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The Nameless Guide To PC Gaming Audio (with binaural headphone surround sound) - Page 130

post #1936 of 3278
Quote:
Originally Posted by PurpleAngel View Post

The Z series sound cards can pass headphone surround sound thru the optical output.
To save a few dollars, you can get a used Creative X-Fi Titanium (non-HD, PCI-E), sometimes for as little as $40, off eBay.
Might also work to get the newer Sound blaster Z (SB1500) for $100 and plug your headphones straight into the Z and you may lke the audio quality enough that you no longer need to use the Audioengine D1.
What headphones do you have?

AKG Q701s. They actually plug into a Matrix M-Stage that is being fed by the D1. Thanks for the info!
post #1937 of 3278

I stumbled over this thread by benbenkr (a very good contributor here ) over on overclock.net: http://www.overclock.net/t/1392877/a-couple-questions-about-cmss-3d-dolby-headphone-and-similar-technologies (the other lively audio forum). I'm sure some of you may well have seen this, but that thread died a total death only 5 posts in. I sent him a quick PM here saying he should re-post on Head-Fi in this thread. Maybe he thought it a little self serving to do so: Anyway, in the public interest and seeing as this is the internet, I will post it here solely because information is power.

 

Quote:
Having tested and used all 4 main VSS technologies extensively, here's my summarized view on them:

*note*
Not all VSS technologies work well for all types of headphone, for example Dolby Headphones does not generally work too well with most closed headsets/headphones. This is due to the reverb DH has and having a closed headphones bounces the "echo" effect, leading to what many refer to as "like being in a tunnel".

CMSS-3D
They still have the best positional cues over amongst the 3 VSS technologies, they are still the ones to go for if your primary needs is absolute positional accuracy.
The downside of CMSS-3D is that it makes the audio sound overly thin, it's worst especially if you use it with bass-shy headphones and even more so if they're open ones. Though there are people who do feel that the "tin can" effect does help even more with positional accuracy as it accentuates the mid-high frequencies, leading to picking up audio cues around the player.

I for one personally think that if you want CMSS-3D to behave like an all rounder, you'll want to use a closed headphone/headset and do at least have tight bass.

Dolby Headphones
They're honestly the worst VSS tech in terms of positional accuracy IF you're using it on a closed headphone with relatively narrow soundstage. Many people do not understand that for DH to shine, open headphones with decent soundstage and some possess at least some tight bass is a must. I use DH with a HE-400 and K702, they're just SWEEET. Positional accuracy is indeed still not as good as CMSS-3D, but the immersion I get... I'm willing to look that off.

Because of this, Dolby Headphones generally work nice with movies too. Much better than CMSS-3D at least.

THX Surround
I don't know what went wrong with THX Surround honestly because what I feel is that it is very inconsistent. In most games, THX surround just doesn't project proper positional accuracy but instead over emphasize on immersion. I honestly only found THX Surround usable with Battlefield 3, I don't know why... but any other FPS or games, THX surround just sounds dull... lifeless.

Some users do however feel that THX Surround provides the best immersion and is good for movies, I personally don't feel that way as I think Dolby Headphones fits that bill better... for me, at least.

SBX Surround
It's been quite on the upward spiral lately, what THX Surround did wrong... Creative took it and modified whatever they needed to and the result is something I would call: the marriage between Dolby Headphones and CMSS-3D.
SBX does not have better positional accuracy than CMSS-3D, but it IS better than Dolby Headphones (even with a good open headphone combo). It doesn't present that "tin can" effect or have too much reverb.

Best of all, I feel that SBX Surround just works with any type of headphones. Be it open, semi-open or closed. SBX fits well within the range and although it doesn't get to be as accurate or as immersive with CMSS-3D and DH, I think SBX is the best all rounder for someone who just wants to game and watch movies.


I hope that helps. Remember, virtual surround sound DOES work. People who say it doesn't, well... too bad, it doesn't for them.
IMO, they work and they're fun to use.

Edited by SaLX - 10/8/13 at 9:53pm
post #1938 of 3278
Quote:
Originally Posted by SaLX View Post
 

I stumbled over this thread by benbenkr (a very good contributor here ) over on overclock.net: http://www.overclock.net/t/1392877/a-couple-questions-about-cmss-3d-dolby-headphone-and-similar-technologies (the other lively audio forum). I'm sure some of you may well have seen this, but that thread died a total death only 5 posts in. I sent him a quick PM here saying he should re-post on Head-Fi in this thread. Maybe he thought it a little self serving to do so: Anyway, in the public interest and seeing as this is the internet, I will post it here solely because information is power.

 

This thread over at overclock.net, did you see the avatar for the last poster, from a week ago?

post #1939 of 3278
I liked the demos of SBX, and I'm generally interested in the potential it has. It did seem to do what I liked about both DH and THX TS. Like DH without the extra reverb, and without THX's inconsistent panning.

So if Creative makes an updated Recon USB with SBX that also works for consoles, I may be super interested.

It was a few short demos though, so I'm not fully convinced on it just yet.
post #1940 of 3278
Ya it would be nice if the recon3d came with the updated sbx pro studio via some firmware update or what not. But sadly I don't think it ever will due to licensing. I'm sure creative signed a deal with thx to ship them with their studio only and breaking that would be costly to them.

And I don't think it sold well enough for them to consider another revision or model.
post #1941 of 3278
Quote:
Originally Posted by TSTY View Post
 

got this from the audioengine website

Considering the annis are rated at 65ohms, i'd say the D1 should be more than enough to drive it.

Having the the knob as such a low position probably means that there's too much gain.

Sorry, not sure what to do if you can't adjust the gain.

 

I know the Annies don't have a super high impedance, but from what I've read here, they (as well as the related Q/K70x variants) are apparently hard to drive properly if they are not fed enough mW.  Since the D1 is only USB powered (5V @ 200mA = ~1.0W), there's a limit to how much power it can output.  Their specs also don't list the mW output at a certain Ohm impedance like the Fiio specs do (my E17 can output 220mW @ 32 Ohm).  All they list is 2.0V RMS and 10 Ohm output impedance at the headphone jack.  I don't know how to calculate the mW output from that, or if it's even possible to calculate that from just those numbers.  I do know that my E17 isn't driving the Annies at max output.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by PurpleAngel View Post
 

Contact Audioengine, see what there tech support has to say.

Maybe it might help to turn down the volume a little, on the computer, with the windows volume control of the Creative labs volume control.

 

Thanks for the advice.  I sent off an email to their tech support around midnight and got a reply in about 11 hours.  That's a pretty quick turn around time for a reply.  And it was a reply from a human because he complimented me on my choice of motherboard since he was using the same one at home.  =)  Anyway, his advice was the same as yours, turn down the Windows master volume to gain adjustment range on the volume knob.  When I tried this before (with both the D1 and E17), the volume slider just bounced back to 100%.  Since that was his recommendation also, I figured I try dragging it a few more times and on the 3rd or 4th try, the slider finally moved and stayed down.  Right now I have the Windows volume slider at 55% and I have full volume knob range, from 6 o'clock to 4 o'clock, where 4 o'clock is very loud instead of beyond deafening.  I'm actually just running the onboard Realtek ALC892 audio, not a Creative Labs card so I just have to adjust the master Windows volume slider.  

post #1942 of 3278
Quote:
Originally Posted by DJINFERNO806 View Post

Ya it would be nice if the recon3d came with the updated sbx pro studio via some firmware update or what not. But sadly I don't think it ever will due to licensing. I'm sure creative signed a deal with thx to ship them with their studio only and breaking that would be costly to them.

And I don't think it sold well enough for them to consider another revision or model.

Actually there are Recons that come with SBX pro studio, Creative announced them like a couple of months ago as Recon R2 but they are Japan only for now.

post #1943 of 3278
Yes, but I hear they are USB only, so no console use.
post #1944 of 3278

yes, totally not for any console use. I was anticipating them when Evshrug hinted at Creative releasing a new external SBX device but in the end it turned out to be a dissapointment

post #1945 of 3278
You guys talking about the omni that's only for USB?

http://www.creative.com/corporate/pressroom/?id=13374

Only recon r2 I heard about was the pcie card. Couldn't find any info on the USB update.

I guess by calling it r2 they can get away with dropping thx.
Edited by DJINFERNO806 - 10/9/13 at 3:46am
post #1946 of 3278
Quote:
Originally Posted by SaLX View Post
 

I stumbled over this thread by benbenkr (a very good contributor here ) over on overclock.net: http://www.overclock.net/t/1392877/a-couple-questions-about-cmss-3d-dolby-headphone-and-similar-technologies (the other lively audio forum). I'm sure some of you may well have seen this, but that thread died a total death only 5 posts in. I sent him a quick PM here saying he should re-post on Head-Fi in this thread. Maybe he thought it a little self serving to do so: Anyway, in the public interest and seeing as this is the internet, I will post it here solely because information is power.

 

 

Hmm, I'd been intending to get an X-Fi Titanium HD for use with my HD 598s and Schiit Magni but according to this that's not the best idea?

 

Anyone else have experience with SBX?

post #1947 of 3278
Quote:
Originally Posted by Merzbro View Post
 

 

Hmm, I'd been intending to get an X-Fi Titanium HD for use with my HD 598s and Schiit Magni but according to this that's not the best idea?

 

Anyone else have experience with SBX?


Maybe invest in a Creative Titanium (non-HD),used $50,has the same CMSS-3D as the Titanium HD.

You can try using the Titanium for awhile, sell it off at a later date, if it does not workout.

 

Or sell off the Magni and get the Sound Blaster Z (SB1500), $98.

post #1948 of 3278
Quote:
Originally Posted by PurpleAngel View Post
 

This thread over at overclock.net, did you see the avatar for the last poster, from a week ago?

Dear gawd... Tacoboy

post #1949 of 3278

Just received my Sound Blaster Z, initial impressions are good. Like the overclock.net thread said, SBX surround offers a good middle ground.
I have tried both TiHD with CMSS-3D and Xonar with Dolby Headphones. It used to be the choice between the "hollow" sound of Dolby Headphones and the bright sound of CMSS-3D. I chose TiHD cus I find it easier to bear.

SBX surround changes everything, no annoying hollow effects like I'm in the middle of an auditorium, and significant improvement over CMSS-3D's brightness (although a bit's still there). There is a drop in positional accuracy when compaired to CMSS-3D, but it's very small. Small enough for me to wonder if it's just because of CMSS-3D's brightness bringing out the details more.

But you can judge all these yourself by listening to youtube comparison videos.

 

I will carefully compare the Zero DAC vs whatever DAC chip they have on Z and do a review in case anyone's thinking about getting an external DAC for their sound card

...eventually, cus I just got mah POKEMANS!!!

...so yeah... I'll get around to it... sorry guys...


Edited by TSTY - 10/12/13 at 1:28am
post #1950 of 3278

Hey guys,

 

Does anyone know if the razer surround sound would work with an external DAC?

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