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Creative Sound Blaster new series Z, Zx & ZxR - Page 17

post #241 of 2363

Exactly what's the difference between the Z and Zx. Are they using same DAC but the amping and the volume control is the difference? If so then I'd much rather get Z.

post #242 of 2363
Quote:
Originally Posted by RPGWiZaRD View Post

Exactly what's the difference between the Z and Zx. Are they using same DAC but the amping and the volume control is the difference? If so then I'd much rather get Z.

There is NO difference. Same card. Just the zx has the addition of the ACM.

There are some reports that the zx's have nichicon gold capacitors. However some of the newer z's have them as well.

Sound quality wise no difference 100% guaranteed.
post #243 of 2363
Double post
post #244 of 2363
Quote:
Originally Posted by DJINFERNO806 View Post

Well according to him we all belong here since only idiots can hear difference between on board and add on sound.

Maybe he's related to the pric0 guy that just showed up in Nameless' PC gaming guide WITH CAPS LOCK ON SOMETIMES SORRY and ****** language saying virtual surround is impossible? Anyway, dragon rage clearly has issues and paranoia about the intents of others, I don't think anyone would take him seriously. Trolls show up from time to time, but rarely do they sound, err, sound of mind and trustworthy, so I just ignore them, responding only if it seems others are being shepherded on the bandwagon.
post #245 of 2363
Just to share the ZxR is now available on Creative Singapore web and I'm expecting delivery very soon! Really hope it doesn't disappoint... Cheers!
post #246 of 2363

ZxR in Europe went out of stock in a day.

post #247 of 2363
Cheers nirvanalive!

Wow Kel Ghu, that was fast! It's still clear the could benefit from improved marketing though wink.gif
post #248 of 2363
Quote:
Originally Posted by nirvanalive View Post

Just to share the ZxR is now available on Creative Singapore web and I'm expecting delivery very soon! Really hope it doesn't disappoint... Cheers!


Glad to hear!

Don't forget to share us your impressions after you spend some time with the card smile.gif

post #249 of 2363
Quote:
Originally Posted by Evshrug View Post

Wow Kel Ghu, that was fast! It's still clear the could benefit from improved marketing though wink.gif

 

They didn't even send us a notification email, for those of us who subscribed to it. :D

post #250 of 2363

Well I hope to be able to buy the SoundBlaster Z soon in europe. It's my last hope to finally find something that I'm totally pleased with coming from onboard Realtek.

 

- With Titanium HD I just don't like the driver interface.

- With ASUS I don't like the very scaled down interface and very cheap not so great working EQ and the cards tend to have a slight tilt towards highs, very analytical & "digital" sound to it. "The random high volume output issue" also scares me a whole lot

- I want a soundcard instead of USB DAC due to the added options such as EQ and 5.1 speaker support (I don't use my 5.1 speakers barely anymore but well it's good to have support at least and then I also use 5.1 speakermode with headphones for improved imaging, games & music)

 

Hopefully this new Z-series will make me satisfied, I feel the ZxR is a little too expensive even if it has a better DAC which is attractive (I don't need the ACM module) but then again I read a lot of average joes noticing SQ improvement coming from their older X-Fi card or ASUS cards to the Z card already, so I'm thinking it should at least be a very big step-up from onboard.


Edited by RPGWiZaRD - 2/16/13 at 5:33pm
post #251 of 2363

I have had the ZXR for a couple of days now.  Unfortunately it doesn't help you guys too much because I am in no way qualified to be talking about audio on this forum.  I am still running to the dictionary to figure out what you guys are talking about in some of the reviews.  The special language audio geeks use has not become mine yet. This will become obvious as I tell what little I can about this sound card

 

I came from a Titanium non HD.  I almost always listen through ATH A-700 headphones and rarely through Logitech x620 speakers.  Not very impressive gear.  The only external amp I have is this tiny Fiio E5.  Most of the time I didn't use it but the last month or two I have.

 

One of the differences I saw when comparing my Titanium to the ZXR was the capacitors.  The ZXR has Fine Gold caps.  They are physically much larger than the caps on the Titanium.  It seemed to me the smallest cap on the ZXR was larger than the biggest on the Titanium.  

 

It was easy to install.  I had zero problems with the software.

 

The ACM seems a little heavier than a half can of soda.  The knob moves smoothly.  It turns lightly, I wish it was a little heavier.  I have a sidewinder x6 keyboard the volume knobs feel similar just different size.  The cords coming from the module are stiff, wrapped in cloth, like the Audio Tech headphones, heavy, and in my opinion 3' too short.  It has a tacky bottom that keeps it in place the weight of the cords do not move the module.  I love having a volume knob it is why I am still using the sidewinder x6 keyboard.  The module is nice looking, I do like the color of the one that comes with the ZX better, I like red.

 

The sound is improved for me through my headphones and through my speakers.  I do not have a sophisticated enough ear to tell you if that is because the parts in this card are superior to the parts in my old one or if it is simply because now I am using a better headphone amp, the card supplied Texas Instruments TPA6120.  In the SBX Pro Studio menu I have not decided what settings I like best.  I really like the sound with nothing turned on.  I also like just the bass checked.  I do not like having the Crystalizer on, it makes the music I listen to sound like the treble is up too high.  

 

I remember when I first went away from onboard sound and sub $20 headphones to the X-fi and the Audio Technicas.  I HEARD THINGS in songs I never heard before.  You know what I'm talking about don't you?  I could hear the pick scrape on the string not just the note.  I heard the wind chimes on the Doobie Brother's "Black Water" as if they were outside my window.  Well, I had just such a moment using this card.  I'm one of those guys that can never figure out the lyrics to songs and end up making up some bizarre words of my own.  The first rock band I ever got into was the Police.  When I first heard the song Don't Stand so Close to Me it was being played on top 40 radio.  It has taken until yesterday for me to realize he says after the book marking line "this girl is half his age"  You don't want to know what I've been singing for the last two decades.

 

I like to game.  I have and do play everything.  Lately I've been playing some Path of Exile, Skyrim, Shogun 2, and Saints Row 3.  The positional audio is at least as good as it was with my Titanium.  I can't tell if it is better yet but I definitely would have noticed a drop off and there has not been one.  In Shogun 2 the surround sound is improved with this card.  My left and right rear speakers play much louder than they did before.  With the Titanium they were so quite in 5.1 that the setting seemed useless.  No longer useless!  When I was using the old Titanium with Path of Exile I had been experiences some BSOD from time to time when another program played audio.  This problem has not resurfaced with the ZXR.  

 

I'm glad I got this card.  It has been an improvement in my entertainment experience.  My music sounds better and my gaming still sounds awesome!

post #252 of 2363
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hugh Jundys View Post

Spoiler Box (Click to show)

 

I have had the ZXR for a couple of days now.  Unfortunately it doesn't help you guys too much because I am in no way qualified to be talking about audio on this forum.  I am still running to the dictionary to figure out what you guys are talking about in some of the reviews.  The special language audio geeks use has not become mine yet. This will become obvious as I tell what little I can about this sound card

 

I came from a Titanium non HD.  I almost always listen through ATH A-700 headphones and rarely through Logitech x620 speakers.  Not very impressive gear.  The only external amp I have is this tiny Fiio E5.  Most of the time I didn't use it but the last month or two I have.

 

One of the differences I saw when comparing my Titanium to the ZXR was the capacitors.  The ZXR has Fine Gold caps.  They are physically much larger than the caps on the Titanium.  It seemed to me the smallest cap on the ZXR was larger than the biggest on the Titanium.  

 

It was easy to install.  I had zero problems with the software.

 

The ACM seems a little heavier than a half can of soda.  The knob moves smoothly.  It turns lightly, I wish it was a little heavier.  I have a sidewinder x6 keyboard the volume knobs feel similar just different size.  The cords coming from the module are stiff, wrapped in cloth, like the Audio Tech headphones, heavy, and in my opinion 3' too short.  It has a tacky bottom that keeps it in place the weight of the cords do not move the module.  I love having a volume knob it is why I am still using the sidewinder x6 keyboard.  The module is nice looking, I do like the color of the one that comes with the ZX better, I like red.

 

The sound is improved for me through my headphones and through my speakers.  I do not have a sophisticated enough ear to tell you if that is because the parts in this card are superior to the parts in my old one or if it is simply because now I am using a better headphone amp, the card supplied Texas Instruments TPA6120.  In the SBX Pro Studio menu I have not decided what settings I like best.  I really like the sound with nothing turned on.  I also like just the bass checked.  I do not like having the Crystalizer on, it makes the music I listen to sound like the treble is up too high.  

 

I remember when I first went away from onboard sound and sub $20 headphones to the X-fi and the Audio Technicas.  I HEARD THINGS in songs I never heard before.  You know what I'm talking about don't you?  I could hear the pick scrape on the string not just the note.  I heard the wind chimes on the Doobie Brother's "Black Water" as if they were outside my window.  Well, I had just such a moment using this card.  I'm one of those guys that can never figure out the lyrics to songs and end up making up some bizarre words of my own.  The first rock band I ever got into was the Police.  When I first heard the song Don't Stand so Close to Me it was being played on top 40 radio.  It has taken until yesterday for me to realize he says after the book marking line "this girl is half his age"  You don't want to know what I've been singing for the last two decades.

 

I like to game.  I have and do play everything.  Lately I've been playing some Path of Exile, Skyrim, Shogun 2, and Saints Row 3.  The positional audio is at least as good as it was with my Titanium.  I can't tell if it is better yet but I definitely would have noticed a drop off and there has not been one.  In Shogun 2 the surround sound is improved with this card.  My left and right rear speakers play much louder than they did before.  With the Titanium they were so quite in 5.1 that the setting seemed useless.  No longer useless!  When I was using the old Titanium with Path of Exile I had been experiences some BSOD from time to time when another program played audio.  This problem has not resurfaced with the ZXR.  

 

I'm glad I got this card.  It has been an improvement in my entertainment experience.  My music sounds better and my gaming still sounds awesome!

 

 

 

Thanks alot for your small but helpful review!

Glad to hear you are enjoying your new toy smile.gif

Fun to see, that you are playing the same games that I use to play too. :)

 

Cheers,

post #253 of 2363
Creatives new drivers seems to be a huge improvement over their older continuously bashed drivers, especially for those of us running Windows 8, as the driver is written for Windows 8 in the first place. Driver-wise so is Asus at the moment left far behind, their driver has an ugly childish interface and is written for Windows XP from the beginning, and then patched over and over again.

No ASIO is still a disappointment, but hopefully Creative will fix that in an upcoming driver. Anyway, this is consumer grade soundcards and most consumers don't need ASIO. For headophiles there's always WASAPI.

I run my Asus:es in Linux so I don't suffer from crappy drivers, but my Soundblaster Z runs in WIndows 8 and it feels like a perfect fit for that environment. Still sounds very good for a 60$ soundcard, perfectly happy with choosing it for my gaming box biggrin.gif
post #254 of 2363
Quote:
Originally Posted by xeizo View Post

Creatives new drivers seems to be a huge improvement over their older continuously bashed drivers, especially for those of us running Windows 8, as the driver is written for Windows 8 in the first place. Driver-wise so is Asus at the moment left far behind, their driver has an ugly childish interface and is written for Windows XP from the beginning, and then patched over and over again.

No ASIO is still a disappointment, but hopefully Creative will fix that in an upcoming driver. Anyway, this is consumer grade soundcards and most consumers don't need ASIO. For headophiles there's always WASAPI.

I run my Asus:es in Linux so I don't suffer from crappy drivers, but my Soundblaster Z runs in WIndows 8 and it feels like a perfect fit for that environment. Still sounds very good for a 60$ soundcard, perfectly happy with choosing it for my gaming box biggrin.gif


No ASIO support is indeed quite sad, but I'm confident that they will patch it with a future update. They should implement it at least for the ZxR cards, as this is their so called "studio-grade" card.

 

I agree with the drivers being fully optimized for Windows 8. As a Windows 8 users myself, this is one of the reasons why I would upgrade to a Z series card. smile.gif

post #255 of 2363

I waited for a sale on the ZX and I'm glad that I did. I really find the ACM handy. Its also very nice when you have a headphone with a coiled cable.

 

I was also surprised to see that it drives a 250 ohm beyer to a decent volume. 

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