Yamaha to Creative? Worth it?

vbimport

#1

I’ve got an Yamaha X-Wave 6000 (DS-XG Series), quite old but still operational. :bigsmile: If i get an opportunity to buy a second hand Creative Sound Blastel Live! 24bit, would it be worth it?
I have Creative Inspire T3000 speakers and wonder if i change the sound card would i hear the difference?


#2

Neither is a really great choice. What are you using your sound card for? Games or regular audio?

By my understanding, the SoundBlaster Live! 24-bit has no hardware DSP, meaning that your CPU takes on the load, plus the drivers are totally different from the standard SBLive. If you are just playing back audio on 2.1 speakers, the Chaintech AV710 (http://www.compgeeks.com/details.asp?invtid=SC-710&cat=SND), one of a number of cards based on the VIA Envy24 HT-S, is a far better choice, provided you plug your speakers into the jack that uses the higher-end Wolfson DAC chip, and the card is very inexpensive.

If you’re a gamer, I’d be looking for an OEM SoundBlaster Audigy 2 on Ebay. One of only two solutions that supports hardware Directsound acceleration (the other being the SoundStorm audio on Nvidia NForce2 mainboards), your CPU usage will be far lower than with other cards. I picked one up for $40 which included the shipping, though more likely you’ll find them around $50+shipping, I lucked into a good deal.


#3

Hmm, the Chaintech looks quite tempting, but what i had in mind was whether to buy this 24bit SB or stick with the Yamaha as a temporary solution or until i find a job (i’m a student in Germany) and start saving for something better. Which would be an Audigy series sound card.
I’m using the PC for multimedia purposes: movies, music, games. Sound quality is of prime concern that’s why i’m asking what to buy. 5.1 channel sound is in the background until i buy something really good.


#4

If that’s the case, I’d stick with your current card.


#5

Interesting… so the 24 bit sounds like it’s not as good (at least in hardware capability) as a “Live value”?


#6

Some of Creative’s sound cards (like plenty of other cheap ones out there) skip using a DSP, and instead use their drivers to offload the DSP functions to your CPU. This raises CPU usage which can lower performance in games. The SB Live! 24-bit, and the SB Audigy LS are the two that I know of that do this.

The best solution is to find an OEM SoundBlaster Audigy 2. While they may lack the gold-plated jacks of the retail models, they still have 6.1 capabilities, full 24-bit sound in hardware due to onboard DSP’s, and have full Directsound hardware acceleration in games so your CPU doesn’t take the hit. The OEM ones can also be found for around $50USD online, so they’re not all that expensive. You only get the card, CD, and the joystick port dongle, but why would you need more?

I bought my OEM Audigy 2 for $40USD including shipping of Ebay. I’m happy with it for what I need.