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Budget PCIe Audio Card with S/PDIF or Opt Out ?

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 

Can you suggest a good budget PCIe sound card to replace my Chaintech AV710 PCI card? With either optical out, or S\PDIF. My new motherboard has no PCI slot. Budget for me is around US$50~60. Is there a consensus on a best one at this level?

 

My setup has been:
Windows7 - Foobar -> AV710 -optical-> Lavry Black DA10 DAC -balanced-> HD650s. I have been a very happy camper.

 

I see PCI - PCIe adapters are available eg http://www.amazon.com/StarTech-com-Express-Adapter-Card-PEX1PCI1/dp/B0024CV3SA
I could stretch the life of the AV710 this way. Is this sensible? audio-compromising?
In general Im suspicious of adapters like this. And my AV710 is getting on in years.

 

I presume I could get an S\PDIF adapter to connect off the new motherboard but have never done this and don't know how good that is.

 

Thank you

post #2 of 5
Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisbbb View Post
 

Can you suggest a good budget PCIe sound card to replace my Chaintech AV710 PCI card? With either optical out, or S\PDIF. My new motherboard has no PCI slot. Budget for me is around US$50~60. Is there a consensus on a best one at this level?

 

My setup has been:
Windows7 - Foobar -> AV710 -optical-> Lavry Black DA10 DAC -balanced-> HD650s. I have been a very happy camper.

 

I see PCI - PCIe adapters are available eg http://www.amazon.com/StarTech-com-Express-Adapter-Card-PEX1PCI1/dp/B0024CV3SA
I could stretch the life of the AV710 this way. Is this sensible? audio-compromising?
In general I'm suspicious of adapters like this. And my AV710 is getting on in years.

 

I presume I could get an S\PDIF adapter to connect off the new motherboard but have never done this and don't know how good that is.

 

Thank you

If your motherboard has an S/PDIF (optical or coaxial) output, you can connect it directly to the DA10 DAC.

Otherwise you can get an Asus Xonar DGX (PCI-E) sound card, Newegg has a $10 mail in rebate this month for the DGX.

post #3 of 5

BTW, S/PDIF does not mean just coaxial type digital I/O but type can be either optical or coaxial.

 

I stream through onboard S/PDIF (optical) daily and it's been OK (but ... no support for native 44.1kHz). If you need support for more samplerates (especially native 44.1kHz), then your budged is probably too low.

post #4 of 5
Thread Starter 

Thank you for the comments & suggestions.

 

Although Im not presently using WASAPI in Foobar and my output is typically 48.0k, I dont want to go backwards on SQ from the AV710, which I understand natively supports streaming at 44.1kHz, 48, 96 & 192. (I dont think my Lavry DAC accepts 192).

 

"I presume I could get an S/PDIF adapter to connect off the new motherboard" - by this I mean, the ASUS board has S/PDIF headers and i assume i can buy an adapter that converts and presents that output as actual S/PDIF (Coax &/or Opt) jacks on the rear of the PC. I had no idea what rates this would output? Sounds like it wont do 44.1kHz.

 

I need to research the kindly-suggested ASUS Xonar DGX PCIe card, as to how it compares with the AV710? It sounds like it won't do 44.1k, for the (seemingly rare) occasions I see 44.1. (btw, most of my music is higher-sample-rate mp3s, as I don't hear the difference from eg FLAC. And music DVDs.) 

post #5 of 5
Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisbbb View Post
 

Thank you for the comments & suggestions.

 

Although I'm not presently using WASAPI in Foobar and my output is typically 48.0k, I dont want to go backwards on SQ from the AV710, which I understand natively supports streaming at 44.1kHz, 48, 96 & 192. (I dont think my Lavry DAC accepts 192).

 

"I presume I could get an S/PDIF adapter to connect off the new motherboard" - by this I mean, the ASUS board has S/PDIF headers and i assume i can buy an adapter that converts and presents that output as actual S/PDIF (Coax &/or Opt) jacks on the rear of the PC. I had no idea what rates this would output? Sounds like it wont do 44.1kHz.

 

I need to research the kindly-suggested ASUS Xonar DGX PCIe card, as to how it compares with the AV710? It sounds like it won't do 44.1k, for the (seemingly rare) occasions I see 44.1. (btw, most of my music is higher-sample-rate mp3s, as I don't hear the difference from eg FLAC. And music DVDs.) 

As you outputting a digital audio signal thru the AV710 to the external to the DA10 DAC, your AV710 has zero effect on audio quality, so removing it from the audio chain will not have a negative effect on audio quality.

I really doubt you would be able to hear a difference between 24-bit/96k and 24-bit/192k, some of the best DACs max out at 24-bit/96k (ODAC).

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