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Thread: Sound Card Upgrade

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2011
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    Derbyshire, United Kingdom
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    Default Sound Card Upgrade

    Hi all,

    I'm sure many of you have seen these threads far too often. I've done a search and have found a number of threads to be of help. However, life's all about asking questions so here I go

    I'm looking at upgrading from my onboard sound on my Dell Optiplex Gx620 to either a Sound Blaster Audigy SE by Creative, or an Asus Xonar DG (I've read bad things about this card so any experience of this under 11.4 would be fantastic). I need low profile size cards as my little Dell is the Desktop variety. I'm not fussed about the bracket, I normally take them off if there's no LP Bracket in the box

    It's main use will be playback of lots of music as well as some movies. The sound is going to my Sherwood Hi-Fi amplifier, so just a better output is what I'm looking for, to make music a bit more enjoyable. Any suggestions are greatly appreciated

    Thanks all,

    Tom

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Austin - Texas
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    10,140
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    Smile Re: Sound Card Upgrade

    There is no doubt I would recommend using the Creative card. Here is a link to the specifications.

    Creative Sound Blaster Audigy SE PCI Sound Card | Creative Labs Online Store

    I use a Creative sound card with an Optical Output but my old Creative SB Audigy sound card has the I/O module and supports Optical and Coaxial outputs. SPDIF normally suggest a COAXIAL output. The I/O modules from Creative seem to be very hard to find and purchase. I highly recommend using COAXIAL or Optical to connect to any receiver as it really works great. I have had tremendously good luck with Creative in Linux, but some of the cheaper sound cards seem to be a pain to really get the promised digital output in a compatible form of COAX or Optical as many really only provide analog, no matter what the literature might suggest without an additional online hard to execute purchase for such items as an I/O module. On the other hand, the final audio quality is very good with Creative and ultimately worth the effort in my opinion. When X-Fi cards first came out, they were not supported in Linux, but now they are. I only ever purchased one Creative sound card that did not work with Linux since X-Fi support has been added to Linux.

    Thank You,
    My Blog: https://forums.opensuse.org/blogs/jdmcdaniel3/

    Software efficiency halves every 18 months, thus compensating for Moore's Law

    Its James again from Austin, Texas

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Derbyshire, United Kingdom
    Posts
    56

    Default Re: Sound Card Upgrade

    Hi James,

    Thanks very much for the feedback James. I think I will go with the the sounblaster audigy. It's going straight to the Hi-Fi amp, so all I need really is a better output source. I'm not going to be using SPDIF just bog standard 3.5 to phono, as my retro amp is all it has ha ha. But daaaaaamn, it sounds nice

    Thanks for the help, and for the info on the expansion cards, I may invest in one to keep safe for later if I do buy a new amp.

    Yours,

    Tom

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Austin - Texas
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    10,140
    Blog Entries
    48

    Smile Re: Sound Card Upgrade

    Hi James,

    Thanks very much for the feedback James. I think I will go with the the sounblaster audigy. It's going straight to the Hi-Fi amp, so all I need really is a better output source. I'm not going to be using SPDIF just bog standard 3.5 to phono, as my retro amp is all it has ha ha. But daaaaaamn, it sounds nice

    Thanks for the help, and for the info on the expansion cards, I may invest in one to keep safe for later if I do buy a new amp.

    Yours,

    Tom
    That sounds good. Be sure to come back and tell us how it is working out for you. Keep your eye out for a good deal on a Receiver too. Two Christmases ago, a local retailer had a Sony 5.1 500 watt model with Optical and Coaxial inputs with a really nice display for under $150 and I have it working with my HTPC with an Optical connection. I am still using openSUSE 11.3 on it and I use Kaffeine/KDE3 to play movies in full 5.1 Dolby Digital. It works like a champ.

    Thank You,
    My Blog: https://forums.opensuse.org/blogs/jdmcdaniel3/

    Software efficiency halves every 18 months, thus compensating for Moore's Law

    Its James again from Austin, Texas

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