The U7 uses Dolby Home Theater V4, which I hear is inferior to Dolby headphone. I'd personally go with whatever has Dolby Headphone. Since I can't get my soundcard to output Dolby Digital 5.1 to it's optical out (so my receiver or PLYR 1's base can decode into Dolby Headphone), I think I'm gonna buy the Xonar U3. It has Dolby Headphone. It's fairly inexpensive, and I'll just run a cable from it's headphone jack to my amplifier. THX Tru Studio is decent, but I miss my Dolby headphone.
That being said, setting up virtual surround seems to be an outright pain in the ass. For instance, on my Recon 3Di, EVERY SINGLE TIME I plug in my headphones, the sound settings default back to 2 channel. In order to get virtual surround, it HAS to be seti to 5.1 surround. So yeah... constantly having to go into the sound options to fix that is soooo stupid.
You might want to take the Xonar U1 lite instead. It serves me since 5 years on different PCs. It has a bit more hardware inside than the Xonar U3 and also serves as a very nice volume knob.
Edited by pietcux - 6/9/13 at 6:56am