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Sound Card+Headphones $200 Budget

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  • Sound Cards
  • Headphones
  • Components
Last response: in Components
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July 31, 2010 3:52:01 AM

I am looking for a sound card and headphones for my PC with a budget of about $200. I also plan on adding a 5.1 surround speaker system later, with about a $100-150 budget on that. I have been looking at the ATH-AD700's or HD555's for headphones, and the OMEGA STRIKER 7.1 as a sound card.
I am looking for a nice pair of headphones for gaming, listening to music on, and the occasional movie.
The sound card would ideally be able to deliver quality audio to both the headphones (I have heard of the ability to emulate 5.1 sound in headphones on a sound card, and have also heard of various benefits from Creative such as X-RAM and EAX, and wondered if either of these is valuable or applicable) and also to a set of 5.1 speakers.

I have also heard that Creative's drivers are horrible. I'm no computer novice, but I don't want to have to mess with it much after setup.

Your advice and recommendations would be greatly appreciated.
Thanks :D 

More about : sound card headphones 200 budget

July 31, 2010 5:34:17 AM

Your initial choices are good.. I'd get the AD700's as the HD555 sound a tad misplaced when it comes to gaming..
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July 31, 2010 2:00:43 PM

Thanks! What do you think of my choice in sound card? Is there any reason to go creative?
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July 31, 2010 2:55:26 PM

No compelling reasons to go creative other than X-RAM and EAX support.. X-RAM is not available on all creative sound cards though and EAX is hardly an attractive feature nowadays.. You can look into the Asus Xonar DX or Auzentec Explosion also.. Though i still feel your current choices are plenty good..
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July 31, 2010 3:19:39 PM

Emperus is right, the AD700s and the Striker will be a good combo.
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July 31, 2010 4:08:23 PM

I won't comment on headphones but the best sound card value is the Auzentech Bravura for your budget.
It features better grade components and is cheaper then its Creative counterparts and has a seperate headphone amp.
It's still a very good deal at this price too bad though it was $73 last week.
http://www.ncixus.com/products/?sku=49090&vpn=AZT%2DBRA...
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August 2, 2010 10:40:27 PM

davcon said:
I won't comment on headphones but the best sound card value is the Auzentech Bravura for your budget.
It features better grade components and is cheaper then its Creative counterparts and has a seperate headphone amp.
It's still a very good deal at this price too bad though it was $73 last week.
http://www.ncixus.com/products/?sku=49090&vpn=AZT%2DBRA...

Auzentech Bravura? Anyone? Is the price increase justified? It's pushing the edge of my budget, so I'm not so sure about it.
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August 3, 2010 3:36:37 AM

lee3821 said:
Auzentech Bravura? Anyone? Is the price increase justified? It's pushing the edge of my budget, so I'm not so sure about it.

It's not a price increase last week it was on sale.
That's all!
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Best solution

August 3, 2010 11:24:43 PM

For solid support of features that some games might want to use, Bravura will be better than HT Omega. I've seen the "EAX is irrelevant now" thing posted several times but I'm not sure why, as EAX 4.0 introduced some cool stuff. (Like ability to wrap sounds in another room in that room's ambiance, and then position that in space within your current room's ambiance... So you could hear a gunfight in a cave, through the cave entrance, in your hallway... If the game coded all that in correctly.)

It sounds like Davcon doesn't believe the bad Newegg reviews on the Bravura are justified (another thread) so I'm kind of tempted to go for that too. People do all kinds of weird things with their systems so the few people having repeated failures might be plugging in to something weird or driving it really heavily or something.

Seems to me like:

Everyone who's bought the Auzentech cards have loved them and raved about the experience.

Everyone who's bought the HT Omega cards have loved them and raved about the experience.

Everyone who's bought the Xonar cards have loved them and raved about the experience.

So really you can't lose!
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August 4, 2010 12:08:47 AM

Thanks! Although the Bravura is about the same price at the moment, it would require a PCI-E connection, which my mobo doesn't have. So, the decision is made for me. Thanks for the help!
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August 4, 2010 12:08:59 AM

Best answer selected by lee3821.
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