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Old 03-16-2009, 03:05 PM   #51 (permalink)
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Default Re: Which sound card?

I see, thanks. The ASUS Xonar Essence STX seems to be more of an analog card though. I wouldn't make much use of the analog outputs on it, since the only analog out I have is a pair of headphones. That Dolby Headphone technology sounds nice though. It would be nice if there was a card that had all the features of the Xonar but without the analog outputs, just to bring down the price.

Regarding the Dolby Live technology, does it just convert the analog signals to digital and leave the digital signals as they are? For instance if you're listening to an mp3 it will convert that to digital virtual 5.1, but if you're watching a dvd/hd movie with ac3 5.1 sound it will leave that signal alone and just pass it through?

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Old 03-16-2009, 04:38 PM   #52 (permalink)
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Default Re: Which sound card?

it should have an option to turn it on and off

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Old 03-18-2009, 04:28 AM   #53 (permalink)
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Default Re: Which sound card?

Well, all sound is analogue. The only difference between the digital outputs and analogue outputs is when/where/by what the sound is converted to analogue.
I'm not sure how the DAC on the sony reciever is, so I don't know how it compares to the Essence STX. Though to take advantage of 7.1 sound, you'd need to use the receiver.

In terms of sound quality:
Xonar Essence STX > Xonar D2X > Auzentech X-Fi ~= Xonar DX > Creative X-Fi ~= Audigy 2 (X-Fi supports games/positional sound better)

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