Originally Posted by Operandi
Well thats obviously USBs biggest strong point but my question wasn't hypothetical it was practical.
My comp has all thee options and I'm wondering which I should go with?
Personally, I wouldnt go with USB, just from my experience. I have an EMU 0404 USB..... its sounds just fine through USB, but it simply takes longer to buffer, if you pause music (and more noticably video) for any length of time, it takes a while for it to kick in again after you press play.
Added to that....E-MU Systems - Support
Yes, you read that right. Still no full driver support in vista for my EMU 0404 USB. Remember the product was released when there were beta copies of vista available. (I tried to use the beta drivers, and the program hanged when 'updating the firmware' of my EMU. If I turn off the soundcard when playing music through foobar, it crashes the whole PC and i have to restart!).
Im now using the optical out on my mobo, so thankfully i do not have to deal with EMU's downright awful driver support. I *think* it sounds a bit cleaner too, but maybe thats me wanting to see it as better.
From what I read, coaxial tends to have the least jitter, but over shorter distances optical can tend to be more accurate (under 5m...?)