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Creative Sound Blaster new series Z, Zx & ZxR - Page 150

post #2236 of 2471
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nitrius View Post

Care to
Care to explain that a bit more? My headphones are only stereo.

Creative takes the 5.1 channels from windows and uses it to create stereo surround sound which results in superior sound vs if you set windows to headphones.

post #2237 of 2471
Quote:
Originally Posted by PurpleAngel View Post
 

Creative Sound Blaster ZxR Versus Onboard Audio

 

http://hothardware.com/Reviews/Creative-Sound-Blaster-ZxR-Versus-Onboard-Audio/?page=1#!bcUKv4

Nice review, thanks for the link Purple. The meme that onboard is as good as discrete get's slightly blown out of the water here, but I agree with the reviewer's verdict that the Z is all you need really. 

 

@RPGWiZaRD - you still not sold your ZxR yet!! :)

post #2238 of 2471
Quote:
Originally Posted by MaxKohler View Post

Creative takes the 5.1 channels from windows and uses it to create stereo surround sound which results in superior sound vs if you set windows to headphones.

Hmm i see. What about when am listening to stereo music, i don't suppose the creative drivers color the music in anyway?
post #2239 of 2471
Quote:
Originally Posted by SaLX View Post
 

Nice review, thanks for the link Purple. The meme that onboard is as good as discrete get's slightly blown out of the water here, but I agree with the reviewer's verdict that the Z is all you need really. 

 

@RPGWiZaRD - you still not sold your ZxR yet!! :)


I've not, I've been too lazy to actively try to sell it, should instead try to sell it in a local forum but been too lazy to set up a thread for it.

I've got a STX II now too and seems like I will return to the onboard. While the STX II sound-wise fits my tastes & setup a lot better the soundstaging *surprise surprise* isn't as good as my onboard when using my particular config I've found to be working best with the Realtek.

I was using the STX II straight for like 5 days, listening to music, mastering tracks and gaming to get a good idea. Then switched back to onboard and what do ya know. the soundstaging did stand out as better quite immediatly. I don't really like Dolby headphone or the Z-series surround config etc as I prefer more natural sound and the onboard somehow provide a lot more realistic, deep, clear accurate positioning of sounds when all effects and stuff are disabled and you just rely on the 5.1/7.1 speaker setting. The only slight difference sound quality wise I notice is mostly the resolution in the mids, otherwise the bass + highs compare suprisingly well, I can definitely live with that but I have a hard time accepting worse soundstaging/positioning on the what is supposed to be highend gaming soundcards. The difference was clear when firing up for example Far Cry 3. I could clearly hear the cars coming from the distance and very well position all the firing and vehicles and voices, easily pinpointing to the right direction. When I played with the STX II, the positioning became a bit confused in a gunfight I thought and wasn't 100% clear on the directions. I've tried all possible configs on the ASUS & Creative card but it doesn't get equally good with any setting.

Is it really too much asked to get a better audio solution than onboard!? Sometimes I hate my ability to having to test all possible settings/configs and listen to changes in sound in order to determine what truly works best. I'm not the guy to read guides and stuff, I decide for myself. That gets me into trouble like this when I happen to find something working in a software way particularly well that unfortunately a product with better hardware doesn't do equally well in the software department.
 


Edited by RPGWiZaRD - 7/14/14 at 5:51am
post #2240 of 2471

did creative ever add gain options to the sound blaster Z?  I sold my card awhile back, but I'm thinking of buying it again.  For some reason, this was the only card that didn't have gain options which caused me some issues.

post #2241 of 2471
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nitrius View Post


Hmm i see. What about when am listening to stereo music, i don't suppose the creative drivers color the music in anyway?

I'm not sure. Someone more knowledgeable would have to comment on that. You could test to see if you can tell a difference. The difference in games is pretty noticeable.

post #2242 of 2471
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nitrius View Post


Hmm i see. What about when am listening to stereo music, i don't suppose the creative drivers color the music in anyway?

 

Yes drivers can affect the sound signature depending on what changes from current to new in the drivers.  Many people with X-Fi cards run PAX drivers due to their improved sound quality.

post #2243 of 2471
I was thinking
Quote:
Originally Posted by NCSUZoSo View Post

Yes drivers can affect the sound signature depending on what changes from current to new in the drivers.  Many people with X-Fi cards run PAX drivers due to their improved sound quality.

I was thinking more in the direction of, when windows speaker setup says 5.1 surround, i doesn't try to upmix the music to 5.1 surround as well? If that's even possible.
post #2244 of 2471
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nitrius View Post

I was thinking
I was thinking more in the direction of, when windows speaker setup says 5.1 surround, i doesn't try to upmix the music to 5.1 surround as well? If that's even possible.


On Z-series it won't sound much different the way Creative handles speaker config but on my onboard it brings a positive effect like bigger soundstaging / clearer imaging / more around/out of my head which I like and why my ZxR is sitting in the bookshelf. :p


Edited by RPGWiZaRD - 7/15/14 at 8:31am
post #2245 of 2471

I have noticed something a little annoying about my setup listed in my profile.  The Yamaha RX-V863 has the center channel always active and if you aren't playing something in surround it just plays a low sound, but gets louder as you turn up obviously.  I know my SLI Volt-Modded 660 Ti's have something to do with it even though they are insanely efficient, because for example when playing ESO when I am loading into a new zone or loading the game on sign in I will hear that center increase in noise as soon the graphics hit vs. 2D loading screen.  I am assuming this is EMI interference, the weird part is Creative put a copper ground bar across the ZXR separating digital from analog.  Is there anything you can do about something like this?  Also does it matter the sound card has to be right on top of the primary GPU the only other option is to put it on the bottom and block part of the secondary card's cooling.  Anyone have any idea on this?

post #2246 of 2471
Quote:
Originally Posted by NCSUZoSo View Post
 

I have noticed something a little annoying about my setup listed in my profile.  The Yamaha RX-V863 has the center channel always active and if you aren't playing something in surround it just plays a low sound, but gets louder as you turn up obviously.  I know my SLI Volt-Modded 660 Ti's have something to do with it even though they are insanely efficient, because for example when playing ESO when I am loading into a new zone or loading the game on sign in I will hear that center increase in noise as soon the graphics hit vs. 2D loading screen.  I am assuming this is EMI interference, the weird part is Creative put a copper ground bar across the ZXR separating digital from analog.  Is there anything you can do about something like this?  Also does it matter the sound card has to be right on top of the primary GPU the only other option is to put it on the bottom and block part of the secondary card's cooling.  Anyone have any idea on this?


it's called a ground loop issue.

post #2247 of 2471

Which one of all three would be best for me ? I will use it with 5.1 speakers and headphone/mic combo,

 

My main usage is 40% gaming, 40% music and 20% movies.

 

also some questions:

-Do all of them come with a headphone amp ?

-Do all of them come with a Beamforming Microphone ?

-can I connect both my speakers and headphone/ mic at the same time ?

-What does the Audio Control Module do exactly and is it useful?

- Is there any options that are better with a 100$ budget ? (Like the Xonar DX)

 

I am fairly new to soundcards and reading 150 pages to get the information sounds a bit hard for me haha, so excuse my laziness and my ignorance about soundcards, and I would love some feedback. Thank you :)

 

Notes : -I am using Asus Xonar DS and I am not happy with it.

           -Sennheiser HD 558 headphones with Labtec LVA-7330 Noise mic

              -Creative Inspire T6100 Speakers.


Edited by Orion1991 - 7/16/14 at 7:32pm
post #2248 of 2471
Quote:
Originally Posted by Orion1991 View Post
 

Which one of all three would be best for me ? I will use it with 5.1 speakers and headphone/mic combo,

 

My main usage is 40% gaming, 40% music and 20% movies.

 

also some questions:

-Do all of them come with a headphone amp ?

-Do all of them come with a Beamforming Microphone ?

-can I connect both my speakers and headphone/ mic at the same time ?

-What does the Audio Control Module do exactly and is it useful?

- Is there any options that are better with a 100$ budget ? (Like the Xonar DX)

 

I am fairly new to soundcards and reading 150 pages to get the information sounds a bit hard for me haha, so excuse my laziness and my ignorance about soundcards, and I would love some feedback. Thank you :)

 

Note : I am using Asus Xonar DS and I am not happy with it.


ZX = Z with ACM.

ZXR has a better DAC and AMP.

The Z's mic is better than the one on the ACM.

The control module lets you plug and unplug things right there on your desktop instead of going into the back of your computer. It also gives you a volume knob. In my opinion it is useless since it's not only been reported to degrade sound, but there is no need for it since you can plug both speakers and headphones and mic into the back at the same time and switch between them using the software.

 

I opted to go for the Titanium HD instead because the ZXR's surround sound positioning is inferior (in mine and other's opinions).

 

You'll want to consider whether your headphones need/benefit from an amp. Some people are buying the Z and using an amp with it.

 

Quote:
-can I connect both my speakers and headphone/ mic at the same time ?

Yes.

post #2249 of 2471
Quote:
Originally Posted by MaxKohler View Post
 


ZX = Z with ACM.

ZXR has a better DAC and AMP.

The Z's mic is better than the one on the ACM.

The control module lets you plug and unplug things right there on your desktop instead of going into the back of your computer. It also gives you a volume knob. In my opinion it is useless since it's not only been reported to degrade sound, but there is no need for it since you can plug both speakers and headphones and mic into the back at the same time and switch between them using the software.

 

I opted to go for the Titanium HD instead because the ZXR's surround sound positioning is inferior (in mine and other's opinions).

 

You'll want to consider whether your headphones need/benefit from an amp. Some people are buying the Z and using an amp with it.

 

Yes.

 

First thank you for the answers, second the ZXR and the Titanium HD are a bit too expensive for me :/ and since the control module isn't exactly useful, you think my best guess is getting the sound blaster Z (around 100$) ? or maybe there is something better in the price range, also does the Z have Dolby technology to get surround sound in games ?

 

also a friend told me to just get the Asus xonar DG with the headphone amp, a lot cheaper and not a big difference between that and the Z model, I honestly have no experience and would love some help.

post #2250 of 2471
Quote:
Originally Posted by Orion1991 View Post
 

 

First thank you for the answers, second the ZXR and the Titanium HD are a bit too expensive for me :/ and since the control module isn't exactly useful, you think my best guess is getting the sound blaster Z (around 100$) ? or maybe there is something better in the price range, also does the Z have Dolby technology to get surround sound in games ?

 

also a friend told me to just get the Asus xonar DG with the headphone amp, a lot cheaper and not a big difference between that and the Z model, I honestly have no experience and would love some help.


I don't know much about the asus cards but I wouldn't recommend the Z because of the subpar positioning in FPS games for these series. I would say either listen to your friend or find an xfi xtremegamer on ebay for under $60.

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