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AWE64 or Ensoniq 1370?

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funnyperson1

Senior Member
Joined
Jun 16, 2001
hey, i was trying to see if my onboard audio was holding back my oc and so i looked to see what i had lying around and found a AWE64 and Ensoniq1370 PCI....which is better?

looking at old reviews i found that many peopel were very attached to the Creative card and it seems to have amazing driver support from old days when creative almost seemed to care about its customers lol...

ive already installed the AWE in my one ISA slot and it seems to sound fine (one speaker on my sony stereo died so im using crappy labtec computer speakers, so i think my speakers would limit sound quality if anything)....but if you think i would gain on either my sound experience greatly or my oc a bit by swapping cards tell me :)...i never really worked with ISA stuff before:eek: ...theres always a first time though....

also do you know if either supports 3D sound? i didnt think so
 

Samoyed

Member
Joined
Oct 20, 2002
Location
VA
The AWE 64 and Awe 64 Gold, using an ESS chip, had a very short life and was quickly supplanted by the first version of the SB Live PCI card. It would be considered a "legacy" device at this point. I have one in a BX board hooked up to some cheap speakers with a cheap sub. It sounds fine to me for general gaming.

I'm not familiar with the Ensonic.

BTW Creative tech support has always sucked and they have never been above pulling crap on their customers. I remmber getting a GF2MXDDR Creative card. I thought I had DDR ram but after practically beating it out of Creative, they admitted that their DDR was only running at a 64 bit wide bus vs the regular DDR which every other company used was running at 128 bits. In fact Creative's GF2MXDDR was SLOWER that the gf2mx's that used SDR ram. I returned it after I got terrible 3d MArk Scores and called their tech support. The guy told me I had a defective card but I found out later I had not installed the VIA 4 in 1 drivers. DOH!
 
OP
funnyperson1

funnyperson1

Senior Member
Joined
Jun 16, 2001
well, yeah cheap is the definition of the speakers im running....and while i hadnt thought to try lowering ram settings before disabling my CMI 8738 onboard, my oc is going well and from a little gaming and music listening the sound is clear, no anomalies, thats all i ask, and software 3d audio is supported
 

quegyboe

Member
Joined
Dec 20, 2000
Location
BC Canada
I personally like the AWE64. It has nice sound, and it allows you to use the Volume Control in Windows to adjust bass and trebble. Sounds good enough to me!
 
OP
funnyperson1

funnyperson1

Senior Member
Joined
Jun 16, 2001
actually yeah, i think i will keep it in here...until i get decent 2.1 speakers for my CMI onboard then ill use this as it definately is not hurting my oc :)..and the sound quality is good pretty sharp, thoughi really miss my Sony setup :(
 

Tebore

Member
Joined
Aug 15, 2001
Location
Toronto,Canada(I can see you....)
That(AWE64) was a great sound card. No crackles or pops. In someways it was better than my SB live 5.1 Though it lacks EAX and Directsound. That card still rocks I use it in my other rig. For a MP3 box that card is better than any of the new cards. Only really bad thing was it could only use up to 4 speakers in quadraphonic sound.
 
OP
funnyperson1

funnyperson1

Senior Member
Joined
Jun 16, 2001
Tebore said:
That(AWE64) was a great sound card. No crackles or pops. In someways it was better than my SB live 5.1 Though it lacks EAX and Directsound. That card still rocks I use it in my other rig. For a MP3 box that card is better than any of the new cards. Only really bad thing was it could only use up to 4 speakers in quadraphonic sound.

actually what made me put the AWE64 card in was a lot of SBlive owners saying that the sound quality and driver quality of their old AWE64 was better than that of their live, and some even switched back.....i am impressed seing as i pulled this out of a ghetto pentium system:D
 

larva

Inactive Moderator
Joined
Jul 12, 2002
It's a matter of cpu utilization. "Real" sound blasters like the AWE64 where the product of a time when you could charge 99-199 dollars for a sound card. The have actual hardware on the card to meet the processing demands of sound reproduction. (And the the chips are not ESS... lol). I still have a AWE64 around here someplace, and I would still be using it if I had an ISA slot. Being a "real" soundblaster means compatibility is assured. Although the AWE64 really brought no functional improvement over the earlier (and cheaper) SB32, two channel sound gets no better than these cards produce, with very low levels of cpu utilization.

The 1370 ensoniq (same exact card as the SB128) is a solution for an era of $20 sound cards. As such most processing takes place in the software driver, relying on the cpu to excecute it. As such the load placed on the cpu by sound reproduction is immense, many times that of a card like an AWE64. Not only are ensoniqs rather ordinary from a sound quality standpoint, but hurt fps noticeably in games as a result of the increased load placed on the cpu.

No contest here....
 
OP
funnyperson1

funnyperson1

Senior Member
Joined
Jun 16, 2001
larva said:
It's a matter of cpu utilization. "Real" sound blasters like the AWE64 where the product of a time when you could charge 99-199 dollars for a sound card. The have actual hardware on the card to meet the processing demands of sound reproduction. (And the the chips are not ESS... lol). I still have a AWE64 around here someplace, and I would still be using it if I had an ISA slot. Being a "real" soundblaster means compatibility is assured. Although the AWE64 really brought no functional improvement over the earlier (and cheaper) SB32, two channel sound gets no better than these cards produce, with very low levels of cpu utilization.

The 1370 ensoniq (same exact card as the SB128) is a solution for an era of $20 sound cards. As such most processing takes place in the software driver, relying on the cpu to excecute it. As such the load placed on the cpu by sound reproduction is immense, many times that of a card like an AWE64. Not only are ensoniqs rather ordinary from a sound quality standpoint, but hurt fps noticeably in games as a result of the increased load placed on the cpu.

No contest here....

woah thanks man...thats great to hear...i thought this had software sound processing
 

JDXNC

Member
Joined
Jan 16, 2002
When I upgraded my GF's rig I actually was determined to get a Socket A mobo with an ISA slot so she can use her AWE64, its an awsome car in my mind, ahead of its time perhaps, and it works with ANY OS without installing drivers manaully. I also had an AWE32, just as good but with the simm slots on it it made it BIG!
 

Samoyed

Member
Joined
Oct 20, 2002
Location
VA
U R right. It's the EMU8000 chip on the Awe 64. doh! I was looking at this other card I had that was an ESS. I thought it was the Awe 64. Question now is : Where is the Awe 64 I had?
 

HeXenViRii

Member
Joined
May 11, 2002
Location
Right near the Beach, FL
i had a generic sound card that was [email protected] out at a 150fsb , i thru in the 64awe rock solid , absolutely no sound deformations. I was so happy i even thru a heatsink on the big chip in the back closest to the isa connectors (that chip gets toasty) :D and that bass controller in the volume controls give it extra points !!!
 

cmcquistion

IT Director Senior
Joined
Oct 15, 2001
Location
Tennessee
I used an AWE64 for about two years. One of the best soundcards I ever had. Far better sound recording quality than the SBLive. I actually did some recording with the AWE64, back when I was first getting into recording. It was great. Big dissapointment with the SBLive, though.