So I've only been using a really average headset with my onboard audio since I ever started getting into computers.
Recently I've been wanting to invest in a sound card and a proper headset, (whilst also watching movies and music, but not so important).
I've recently eyed the Asus Xonar DG, which seems like a tremendous bang for buck. However, there are slightly more expensive cards, and I was wandering if they were worth the extra 30-50 dollars??
Also, if I am to get a sound card, like the DG or others, and it has 5.1 capabilities, do I need to get a 5.1 headset to get full use out of it? Or will a simple analog headset be okay?
And so I'm also looking for a decent gaming headset for under $100, I've never spent that much on a headset before, but is it worth it? I thought something like the TT Shock (not ONE), or Draco would be okay with the soundcard? Or is something in the $80-90 range better?
So to sum up, I am looking for a headset + soundcard combo, roughly 150ish, if it justifiable, a bit more.
I have the DG and a pair of Audio Technica AD700's. I can tell you they're both pretty awesome bang for buck. I was in the same boat as you with on board sound and a mediocre headset, and I can't believe how much better my sound quality is now, especially for gaming.
I'd say you're on the right track with the DG, and I'd highly recommend taking a look at the AD700's.