Motherboard Audio Chipsets

Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.chips (More info?)

Is there a page somewhere that compares the different integrated audio
chipsets that many motherboards are now including?

I'm about to build a new PC with a microATX motherboard. Audio quality
is an important factor but I have a limited number of PCI slots so I'm
looking for something on-board.

How do these rate?

ADI AD1980
C-Media CMI9739A
Realtek ALC655
AC97 Codec

Are there ones that I should be looking for?

Thank you for your time,
~Lauren
6 answers Last reply
More about motherboard audio chipsets
  1. Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.chips (More info?)

    Check this out. USB audio. Don't know if there are others.
    http://www.turtlebeach.com/site/products/audioadvantage/producthome.asp


    "Lauren the Ravishing" <lauren_the_ravishing@yahoo.com> wrote in message
    news:1117042654.521103.41560@g14g2000cwa.googlegroups.com...
    > Is there a page somewhere that compares the different integrated audio
    > chipsets that many motherboards are now including?
    >
    > I'm about to build a new PC with a microATX motherboard. Audio quality
    > is an important factor but I have a limited number of PCI slots so I'm
    > looking for something on-board.
    >
    > How do these rate?
    >
    > ADI AD1980
    > C-Media CMI9739A
    > Realtek ALC655
    > AC97 Codec
    >
    > Are there ones that I should be looking for?
    >
    > Thank you for your time,
    > ~Lauren
    >
  2. Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.chips (More info?)

    On Wed, 25 May 2005 19:55:48 GMT, "dawg" <don't look@worldnet.att.net>
    wrote:

    >Check this out. USB audio. Don't know if there are others.
    >http://www.turtlebeach.com/site/products/audioadvantage/producthome.asp

    It's my understanding that USB audio uses quite a few cpu cycles.
  3. Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.chips (More info?)

    On 25 May 2005 10:37:34 -0700, "Lauren the Ravishing"
    <lauren_the_ravishing@yahoo.com> wrote:

    >Is there a page somewhere that compares the different integrated audio
    >chipsets that many motherboards are now including?
    >
    >I'm about to build a new PC with a microATX motherboard. Audio quality
    >is an important factor but I have a limited number of PCI slots so I'm
    >looking for something on-board.
    >
    >How do these rate?
    >
    >ADI AD1980
    >C-Media CMI9739A
    >Realtek ALC655
    >AC97 Codec
    >
    >Are there ones that I should be looking for?
    >
    >Thank you for your time,
    >~Lauren

    I don't know about the other's so much but C-Media is pretty decent. I
    have that on my Asus mb and used it for a while and had no issues and
    the sound quality was ok. AC97 is just a standard and not a sound
    chipset although some mb's list their mb as having AC97 for sound.
    C-Media is also AC97. I think Realtek is supposed to be ok. My Abit
    mb has Realtek ALC650 but I have never tried it out. The only onboard
    sound solution that can match an add-on card like an Audigy2 is the
    Soundstorm that came on mb's with the Nforce2 chipset. But I think all
    onboard sound these days is fairly decent for music, mp3's, internet
    radio etc. It's when you get into 3D audio in games that they may fall
    a bit short. I prefer to use add-on cards myself and have Audigy2 on
    one PC and Santa Cruz on the other. It all depends on what your PC
    usage is. I'm a gamer and is why I use add-on cards.
  4. Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.chips (More info?)

    Soundstorm was just too expensive to implement on cheap boards.

    My Nforce2 board has Soundstorm... the performance is 'adequate'.

    It depends on what your expectations are... if the PC is to be a used
    in a studio or hi-fi environment, you're going to want a professional
    card.

    If it's just to pipe occasional MP3 music, onboard is fine.

    T.
  5. Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.chips (More info?)

    On Thu, 26 May 2005 12:26:28 -0700, Fisher <fisher@no_email.here>
    wrote:

    >I don't know about the other's so much but C-Media is pretty decent. I
    >have that on my Asus mb and used it for a while and had no issues and
    >the sound quality was ok. AC97 is just a standard and not a sound
    >chipset although some mb's list their mb as having AC97 for sound.
    >C-Media is also AC97. I think Realtek is supposed to be ok. My Abit
    >mb has Realtek ALC650 but I have never tried it out.


    Just to complicate things further, the chip is only one relatively
    small part of the equation. I've got two systems, both with AC97
    sound using C-Media CODECs. The first is an ASRock K7S41GX using a
    CMI9739 chip. The second is a Chaintech 7NJL6 using a CMI7961A. The
    difference in specs between these two chips is quite small, but the
    difference in sound quality is very noticeable. The Chaintech board
    has a much cleaner sound, sufficiently better that it's pretty obvious
    with my only average-quality computer speakers.

    Unfortunately audio is one of those tricky analog things where
    subtleties in design can affect performance much more than
    specifications.

    > The only onboard
    >sound solution that can match an add-on card like an Audigy2 is the
    >Soundstorm that came on mb's with the Nforce2 chipset.

    Virtually none of the nForce2 chipsets use the Soundstorm audio. My
    above-mentioned Chaintech board certainly does not. Most of the
    nForce1 boards used Soundstorm, but it was mostly dropped for the
    nForce2.

    > But I think all
    >onboard sound these days is fairly decent for music, mp3's, internet
    >radio etc. It's when you get into 3D audio in games that they may fall
    >a bit short. I prefer to use add-on cards myself and have Audigy2 on
    >one PC and Santa Cruz on the other. It all depends on what your PC
    >usage is. I'm a gamer and is why I use add-on cards.

    I find the integrated audio on my Chaintech board to be quite
    sufficient for light-use, but I purchased a PCI sound card for the
    ASRock board.

    -------------
    Tony Hill
    hilla <underscore> 20 <at> yahoo <dot> ca
  6. Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.chips (More info?)

    On Thu, 26 May 2005 22:38:21 -0400, Tony Hill
    <hilla_nospam_20@yahoo.ca> wrote:


    >Virtually none of the nForce2 chipsets use the Soundstorm audio. My
    >above-mentioned Chaintech board certainly does not. Most of the
    >nForce1 boards used Soundstorm, but it was mostly dropped for the
    >nForce2.

    Here's a list showing all the motherboards that use Soundstorm. If I
    was going for onboard sound and had AMD I would buy one of those but
    of course not if I wanted an Nforce4 mb as none of those have it.

    http://www.nvidia.com/object/motherboards.html

    NVIDIA SoundStorm

    For the most powerful integrated audio solution available today, look
    for NVIDIA nForce(TM) and NVIDIA nForce2 systems featuring NVIDIA
    SoundStorm™ audio.
Ask a new question

Read More

CPUs Chipsets Audio Motherboards