Creative Labs SoundBlaster Audigy 2!

<A HREF="http://www.creative.com" target="_new">Link</A>
Will you look at that! Creative has released a new sound card! *stares at specs*I can't see anything new*stares at specs again* Ohh there it is, an ever so slightly improved Sound to Noise Ratio, and support for 6.1 sound.

Ok, then. Am I the only one who thinks this doesn't even deserve to be considered a new product?

Intelligence is not merely the wealth of knowledge but the sum of perception, wisdom, and knowledge.
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  1. lol... darn!!! you beat me to posting a thread about it. So is it better than the platinum ex card? Why don't they have a black one?!?!? will they come out with a "NEWER" platinum 2 ex card??!?!?

    The greatest risk of all is not taking one!
  2. well... i guess you don't know. Oh well. I bet if you were to link this to the CPU forum, you'd get more hits there.

    The greatest risk of all is not taking one!
  3. Yes, there probably will be an Audigy 2 Platinum EX. Is it better? Well, that depends on your definition of better; the specs have hardly changed/improved.

    Intelligence is not merely the wealth of knowledge but the sum of perception, wisdom, and knowledge.
  4. Think of where we would be today if Creative had competition.

    [boycotting Creative forever]
  5. correct me if i'm wrong guys, but it appears audigy 2 is actually a fulfilment of what audigy 1 was promised to be:

    to quote creative:
    Quote:
    Sound Blaster Audigy 2 lets you make rich 24-bit recordings to your PC with an unprecedented 24-bit/96kHz recording capability, while ASIO support allows compatible music creation software to link directly to ASIO compliant hardware, allowing multi-channel recording simultaneously at 16-bit/48khz at ultra low latency of <=2ms.


    It appears the card is finally fully 24bit/96khz capable. Or is this another lie? I'm interested in finding out....

    Also the features for DVD playback seem somewhat improved. Is it my imagination though or would all this be software side improvements? It seems to me no changes would be required in the hardware as it should already be there for the features we had before. Are freaking insane? For all appearances they're now charging 150 bucks for a drive update!

    The itsy bitsy spider climbed up the empires state building, along came goblin, wiped the spider out
  6. They've always had relatively decent hardware. It's always been the software/drivers which suck. Not a bad SNR for a PC soundcard. I'm sure the EMU chiphas plenty of balls too. I'm still not falling for it. It's been these really nice hardware specs that has sucked me in in the past. I was a sad camper for two generations of their so called top of the line stuff, first the AWE32PNP, and then the SBLive.
  7. Hmm, a little better hardware with the same shitty drivers perhaps? A3D 2.0 still rules, glad I have my Vortex2.

    <font color=blue>You're posting in a forum with class. It may be third class, but it's still class!</font color=blue>
  8. I can get my hands on one of those Vortex2 cards cheap. Are any new games going to still support A3D? Would it be worth it?

    To start press any key. Where's the "any" key? --Homer Simpson.
  9. You gotta look hard to find them. Anyway, I've played most of the latest (or should I say lamest) games and all have supported A3D 2.0.

    <font color=blue>You're posting in a forum with class. It may be third class, but it's still class!</font color=blue>
  10. One advantage Creative's sound card have is that it is supported by many OS.
  11. True, but that's only because the fooled so many people into buying them.

    <font color=blue>You're posting in a forum with class. It may be third class, but it's still class!</font color=blue>
  12. Lol. Well, A3D 2.0 is still supported by a number of games but not nearly enough..

    If you like A3D i highly suggest you just go with a GTXP or something similar. The Vortex 2 cards had awsome sound but they're incompatible with alot of stuff these days too.

    The itsy bitsy spider climbed up the empires state building, along came goblin, wiped the spider out
  13. Compatability is an issue with the 2000 driver not being finished when the company went bankrupt, it's perfectly compatable with everything I can throw at in in 98SE, and the XP drivers (developed by MS) work OK for most people.

    <font color=blue>You're posting in a forum with class. It may be third class, but it's still class!</font color=blue>
  14. Creative did not "fool" anyone. Their products have some quirks. When they work, they work really well. If they have conflict with something in your system then they are useless. I have never had a conflict/driver problem on any of my own PCs but I have seen the problems before. I had a PCI128 die but that was the card itself, not a conflict.

    I want to see Hercules and Turtle Beach put out a new card with the nice new nifty features also.

    ---------------

    Stupidity should be painful.
  15. Actually, I had a driver problem with the Live! Platnum whereby it would loose channels and not get them back regardless of settings without removing the driver and all registration keys and reinstalling it.

    <font color=blue>You're posting in a forum with class. It may be third class, but it's still class!</font color=blue>
  16. Well, surprise surprise, it really is a new card. There's a preview up at pc.ign.com

    It's FULLY 24bit now...multichannel recording and everything.

    Full support for 6.1 and DVD-Audio.

    Brand new software....not just an update to the existing playcenter etc..

    Who knows...maybe they'll finally catch up to the quality of the GTXP. I will at least give it a listen when it comes out...not that I use dvd audio discs....

    /me burps.

    The itsy bitsy spider climbed up the empires state building, along came goblin, wiped the spider out
  17. Yeah.

    Nothing even worth noting here.

    They seriously need to move their headquarters out of Oklahoma. The stupidity that is Oklahoma is infesting them like prions.


    P4's @ 3600Mhz ()wNz J00 4LL!!!!!!
  18. Quote:
    Who knows...maybe they'll finally catch up to the quality of the GTXP.

    Bwahahahahahahahahahahahaha!

    Thanks. I needed that.

    To start press any key. Where's the "any" key? --Homer Simpson.
  19. so will Klipsch come in all of this and duet w/ the audigy 2 card w/ a new 6.1 speaker system? If so, im gettin it w/ the GTXP 6.1!!!!

    The greatest risk of all is not taking one!
  20. is Creative audigy 1 and audigy 2 the SAME chip?

    like live and live 5.1....the only different is the channel

    6.1...um...it seems quite useless for now...there is no mayny dvd or game that really support 6.1.
    maybe when directX 9 come out..game developer will start move to 6.1...but still too early to say

    So what is creative's next move? 7.1?
  21. Quote:


    So what is creative's next move? 7.1?

    Gulp, I barely have room for 5 speakers and a sub, let alone a 6.1 or 7.1 system. I'm definitely not covering my entire room with speakers.

    Intelligence is not merely the wealth of knowledge but the sum of perception, wisdom, and knowledge.
  22. Bah! first 5.1, now 7.1...why don´t they make it 99.9 or something and make that
    final so you don´t have to buy a new freaking soundcard every month...


    <font color=red>I need a sig</font color=red>
  23. Hercules just released a new SC that is 7.1 (take that creative=P) They also went to UDA (take that creative=P) and they updated their drivers for the GTXP in the process with supposed good improvements in XP performance etc (take that creative=P)

    Grab the new drivers from hercules then we can debate just how useless 7.1 si since no one makes anything bigger than 5.1 for pc's LOL.

    Now, get off your ass and support EAX 3 hercules!

    Wait, i see 10,000 lawsuits from creative on the horizon, doh, hercules will die soon, its getting too competative.

    The itsy bitsy spider climbed up the empires state building, along came goblin, wiped the spider out
  24. 7.1 sounds useless, who has room for more than a few speakers?, and the hardware specs look like they are utilizing more of what's already there. It would be nice to hear from someone who actually has one of these cards. I'm running an Audigy gamer at the moment ($50 on-line, can't believe people still goto the store and pay retail, $100 for a sound card?!) Won't touch Hercules anymore, getting burnt on the Game Theater was enough. Can't say I've been thrilled with Creative products, but every thing I've ever seen from them has always worked fairly well for just about everyone I know right out of the box. It didn't take six months and half a dozen driver updates before it started working at all(Game Theater), and then only to have the hardware die six more months after that. :) Actually that was my fault, I dropped the external box at a lan party.
  25. When will Tom's Hardware do a review of the Audigy 2 Plantinum v. DMX 6 Fire card ? I am wanting to know and see that review.. It will be great.. I hope that they do on for everyone here..
  26. well guys to be really honest i just think that u hate any company that has good products and is a good seller in the market
    e.g. creative is bad
    intel is bad ( it more than whopps the ass of AMD top products and dont tell me to see when the opteron or hammer or whatever comes out do u really think that intel will just lie on its ass and let the northwood compete with it?
    oh yea ATi is suddenly the good one and Nvidia the evil one well wait for the nv30 and if it performs better than the r300 then y'all be yelling about ATi taking adavntage and churning out lower quality and performance products for a high price bah!
    eat this ppl
    oh yeah and about the turtle beach sound cards i really dont know if theyre good or not because THEYRE NOT AVAILABLE in INDIA unike creative stuff which is much more widespread
    ERROR: BAD MOUSE OR MOUSE NOT FOUND ...SPANK THE CAT?<P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by jaythaman on 10/22/02 03:07 AM.</EM></FONT></P>
  27. Lots of Creative hate in this thread.. and everyone's entitled to their opinion.. now here are some facts anyway:

    Audigy 2 is not the same chip as Audigy 1.
    Audigy 2 and Platinum does 24bit/96kHz throughout, and recording too (but not in ASIO mode).
    It supports true 6.1 with a discrete rear center channel.
    Supports DVD-Audio Advanced Resolution (5.1 24bit/96kHz or stereo 24bit/192kHz).
    They use Cirrus Logic DACs this time around and they're good.
    SNR is great and the overall characteristics of the card is past or on par with all consumer sound cards (note consumer) available. (check review at www.digit-life.com).

    Audigy2 Platinum EX will support ASIO 24bit/96kHz recording and in 5.1.

    Discrete 6.1 in games works seamless if the game is coded for DirectSound3D. (Seamless, all done on driver level, not game-code level).

    Hercules 7.1 card... is rather bogus.. check tomshardware's review on Fortissimo and Digifire 7.1 cards.. and get your own opinion.
  28. no creative hate here, i enjoy my audigy and plan on buying a audigy 2 when i save the funds

    oh and cant wait for christmas, i asked for a creative MuVo 128mb MP3 player!! the best, most simple mp3 player on the market!

    Athlon 1700+, KT266A, 512MB PC2100, Geforce 3, Audigy, Z560s
  29. Quote:
    i enjoy my audigy and plan on buying a audigy 2 when i save the funds

    Just got mine last night and installed it. Haven't had much time yet to mess with it (it was late and I couldn't turn the volume up), but first impressions are very positive. Sound quality seems improved for sure. I'll really give it a grilling tonight with games, CDs, MP3s, DVDs, etc. It comes with a DVD-Audio Sampler disc, but I chose not to install the Creative MediaSource application so I'll have to wait for Windows Media Player to support DVD-A before testing that.

    Ritesh
  30. I'm actually one of the believers this time. 24/96 and good ASIO implementation. (No matter how much CREATIVE sucked, they've had fairly low latency as of late). I agree that Audigy 2 seems to be what the Audigy was billed as, and when the ex comes out I might go and buy one. I've been interested in getting a new soundcard for a while as my Aureal, Yamahas and Terratec are getting old. As I am no longer professionally involved with sound engineering, the Audigy seems to fit my needs as a hobby musician and gamer. I have to say that EAX has long since passed A3D in quality and "cool" factor, even if the first implementations were poor. Besides A3D is fast becoming legacy.

    Just my 2 cents...

    Dev

    Poor windows was not a brave soul. Threatened by the force of General Protection and Major Problem the little OS committed suicide by hanging.
  31. im curious before i drop $130 on another audigy, how has it been? Also ritesh, I've been waiting for intels granite bay chipset to be released (nov 3rd?) but it wouldnt bother me to stick with my amd based setup if i could find one that will be compatible with all my usb devices (my via kt266a doesnt recognize my intel cs110 webcam properly, only intel systems do, go figure) and I also think my cheap taiwanese via crap interfaces incorrectly with my audigy (i have to run in PIC mode for interrupts just to get a smidgeon of stability because my board doesnt handle APIC correctly).

    I'm looking also at a SIS745 and a Nforce 1 but leaning towards the sis.. or should i just get a granite bay based p4 rig, knowing with all certainty that all my devices will work correctly? I'm a believer in theres no substitute for intel.

    Athlon 1700+, KT266A, 512MB PC2100, Geforce 3, Audigy, Z560s
  32. Quote:
    im curious before i drop $130 on another audigy, how has it been?

    Unfortunately I didn't have much time for testing last night, but I did manage to try a few games at a decent volume. Sound quality is definitely better than the Audigy. In particular, imaging and positioning is much improved. Mids and highs come in better now; voices sound extremely accurate.

    I tried playing a couple music CDs too. The improvement was more subtle here but they sounded somewhat more balanced, more like my hi-fi stereo. With the Audigy music didn't sound quite right and I figured the problem was the Klipsch Promedia speakers not being good for music. Now with the Audigy 2 I realize that the Promedias are quite balanced speakers even for music.

    Not sure if it's worth $130 if you already have the Audigy (definitely worth an upgrade from the Live!). I'm auctioning off my Audigy (if anyone's interested the Ebay item # is 2065798409) so I can recover some cash. I think it depends mainly on the quality of your speakers. I would say that with your Z560s you would notice a nice difference in overall sound quality and games will sound significantly better. Still if I were you I'd wait for the OEM version, which would run less than $80 I imagine. The only thing the retail version gets you is gold-plated contacts (only affects durability, not sound quality), a couple games (Hitman and SOF2), a showcase CD (bloatware), and a DVD-Audio sampler disc (probably pretty cool to listen to). In retrospect I probably should have waited for the OEM version myself, but the review at <A HREF="http://www.digit-life.com/articles2/creativeaudigy2/index.html" target="_new">Digit-Life</A> got me too excited to wait. The review is quite accurate IMO.

    After I give this card a thorough grilling I'll post some more detailed impressions. I may not have time until this weekend though.

    Quote:
    should i just get a granite bay based p4 rig, knowing with all certainty that all my devices will work correctly? I'm a believer in theres no substitute for intel.

    Intel chipsets are the way to go for headache-free gaming and computing in general. Especially with an Intel webcam :redface: . You can wait for Granite Bay but mobos based on it won't be cheap! If you get an i845e mobo and a 2.4B, and overclock it, you get much higher performance than your current machine, a good value, and Intel stability. Personally, I'm waiting until I need the power because I'm playing old games. I'm currently playing the awesome 1994 strategy game X-Com: UFO Defense. :lol:

    Ritesh

    <P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by ritesh_laud on 10/30/02 08:15 AM.</EM></FONT></P>
  33. I'm a big fan of old dos games, my first true gaming love was Kings Quest/Space Quest. I later discovered Zork and the other text based games but my PC gaming started in the mid 80s, Commodore 64 was my first "PC", first IBM compatible PC a 286. So I enjoyed X-Com, very fun game, I liked the first one best the sequel 'Terror from the Deep' I didnt like as much.

    About the Audigy2, I'll probably pick up the OEM version after I get a 845e or a 845pe (official DDR333 support is the only additional feature right?), depending on which I can find cheapest.

    Edit- also if I ordered a 845e board (alot cheaper than a PE), would you get a intel branded 845e board (D845EBG2 $76 refurb)or
    another manufacturer (with probably more overclocking options but less guarantee on stability?) such as the gigabyte GA-8IE ($56 refurb) or the ABIT BD7II 845E ($65 refurb)?
    I am leaning more towards the cheap gigabyte, same thing and i've had success for the most part with gigabyte in the past (I'm typing this using a gigabyte 7vtxe).
    Thanks in advance

    Athlon 1700+, KT266A, 512MB PC2100, Geforce 3, Audigy, Z560s<P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by kinney on 10/30/02 11:15 PM.</EM></FONT></P>
  34. Quote:
    after I get a 845e or a 845pe (official DDR333 support is the only additional feature right?)

    Correct. I think this is how it goes:
    845 - original P4 SDRAM chipset
    845D - add support for DDR266
    845E - add support for 533 FSB
    845PE - add support for DDR333
    845G - integrated 200 MHz graphics, 533 FSB, DDR266
    845GE - integrated 266 MHz graphics, add support for DDR333

    Quote:
    would you get a intel branded 845e board (D845EBG2 $76 refurb)or another manufacturer

    If you want to do ANY overclocking at all, stay away from the Intel motherboard since they have very few tweaking options. On motherboards with Intel chipsets, the only major differences with respect to stability is the number and quality of the voltage regulators and capacitors used. Asus and Abit generally spend a few more bucks to ensure good voltage regulation for maximum stability. The side effect of this is that you have plenty of room to overclock. Other brands are generally fine at stock speeds or mild overclocks, but if you want to overclock a lot I would spend the extra for Asus or Abit!

    Ritesh
  35. Sounds positive, Ritesh... I think i'll test out an audigy 2 here. Need to upgrade speakers too though. Getting tired of good quality, i want excellent quality=P

    If they improved the balance and the positioning enough i might put away my GTXP.

    My biggest concern is the new drivers and software package with it though. Can we get any input on what the drivers and included software is like quality wise? The new GTXP drivers are AWSOME so i'm not sure if i wanna change or not at this time even if the audigy is improved.

    Windows is like a house of cards... One wrong move and it all comes crashing down.
  36. Quote:
    Can we get any input on what the drivers and included software is like quality wise?

    Well as you may know drivers have always been Creative's Achilles' Heel. They have a track record of not fixing issues. Fortunately, I haven't run into any problems yet. All the games I've run have been stable and worked fine. In Windows 98 or Me you have the option of choosing WDM or VXD drivers. I'm using the VXDs for better games performance.

    The Audigy 2 drivers fix the Soundfont issues that the current Audigy drivers have. I have the Utopia Audigy soundfont installed and a few of my MIDI files wouldn't play 100% correctly with the Audigy. I played some MIDI files with the A2 and found that the new drivers have fixed that.

    Regarding the applications, I've only installed the basics. All the basic applets have a new, more streamlined look. More intuitive and less fancy colored bloatware-looking. However, they're slower to load for some reason.

    I didn't install MediaSource, Creative's substitute for Windows Media Player. It's 40 megs of bloatware IMO. So for the moment I can't play the DVD-Audio disc that came in the retail bundle. Big deal, I'm sure the next version of Windows Media Player will play DVD-Audio.

    One caveat is that unlike the Audigy, the Audigy 2 by default doesn't duplicate 2-channel stereo to the rear channels! You have to enable CMSS 3D to get it duplicated. Unlike the Audigy where CMSS was part of the crappy Playcenter application, CMSS is now integrated into the basic EAX Console applet and now has two modes.

    The first mode only seems to duplicate two-channel source material to the rears and doesn't "create" a center channel, like the Audigy's CMSS does. This is a good thing because I don't want a fake center channel created out of thin air. :smile: The second mode does that plus adds something to do with DVD audio.

    Also, on decoding DD 5.1 audio you now have several options. I ignored them all and just chose "pass-through" because I've found that PowerDVD's audio decoding is markedly superior to that of Creative's drivers.

    Also one problem is that the basic Windows Volume Control (the yellow speaker looking thing) has disappeared from my system tray! It appears that Creative wants to force you to use their mixer. Well, I've always preferred Volume Control because it's fast, logical, and I can also control mixer settings for other soundcards I have on my system. So I still haven't quite figured that one out, even though I was able to go into the System Configuration program and disable Creative loading its own mixer on startup. In the meantime I've just put Volume Control on the desktop and just use it from there in the rare times I need to run it.

    Ritesh
  37. i'd like to add my 2 cents worth to this. i just built a new machine and instead of using the onboard sound i went with the audigy 2. i've been running it a week now and i like it. i have an audigy 1 in my other machine.

    this card handles dvd's like a champ and playing my favorite addiction (diablo 2 expansion) it's fnatastic. i had no problems w/the drivers and installation was a snap.

    i've used the tb santa cruz and thought it was a great card, still do, but i wanted the audigy 2 for this machine.

    p.s. if you want to see what the rest of the machine is go to motherboards and chipsets where i have it listed.

    athalus
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