Which Sound Card with Logitech Z-560

Hi All,

I plan on purchasing a new sounds but don't know whether to get the Soundblaster Audigy OEM($88), Soundblaster Audigy 2 OEM($99) or Soundblaster Audigy 2 Retail($159). I just purchased the Logitech Z-560 speakers a few days ago and enjoying it but would like some improvement in sound quality and surround sound. I'm currently using Soundblaster Live! Value. I mostly play games, watch TV/Movies and listen to music. I don't plan on recording anything.

Will I notice any difference between the two with my new speakers?
Which sound card would be the best bang for the buck?

Thanks for any suggestions.
8 answers Last reply
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  1. Are those US prices? They're a bit high. I just recently bought an Audigy 2 OEM for $71. My old computer had a SB Live Value. I build a new one with an Audigy 2 and Z-560s, so our situations are very similiar. Anyway. I can't tell you how much of a difference the Audigy 2 makes because I upgraded the speakers and sound card at the same time, but I can tell you that the Z-560 + Audigy 2 combination sounds AWESOME.
  2. Thanks for the reply.

    These are CAD prices. I heard the Audigy 2 OEM comes with plastic connectors whereas the Retail comes with gold connector. What's the difference? If there's a big difference then I might go with the retail version with the software bundle. I had the Cambridge Soundworks PCWorks 2.1 speakers. I notice a big improvement with the Logitech Z-560. What kind of speakers did you have before?
  3. I don't think there's much of a difference between the plastic and gold but i could be wrong. I used to have Altec Lansing ATP3s I think.
  4. Better choose the Retail Audigy2,if you dont care the price.And the software with Audigy2 is very important--you know Creative wins the market by using fantastic supporting bundles.The gold connector will help you get the pure music sound.
  5. Well, I've been asking around whether to get OEM or Retail. So far, I've got responses to get the gold connector (Retail) based on the sound quality and durability. I don't plan on upgrading my sound card for a long time so I'll be looking at sound quality in the long run.

    Does anyone know when they're going to start selling the Platinum EX Front Panel separately? I plan on playing the electric guitar or sing karaoke at my house in the future (I hope I don't scare my neighbors - lolz). Should I get a separate system for the guitar and karaoke or upgrade to the Audigy 2 Platinum EX Front Panel?

  6. The gold connectors theory on better sound quality is false. Durability, yes.

    I've never been able to tell the difference between a stereo hooked up with gold connections and then regular steel connections. A meter couldn't even tell the difference, and you sure arent going to tell the difference using logitech z560s.

    Nothing against them, I use them. But they arent Martin Logans or some premium setup where something so subtle might matter.

    On durability if you unplug and plug back in the steel ones once a year or so you won't have any problems there.

    Now that you know the truth, I would recommend the retail for you anyway.. sounds like the small difference in money is worth the longevity and ease of mind.

    Cheapskates like myself are better off with the oem. I figure by the time the oem corrodes (about never) I'll have moved on to something else.

    Athlon 1700+, Epox 8RDA (NForce2), Maxtor Diamondmax Plus 9 80GB 8MB cache, 2x256mb Crucial PC2100 in Dual DDR, Geforce 3, Audigy, Z560s, MX500
  7. What kinney said. And BTW even Martin Logans or B&W Signatures won't tell any difference. For the 100th time, gold connectors are for durability only.
  8. Thanks for all the replies.

    I just went out the yesterday and bought myself the Audigy 2 Retail. I was able to get a price match, which saved me $10 plus $41 rebate.

    The card is pretty big compare to my old SoundBlaster Live! Value but I did not have any problems installing the card. I was able to install the drivers without problems also. Anyways, the sound is crisp compare to my old card. Now, I can hook up my old speakers and get 6.1. I'm satisfy with the results.

    Thanks to all who replied.
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