod. Then thats why. Hps will not sound the way they should if they req power which those portable mp3 players cant provide.

    Because if its the HD 555 that you tried then its the source worten used to let you test them. Because something is wrong if they came out flat. Usually its the source that they was plugged into.
     
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2010
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