Hi, I'm new to sound cards and was wondering if it really makes that big of a difference between the a dedicated and a integrated? How would you compare it to the sound chips in the iphone 4 etc? I have a pretty good set up for headphones and was just wondering what would get me the most quality for the best value. Thanks. Also I have the asrock p67 extreme 4 gen 3 motherboard, compared to integrated how good are these cards?
Soundcards make a significant difference compared to integrated, provided you are using more then generic $20 desktop speakers. They'll totally blow away the sound chips on mobile devices [some are even competitive in quality to some $500 amps].
The best quality/value choices are the ASUS Xonar DG(X) and ASUS Xonar D1/DX. Slightly different target markets: The DG(X) is more suited for headphone use then the D1/DX is.