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Optimal configuration options help wanted | Asus Xonar DX | Logitech G51

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 

Hello,

I'm a music enthusiasm but I don't know much in the technical side.

Here's my setup : Asus P7P800 Pro motherboard | Asus Xonar DX | Logitech G51 sound system. I use the computer as much for listening to music, movies and playing games.

I just upgraded from motherboard sound to a Xonar DX, I though why not, let's try it! After hours fiddling with the power connector (seems to be a common problem) I finally get good sound and can enter in the Xonar Audio Center application.

-Are those speakers good enough to gain full advantage of the sound card?
-What should I choose as the Audio Channel? The manual say to select the one matching the audio source, but ain't it a bit annoying to switch it every time I go from playing mp3 to playing a game? In any case, I don't see any audible difference. I guess I should let it to 6 channels (for 5.1 speakers)?
-Same thing for the sample rate. Do I really need to go and switch to a different rate depending on which mp3 I'm listening to? Can I let it at the higher setting (? Why is the default value not it?
-Most importantly: Analog Out. I get that I should select 5.1 to get surround sound in games and movies, but selecting it output the stereo mp3 music to surround speakers and it just don't feel right. Is it the usual configuration or am I right saying that surround speakers should not be used in the case of stereo music?
-7.1 Virtual Speaker / Dolby Virtual Speaker : When should I enable those?
-My speaker kit offers a "matrix" button that seems to do a similar effect as selecting 5.1 in the analog out option. I always let it off for the same reason as mentioned above. I guess with that sound card I should never use it?

With my onboard sound it seemed as if it detected if the source was stereo or surround to enable or disable the surround speakers depending on what I was doing automatically, but with the Xonar Audio Center it seems I have to manually switch the analog output option. Why?

post #2 of 4
I understand. I don't personally like 2 channel stereo music output to surround in 5.1 channels, even on my home audio system. It sounds artificial. Lot of people are that way.

To be honest, I don't use the Xonar DX any more. It's on my son's computer. So I can't answer a lot of questions about it. But sure. You can get better sound through a speaker upgrade. The drivers in the G15 satellites are only 2" and the sub is 5.25"--probably more midbass module than true subwoofer, and undoubtedly it is producing all the midbass for those tiny drivers in the satellites. I went from Klipsch Promedia 2.1 set to Cambridge Audio S30s using an old amp I had laying around, and the sound was so much better.

So it just depends on whether or not you want to spend a good bit more money. You could get great sound out of a 2.1 setup that would make you forget about that surround sound. A pair of Emotiva Airmotiv 4s and a $100 sub would sound dramatically better. smily_headphones1.gif
post #3 of 4
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the reply.

Unfortunately, it don't help much. Of course there are better speakers out there, my question was not which speaker set should I buy to get better sound, but how to get optimal sound with my current setup. I also like the 5.1 surround effect in games, I don't want to trade it in for better quality stereo speakers. I also wanted to know up to which extend the G51 is preventing me from taking advantage of the sound card, which you tried to explain but unfortunately I don't understand anything about what driver inches could mean.

post #4 of 4
Sorry. I misunderstood because your first question was, "Are those speakers good enough to gain full advantage of the sound card?" The DX is an excellent DAC, and in my opinion, better than what I have heard in some entry level audio/video receivers. Satellite speakers with small drivers will often have a thinner or more congested sound than powered monitors or passive speakers with larger drivers. And they also typically are not good at producing midbass (thus the subwoofer having to do that for them). So small speakers like that are a good choice when people have to have something small, but speakers with larger drivers are typically much better for SQ.
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