This question seems to pop up regularly and I get this question in my PM and emails frequently. The inquiry usually surrounds a person with their first sound card or curious about connection method to their speakers or receiver. They have the option of either a digital connection through S/Pdif or normal analog interconnects and are wondering is digital the best connection method? I always give the same answer, "It depends on the card(source) and the device you are connecting to." The questions really surrounds the quality of the DAC (Digital to Analog Converter) chip in your card and speakers/receiver. Consider: If you have a older card or are using onboard and connecting to a modern receiver chances are the DAC in the receiver is higher quality then the DAC in the source. In this case digital would give you the optimal sound quality for that system. If you have a higher end/modern soundcard and a set of Z-5500's or low/mid quality receiver chances are the card will have the better DAC chip so in this case analog is the better connection method. Few years back digital was generally always the better connection method for PC audio but with sound cards continually pushing the bar higher for component quality, it is no longer the case. If you have a receiver or digital speaker system and are unsure which way to go, do some experiments. Try both and use your ears to decide but generally you will find the above information to be accurate. To note: HDMI follows the same ideas as it is just another digital connection that might suffer from DAC quality. Hope that Helps. Good luck and hope that helps!