My onboard audio is a SupremeFX X-Fi 2. It's a Realtek AC chipset with a Creative X-Fi software layer for DSP effects. I employ the DSP effects for gaming quite frequently.
The motherboard audio-outs are inconveniently placed to connect headphones to (same with the front audio outs) since my headphone cables aren't long enough. If I were to use the S/PDIF optical out to an outboard external DAC (e.g. my Peachtree Nova [ESS Sabre24]) would the DSP and software effects carry over to the DAC via the digital output? Essentially what I'm asking is whether equalization and software DSP of the Creative X-Fi drivers occurs at the digital level (i.e. before the DAC stage). If it does, I would have a very pleasing gaming setup.
Would appreciate any input, thanks.