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Anyone recommend a good sound card?

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Vishera

Member
Joined
Jul 7, 2013
Buying it as a b-day gift for someone. Just looking for a decent entry level card that'll give a boost in quality over a motherboard chipset, between $30-$50. Also wondering if there's any noticeable difference between surround sound and stereo speakers?
 

EarthDog

Gulper Nozzle Co-Owner
Joined
Dec 15, 2008
Location
Buckeyes!
Which motherboard chipset? If its ALC1150, you are going to need a good set of speakers or cans to hear the difference over a $30-50 sound card in many cases.
 
OP
Vishera

Vishera

Member
Joined
Jul 7, 2013
I'm considering two different things here: Surround or stereo speakers, whichever is better, w/ sound card, or speakers w/o sound card. Which would make a bigger difference to a high schooler playing CoD? Is it better to get really good speakers instead of getting speakers and a sound card? Trying to spend less than $100 here.
 
OP
Vishera

Vishera

Member
Joined
Jul 7, 2013
I believe he has an ASRock Z97 Anniversary. Looking at the specs it says Realtek ALC892 with ELNA audio caps, if that's the info you were looking for.
 

wingman99

Member
Joined
Dec 10, 2003
I believe he has an ASRock Z97 Anniversary. Looking at the specs it says Realtek ALC892 with ELNA audio caps, if that's the info you were looking for.

ALC892 sound Codec has DACs with 95dB SNR
http://www.realtek.com.tw/products/productsView.aspx?Langid=1&PFid=28&Level=5&Conn=4&ProdID=284

Creative Sound Blaster Card AUDIGY RX SNR is rated 106dB
E-MU chipset for advanced effects processing

Dual microphone inputs

Super low-latency audio recordings

Control and customize your audio

Fine-tune your EAX settings

Premium Sound Blaster quality

Bundled Creative recording software

Dedicated high-quality headphone amp

Enjoy cinematic surround sound

$55.99 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produ...BxJ1W-ZGVUZktWBG3VF-AaAu1s8P8HAQ&gclsrc=aw.ds

If you only have $100.00 to spend I would go for the surround sound 5.1 speakers, you can hear what is going on behind you in gaming.
 

NiHaoMike

dBa Member
Joined
Mar 1, 2013
If he already has a 2.1 set, just add two more speakers for the rears to make a 4.1 setup, using the better ones for the fronts. Places like Goodwill sometimes have good deals on decent speakers. For an amplifier, there are cheap but decent units available on Amazon.
https://smile.amazon.com/dp/B01I2LYJWI
 
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Vishera

Vishera

Member
Joined
Jul 7, 2013
Alright, thanks guys. I kinda figured at his board's price point there would be a decent audio chip on it but I wasn't too sure. Might not be an insanely advanced setup but I'm sure for what little experience he has thus far it'll blow his mind LOL.
 

wingman99

Member
Joined
Dec 10, 2003
I use to use the creative sound card however I just pulled it 3 weeks ago to sell. Now I'm using on board Realtek ALC887 codec for gaming also music and I can't tell the difference with the good speakers that I have.
 

Mpegger

Member
Joined
Nov 28, 2001
Just a suggestion to think about; no matter what chipset the onboard uses for sound, you can bypass it with a pure digital signal over HDMI to a HT receiver. Money would be better spent on a decent HT receiver and speakers, though of course this option would be more then a $100 budget would allow. However, you could start with just a HT receiver + 2 speaker + sub setup, and later on buy matching speakers to expand to 5.1 or more.
 
OP
Vishera

Vishera

Member
Joined
Jul 7, 2013
Just a suggestion to think about; no matter what chipset the onboard uses for sound, you can bypass it with a pure digital signal over HDMI to a HT receiver. Money would be better spent on a decent HT receiver and speakers, though of course this option would be more then a $100 budget would allow. However, you could start with just a HT receiver + 2 speaker + sub setup, and later on buy matching speakers to expand to 5.1 or more.

Yeeeeeah, I think i'll leave that to his parents. But still good info to give him if he ever decides he doesn't like the sound quality.
 

[email protected]

Member
Joined
Apr 7, 2016
Location
Israel
My Soundcard is really good and i got it for less than 100$.
You do have to play a little with the drivers but you can find answers for your problems online.
Its : ASUS XONAR DGX
Also its 5.1 surroundsound (Tested with my Roccat Kave 5.1.