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GAMING AUDIO QUESTION

Last response: in Video Games
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February 9, 2009 7:08:47 PM

Hello, i've been playing on my current system without an audio card and a friend was telling me the benefits of using an audio card to play games (i've been using the integraded audio of my board). That been said, im on a quest to find out what to do. My question is: RAZER is coming out with the MEGALODON and this connects USB (i like the idea of surround) do i need an audio card since all the procces is been done via usb? or should i stick to an audio card and a matching headset

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February 9, 2009 8:08:15 PM

I'm still not sold on discrete sound cards for general use these days. It's another driver that is usually unstable(Creative's) and the difference in quality is usually not something you would be able to detect on something like a pair of headphones or the kind of low-end stereo system used by most computers. Maybe on a lower end dual or single core machine where you're pushing the limits of what the processor is capable of, but I'm not even sure that onboard audio still uses CPU time.

I'm guessing that the same people who say they can tell the difference between onboard audio and the newest Creative X-fi are the same people who can tell the difference between regular cables and gold-plated monster cables.
February 9, 2009 8:18:52 PM

lol i do home theater and i get your point. But that been said the usb and the internal audio are 2 independent things wouldent you agree? i want to get the megalodon when it comes out but i also want to get the best sound and gaming experience. I think ill wait for the USB headphone to come out but i want to hear more comments on this matter
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February 10, 2009 2:02:32 PM

If you have the right audio components, a sound card is definatly worth it. For example, the before mentioned Megaladon is a full 7.1 surround headset (and my next audio upgrade :D ).

That being said, even though the output is USB, unless you have a dedicated card, the most your 7.1 headset would do is what the onboard audio can do.
February 10, 2009 2:41:23 PM

Which in the case of any modern motherboard is ..........




7.1 surround.
February 11, 2009 1:48:22 AM

I dont agree, if ishutdown the integrated audio from the motherboard i will still hear the audio on the usb, therefore i asume the audio card has no influence on the usb processing.
Not only that i notice on my usb headphone has its own independent software. Im currently runing a plantronic usb and it works fine but my friend insist there is a difference and therefore the forum q. I think it does not matter but please i would apreciate more input
February 12, 2009 2:10:09 PM

Well, from what I can find on their website http://www.razerzone.com/p-133-the-razer-megalodon-71-s... , it looks like all the audio processing is done by the headphones:

Quote:
Onboard Audio Processing
Offload processing to the internal sound card and take the demand off your CPU


Also, the hardware requirements are:

Quote:
PC with built-in USB port
Windows® XP / x64 / Vista/ Vista64


Which would also point to the audio processing being done by the headphones. It wouldn't be too surprising, as there are USB soundcards. My guess is that their "Razer Maelstrom™ Audio Engine" is equivalent to CMSS 3D or Dolby 3d Headphone, and that the headphones themselves work as a USB soundcard.

As for this....

Quote:
I'm still not sold on discrete sound cards for general use these days. It's another driver that is usually unstable(Creative's) and the difference in quality is usually not something you would be able to detect on something like a pair of headphones or the kind of low-end stereo system used by most computers. Maybe on a lower end dual or single core machine where you're pushing the limits of what the processor is capable of, but I'm not even sure that onboard audio still uses CPU time.

I'm guessing that the same people who say they can tell the difference between onboard audio and the newest Creative X-fi are the same people who can tell the difference between regular cables and gold-plated monster cables.


I thought the same thing as you, until I actually bought a sound card. There is certainly a difference in sound quality and clarity, even on relatively cheapo speakers. It's hard to describe the difference, but mostly you hear things in your music that you didn't hear before, like faint drums in the background, or a trill, or background voices, or even Bonos lips smacking in one song (which was the most surprising!). If you're sceptical, as I was, go and buy a decent soundcard and hear for yourself.

People also get soundcards is for the superior virtual 3d sound. If you use headphones, and want to hear virtual 3d sound, you need something like CMSS 3d or Dolby headphone, which as far as I'm aware of you can only get via soundcards.
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