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Sound Card needed or not for this setup?

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 

Guys, my main rig is PC based.

 

I use an optical or SP/DIF out from my motherboard (Asus Z77 Sabertooth). DACs are my Audio GD Ref. 5 or DAC19DSP (both are pretty well regarded DAC's). Finally I output RCA to my Micro Tube and in future will be outputting ACSS to an NFB-6 (about to order).

 

My query is:

1) Is my onboard audio solutions coaxial/optical out good enough, or do I need a soundcard?

2) Do I need a good optical cable/coaxial cable? I am using default ones by Audio GD.

 

Thanks!

post #2 of 6

the onboard to DAC should be fine, you're not using the DAC onboard and I don't think you'd get much advantage, if any coming via a sound card.

 

You don't mention the headphones at the end of the chain, what are you using there? is it the HD650 in your signature?

 

I'm not a huge believe in going overboard on the optical cables so go with what you've got, I don't think they will be the bottleneck

post #3 of 6
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by dc-k View Post
 

the onboard to DAC should be fine, you're not using the DAC onboard and I don't think you'd get much advantage, if any coming via a sound card.

 

You don't mention the headphones at the end of the chain, what are you using there? is it the HD650 in your signature?

 

I'm not a huge believe in going overboard on the optical cables so go with what you've got, I don't think they will be the bottleneck

 

Hi dc-k, it is the RS1i and the HD650, as well as the other cans mentioned in my signature.

 

Thanks for the advice!

post #4 of 6

It will make zero difference, other than giving you software tweaks depending on the soundcard.

post #5 of 6

That depends entirely on whether you're going to be gaming on that setup or not.

 

You add a sound card to the chain if you need its gaming DSP features; even a cheap one with S/PDIF output will suffice for that.

 

Otherwise, you can use S/PDIF straight from the motherboard audio codec or USB and not lose anything.

post #6 of 6
Quote:
Originally Posted by NamelessPFG View Post
 

That depends entirely on whether you're going to be gaming on that setup or not.

 

You add a sound card to the chain if you need its gaming DSP features; even a cheap one with S/PDIF output will suffice for that.

 

Otherwise, you can use S/PDIF straight from the motherboard audio codec or USB and not lose anything.

good point, I always forget about gaming...

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