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Need sound card advice!

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

Hey,

 

I built a new computer few months ago and just getting around to the sound & speaker part of it.

 

Right now I have:

Sound: On board - ALC892

Headphone: Pioneer SE-MJ551 http://www.pioneerelectronics.ca/POCEN/Home/Headphones/Headband/SE-MJ551-R

Speaker: Edifier S330D

http://www.edifier.ca/products/edifier-multimedia/s330-s330d.html

 

Usage is 50% Music/Movie, 50% gaming.

I was using headphone only until I got the speaker last week. I am using speaker only now but I am sure I will start using mix of headphones and speakers once the honeymoon period is over with the S330D bigsmile_face.gif

 

I have researched quite a bit and decided to stick with ASUS Xonar series.(good for price and had bad experience with Creative)

 

I'm deciding between Xonar DG/DGX and DX. (note all price in Canadian $)

 

First the ones that I won't get

STX - $190~200 is good and I wouldn't have to think about upgrade once I get it but I don't see me upgrading my speakers any time soon.

 

DS/DSX - $50~55 I don't see the point of this card. I would either go cheaper and go DG/DGX or pay a bit more for DX.

 

From what I've read

DG/DGX - $35~40/$45~55 Best bang for buck. Headphone Amp

 

DX -  $85~95 Better sound chip than DG/DGX. No Headphone Amp.

 

My question is with my speaker and headphone would I notice significant upgrade in sound from my on board? If so is DX worth spending 2~3 times more money than DG/DGX?

 

I know my headphone and speaker are very low end compare to most people here in the forum, but I would appreciate if you guys could help me.

Thanks!

post #2 of 7

I recommend the DG/DGX (never seen the DGX, but I stopped looking at sound cards after I got my DG).

 

It may not show a huge improvement to those headphones, but the headphone amp will come in handy if you get one with a higher impedence.

 

For myself, it was a huge improvement over stock (not even sure what that is anymore); but that was partially due to the fact that there was a nasty whine that I could hear through my headphones (Beyer DT770-Pro80) when using the front jack on my case.  Evidently I wasn't as careful routing the wires as I thought I was when I put everything into this case.  I should note that I could not hear this same whine on a cheaper headset that I own as well.

 

Getting the DG with the built in amp, while it may not be the best amp out there compared to others, will save you a bit to start if/when you do get higher quality cans since you won't have to immediately invest in one.
 

post #3 of 7
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by liquidzoo View Post

I recommend the DG/DGX (never seen the DGX, but I stopped looking at sound cards after I got my DG).

 

It may not show a huge improvement to those headphones, but the headphone amp will come in handy if you get one with a higher impedence.

 

For myself, it was a huge improvement over stock (not even sure what that is anymore); but that was partially due to the fact that there was a nasty whine that I could hear through my headphones (Beyer DT770-Pro80) when using the front jack on my case.  Evidently I wasn't as careful routing the wires as I thought I was when I put everything into this case.  I should note that I could not hear this same whine on a cheaper headset that I own as well.

 

Getting the DG with the built in amp, while it may not be the best amp out there compared to others, will save you a bit to start if/when you do get higher quality cans since you won't have to immediately invest in one.
 

Thanks for fast reply.

Did you notice any sound difference from speakers ? (other than the noise)

post #4 of 7

I don't have any speakers hooked up to my computer.  I haven't since I put in the sound card.  I have the ability to run (via a custom A/B switch) the (crappy) speakers attached to an old receiver, if I ever get around to making the interconnect.  I use headphones so I can have my music turned up while I work and not bother my wife or (especially) sleeping kids.
 

post #5 of 7
Thread Starter 

Any more advice? 

 

EDIT: What do you guys think about buying used sound card from a person (instead of a reputable seller)?

Would you buy a better used card or worse but new card?


Edited by lastsd - 1/23/13 at 6:58pm
post #6 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by lastsd View Post

Any more advice? 

 

EDIT: What do you guys think about buying used sound card from a person (instead of a reputable seller)?

Would you buy a better used card or worse but new card?


It depends on the card and how well I knew this person (or how highly rated the seller)

post #7 of 7

The Xonar DX/D1's line-out/headphone jack has a high impedance, so better just save a few dollars and get the DG or DGX.

 

Otherwise the Creative Labs Sound Blaster Z ($110), is a good investment, same DAC as the Xonar DX/D1 and comes with a head amp.

And the back panel has separate headphone and speaker output jacks.

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