I wanted to take my gaming experience to the next level. So after having bought a pair of roccat kave, I was looking for a decent soundcard, because with onboard it's sounds a bit lame. The primary goal of the card has to be accuracy in FPS games(positions). Next to that I watch movies. So it looks something like this: 65% games/35% movies.
Now there are three particular cards catching my interest or at least, the best in my price range, which is about < 100 dollar:
Asus Xonar DX/D1
Creative Xfi Xtreme Gamer
Creative Xfi Titanium
I read that the Xonar DX/D1 had better overall sound quality, but the Xtreme Gamer was better when it came to positioning in games. Altough the Xtreme Gamer should have my immediate preference, I'm highly doubting due to all positive feedback on the Xonar, which gives me the idea it's actually better overall. Besides that, I'm using Windows 7 and I read that there was pretty much collision with the Creative drivers and Win 7.
And what's the difference between the Titanium and the Xtreme Gamer? Also, I read a lot of positive reactions about the HT Omega Striker, but since I live in Europe that one isn't available here.
They are much better sounding than any of Creative's cards and DO support EAX 2-5 for older games (newer games do not use EAX).
Creative's cards are extremely overated.
They are overpriced, have subpar sound quality, terrible drivers and near nonexistent support.
HT|Omega makes some great soundcards but I would recommend against the Striker.
While not necessarily a bad card, it does have an older sound processor (the C-Media CMI8770).
The newer C-Media CMI8788 (AKA Oxygen HD), such as is used in all the ASUS Xonar cards, is more feature rich and a better choice.
There will be no difference at all.
The only thing that gave Creative a heads up in positional sound processing was their EAX hardware processing.
As EAX is not used anymore they perform exactly the same as all the rest.
To add to that, ASUS' Xonar line can do legacy EAX 2 processing in hardware and emulation of EAX 5 when needed for older games.