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

Written by Michael Larabel in Hardware on 1 September 2020 at 02:02 AM EDT. 50 Comments
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.

The SoundBlaster AE-7 was released last year as a "hi-res PCI-e DAC and Amp sound card" with "audiophile-grade components" with Sound Core3D audio processor, but up to now hasn't worked at all under Linux.

Creative does acknowledge their lack of Linux support and writes, "Creative does not provide an official (thus does not directly support) Linux driver, however, there are development efforts in the ALSA community to support SoundCore 3D based Creative sound cards. Users may wish to contact ALSA community for the drivers."

Now about a year after launch, thanks to Connor McAdams' great work there are the AE-7 patches queued in sound.git's for-next branch. That is material for the Linux 5.10 merge window coming up in September and to the ca0132 HDA driver is this SoundBlaster AE-7 support implemented over the course of several hundred lines of code to wire it all up including the various controls.

A pity it took so long due to Creative not working on the support themselves or sponsoring said work, but at least it's out there for those using one of these $200+ PCIe sound cards. There is also out already the SoundBlaster AE-9 but no Linux support yet.
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