Creative Xmod - Music Dependace, Desktop/Laptop Usage
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stevenswall

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I purchased a Creative Xmod (amazon, $30) and received the unit on Saturday. I have since been able to use it for ~3 hours, and find that I typically prefer it on, though the level of the crystallizer effect, and the intensity of emulated surround sound, are usually adjusted each time my music changes genre, or set to default, (the lowest level possible, with it still being on) when it is not suited for the music, which is usually about 1 in 5 songs. Using it as a DAC works well, the device is plug and play, but I noticed a difference between a laptop and a desktop setup. On the desktop, (which usually falls prey to my tinkering) the system volume control is operated independently of the Xmod, which I prefer. On the laptop, however, the volume control wheel on the Xmod controlled the system volume. The problem with this is if you want to listen to music from the line in jack while you are on the computer. When you plug your DAP in, it is very quiet, usually even with the volume turned all of the way up. To compensate for this, you can turn the Xmod up, and then adjust the volume of the computer, so that it matches the level of the line input, thus ensuring that you don't get blown out of your seat when the computer makes an error tone (this happens
Make sure to upgrade the firmware, or you will not be able to use the line input while it is connected to the computer, you will have to use a USB travel charger. Another consideration is to plug you phones into the line out port, instead of the headphones port, as the surround sound experience is different (I prefer it this way [line out]) All in all, it was worth the $30, especially when used with a Laptop>Tv setup streaming Netflix (stereo) it enhances the sound output enormously, and actually managed to fill the room with the emulated 3D sound coming through the weak family stereo.
 
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