CD Playback problem in Hercules Fortíssimo III
Whenever I try to listen to a CD on my pc, it only plays some noise in any players except the Hercules MediaStation II. I'm using optical out to my AV receiver, but it also happens on the regular speakers. This never happened until I installed the sound card. It's not that a big a deal since I can play them with the Hercules MediaStation but I just thought it was weird.
Now someone correct me if I'm wrong, but the Fortissimo III has hardware MP3 decoding, and the only program that takes advantage of it is the MediaStation software. If you use something like Winamp, it has it's own software codec, so that could be a problem. Download the Nimo codec pack and see if that fixes it.
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Tt Smartfan II
2x512MB Corsair PC3200
BBA 9700 Pro AIW
2x80GB 7200RPM Maxtor
Guillemot Game Theatre XP
No, the Fortissimo3 uses the Crystal CS4624 chip that doesn't support hardware MP3 playback (unlike the CS4630 on the Santa Cruz/Sonic Fury) although as you say, this is only available from the Turtle Beach player bundled with the sound card and IIRC, the driver implementation isn't quite solid. Not to mention that when these days you get 0% CPU usage with Winamp 2.81 on a P3 733MHz when playing mp3s, you don't bother too much with hardware mp3 playback.
To the main question now: Have you enabled 'Digital Audio Playback' on your CD-ROM drives? This probably solves it (data will be read by the CD drive digitally and the digital data is sent to the sound card through the IDE bus; maybe MediaStation does DAE automatically...?) although frankly, this is weird. Check to see how you have connected the CD drive and the sound card and if there are any reversed or incorrect connections between the wire and the card.
Actually, reversing the analog audio cable from the CD-ROM will just swap stereo channels. I believe you still want to go with digital playback if the option is available.
On a side note, has anyone compared DACs in CD-ROMs to the DACs on soundcards? Is there any advantage to using the CD analog output? I'd suspect the longer signal path inside the case would negate any DAC benefits, but I don't have the resources to test this...