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The Nameless Guide To PC Gaming Audio (with binaural headphone surround sound) - Page 103

post #1531 of 3068
You might be able to find an older Creative Live! Go > Asus Xonar U3 = current Creative Go! Pro USB. Those are the known USB thumbstick options, who knows if Creative intends to make one with SBX?

If you want better, Creative sells a number of USB surround thingies, but IMO you would do well to skip straight to a Creative Recon3D USB. Personally, I find CMSS3D to be too sharp in the treble, and THX TruStudio Pro is the best sounding virtual surround processing I've heard, BUT all the DSPs have their fans (For me CMSS-3D is too sharp, and DH echos, THX in the Recon3D had a better sense of depth). NamelessPFG has offered to sell his Recon3D USB for ~$65, a good price. It comes with decent cords, so you can adjust volume from the physical device on your desk. I think the Recon3D USB could've been made smaller (some wasted PCB space, also designed to expand with a wireless transmitter for one of Creative's headphones), but it's still fairly small, about 1.5x the width of an iPod and almost an inch thick – your desktop amp will probably be bigger. Side bonus: easy enough to bring to a friend's house or hook up to a game console.

I ran the HE-400 alright off of the Recon3D USB, but somethings like soundstage depth definitely benefitted from double-amping. If you got an amp like the Schiit Magni, FiiO E09k, or a Little Dot i+, you'd still easily be in budget.

Personally, I'd like Creative to revisit the Recon3D USB: remove the wireless expansion, cut the size, integrate a better amp and switch to SBX if they think that's superior tech (haven't heard that DSP myself). Wasn't a problem for me: I just plugged in my tube hybrid amp and everything sounded great.
Edited by Evshrug - 5/18/13 at 5:35pm
post #1532 of 3068

does it have optical out so that i can wire it to the amp? also is THX/SBX/CMSS-3D/Dolby better from experience?

post #1533 of 3068
The Recon3D USB only has a headphone jack for output, so the Recon3D USB would be the DAC, and you would use the headphone jack to make an analogue connection to an amp. All three of the amps I mentioned ONLY accept analogue input anyway.

I've personally tried (in order of most recent) Dolby Headphone, THX TruStudio Pro, the cirrus logic surround used in a DSS2, and Silent Cinema (Yamaha's). Dolby Headphone works pretty well, and it sounds pretty laid back, but it has some environmental reverb/echo to get used to and has less of a sense of depth than Creative's options IMO. DH is Mad Lust Envy's favourite. Silent Cinema is very, very similar to DH, but on my AV receiver I can tweak the sound a lot. I had a hard time getting a good feel for the DSS2's sound, so I can't quantify it's quality. CMSS-3D, I've watched many samples and heard it at a friends house, it actually does a great job of surround, but the treble is uncomfortably sharp for me. CMSS-3D is NamelessPFG's favourite. THX had a great sense of depth, negligible sense of an "echo," and doesn't have the harsh treble (if you turn off Crystalizer and set it up right for you), and thus it was my favorite. It seems pretty clear that your mileage may vary, although the options from Creative allow for the most adjustment and customization, so I personally would recommend CMSS-3D, THX TruStudio Pro, or SBX Pro Studio.
post #1534 of 3068

how about the X-Fi HD USB, it should have the same sq of the pcie ver. and it has usb, optical in and out.

 

from what i understand, i think i would enjoy THX the most, but using the X-fi USB, it uses CMSS-3D. is there a way to use THX on the X-Fi HD?

post #1535 of 3068

Hello,

 

I just installed Counter strike: Global Offensive. Because I own a Titanium HD I pointed Creative Alchemy toward "C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\SteamApps\common\Counter-Strike Global Offensive," set the duration to 20 (had stutter at 25), left buffer at 4, set audio to 5.1 in game options and set "snd_legacy_surround" to 1 in game's console. I barely played so far, I just wanted to clarify if I maybe missed something or did something wrong. I'm also wondering if I need to start Alchemy every time I start CS:GO or is that a 1 time thing (same with legacy_surround).

 

Thank you.

post #1536 of 3068
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by junrin View Post

how about the X-Fi HD USB, it should have the same sq of the pcie ver. and it has usb, optical in and out.

 

from what i understand, i think i would enjoy THX the most, but using the X-fi USB, it uses CMSS-3D. is there a way to use THX on the X-Fi HD?

 

Actually, the X-Fi HD USB is, for all intents and purposes, a completely different product than the X-Fi Titanium HD.

 

Like all USB "X-Fi" products, there's no EMU20k1/20k2 in there, so it doesn't even really deserve the X-Fi branding. It just runs everything in software, like motherboard audio codecs with the X-Fi MB software suite; this is why there's only Entertainment Mode.

 

And on that note, because only Entertainment Mode is present, you ONLY get THX TruStudio Surround, not CMSS-3D Headphone like the older USB "X-Fi" products that lack the THX branding. To my knowledge, the X-Fi Titanium HD is the only card that lets you choose between the two.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ban13 View Post

I just installed Counter strike: Global Offensive. Because I own a Titanium HD I pointed Creative Alchemy toward "C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\SteamApps\common\Counter-Strike Global Offensive," set the duration to 20 (had stutter at 25), left buffer at 4, set audio to 5.1 in game options and set "snd_legacy_surround" to 1 in game's console. I barely played so far, I just wanted to clarify if I maybe missed something or did something wrong. I'm also wondering if I need to start Alchemy every time I start CS:GO or is that a 1 time thing (same with legacy_surround).

 

Everything looks correct.

 

You don't need to start ALchemy every time; you see, every time you think you're launching ALchemy, you're just launching a convenient GUI frontend for copying a dsound.dll and dsound.ini to your game directories, along with setting parameters in dsound.ini. Really, you could just copy those files from another game folder, edit dsound.ini as necessary, and not bother with Creative's little frontend.

 

It's like how you don't have to launch the settings window for a 3dfx Glide wrapper like dgVoodoo every time just to play an old game in Glide mode. Simply having the DLL present is good enough, as the game (and presumably other executables in the same directory that call the wrapper DLL) will automatically try to use it.

 

snd_legacy_surround, like most console variables, also sticks; there is no need to change it every time you start CS:GO or any other Source engine game.

post #1537 of 3068

Do you think that the X-fi USB is worth it? or would you rather buy the recon USB?

 

also, how would one wire the compass gd and X-fi/recon 3d in sequence?

post #1538 of 3068
I believe the compass gd is an amp/DAC combo... Isn't digital (like an Optical cable) the only input on the compass? Plus the Compass is pretty large, right? Why are you considering that piece of equipment to pair with your laptop? It isn't a logical choice for your needs or space. Isn't it also WAY outside of your budget?
Edit: looking at audio gd's website, it looks like it does have an analogue input. Also, for $499, you could buy a desktop computer, and then get a PCI soundcard...

I still recommend one of the USB devices I mentioned designed for gaming, then plugging an amp like the Schiit, FiiO, or Little Dot into the headphone jack of the USB device.
post #1539 of 3068

There's USB Input on the compass(old ver) as well, it just also has Digital inputs. There was one being sold on the F/S that was in his budget, unless some one else snatched it already.  He might also get lucky and fine a used NFB 12.0  cheap in the F/S forums.  I would say just get a used cheap X-FI Titanium for like 49ish and use optical from that into a external dac amp. That way he get the stuff he wants while getting the sound performance from a external dac. He can just use the USB  of either compass(old) or a used NFB12.0 and not worry about CMSS3D headphone or Dolby headphone.


Edited by genclaymore - 5/21/13 at 3:40pm
post #1540 of 3068
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by genclaymore View Post

There's USB Input on the compass(old ver) as well, it just also has Digital inputs. There was one being sold on the F/S that was in his budget, unless some one else snatched it already.  He might also get lucky and fine a used NFB 12.0  cheap in the F/S forums. I would say just get a used cheap X-FI Titanium for like 49ish and use optical from that into a external dac amp. That way he get the stuff he wants while getting the sound performance from a external dac. He can just use the USB  of either compass(old) or a used NFB12.0 and not worry about CMSS3D headphone or Dolby headphone.

 

The internal sound card route would be what I would have advised, except for one small problem...

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by junrin View Post

I have a mini-itx build, with ONE pcie 3.0 x16 slot, occupied by my 7870, and I have a pair of HE-400's, which i'm running off onboard audio.

 

can anyone recocmend me a USB dac and amp?

 

Needless to say, PCIe sound cards aren't an option in the first place. Not without basically building a whole new computer (which is the only time motherboard changes are really worth it).

post #1541 of 3068
Hey...it's me again ksc75smile.gif
Previous post i say want to buy a dt990 but ...sunday i see the hd 598 im my hand and hell... they are so good and sexy i still not have the chance to use the dt990 they are so different?
looks like 598 is more durable its true?
Mad says you lose in the immersion and internet don't help... is like take a drink from a hydrant
 
*edit*
 
hmm i found a guy who selling a used lcd-2 wit a very good price
 
change dt990 to lcd-2 please help '-'

Edited by MadMag - 5/27/13 at 6:23am
post #1542 of 3068

Ok, so I decided to dive in and got an AKG 65th.  I'm looking at the FiiO for my amp.  I spent the day looking at sound cards before finding out that my computer's graphic cards eat up all the room I have in there.  So, do I go for the Creative X-fi Surround 5.1 Pro since it is USB, or is there a better bet out there for me?

 

Cans, amp, card... anything else I'm forgetting?  

 

Edit: Reading page 103, looks like some of my same questions answered :)


Edited by Navinabob - 5/27/13 at 10:35pm
post #1543 of 3068

a used O stack might run under $200 in the fs thread, but u'd lose mic support

post #1544 of 3068

Hello,

 

I'm trying to capture the best possible sound positioning from BF2 into a video and i was wondering if any of you have any experience with this. I'm not sure what kind of audio codec I should record with, should I go with stereo or...

 

Thanks.

post #1545 of 3068

What would you guys go for if you were going to almost always play video games (first person shooters).

 

Would you get the titanium HD or the ZxR?

 

Ive been reading that the ZxR has better components, but I dont think it has cmss-3d.  Im sorry if this has already been answered.

 

Im looking for overall sound quality as well as positioning.  Most likely will be going with a dt990 pro 250ohms


Edited by jstaff - 6/2/13 at 7:51pm
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