USB 2.0 Sound: Creative Labs Audigy 2 NX

Maximum Compactness

Along with growing demand for notebook PCs, USB sound cards are becoming more popular. This is because lap-top sound quality is usually sub-par, and an external device is required to bring the sound quality up to speed in comparison to the desktop. The problem with this solution is the low bandwidth and significant processor load that comes with a USB 1.1 external sound card connection. Now, Creative tries to surpass the limitations inherent in a USB 1.1 connection, with its debut of the Audigy 2 NX, an external audio card with a USB 2.0 connection.

The Audigy 2 NX, which comes in a little plastic-and-metal box, surprises at first blush as it is hard to imagine that so much comes in such a small package - however, the actual size is slightly larger because the Audigy 2 NX requires an external power supply.

Aside from these minor encumbrances, the device's compact size is a feat, especially considering that the back and one side are dotted with a variety of connector sockets. The Audigy 2 NX is delivered with an infrared remote control, identical to that supplied with the other Creative cards, such as the Audigy 2 ZS, which is an asset. Furthermore, the design of the case - black plastic and aluminum - is a good match for laptops, which represents another nice touch.