Creative Sound Blaster X7 - Detailed Review & Impressions
Oct 13, 2020 at 3:43 PM Post #3,481 of 3,514

Yethal

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Wonder how the Yahamha RX-V6A would do? Any drawback to using a traditional receiver? Seems to have everything and be the only way to get 7.2 channel uncompressed PCM to headphones?
Once PS5 comes out we won't have to use external processing devices for that, just regular stereo dac/amps, as for PS4 though, yeah it might be a good idea
 
Oct 13, 2020 at 4:14 PM Post #3,482 of 3,514

Find the Door

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Once PS5 comes out we won't have to use external processing devices for that, just regular stereo dac/amps, as for PS4 though, yeah it might be a good idea
How do we know that for certain though? Plenty of existing USB dacs and amps don't function with the PS4 - how do we know they will with the PS5?

Is there a masterlist of functional USB dac amps that work with the PS4? I know the mixamp does but it also uses optical to send audio
 
Oct 14, 2020 at 7:42 AM Post #3,483 of 3,514

Yethal

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How do we know that for certain though? Plenty of existing USB dacs and amps don't function with the PS4 - how do we know they will with the PS5?

Is there a masterlist of functional USB dac amps that work with the PS4? I know the mixamp does but it also uses optical to send audio
PS4 has generic support for USB dacs that use USB Audio Class 1 transmisstion standard. Judging by the fact that support for USB Audio Class 2 (which most modern usb dacs use) was commited to freeBSD (on which PS4 operating system is based) was added in 2012 (according to this commit), I'd make an educated guess that Sony simply didn't bother to add it back then which is why USB dacs that use UAC2 don't work on PS4. However, unless PS5 system software is still based on FreeBSD 9 (which it'll be 9 years old in January so I kinda doubt that) we should get UAC 2 support 'for free'

With that said, this is still an educated guess, it's entirely possible for PS5 to not support UAC2 dacs at all.
 
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Oct 18, 2020 at 12:49 PM Post #3,484 of 3,514

Find the Door

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PS4 has generic support for USB dacs that use USB Audio Class 1 transmisstion standard. Judging by the fact that support for USB Audio Class 2 (which most modern usb dacs use) was commited to freeBSD (on which PS4 operating system is based) was added in 2012 (according to this commit), I'd make an educated guess that Sony simply didn't bother to add it back then which is why USB dacs that use UAC2 don't work on PS4. However, unless PS5 system software is still based on FreeBSD 9 (which it'll be 9 years old in January so I kinda doubt that) we should get UAC 2 support 'for free'

With that said, this is still an educated guess, it's entirely possible for PS5 to not support UAC2 dacs at all.

Is the X7 a UAC2 device?
 
Oct 28, 2020 at 1:11 AM Post #3,486 of 3,514

xxlbeerz

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How does the X7 compare to some of these newer THX and Topping amplifiers?

As I am using a USB mixer/audio interface(Soundcraft 12 MTK) the X7 is in amp only mode. I could go for a more basic non-USB amp setup to keep it simple. Wondering if I might gain SQ as well as I've started getting into mid-fi headphones instead of $100-200 gamer staples like PC37, ATH-AD700X, 990, etc.
 
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Oct 28, 2020 at 3:46 AM Post #3,487 of 3,514

Yethal

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How does the X7 compare to some of these newer THX and Topping amplifiers?

As I am using a USB mixer/audio interface(Soundcraft 12 MTK) the X7 is in amp only mode. I could go for a more basic non-USB amp setup to keep it simple. Wondering if I might gain SQ as well as I've started getting into mid-fi headphones instead of $100-200 gamer staples like PC37, ATH-AD700X, 990, etc.
X7 doesn't have an amp only mode, rca in go through an analog to digital converter, then through a shared mixer and then through the builtin dac.
 
Oct 28, 2020 at 6:02 AM Post #3,488 of 3,514

ourfpshero

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X7 doesn't have an amp only mode, rca in go through an analog to digital converter, then through a shared mixer and then through the builtin dac.

to build on that: the x7 definitely loses something when using a different input other than the usb mode. When I use an rca or optical input the sound is thinner and loses bass and richness. It is very noticeable. Which is sad because the headphone and speaker amps on the x7 have decent power. I usually use an Aune x1 pro as a dac and the sound is superior to the x7 in most ways except bass (and of course gaming effects). I wanted to feed the x7 with the different inputs so I could utilize my different sources at the same time.
 
Oct 28, 2020 at 9:53 AM Post #3,489 of 3,514

xxlbeerz

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Yes, I notice the line input is very quiet compared to the USB.

Most games today have pretty decent surround effects with stereo speakers, so I am not sure something like a soundcard or software really matters any more. I just tried a borrowed Topping L30 and to me the X7 sounds better. Maybe not as detailed/refined, but definitely more exciting. Maybe I'm just not an "audiophile" because I am trying things like this L30 amp and HiFiMan Ananda headphones and find it so boring.

The main reason I want to use a non-usb amp is for simplicity with I/O in a two PC streaming setup, but I been listening to X7 for 5 years so I'm pretty used to it.
 
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Oct 28, 2020 at 3:46 PM Post #3,490 of 3,514

Yethal

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to build on that: the x7 definitely loses something when using a different input other than the usb mode. When I use an rca or optical input the sound is thinner and loses bass and richness. It is very noticeable. Which is sad because the headphone and speaker amps on the x7 have decent power. I usually use an Aune x1 pro as a dac and the sound is superior to the x7 in most ways except bass (and of course gaming effects). I wanted to feed the x7 with the different inputs so I could utilize my different sources at the same time.
Are you sure all inputs are at their maximum volume in the mixer tab?
 
Nov 11, 2020 at 5:37 PM Post #3,491 of 3,514

mike208

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X7 doesn't have an amp only mode, rca in go through an analog to digital converter, then through a shared mixer and then through the builtin dac.

I just got an Xbox Series X, want to use my Beyer DT990 250Ohm with it, not getting any sound from the controller 3.5mm with the DT990s. I did get some sound on the xbox one with this setup. So not sure its an amp issue. But can I pass the sounds from the controller via 3.5mm to RCA line in on the X7(plugged into my nearby PC) and let it amp the sound to the headphones? I tried this and still got no sound, just not sure if its because that doesn't work or if I am missing something. I tried a pair of 3.5mm earbuds and got sound on those form the controller so I don't think its a controller or setting issue. If the X7 won't work then I may need to get a stand alone amp I guess
 
Nov 12, 2020 at 7:35 PM Post #3,492 of 3,514

Yethal

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I just got an Xbox Series X, want to use my Beyer DT990 250Ohm with it, not getting any sound from the controller 3.5mm with the DT990s. I did get some sound on the xbox one with this setup. So not sure its an amp issue. But can I pass the sounds from the controller via 3.5mm to RCA line in on the X7(plugged into my nearby PC) and let it amp the sound to the headphones? I tried this and still got no sound, just not sure if its because that doesn't work or if I am missing something. I tried a pair of 3.5mm earbuds and got sound on those form the controller so I don't think its a controller or setting issue. If the X7 won't work then I may need to get a stand alone amp I guess
If you have a TV with toslink out just use that, if not then maybe consider and hdmi to toslink splitter
 
Nov 14, 2020 at 11:46 AM Post #3,493 of 3,514

mike208

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If you have a TV with toslink out just use that, if not then maybe consider and hdmi to toslink splitter

Doh, I should have thought of that. I actually already have an HDMI audio extractor. Unfortunately it appears to be having issues. Audio isn't constant, might be the optical cable, but more importantly I am not getting any video out to the TV. Tried several different HDMI cables. I'm not using one of the new fancy HDMI 2.1 TVs so I would think the cables I have should work just fine.

Forgot when I was trying to get everything setup properly way back when, I bought an Xbox Mixamp TR and apparently that works on the series X as well so I will just try that
 
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Nov 17, 2020 at 1:22 PM Post #3,494 of 3,514

tdx

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Recently I purchased an X7 Limited and I was offered a chance top review a free Burson V5i Op amp for it. I can also compare it to the Sparkos SS3602 and SS3601 Op Amps that I have purchased too.

First off, the installation of the Bursons is much easier, as the Sparkos Opamps require the panel of the X7 to be left off whereas with the Bursons it can be closed. Not a huge deal but a difference nonetheless. Installation itself is absolutely pain free, couldn't be easier.

Now when it comes to sound, the first thing to note is that both the Bursons and the Sparkos leave the default X7 Op Amps in the dust. It's not a even close, they sound better in every single metric. So swapping Op Amps on the X7 is not something that is just recommended, I would say it's absolutely essential if you want to get a much better sound out of it, both for the HP output and for the speaker outs.

As for the sound quality of the Bursons themselves, they are indeed very good. They bring to the table a much better instrument separation, more dynamic range, better specialization, more coherency in the high and low frequency and finally a much smoother sound, even at low volumes.

If compared to the Sparkos I would say they're close, the Sparkos take all the aforementioned things and kick them up a notch, but they're also more expensive and again not as easy to use because of the cover that has to be off. And honestly just installing the Bursons brings such an improvement over stock that the Sparkos are nicer, yes, but not to the same dramatic degree.

So all in all, I would highly recommend the Burson Op Amps to anyone who is looking to increase the quality of the X7's sound.

Cheers!
 

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Dec 1, 2020 at 9:27 AM Post #3,495 of 3,514

Fotopaul

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Recently I purchased an X7 Limited and I was offered a chance top review a free Burson V5i Op amp for it. I can also compare it to the Sparkos SS3602 and SS3601 Op Amps that I have purchased too.

First off, the installation of the Bursons is much easier, as the Sparkos Opamps require the panel of the X7 to be left off whereas with the Bursons it can be closed. Not a huge deal but a difference nonetheless. Installation itself is absolutely pain free, couldn't be easier.

Now when it comes to sound, the first thing to note is that both the Bursons and the Sparkos leave the default X7 Op Amps in the dust. It's not a even close, they sound better in every single metric. So swapping Op Amps on the X7 is not something that is just recommended, I would say it's absolutely essential if you want to get a much better sound out of it, both for the HP output and for the speaker outs.

As for the sound quality of the Bursons themselves, they are indeed very good. They bring to the table a much better instrument separation, more dynamic range, better specialization, more coherency in the high and low frequency and finally a much smoother sound, even at low volumes.

If compared to the Sparkos I would say they're close, the Sparkos take all the aforementioned things and kick them up a notch, but they're also more expensive and again not as easy to use because of the cover that has to be off. And honestly just installing the Bursons brings such an improvement over stock that the Sparkos are nicer, yes, but not to the same dramatic degree.

So all in all, I would highly recommend the Burson Op Amps to anyone who is looking to increase the quality of the X7's sound.

Cheers!
Is there a specific version of the Bursons opamp that fits the X7 ? Or could a v6 work aswell ?

I want try replacing the stock, but do want to be able to close the unit.

Thanx!
 

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