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Sound Blaster X-Fi Xtreme Gamer vs Audio

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October 17, 2012 1:46:39 PM

Hi Guys need to know difference between Gamer and Audio sound cards... basically i like to play music but off course like games as well.which one should i buy Gamer ou Audio Edition...
http://us.store.creative.com/Sound-Blaster-XFi-XtremeGa...

http://asia.creative.com/products/product.asp?category=...
October 17, 2012 5:15:51 PM

Both are obsolete by todays standards (The ASUS Xonar DG(X) and ASUS Xonar DX take over the sub-$100 market segment).

Of the two, the ExtremeGamer is significantly better. The ExtremeAudio isn't even a proper X-fi; just a re-branded Audigy 2. Horrid driver support as a result.

Again though, I don't recommend either.
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Best solution

October 17, 2012 5:33:45 PM

Depending on the price , You can get the PCI-E based X-fi Titanium("Real X-FI") card that has hardware openAL and all that other good stuff.

With PCI going away in a hurry, it may be an option.

With Windows no longer using much if any hardware acceleration(OpenAL is on 3rd party software/plugins). It gets harder and harder to recommend a sound card based on its hardware acceleration level.

Asus has good cards, but I wanted some of the features that are still present in X-fi(OpenAL in hardware CMSS-3D) with the right audio plugins on software.

With a non hardware accelerated plugin, most of this is now done in software and does not sound that good to be honest(too much center channel for music, kind of ruins the stereo image when the singer has parts of their voice moving from center it sides when it is not recorded that way. Happens because certain frequencies get into the center channel more often then needed.). Ideally, I want NO center used with music, but do not mind the rear speakers being just a copy of the fronts(for 2 channel sources).

Sound is so personal it is hard to find one solution for all listeners.
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October 17, 2012 5:49:48 PM

Those are both garbage sound cards.

If you're just listening to mp3s and playing games then you don't really need anything more than onboard or a low end sound card like this: http://www.amazon.com/ASUS-Channel-Sound-Card-XONAR_DG/...

Do you have surround sound, good headphones, listen to "loseless" music? You don't need a sound card for listening to mp3s or music off YouTube, and game audio isn't very high quality either.

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October 17, 2012 6:30:27 PM

yes i have fenda f6000 native 5.1 home theater system on board i have Realtek ALC888 i am happy with that but i was thinking may be external card give me more pleasure than internal...
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October 17, 2012 7:36:09 PM

2668153,3,34470 said:
Asus has good cards, but I wanted some of the features that are still present in X-fi(OpenAL in hardware CMSS-3D) with the right audio plugins on software.

ASUS supports hardware OpenAL 2.0. They also offer the same benefit as CMSS-3D via Dolby Pro Logic IIz and Dolby Headphone.

Quote:

With a non hardware accelerated plugin, most of this is now done in software and does not sound that good to be honest(too much center channel for music, kind of ruins the stereo image when the singer has parts of their voice moving from center it sides when it is not recorded that way. Happens because certain frequencies get into the center channel more often then needed.). Ideally, I want NO center used with music, but do not mind the rear speakers being just a copy of the fronts(for 2 channel sources).


The primary driver of audio quality remains the DAC on the soundcard, the specific OAMPS used, followed by the driver layer.
[/quote]
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October 17, 2012 8:55:15 PM

I bought a X-FI titanium HD for 20$ from newegg last year nothing can beat the internal audio DAC from that card not even the newer Recon3D sound cards or the Xonar. It has a 122db SNR which is the best on the market atm.
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October 18, 2012 12:42:38 AM

gamerk316 said:
2668153,3,34470 said:
Asus has good cards, but I wanted some of the features that are still present in X-fi(OpenAL in hardware CMSS-3D) with the right audio plugins on software.

ASUS supports hardware OpenAL 2.0. They also offer the same benefit as CMSS-3D via Dolby Pro Logic IIz and Dolby Headphone.

Quote:

With a non hardware accelerated plugin, most of this is now done in software and does not sound that good to be honest(too much center channel for music, kind of ruins the stereo image when the singer has parts of their voice moving from center it sides when it is not recorded that way. Happens because certain frequencies get into the center channel more often then needed.). Ideally, I want NO center used with music, but do not mind the rear speakers being just a copy of the fronts(for 2 channel sources).


The primary driver of audio quality remains the DAC on the soundcard, the specific OAMPS used, followed by the driver layer.
[/quote]
said:

While I would agree that the DAC plays the biggest role(in overall quality). The software upmix is very "bad"(software based X-fi cards). I found Dolby did not sound that good to my ears(again personal opinion).

As for the opamps, unless you are running a very good home stereo(and those now are all digital bypassing the sound cards opamps), most consumer level audio still uses 4558 variation opamps(X-fi is no exception to that rule). So even if you have the best thing you can get on the card, it will get limited when it hits the stereo/speakers. Just like all hardware, you will get a bottleneck somewhere.

Good to know that Asus has hardware OpenAL. Basic stereo mirror upmixing is easy to do on a hardware level, just not nice and automatic.

Are you running an Asus card by any chance?

I'd even go as far as to tell the OP that they may as well try the onboard to see how they like it first.
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October 25, 2012 8:55:34 AM

Best answer selected by ilyas429.
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