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The Nameless Guide To PC Gaming Audio (with binaural headphone surround sound) - Page 121

post #1801 of 3109
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nijs View Post
 

I've read here that the Titanium HD has cmss-3d but on the creative page they only mention THX TruStudio Pro, can anyone clarify this for me?

They don't have any cmss-3d card anymore Oo

Creative sound cards used CMSS-3D up until the Titanium/Titanium HD series sound cards.

(Which I believe works with any version of Microsoft Windows).

Creative then switched over to the Recon3D series (drop in sound quality).

Now Creative has the Z series which uses the TruStudio Pro software, which only works with Win 7 or Win 8.

I guess Creative Labs want people to buy the TruStudio Pro, over the older Titanium/Recon3D stuff.

post #1802 of 3109

well that sucks, im looking for a setup to go with my akg 702 anni and i was thinking to get the tit HD + AMP.

 

Since they're abandoning cmss-3d should i get the zxr instead or the tit HD is still a good choice? will the zxr card alone drive the 702 anni?

post #1803 of 3109
Nijs,
Last time I checked, the Ti HD had THX TruStudio Pro surround processing for "entertainment" mode, but "gaming" mode still used CMSS-3D. The new Z-series cards from Creative use SBX ProStudio, which has been confirmed to be slightly different sounding from THX TSP (even though the driver control panel looks about the same). I like the new stuff, but the older Ti HD is still a good card (former flagship).
post #1804 of 3109
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nijs View Post
 

well that sucks, I'm looking for a setup to go with my AKG 702 anni and I was thinking to get the tit HD + AMP.

 

Since they're abandoning cmss-3d should i get the ZxR instead or the Titanium HD is still a good choice? will the ZxR card alone drive the 702 anni?

I would say to get the T-HD (Titanium HD) and a Schiit Magni headphone amplifier.

The Schiit Magni has an output impedance of less then 1-Ohm :) so should be a slightly better amp for the 62-Ohm Annies. (the ZxR is about 10-Ohm, I think).

The ZxR and T-HD use the same PCM1794 DAC chip for the headphones

You can use all three of the T-HD's op-amps for processing headphone audio (RCA jacks), with the ZxR you can only use two of the op-amps for headphone audio.

Both the ZxR and Schiit can drive headphones up to 600-Ohm (guessing).

The Schit Magni is external, so less affected by any electrical noise inside the computer case.

The Schiit Magni can be used with other sources besides the T-HD.

post #1805 of 3109
Quote:
Originally Posted by Evshrug View Post

Anyway, back on track. if you actually looked at an E09k, you'd see it has a big fat glorious analogue volume knob dominating the front of it, and line-in inputs on the back for other sources on the back and even a USB pass through input so that you can plug your E17 into the computer without mucking about with a mess of wires each time. Yes, it has a 10 Ohm output impedance, very similar to what early iPods had, but if you learn more, you'll find that output impedance matters because on many headphones, their impedance changes with frequency. The K701 variants actually have unusually linear impedance (doesn't change much with frequency), so, even though it already has pretty good damping, that level impedance reaction makes it less reactive to higher output impedances. I thought about getting an E09k for myself before, but I ended up getting an E12 instead, which suits me fine. If you want to spend more on an O2 (which isn't very ergonomicly designed), it sounds very similar. The AD700 doesn't scale up with amping beyond what you already get with your e17, so another amp would mostly just be for convenience with that headphone, and a couple dB of raised bass in the AD700 from a 10 ohm output impedance on the E9 might actually be enjoyable.

 

I have looked at the E09k and it would make a very slick desktop setup but I was worried about the 10 Ohm impedance.  I did see some people suggesting it as a suitable amp for the K/Q70x but I couldn't figure out why since the output impedance was so high.  Thank you for the technical explanation of the linear impedance behavior of the K/Q70x.  I didn't know impedance varies with frequency on headphones.  

 

I may have to reconsider my planned game/desktop setup.  The main reason I didn't want to use the E17 as my main desktop rig all the time is because of undue battery wear on the proprietary li-ion battery.  I didn't realize until I got it that it never runs on USB power, it's always battery powered, just with inline charging.  From my other hobby I have experienced li-ion capacity degradation due to many charge cycles over 2-3 years.  I want the E17 to last by minimizing unnecessary charge cycles.  I have already disabled USB charging on it to force it to only charge when it's empty, but if I run it as my main desktop rig, it was wear out faster than if it was only used on my laptop & phone/tablet.  But realistically speaking, I'll probably want and buy something better (read: $$$$) before the battery dies so I might as well use it and enjoy it now.  I did look at the O2 amp (paired with ODAC) and agree the physical port design leaves something to be desired.  I think it was designed that way as a compromise to reduce cost and make it "portable" capable, but I would have preferred a rear power and line-in jacks.  

 

As it stands, buying an Asus U3 and Fiio E09k would be my cheapest option (sunk cost of the E17 doesn't count) to get what I want.  MLE's suggestion of the Audio GD 15.32 is a much more powerful setup and more future-proof for some hard to drive headphones like the HE-500 or something, but it's less flexible in that it can't be re-used as an analog amp (since it has no analog inputs).  The various potential firmware and/or driver issues and extra cost of shipping it back for any warranty/doa issues also factors in.  I can buy the E09k at a local store and return/exchange it if I get a DoA unit.  

 

Thanks for the info about the AD700 amp scaling.  Now I know what (not) to expect when I plug them into the E09k.  I may just leave them plugged into the front ports of the onboard Realtek audio when I want to run them in headset mode with the v-moda boom mic.  

post #1806 of 3109

Avro,

I hope I didn't overdo it, but I get a kick out of figuring things out and helping. I don't ALWAYS know the best answer, but usually I can point the way.

 

I actually paraphrased the headphone impedance info from that certain guy's blog. He does show the E9 in a few of the graphs, and shows the difference in how much amp output ohms has on two different headphones (with less effect on the Sennheiser), and says that if a headphone had a linear impedance response (he didn't know of one) it wouldn't be affected much by the amp output ohms.

 

I didn't know the E17 kept using battery power even while charging. I was personally very excited about the E11 having changeable batteries and tried petitioning for the E12 to have that feature when it was being designed, but I lost out to the majority that said they'd like to use the amp while charging. But, I came to the same conclusion as you: probably will buy something else once the battery wears out, might as well get my money's worth in the meantime. What I know about lithium ion batteries from training at work, they do wear down over time like a car tire, but not using them at least once a month for a full cycle can also be harmful to the maximum battery health (so exercise the cells for a full cycle at least once a month), and that it doesn't suffer from memory effects like old rechargeable battery types so normally you can "top off" the battery without hurting it.

 

The O2's design tries to be somewhere between a desktop and portable, and ergonomically isn't successful at either, IMO. Bigger than pocket size, awkward shape, while also having a smaller knob and cluttered port design, and not being as good as a desktop amp could be (though very nice for a portable amp, tho I don't count a transportable amp as a portable... my iMac is transportable too, and I don't call it a portable!).

 

I don't think I'd ever buy the AudioGD personally, just from the price, Mad's slight improvement in performance, and the issues he had with it.

 

if the AD700 changes at all from the 10 ohm output impedance of the E09k's amp, it would be a bit of bass warmth that might actually sound nicer

post #1807 of 3109
Quote:
Originally Posted by Evshrug View Post

Nijs,
Last time I checked, the Ti HD had THX TruStudio Pro surround processing for "entertainment" mode, but "gaming" mode still used CMSS-3D. The new Z-series cards from Creative use SBX ProStudio, which has been confirmed to be slightly different sounding from THX TSP (even though the driver control panel looks about the same). I like the new stuff, but the older Ti HD is still a good card (former flagship).

 

Tks for the reply Evshrug, i managed to confirm that the card uses cmss-3d as well :). Oh i thought sbx was thx renamed... anyway sbx is good but for my ears nothing beats cmss-3d and thats why im willing to risk bad driver support. I just hope it wont be a bad move on my part...

Quote:
Originally Posted by PurpleAngel View Post
 

I would say to get the T-HD (Titanium HD) and a Schiit Magni headphone amplifier.

The Schiit Magni has an output impedance of less then 1-Ohm :) so should be a slightly better amp for the 62-Ohm Annies. (the ZxR is about 10-Ohm, I think).

The ZxR and T-HD use the same PCM1794 DAC chip for the headphones

You can use all three of the T-HD's op-amps for processing headphone audio (RCA jacks), with the ZxR you can only use two of the op-amps for headphone audio.

Both the ZxR and Schiit can drive headphones up to 600-Ohm (guessing).

The Schit Magni is external, so less affected by any electrical noise inside the computer case.

The Schiit Magni can be used with other sources besides the T-HD.

 

tks once again, PurpleAngel, but since the T-HD is rather expensive in my country and even if i order online i was thinking to get the normal titanium + the magni/modi combo. ppl in the k702 anniversary thread say that the combo works well enough and the difference will be small, 5-10€ cheaper

 

I couldnt confirm if the DAC in the modi is better or not than in the titanium hd, does anyone know?

 

According to what ive read ill still get the cmss-3d via optical from the card right?

 

Stupid question but do the magni/modi and the Soundcard come with cables or do i have to purchase them separately? My first time buying any of these equipments...

 

Thank you

post #1808 of 3109
Nijs,
I thought SBX was just THX renamed at first too (which was fine with me, I LIKE THX, just the Recon3D hardware had "room for improvement" compared to the X-Fi and Z-series gear), but numerous people who've tried both say they are different, and they posted surround-processed videos on the web which seem to illustrate the difference well (even though YouTube compression hurts the maximum quality). And about driver support, Nameless seems to get on well enough with his X-Fi card.

I think the Modi uses a sabre DAC, but can't remember which chip number. If I recall correctly, it's the same one used in the ODAC (different implementation tho). I doubt the Schiit stack comes with cables, but I haven't bought one and could be wrong.
post #1809 of 3109
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nijs View Post
 

tks once again, PurpleAngel, but since the T-HD is rather expensive in my country and even if I order online I was thinking to get the normal Titanium + the Magni/Modi combo. ppl in the k702 anniversary thread say that the combo works well enough and the difference will be small, 5-10€ cheaper

I couldn't confirm if the DAC in the Modi is better or not than in the Titanium HD, does anyone know?

According to what I've read I'll still get the CMSS-3D via optical from the card right?

Stupid question but do the Magni/Modi and the sound card come with cables or do i have to purchase them separately? My first time buying any of these equipments...

The Titanium (non-HD) has the same surround sound features as the Titanium HD

The Modi is a USB input DAC and the Titanium has a S/PDIF optical output, so you can't use the Titanium with the Modi, when you plug the USB Modi into your computer it will bypass the Titanium sound card.

You might just get the Titanium (non-HD) and the Schiit Magni for now, as you can plug the Magni into the Titanium's line-out/headphone jack.

 

Not sure how the Titanium HD's PCM1794 DAC chip compares to the Modi's AK4396 DAC chip.

The Titanium (non-HD) uses the CS4382 DAC chip.

post #1810 of 3109

Nijs, I got the Titanium non-HD so I could use 5.1 surround speakers and have an Audioengine D1 AMP/DAC plugged in to the optical for headphones. 

The Audioengine D1 sounds great so far and CMSS-3D comes though over the optical link.

Not sure if that helps you or not.

post #1811 of 3109

Evshrug

 

I couldnt find any info regarding the modi DAC so i emailed them for more details and the cables :) the o2 /odac combo is under my eye as well. Im still looking for the best combo for my budget but there are so many options and so many opinions is hard to decide.

 

Now i know how girls feel when buying shoes...and thats why they buy all the shoes they see, they just cant decide which one to get :)

 

PurpleAngel

 

duh i completely forgot to check the inputs on the modi, good thing i posted here :)

im going with the titanium non hd, just lurking on the akg 702 anni what setups ppl have and hopefully theres someone with a good setup within my budget and similar music taste

 

pox67

 

hey pox tks for the feedback, im checking the D1 atm

 

 

Edit: well im going with the Titanium HD and a Schiit Magni

 

thanks everyone for the feedback, much appreciated. Merry Christmas :D  


Edited by Nijs - 9/10/13 at 7:33pm
post #1812 of 3109
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nijs View Post
 

Evshrug

I couldnt find any info regarding the modi DAC so i emailed them for more details and the cables :) the o2 /odac combo is under my eye as well. I'm still looking for the best combo for my budget but there are so many options and so many opinions is hard to decide.

Now i know how girls feel when buying shoes...and that's why they buy all the shoes they see, they just cant decide which one to get :)

PurpleAngel

duh i completely forgot to check the inputs on the Modi, good thing i posted here :)

im going with the titanium non hd, just lurking on the akg 702 anni what setups ppl have and hopefully theres someone with a good setup within my budget and similar music taste

pox67

hey pox tks for the feedback, im checking the D1 atm

Edit: well I'm going with the Titanium HD and a Schiit Magni

thanks everyone for the feedback, much appreciated. Merry Christmas :D  

When you install the Titanium HD, remember to disable on-board audio (in the BIOS).

And with the Titanium HD, you plug external headphone amplifiers into the RCA outputs, not the Titanium's headphone jack.

post #1813 of 3109

Alright man, thanks once again :)

post #1814 of 3109
Quote:
Originally Posted by Evshrug View Post
 

Avro,

I hope I didn't overdo it, but I get a kick out of figuring things out and helping. I don't ALWAYS know the best answer, but usually I can point the way.

 

I didn't know the E17 kept using battery power even while charging. I was personally very excited about the E11 having changeable batteries and tried petitioning for the E12 to have that feature when it was being designed, but I lost out to the majority that said they'd like to use the amp while charging. But, I came to the same conclusion as you: probably will buy something else once the battery wears out, might as well get my money's worth in the meantime. What I know about lithium ion batteries from training at work, they do wear down over time like a car tire, but not using them at least once a month for a full cycle can also be harmful to the maximum battery health (so exercise the cells for a full cycle at least once a month), and that it doesn't suffer from memory effects like old rechargeable battery types so normally you can "top off" the battery without hurting it.

 

if the AD700 changes at all from the 10 ohm output impedance of the E09k's amp, it would be a bit of bass warmth that might actually sound nicer

 

It was just the right amount of techno babble.  :wink_face:  I do that sometimes too.  I can get a bit too wordy on topics that I have some good knowledge on.  

 

I was not pleased when I learned that the E17 was not running directly on USB power until after I got it.  But that was my own fault of not doing enough research.  That and it was an impulse buy because it was a cheaper open box unit, which was basically brand new, even the screen protectors were untouched.  

 

Yes, I also know that li-ions degrade over time even when they are unused.  It's a side effect of the li-ion chemistry.  In usage cases like smart phones, that won't matter because it will degrade faster from the almost daily charge cycles before chemical breakdown over time degrades it.  But for other uses like in high powered flashlights the degradation over time is more of an issue.  

 

I agree that the O2 has a very messy wire layout in it's stock form, partly why I didn't really want to get it.  Hopefully I'll have some time this week to pick up the E09k from the store.  I got the Dolby Headphone over optical into my E17 working last night.  Man... movies sound awesome on my AKGs now.  :k701smile: That virtualized positional audio works great for the 6-channel audio in movies.  Unfortunately the only game I currently play with any regularity is Guild Wars 2, which doesn't have the greatest positional audio since it's only a MMORPG.  But in the areas where it is used, it definitely sounds better than before because I tested it before and after DH was turned on.  I guess I should start installing/downloading some of those games I bought during the last Steam sale.  I've installed/played maybe 10-15% of my Steam library... :p

post #1815 of 3109
Quote:
Originally Posted by OP20 View Post

Thankyou for the responses. I just read that the Asus Xonar Essence STX has an output impedance of 10 ohm. I'm not an audiophile with any HiFi experience... am I going to be able to tell the difference between 23 and 10 ohms output impedance?

In the past couple days of research I find myself curious if my inexperienced ears would be able to pick up on any audio degradation of going from the U3 directly. I'm always very interested in finding the very best solution from experienced people such as the audiophiles here... but I also enjoy an very clean desk :P It's unfortunate I don't have room for an internal card... and that the Xonar U7 kinda sucks from what I've read as far as positional audio compared to the U3.

Where did you find that the U7 is inferior than the U3? The U7 is Asus's TOTL usb soundcard with Dolby Headphone. Then they have the U1 which is also very good and then last one is the U3.
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