Pros: Compact, High Quality, Simple
Cons: Not the most transparent
Thought it great until I recently comparered its analog out to the DAC on my Onkyo TX-SR876 receiver...
Although good to a point, it failed in highly complex loud music passages like the Choral movement of Beethoven's 9th Symphony..... where as the volume and the number of instruments and voices increased, the 2496 could not keep the sounds seperate.... they become muddled/mixed a little muddy.
Under all other conditions, and especially with Jazz, small acoustic, baroque music, there was no discernible difference between the two.
This is a great sound card..... but perhaps reaching the limits of what can be achieved internally within a PC