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Creative X-FI External soundcard - Do I Need to Upgrade?

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 


I'm new to this audiophile stuff, and have a question about a suitable soundcard for me.


I have HD 558 & HD 202 and use them mostly on my PC through a Creative X-FI 5.1 External USB soundcard (the standard one, not 'Pro' or 'HD' version). Now I've read a relatively good reviews on sub-100$ Asus soundcards and a couple of portable DAC/amp combo, and here's the question : Are those soundcards and portable DAC/amp combo can be considered as an upgrade from my current soundcard? Do I gonna notice the improvements?


Right now I'm gathering info about Asus Xonar DSX, Fiio E07K and Musiland Monitor 01 US but desperately need an answer for those questions first.

Thanks in advance.

post #2 of 7

Are you content with the sound that your external usb soundcard is providing? I normally use a nuforce dac at work and later "upgraded" to a AudioQuest dragonfly after hearing such rave reviews for it. After the purchase, I did hear little differences in clarity but did not justify the price tag. I ended up selling it and keeping my Nuforce dac for the office. The HD558 and HD 202 do not benefit from an amp and I think buying those  you have listed would just be a waste of money. Just my two cents. 

post #3 of 7
Thread Starter 

Thanks for your reply.


In my opinion the X-Fi is better than my Realtek onboard (ALC889), which dominated by the bass and isn't providing enough loudness for both headphones. The X-Fi on the other hand, is more 'balanced' and I find it's quite enjoyable, especially when playing lossless or high-bitrate lossy tracks. In general I'm satisfied with it, but still curious about those products, especially the Asus & Fiio.


more opinions please, thanks :)

post #4 of 7

My opinion is always this: If you want to improve the music, get better headphones. Your current dac is just fine and you have easy to drive headphones so you shouldnt need an amp. Dont waste the cash for maybe a .01% improvement (yes a randomly chosen number, welcome to the internet smile.gif) in the signal. Instead get yourself something you'll enjoy, like more music to listen too smile.gif or better headphones wink.gif

Edited by weez82 - 4/5/13 at 2:01am
post #5 of 7
Thread Starter 

thanks for your reply weez82!


OK, I think I'll just save my money and switch my target back to a headphone with different sound signatures, an ATH-M50 maybe :D 

post #6 of 7

I'll recommend the ATH-A900x over the m50. If you live in the US and snoop around the deal thread on this forum..deals for these usually come up. ~125$

post #7 of 7
Thread Starter 

I live in Indonesia and the A900X is about $180, M50 is $150.


but thanks for your recommendation, I'll spare my time to read the reviews.

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