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Creative SoundBlaster AE-7 Sound Card To Be Supported By Linux 5.10

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  • Creative SoundBlaster AE-7 Sound Card To Be Supported By Linux 5.10

    Phoronix: Creative SoundBlaster AE-7 Sound Card To Be Supported By Linux 5.10

    Creative Labs last year released the high-end SoundBlaster AE-7 sound card. Sadly the company is back in their state where they do not provide official Linux support, but coming up for Linux 5.10 is the support for this sound card thanks to Connor McAdams who has worked on supporting prior SoundBlaster hardware under Linux...

    http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?pag...ter-AE-7-Linux

  • #2
    Creative still making sound cards?

    384/32 is a big lie until somebody makes the impossible 192dB SNR DAC...

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    • #3
      For anybody considering this, I'd suggest getting an external dac/headphone amp combo instead. Something like JDS Labs Atom or Topping DX7 Pro.

      Buying Creative crap is basically throwing your money down the toilet.

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      • #4
        My second Hobby is diy Hifi audiostuff. Just recently I was very surprised what onboard is delivering nowadays.

        The onboard sound of the asus ws pro x570 ace is really splendid. They have a Realtek chip not the premium Wolfson, ESS, AD or TI / BurrBrown DAC's.
        But a sophisticated layout with separated PCB layers and good EMI suppression/mitigation. Some Nichicon Muse Caps. Well made.

        I haven't had a recent Soundblaster. So I'm not able to compare it but onboard is reaching a new level. They (Creative) will have trouble justifing the extra costs for a dedicated card.
        Last edited by CochainComplex; 09-01-2020, 05:51 AM.

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        • #5
          Same old Creative, excellent hardware, crappy software.

          Back when I bought them, I had a couple of their soundcards (before I knew any better). A budget one at first, then upgraded to an XFi. The drivers and software were even bad on Windows.

          Honestly, it's probably for the best that the community is writing the driver, it'll probably be better than whatever Creative could write. Props to the author of these patches.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by ayumu View Post
            For anybody considering this, I'd suggest getting an external dac/headphone amp combo instead. Something like JDS Labs Atom or Topping DX7 Pro.

            Buying Creative crap is basically throwing your money down the toilet.
            Cheap USB DACs deliver good performance too.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by numacross View Post
              the 30€ Sharkoon Gaming DAC Pro S has some "...faint background hiss I was able to hear whenever I connected low impedance headphones..".

              For 30€ that is acceptable for a 200€ card it should not have any hiss...for me this does not sound like an alternative. Well I havn't heard the SoundBlaster but I doubt they hiss.
              Hiss is often some groundloop or EMI issue and can be considered as bad board design if the DACs are good. Although I have to admit the AE-7 PCB looks a bit cluttered. AE-9 looks way better from PCB design + more decoupling caps.

              The onboard soundcard I have mentioned don't hiss either.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by kaprikawn View Post
                Same old Creative, excellent hardware, crappy software.

                Back when I bought them, I had a couple of their soundcards (before I knew any better). A budget one at first, then upgraded to an XFi. The drivers and software were even bad on Windows.

                Honestly, it's probably for the best that the community is writing the driver, it'll probably be better than whatever Creative could write. Props to the author of these patches.
                Imagine, if they were certain other vendor they would prevent the community from supporting their hardware their own way via "signed un-redistributable firmwares"


                kudos to creative for not getting in the way, I understand if a company doesn't want to do the work themselves, what I do not get is the policy of putting sticks in the user's bike tire.
                Last edited by JPFSanders; 09-01-2020, 06:35 AM.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by CochainComplex View Post

                  the 30€ Sharkoon Gaming DAC Pro S has some "...faint background hiss I was able to hear whenever I connected low impedance headphones..".
                  Well of course it's not an audiophile device, but for 15€ they provide excellent quality. Most people don't have headphones that would exhibit the hiss.

                  Originally posted by CochainComplex View Post
                  For 30€ that is acceptable for a 200€ card it should not have any hiss...for me this does not sound like an alternative. Well I havn't heard the SoundBlaster but I doubt they hiss.
                  Hiss is often some groundloop or EMI issue and can be considered as bad board design if the DACs are good. Although I have to admit the AE-7 PCB looks a bit cluttered. AE-9 looks way better from PCB design + more decoupling caps.
                  Internal PCIe sound cards have higher chances of picking up interference. I've had both a X-Fi and a ASUS Xonar that would sometimes pick up sounds when the PC was under heavy load (and this was with a high-end Seasonic PSU). Having a GPU that eats a few hundred watts above the PCIe sound card can have an effect regardless of how good the shielding is. Since then I've been using USB DACs exclusively and haven't had that problem.

                  Originally posted by CochainComplex View Post
                  The onboard soundcard I have mentioned don't hiss either.
                  Have you tested the same headphones as the Sharkoon DAC was tested with?

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                  • #10
                    I use a Asus Xonar U5, which is a external USB DAC. What I like the most about it is that you can keep your headphones plugged in and switch outputs with a push of a button, something I didn't find on a Creative model.

                    Its Linux support is okay, meaning if plugged it works out of the box, with the inconvenience of not shutting off the speakers (a ALSA bug) when you press the switch output button, but I can live with that, since I can power off my amplifier with ease.

                    This model in particular apparently have a bad reputation on going kaput, with people complaining about it on the internet. My first unit I bought used and lasted a couple years before curiously stopping to work on Intel systems (desktop and laptop), while working fine on AMD ones, until it finally died for good last year. I suspect my USB hub may have caused it, since is a powered model that I was using it without the 5v power adapter. So I got used to let the headphones plugged all the time, and after watching the gold coating of the plug of my expensive (for me) headphone wear off, I bought a brand new unit with a 3 year warranty for a really low price, so I'm sticking with it for a while until I find a substitute from a reasonable price after it dies. And this time I'm plugging it directly on the motherboard, not on the USB hub.

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