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Creative Super X-Fi headphone holography

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  1. DeadOfKnight
    I wonder is how meticulously "calibrated" this tech is for "certified" headphones, and how much that makes a difference. They talk about first party headphones and any others that become certified like they'll be the ideal pairing with the Amp, but I find it hard to believe you can get a better experience from the SXFI Air than you can with a pair of DT 770 Pros and an SXFI Amp. I'm sure any certifying they do will be done in-house, so this just sounds like a shameless money grab to me. Of course, a proper sound card will undoubtedly be the way to go for this kind of thing, whenever they get around to releasing one. They're supposedly using machine learning to improve their algorithms over time. However, the SXFI Amp is probably the best way to early adopt. At least I think it would be. It would be nice to hear from someone with both the Amp and the Air, or at least a good comparison between using the Amp with certified headphones, a pair of uncertified headphones from that list, and a pair of quality headphones that aren't listed.
     
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2019
  2. Azurik
    I'm quite intrigued by the little dongle. Just a few questions someone might be to answer hopefully.

    1) can I fully access, modify, customise the software on the Android app, whithout having to download the PC software (Mac user only)? Creative does normally not support osx with their software like with the creative engine.

    2) does it work with the PS4? I know it works, but will it work to the full extend as the PS4 is only able to output stereo through usb and I wonder if there would be any loss of spatial sound by not feeding it a multi channel signal?

    Ty

    Edit

    It appears the sfxi will still work with the ps4s stereo output via usb and create 2 virtual speakers infront of you. I didn't like it on the mobius so I don't think I will like it on the sfxi.

    Hopefully the next gen of consoles will support full multi channel support via usb.
     
    Last edited: Aug 5, 2019
  3. illram
    You can fully customize and use the SXFi with just the Android app, no other app needed. (The iOS app also works now.) When you use it on another device the last settings and headmapping you selected will be saved on the device.

    Like you said in your own answer to question 2... it's not worth it just as a stereo "room simulator," which is sadly all you will get on any console.
     
  4. jologskyblues
    Judging from the reviews and user feedback, I get the feeling that SXFi is really meant for multi-channel surround sound sources to headphone surround virtualization rather than two-channel stereo music.
     
  5. jaakkopasanen
    That's definitely where the value is. But that's not to say speaker virtualization with two channels wouldn't be a fantastic thing, it's just that requirements for that to work well enough to be worth are so much higher. For me almost all speaker virtualization technologies can do side and rear channels decently but frontal localization and externalization is almost never there.

    Listening to music with speaker virtualization that cannot do front speakers convincingly isn't really adding anything compared to listening to music on headphones without virtualization. There really isn't anything wrong with listening to music on regular headphones. Add picture from a movie or a game and the the pieces start to come together a lot better. Add surround sound and it can be very enjoyable with decent speaker virtualization. I don't own or have never tried Super X-Fi but from what I've read the frontal localization and externalization isn't quite there in many cases. Many people report having the sound a little bit out of the head and that might be enough with surround and especially if there's video involved. Purely listening to music with speaker virtualization really requires a proper HRIR personalization done with binaural microphones, in my opinion at least.

    I only wish there would be a way to import a custom HRIR into Super X-Fi amp. I would by the device in an instance.
     
  6. froes
    This question came up within a discussion about the usage of the Audeze Mobius with an Android smartphone.
    The same problem should appear for the Super XFi.

    If an USB soundcard like device is connected to an Android smartphone, what will be trannsmitted to the soundcard when playing an 5.1 or 7.1 flac file?
    Stereo downmix or all the channels?
     
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2019
  7. Falkentyne
    Stereo downmix. I've never seen a phone that has a 7.1 configuration possible over a headphone jack, which would require the operating system to be surround sound aware, allowing a configuration for it.
     
  8. froes
    The SXfi amp is a USB device. My only hope is that the Sxfi player can send 5.1 or 7.1 via USB. He can't play 4.0 (Quad).
     
  9. Ken Quek
    No, Android OS does not support more than stereo. The SXFI Amp functions as a USB DAC not DAP. So it only receives stereo audio from Android. Nothing more.
     
  10. froes
    I thought so (in the meaning of I was afraid of this. I never thought as a DAC of it.)
    So the Sxfi makes no sense to me, if it only makes a two channel fired room of a downmixed 5.1 audio file.
     
  11. Ken Quek
    The only way to unleash it's full potential is to use with computer for 8 channels. That's what i bought and dedicated it for.

    As for whether Android downmix or only playback the L & R channels, it depends on the player you use. But yes it is pointless.
     
  12. Lifted Andreas
    To me the holographic feature is a gimmick.

    As a functioning stereo DAC/AMP though, the SXFI is fantastic. The sound is clear, the bass is almost perfect. Cues in FPS games are absolutely the best I've heard on any thumb DAC/Amp before.

    Honestly after hearing how good it is with music and games I don't give a crap about the "holographic" sound tech. Even though it's a complete gimmick to me since I can't test it properly due to not having any headphones from the list, and it just sounds bad. I'm totally happy with my purchase overall, even if the main selling feature is totally shite and useless.
     
  13. AudioManNewb
    The effect is not useless its actually quite amazing the imaging is fantastic for games and the headphone profiles only really change the EQ of the headphones not the effect. Once you get a good headmap the effect is quite stunning.
     
  14. Lifted Andreas
    Okay let me rephrase that... - For me personally the effect is useless. I have not been impressed by it at all, it actually just sounds like hard EQ and Echo/Reverb added on. Not my style or anything I'm willing to spend time faffing about with.

    My post was focused on praising the DAC itself, which by reading this thread should be the same thing some of you should be focusing on more. Instead of just complaining how the Holographic sound feature is a failure or bad, and thus its making this DAC/AMP completely crap/pointless. Which isn't the case at all.
     
    Last edited: Aug 15, 2019
  15. froes
    There are by far cheaper and equal or better DACs on the market.
    I have the
    • SMSL IDOL
    • Sabaj Da3
    I love the Sabaj in my PC and the SMSL on my smartphone. The Creative Sxfi is oversized for this purpose and has not enough features compared to the Sabaj.
     
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2019
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