Its only for pc but its only 40 may be worth a try.
Brand new guy here, already posted this over in the Nameless PC oriented thread, but I thought I'd post it here as I didn't see any mention of it when I glanced through earlier. If you've got a Creative card and Windows 7, you can pass the CMSS software processing along to ANY audio device (including external USB DACs) to bypass the circuitry on the internal card. This pretty much seals my purchase of the FiiO E17 which I was already looking at as a good partner for my DT770 Pro 80s, being able to retain the virtual surround feature of my internal card while using a great external DAC just sweetens the deal for me. Here's how to do the handoff of CMSS processed output completely in software:
Before following this checklist, make sure your current audio device is fully configured for CMSS (Windows configure speakers wizard is done and set to a surround setup, Creative Console speakers set to headphones, CMSS-3D is enabled, Crystalizer is disabled, "Disable Sound Blaster enhancements" under the Sound Blaster tab of your default audio device's properties is unchecked). I like unchecking the sub in the Windows wizard here to create a virtual 5.0 rather than a virtual 5.1 because I think it may help tame the overbearing bass some of you were talking about on the 770 80 ohms. The Beyers are already mashing together the bass output from the other 5 virtual channels into a pair of very bass-capable headphones, do you really need a virtual sub as well? Also, as we all know, subwoofer bass position is something your brain can't pinpoint, so I don't see why you'd want lots of it in your pinpoint accurate virtual surround. I think I remember hearing a noticeable difference with this changed in my limited A-B testing with a ripped BD of Evangellion 1.11 (the last battle scene has explosions and technobabbling jumping ALL over every channel when I listen with my physical 5.1 Acoustic Research HC6, so far it's by far the best test of virtual surround I've tried yet), but I wish I had another pair of Beyers to do a real A-B and not rely on my terrible memory/imagination.
1. Right click on your volume tray in Windows 7 and select "Recording devices"
2. Select "What U Hear" and click "Properties" (cringe inducing grammar there Creative)
[Note - you do NOT have to set this as the default recording device]
3. Select the "Listen" tab and check the box marked "Listen to this device"
4. Under the drop down marked "Playback through this device:" select your desired DAC
5. Make sure "Continue running when on battery power" is selected as a software passthrough should have no effect whatsoever on your battery life
6. Select the "Levels" tab and set it to something comfortable, as the volume control for the Creative card's standard output will have no effect on the volume of the software recording device.
7. Enjoy listening to CMSS freed from the noisy and inferior hardware confines of your internal soundcard!
I just noticed as I was creating this guide that on the properties>levels>balance menu of a audio device that's been configured as 5.1 or 7.1 under Windows speaker config has a separate balance for each channel. I wonder if this actually works on either the Creative card or other DAC to turn down the sub or turn up areas that are weaker in the soundstage. I'll try and do some more research on this when I get the time to do a better A-B comparison of a bunch of different software settings.
Hopefully someone else finds the steps I've written in this guide useful, I know I did. Now I just need to go pick up an E17 from somewhere and see how it sounds with CMSS passed along to it in BF3...
I know you just ordered a new amp that will take care of this issue but why did you never consider a receiver? I have a mixamp but game primarily using my more than decade old Sony receiver simply because it's SQ absolutely BLOWS the mixamp away. It decodes DD and DTS and while it doesn't have Dolby Headphone branding (i bought it before that existed), Sony's proprietary Headphone Theater does just as good of a job as the mixamp in terms of positional cues. My particular receiver also lets you adjust the soundstage as well so there really is no downside to it, in comparison to the mixamp. The mixamp is a great product and I'm not knocking it, it just can't hold a candle to the SQ and features of a solid receiver -- which to be fair, it shouldn't be expected to considering how much more money I spent on that receiver vs the mixamp. I ask simply because to me a receiver seems like the most obvious solution for something that can be used for gaming, music and movies.
I got my Xonar DG soundcard in today. So far it sounds pretty good but I'm confused with the gui coming from the razer. I don't know when Dolby Headphone is enabled and things of that nature. Does anybody have any suggestions for setting this card up for gaming with the hd555's?
Make sure DX is disabled is a good start as that seems to be the cause for quite a few problems. If its turned off the GX button is not lit up green.
I normally use the 8 channel with dolby headphone for gaming and sometimes use SVN too. Just click on the drop down list for audio channel and pick what you want. To turn on dolby headphone click the box towards the bottom of the panel and a small tick in the box indicates dolby headphone is running.
Some other options to look at are the 7.1 virtualisation (button above dolby headphone) and the SVN button below the volume. SVN magnifies the quietier sounds around you it seems so footsteps, whistling of wind etc all seem louder and easier to hear. If the button is lit up green its on.
Just mess around with the settings until you find somthing you like. Hope this helps a tad.
Hmm, as much as I don't mind getting my hands dirty with hardware, I do enough of that at my job. Which amp would you recommend that will compliment the treble, bass, and mids? I was also considering the O2 and Valhalla
I bought some Beyerdynamic DT 880 600 ohm phones, and want to figure out what I should do with regards to DAC/AMPs. The source for everything will be my self built Win7 64 bit pc.
I currently mostly use the headphones for video games and will continue to do so with the new headphones, but I plan on listening to music a lot more with the improved setup.
My question is how much of an improvement an external amp/dac provide over one of the nicer sound cards (seems like Asus Essence STX and HT Omega Claro are the best). Would those sufficiently power 600 ohm headphones? The literature they produce says they will, but I would rather hear it from a knowledeable head-fier than the people who are trying to sell me the cards.
Even with a sound card that says it can drive the Beyer's I feel like I would prefer to just buy an amp for them. If I just bought one of those cards + an amp (say Shiit Asgard or Matrix M Stage) that should provide really good quality gaming sound, and still decent quality sound for music, right? I haven't really figured out if I should just get a DAC and AMP or if AMP + sound card is a better option for me. Thanks for any help :)