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Old Jan 20, 2019, 10:03 AM   #1
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Hapatingjaky
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Default EVGA Nu Audio The ****?

https://www.evga.com/articles/01281/evga-nu-audio/

So I though the Discrete Audio market was dead?

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Old Jan 20, 2019, 11:13 AM   #2
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Hey, it's nice to have a good headphone amp. I'm still rocking an Asus xonar essence stx in my desktop (which I haven't really upgraded in 7 years )
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Old Jan 20, 2019, 10:59 PM   #3
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I so badly wanted an audio card at one point. I've got a Focusrite interface now, and don't really care any more.
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Old Jan 21, 2019, 09:33 AM   #4
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Still a good idea to have a sound card for a higher quality DAC

I still have my tried-and-true Xonar DX as a DAC with my Schiit Magni 2 Uber amping my cans. Works great. I was looking at a Xonar Essence STX II yesterday at Microcenter.. but for $260 I can't justify it when my Xonar DX works as well as it does and I have no need for the amp on the card.
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Old Jan 21, 2019, 11:24 AM   #5
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On the one hand it's nice to have a high quality soundcard option. On the other, this is literally a USB DAC bolted to a PCIe card. The "gaming" tag is highly questionable as it has no analog 5.1/7.1 output, DD Live/DTS Connect, or headphone HRTF processing.
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Old Jan 21, 2019, 11:27 AM   #6
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It has the most important gaming feature, RGB lighting.
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Old Jan 21, 2019, 12:16 PM   #7
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It's tempting, but my Xonar U7 is still chugging along fine.
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Old Jan 23, 2019, 08:39 AM   #8
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I love a good soundcard, still using X-Fi Titanium HD. No onboard sound comes close to it.

This evga soundcard have some pros and cons.

Pros:
-High quality components; discrete resistors, audio caps, separate clock for 44.1kHz and 48kHz, headamp with volume control etc etc etc.

Cons:
-WTF with USB based XMOS DSP? It didn't offer goodies like Dolby Digital, DTS, EAX or anything to add value to it that even basic onboard has some of it. Also it need additional PCIe to USB bridge that only guzzle power.
-external SATA power. Uhh why? Don't like the idea to fit external power to soundcard. That made an more cable clutter.
-RGB, this nonsense should stay out of any soundcard.
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Old Jan 23, 2019, 08:58 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by Apocalypsee View Post
-RGB, this nonsense should stay out of any soundcard.
It should have stayed out of PC's period and saved for when Disco is popular again.
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Old Jan 23, 2019, 11:05 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Apocalypsee View Post
I love a good soundcard, still using X-Fi Titanium HD. No onboard sound comes close to it.

This evga soundcard have some pros and cons.

Pros:
-High quality components; discrete resistors, audio caps, separate clock for 44.1kHz and 48kHz, headamp with volume control etc etc etc.

Cons:
-WTF with USB based XMOS DSP? It didn't offer goodies like Dolby Digital, DTS, EAX or anything to add value to it that even basic onboard has some of it. Also it need additional PCIe to USB bridge that only guzzle power.
-external SATA power. Uhh why? Don't like the idea to fit external power to soundcard. That made an more cable clutter.
-RGB, this nonsense should stay out of any soundcard.
Dolby Digital and DTX you must purchase the codec from the Windows Store... No Soundcard Manufacturers will support it anymore, even Creative and Realtek won't offer the support. Its a Windows 10 thing.

EAX is dead, killed by Microsoft with Windows 7. Its why Creative offered that wrapper sofware whatever it was called but killed support shortly after the release.
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Old Jan 23, 2019, 11:31 AM   #11
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Nice to see, but odd hardware choices. I really wish this sorta stuff would come back. The 3D audio in most games is kinda meh compared to where it used to be.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hapatingjaky View Post
Dolby Digital and DTX you must purchase the codec from the Windows Store... No Soundcard Manufacturers will support it anymore, even Creative and Realtek won't offer the support. Its a Windows 10 thing.

EAX is dead, killed by Microsoft with Windows 7. Its why Creative offered that wrapper sofware whatever it was called but killed support shortly after the release.
Not entirely accurate. MS killed the Directaudio API with Windows 7 as they changed the audio stack. This was one of the most commonly used API's to do accelerated 3D audio in games and EAX was layered in. When MS killed Directaudio, you lost the 3D audio in games that used it and the EAX effects that ran through it. EAX still worked fine in Windows 7 if the game used a different audio API like OpenAL. Bleh it's a difference of no consequence. It's still dead.
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Old Jan 23, 2019, 01:38 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hapatingjaky View Post
Dolby Digital and DTX you must purchase the codec from the Windows Store... No Soundcard Manufacturers will support it anymore, even Creative and Realtek won't offer the support. Its a Windows 10 thing.
Different issue. You need to buy a license to use Dolby Atmos for Headphones (simulated positional audio sound over stereo). Windows Sonic for Headphones does the same thing and is free. Dolby Digital Live and DTS Connect (encoding 5.1 channels for S/PDIF) work perfectly fine in Windows 10 as long as your audio device driver supports the feature.

If you use this EVGA card for gaming, all the game sees is basic stereo out. Some games natively support positional audio over headphones, but it's very hit or miss. Sure, you can enable Dolby Atmos or Windows Sonic simulated 7.1 but now you've just kneecapped your $250 32-bit 384kHz card as both those solutions lock your output to 16-bit 48kHz.
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Old Jan 23, 2019, 02:02 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GTwannabe View Post
Different issue. You need to buy a license to use Dolby Atmos for Headphones (simulated positional audio sound over stereo). Windows Sonic for Headphones does the same thing and is free. Dolby Digital Live and DTS Connect (encoding 5.1 channels for S/PDIF) work perfectly fine in Windows 10 as long as your audio device driver supports the feature.

If you use this EVGA card for gaming, all the game sees is basic stereo out. Some games natively support positional audio over headphones, but it's very hit or miss. Sure, you can enable Dolby Atmos or Windows Sonic simulated 7.1 but now you've just kneecapped your $250 32-bit 384kHz card as both those solutions lock your output to 16-bit 48kHz.
Not to mention the audio files for most games probably isn't sampled above 16-bit 44.1 or 48Khz anyway.
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Old Jan 24, 2019, 05:33 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NWR_Midnight View Post
It should have stayed out of PC's period and saved for when Disco is popular again.
Amen for that!

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Originally Posted by GTwannabe View Post
Different issue. You need to buy a license to use Dolby Atmos for Headphones (simulated positional audio sound over stereo). Windows Sonic for Headphones does the same thing and is free. Dolby Digital Live and DTS Connect (encoding 5.1 channels for S/PDIF) work perfectly fine in Windows 10 as long as your audio device driver supports the feature.

If you use this EVGA card for gaming, all the game sees is basic stereo out. Some games natively support positional audio over headphones, but it's very hit or miss. Sure, you can enable Dolby Atmos or Windows Sonic simulated 7.1 but now you've just kneecapped your $250 32-bit 384kHz card as both those solutions lock your output to 16-bit 48kHz.
Yes that's what I meant. Thank you for writing that for me Without these things, there are no point of buying this card instead of cheaper external DAC if you really want pure audio quality. Heck, even Realtek ALC1150 have better software feature than this, look at page 11 of its datasheet. Its optional but hey its there, and an impressive list too.
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If 3 fans left the station at 10:30am cooling at a temp of 63c and one fan was derailed by a stray sata cable on the track, how long would it take all 3 fans to get on Seyiji's last nerve?

(a) Mmmm donuts
(b) 70c
(c) Hey there muscly arms, why the long face?
(d) Must use fire.
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Old Jan 24, 2019, 01:44 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GTwannabe View Post
Different issue. You need to buy a license to use Dolby Atmos for Headphones (simulated positional audio sound over stereo). Windows Sonic for Headphones does the same thing and is free. Dolby Digital Live and DTS Connect (encoding 5.1 channels for S/PDIF) work perfectly fine in Windows 10 as long as your audio device driver supports the feature.

If you use this EVGA card for gaming, all the game sees is basic stereo out. Some games natively support positional audio over headphones, but it's very hit or miss. Sure, you can enable Dolby Atmos or Windows Sonic simulated 7.1 but now you've just kneecapped your $250 32-bit 384kHz card as both those solutions lock your output to 16-bit 48kHz.
In my experience Atmos Headphone and Windows Sonic are both pretty bad. The best 3D headphone virtualization is either Creative SBX or CMSS. It's the only reason I have a Creative Sound Card. For just music listening or movies either an external DAC or an external AV receiver connected via HDMI are perfectly fine options.
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Old Jan 24, 2019, 01:47 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Apocalypsee View Post
Amen for that!


Yes that's what I meant. Thank you for writing that for me Without these things, there are no point of buying this card instead of cheaper external DAC if you really want pure audio quality. Heck, even Realtek ALC1150 have better software feature than this, look at page 11 of its datasheet. Its optional but hey its there, and an impressive list too.
I agree with you that people shouldn't buy this card, but I do think the Creative sound cards are still worth considering for SBX virtualization. It takes the full 7.1 signal and processes it down to headphones, it's not just trying to expand a stereo signal to something greater. You can definitely hear a difference.
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Old Jan 24, 2019, 01:58 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by Nagorak View Post
In my experience Atmos Headphone and Windows Sonic are both pretty bad. The best 3D headphone virtualization is either Creative SBX or CMSS. It's the only reason I have a Creative Sound Card. For just music listening or movies either an external DAC or an external AV receiver connected via HDMI are perfectly fine options.
I have a SoundBlaster Z sitting in my desk drawer because of horrible driver bugs Creative never bothered to fix (last driver release for this current Creative product was March 2017). When you can only play games for 30 minutes before the driver sharts and shuffles audio channels to the wrong speakers it's a problem...
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Old Jan 24, 2019, 04:18 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GTwannabe View Post
I have a SoundBlaster Z sitting in my desk drawer because of horrible driver bugs Creative never bothered to fix (last driver release for this current Creative product was March 2017). When you can only play games for 30 minutes before the driver sharts and shuffles audio channels to the wrong speakers it's a problem...
Just curious: Is it all games, or just certain games, or just one? The only reason I am asking, as an example, is Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six's last patch screwed the sound all up, where at random times, the sound does exactly what you are talking about, specially with the left and right channel getting switched. It happens on all makes and models of sound cards. Is it possible it is a game bug?
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Old Jan 24, 2019, 05:07 PM   #19
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Meh. Optical out from motherboard to "sound processor" of choice.
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Old Jan 24, 2019, 05:31 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NWR_Midnight View Post
Just curious: Is it all games, or just certain games, or just one? The only reason I am asking, as an example, is Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six's last patch screwed the sound all up, where at random times, the sound does exactly what you are talking about, specially with the left and right channel getting switched. It happens on all makes and models of sound cards. Is it possible it is a game bug?
It wasn't just games; when it borked even stereo music would be matrixed across the wrong speakers until reboot. Most likely a problem with the SBX stereo expansion or DTS encoding. Other weird issues with the Mic input never working with Hangouts dialer, recording latency that broke noise cancellation, etc.

My current board has Realtek 1220 with DTS encoding without any issues at all. I do miss the ability to automatically switch between speakers and headphones while playing a game but I'll take slightly clunky operation over bugged garbage software.
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Old Jan 25, 2019, 08:50 AM   #21
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I am still using a Soundblaster E3 and my Senheiser Game Zero... Never got around too ordering anything yet.

I may still do the Schiit Nunz recommended too me months ago. All I want is awesome Headphone sounds. I have a 300' Fiber HDMI cable run to my home theater as well so Audio decoding like Dobly Digital and such is not an issue.
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Old Feb 18, 2019, 11:29 PM   #22
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Might want to wait for the Sound BlasterX AE-9.

https://www.guru3d.com/news-story/cr...terx-ae-9.html
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Old Feb 19, 2019, 09:07 AM   #23
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Might want to wait for the Sound BlasterX AE-9.

https://www.guru3d.com/news-story/cr...terx-ae-9.html
Well I hope the poor saps who bought the AE-5 like their current drivers because they can kiss Creative software updates goodbye.
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Old Feb 19, 2019, 01:31 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by GTwannabe View Post
Well I hope the poor saps who bought the AE-5 like their current drivers because they can kiss Creative software updates goodbye.

Creative drivers for my ZxR haven't been updated since 2017, but everything is working perfectly. No need for constant updates.
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Old Feb 19, 2019, 01:57 PM   #25
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Originally Posted by Och View Post
Creative drivers for my ZxR haven't been updated since 2017, but everything is working perfectly. No need for constant updates.
There have been 4 Windows 10 revisions released since then and they all overwrite the Creative driver with a generic HDA driver. That disables Creative features such as DDL/DTS encoding. You need to reinstall that old Creative driver which has not been tested on 1703, 1709, 1803, or 1809 and has issues such as randomly shuffled audio channels and crashes that result in death squeal until reboot.
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Old Feb 20, 2019, 12:42 AM   #26
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I don't have any issues with the ZXR once I am able to get the proper drivers installed after win10 shits all over everything again with each revision. Getting win10 to not just overwrite my driver again is the real issue. On the EVGA card, this looks like exactly the kind of thing I'd have been all over when I was still single and had money to burn.
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Old Feb 20, 2019, 08:31 AM   #27
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If you read the EVGA forums things are not going so well:

1.) Dolby/DTS issues are rampant where it just drops out or is not supported/not showing up.

2.) No Audio or Audio drop outs.

3.) Driver issues in regards to nothing being installed once the driver is installed. Or having to the force the driver.

4.) Static/Hissing reported.

So basically same issues as Creative drivers. Wonder how long it takes EVGA to stop supporting it.
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Old Feb 20, 2019, 10:08 AM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hapatingjaky View Post
If you read the EVGA forums things are not going so well:

1.) Dolby/DTS issues are rampant where it just drops out or is not supported/not showing up.

2.) No Audio or Audio drop outs.

3.) Driver issues in regards to nothing being installed once the driver is installed. Or having to the force the driver.

4.) Static/Hissing reported.

So basically same issues as Creative drivers. Wonder how long it takes EVGA to stop supporting it.
How did they bungle it that badly? The EVGA card is quite literally the guts of a USB DAC soldered to a PCB and PCIe-to-USB bridge chip. It should not need drivers...
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Old Feb 20, 2019, 11:23 AM   #29
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Originally Posted by GTwannabe View Post
How did they bungle it that badly? The EVGA card is quite literally the guts of a USB DAC soldered to a PCB and PCIe-to-USB bridge chip. It should not need drivers...
Some of the designs, using the bridge chip is one of the reason contributing to the driver problem, adding additional unnecessary stuff like RGB lighting could makes things worse.
Using SATA ports that shared with harddrive could possibly cause hissing/static issues.
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