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  • Khudsa
    started a topic Sound Card recommendation

    Sound Card recommendation

    A recommendation for a good affordable sound card that work for Linux?

    I have searched and Asus Xonar DX seems good and supported by ALSA .

    I don't understand very much about actual sound cards, brands etc.

    It's not for professional use, is more for music (HI-FI stereo, headphones etc.) and some gaming.

    Thanks.

  • TurbulentToothpick
    replied
    Hi, this article was just published a few days ago! Highly relevant to this topic, though they don't address linux usage.

    Asus' budget Xonar DGX and DSX sound cards reviewed
    http://techreport.com/articles.x/23358

    I came here looking for a recommendation for a new linux sound card. I've been using an old Aureal Vortex 2 since it came out in the late 90s or whenever that was!

    Leave a comment:


  • schwarzygesetzlos
    replied
    gentoo user reporting

    I run a ASUS Xonar DG which is a cheapo PCI-card with good quality (http://techreport.com/articles.x/19997). It uses a CMI8788 Oxygen HD Audio chip which is flawlessly supported in the kernel for some time. I think I had 2.6.38 running at the time I bought the card... Also pulseaudio works nicely with this card.

    What it lacks is 5.1/7.1 audio decoding done on the card. But if you connect it via optical SP/DIF to an AV-Reciever (which does the decoding) that doesn't matter. It uses only little power and does not require an additional connector like the ASUS Xonar DX 7.1. But if you have no AV-Reciever and require 5.1/7.1 the Xonar DX is sure the way to go, like dimko said!

    Leave a comment:


  • dimko
    replied
    gentoo user reporting

    Xonar DX is freaking awesome.

    It was first PCI-E Card I could find on market(A few years back i had only 1 pci slot taken for wireless card on Asus MoBo). It does require floppy power connection.(it will work without it, but will sound much more quiet, however i don't know if it wont perm damage card itself) But there are IDE to floppy connectors for power, so it's not problem. And I also have one of those attached to power supply.

    It has mature drivers built into Linux kernel, so its compatible with pretty much any sane distro. Drivers were mature since moment I bought it and thats a few years ago.

    it has 1x PCI-e, which means its fully compatible with PCI-E 16X. Don't worry about size difference. It fits just fine.
    It doesn't have all bells and whistles that Creative can possible have, but problem is, all those bells and whistles are not available in Linux anyway.

    I am not audiophile, so didn't test it with Jack, but I don't think you will hear anything that I didn't hear. After all I am only perfect and you are only human :P And funnily enough, good set of cheap ear plugs(Panasonic or something? Not Sony for sure!) can provide very nice sound with it. Deep Bass. No sound delays were noticed. I have tested over several thousands of hours with Heroes Of Newerth. APPROVED! :P

    All 5.1 channels work. Were checked with Creative Speakers(crap, doesn't ever buy any wireless products from them, bought device, it failed in 2 months. Replacement didn't live for month, at that time I gave up. 700 euros down the toilet, will avoid creativein the future)

    Leave a comment:


  • RealNC
    replied
    Originally posted by benmoran View Post
    The cons are that there is probably a bit more lag, being a USB sound device.
    Nope, not really. USB does not introduce any relevant latencies. I've seen home studios with USB sound cards that come with ASIO drivers. They can get 4ms latency out of them, which is pretty much the same they get with PCI cards. 4ms is waaaay lower than what ALSA uses to begin with (ALSA has about 20ms latency by default.)

    Leave a comment:


  • benmoran
    replied
    After a lot of thought, I went a completely different route. I ended up buying a Topping TP30. It's a small, but high quality t-class amplifier with a built-in USB sound card. I'm running this into a small pair of bookshelf speakers, though it does also have a headphone jack on the front.
    The pros of a setup like this is that you avoid pretty much any interference due to the sound card being in the amp, and not the PC. You also get something that can actually drive speakers, unlike most PC sound cards.
    The cons are that there is probably a bit more lag, being a USB sound device. It's a purely stereo setup, so no fancy dsp or surround features. There is also no mic input. I have a seperate pair of USB surround headphones that I use for games, and my webcam also has a mic on it, so this wasn't an issue for me.

    Just something to think about.

    Leave a comment:


  • RealNC
    replied
    Originally posted by crazycheese View Post
    For desktop, audio hardware is dead since 1995. For normal use, just standard analog codec is enough. If you need something with less noise/signal, do as suggested above - buy "audio interface". You don?t need soundcard for digital since its noiseless and DAC-free.

    Creative is crap, as its high-noise on analog outs (and masking that). I don?t know why would you buy sonar?
    For Dolby Pro Logic encoding and Dolby Headphone (D1; the D2 also has DTS.) For games, the driver can also be important. On-board supports at most 24 channels. Xonar supports 128. Creative's X-Fi can mix up to 128 in the actual hardware. That means that the game is less likely to cut-out audio due to reaching the 24 channels limit.

    So, no, audio hardware is certainly not dead. Well, at least for Windows. That stuff isn't working on Linux to begin with. The only other thing I can think of that also affects Linux is the stereo cross-talk and dynamic range. With on-board that doesn't perform very well in this regard, the sound is going to sound slightly "garbled" when compared to a Xonar. But good luck ABX-ing this without $200 headphones, so for most users it's not an issue.
    Last edited by RealNC; 01-19-2012, 11:08 AM.

    Leave a comment:


  • crazycheese
    replied
    For desktop, audio hardware is dead since 1995. For normal use, just standard analog codec is enough. If you need something with less noise/signal, do as suggested above - buy "audio interface". You don?t need soundcard for digital since its noiseless and DAC-free.

    Creative is crap, as its high-noise on analog outs (and masking that). I don?t know why would you buy sonar?

    Leave a comment:


  • MaxDaniel
    replied
    I have found ASUS Xonar D2X is best among all. The best point about ASUS is audio performance which is superb as compare to others. Another good point about it is the reasonable price.

    Leave a comment:


  • RealNC
    replied
    Originally posted by curaga View Post
    This is new to me, wikipedia says PCI allows 25W and PCI-E 75W?
    Maybe they mean the PCI-e x16 slots (the ones where you put the graphics card in) not the small x1 ones. Sound cards are used on PCI-e x1 slots.

    Leave a comment:

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