Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Computer Audio › Astro Mixamp vs sound card for PC
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Astro Mixamp vs sound card for PC - Page 2

post #16 of 22
Thread Starter 


Originally Posted by NamelessPFG View Post

You'd be using the optical output of the onboard audio codec, at the very least, but obviously none of the analog outputs. I still don't know if you can actually send a real-time-encoded Dolby Digital signal that way, though (which is what Dolby Digital Live does). On the other hand, the Mixamp has a USB port IIRC, so maybe you could use it like a USB DAC.


Does that someone you asked own BOTH the Mixamp and the X-Fi Forte? Ask him to set up the X-Fi Forte to output Dolby Digital Live through S/PDIF (it has a Toslink adapter for the RCA jack bundled with it) and into the Mixamp. There's just too many variables here, and I want to find out if it's more of a preference for Dolby Headphone over CMSS-3D Headphone in that person's case.


Well that person sold the x-fi forte for the mixamp, now he has the mixamp he says he prefers it. Although he did say it was mostly because he liked Dolby Digital better than CMSS-3D!

But theres no point in me loosing out money wise to something that will be very similar in SQ! Also i heard that if you have onboard sound it could be quite noisy compared with external DAC's and amps!


The motherboard i will be getting has Coaxial SPDIF port and a Optical SPDIF port, also says it supports 7.1 channels surround sound playback


http://www.msi.com/product/mb/P67A-GD53--B3-.html#/?div=Overview (motherboard)


post #17 of 22

The page still makes no mention of Dolby Digital Live. If the drivers won't let you encode the audio into AC-3 (Dolby Digital), this is going to complicate things a lot since that means it's outputting PCM.


And when you output PCM over S/PDIF, all you get is stereo. There just isn't enough bandwidth for the extra channels; only HDMI can output 5.1 or 7.1 as uncompressed PCM. If the Mixamp only gets stereo, then Dolby Headphone's going to be shortchanged in positional information and you won't have any rear audio cues! (AC3Filter might work around this, but from what I can tell, it's not very viable for gaming. You might just be better off buying a Xonar DG or X-Fi XtremeMusic or XtremeGamer + S/PDIF output module + Dolby Digital Live upgrade to get around this...and in the Xonar DG's case, you can just forego the Mixamp altogether for Dolby Headphone if desired.)


As I suspected, though, it was a preference for Dolby Headphone over CMSS-3D Headphone. I'm not going to recommend one over the other until I can test Dolby Headphone properly (read: not watching YouTube videos pre-mixed with it, but actually playing games with it working on-the-fly), but just keep in mind that as with any generic HRTF for binaural surround, there's going to be a lot of subjectivity involved.


Just as an aside, what games do you play? It's mostly the older ones that require a proper X-Fi for EAX, but if you don't play any of them, you won't really be missing anything effect-wise and should concern yourself more with general output quality and whatever HRTF tech might be used.

post #18 of 22

I have the Titanium HD, but will probably be getting the Astro Mixamp PRO so I can talk with friends on XBOX and also for the volume knob, is this a good idea?

post #19 of 22
Originally Posted by xSpartanCx View Post

I have the Titanium HD, but will probably be getting the Astro Mixamp PRO so I can talk with friends on XBOX and also for the volume knob, is this a good idea?


They're different products for different uses.


Think of the Mixamp as a sound card for consoles, and as such, dedicate it to the consoles. It shouldn't even be a factor in PC gaming, especially if you own the Titanium HD already.

post #20 of 22

Yes, but I use both xbox and pc for gaming. I use the titanium hd as an amp for my headphones, but don't want a whole bunch of wires to be able to talk with my friends like this product:


post #21 of 22

I'm rather confused by your setup.


Usually, I'd think that you're either playing on the PC or the Xbox, not both at the same time. I also don't see a good reason to handle communication specifically through the Xbox when on PC, you've got Steam, Skype, Ventrilo, TeamSpeak, Mumble, various in-game voice chat implementations, etc.


However, you did say that you were using the Titanium HD itself as a headphone amp, even for Xbox use. If that's the case, I would have suggested pairing a dedicated amp with your headphones, if they need it, and then plugging the whole system into the PC with Titanium HD or Xbox with Mixamp as needed.

post #22 of 22

I've got my xbox plugged into the titanium with a passthrough to headphone port so i don't have to switch cables around when going from pc to xbox. I''m using a modmic to talk to people, but don't want to have to attach a y addaptor all the way from my controller to my pc to hear them instead of dealing with the ducking that xbox usually does when set to play through speakers instead of the headset, and then I won't even have any control over the volume of hearing them.


I could have some type of switcher i suppose to switch between the mixamp connected to my xbox and my pc... Any suggestions? Because I was liking the ability to have a volume knob on the mixamp instead of having to adjust sound in windows.


My main question: Is there any danger of using the mixamp when I already have a sound card in my computer, would I be losing any quality?

Edited by xSpartanCx - 12/29/12 at 12:48pm
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Computer Audio
Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Computer Audio › Astro Mixamp vs sound card for PC