DMX/6fire LT vs Revolution 71.
Apr 12, 2004 at 1:52 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 11

RayEarth

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I'm currently looking for a soundcard to use for music and occasionally some dvd movies (ie. AC3/5.1).

Looking over the internet, it seems at that price range I have a few choices, namely:

Terratec DMX 6fire LT (discountined but can be bought new at various places) - $100
MAudio Revolution 7.1 - $99

Right now I'm leaning towards Terratec DMX 6fire LT (which is the younger brother of Terratec DMX/6fire without the breakout box, why did they discontinue this?!?) as it seems to have better performance based on various reviews I've read. Like higher dynamic range, lower noise/distortion, etc.

Any other viable options? Anyone used the Terratec DMX/6fire LT before?

Thanks
 
Apr 12, 2004 at 6:34 PM Post #2 of 11

mjw

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I use the DMX6fire LT. IMHO its audio quality is almost on par with the EWX2496. However I had some difficulty in the past with the break-out board "MXR" (used for digital i/o, the card is capable to work without it).
The drivers are quite good if you have an average configuration and use the latest Windows version. Until recently my machine did not meet these requirements (being a Dual CPU machine and running 2k instead of XP) - so I had quite (not so) funny problems with the card.
I'm not quite sure if it is possible to use it under Linux (the chipset is recognized by ALSA, but no sound - I guess this requires some digging through lengthy manuals which I don't have any desire to do right now).

HTH,
mjw
 
Apr 12, 2004 at 11:34 PM Post #3 of 11

RayEarth

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I assume both cards support AC3 decoding right?

Here's an interesting review from tech-report

"Of course, thinking that the $91 Revolution 7.1 could compete with the $250 DMX 6fire 24/96 probably wasn't entirely realistic. The DMX 6fire 24/96 is very much targeted at high-end audio enthusiasts, while the Revolution 7.1 is more appropriate for general PC enthusiasts looking for true 24-bit audio that sounds really, really good. "

Of course, this guy was talking about the full DMX6fire, not the LT version, but there should be no difference between the two brothers except for external connectors and MIDI support.

Also an interesting thing to note is that DMX6fire has *some* support for DirectSound, while Revolution 7.1 has none?
 
Apr 12, 2004 at 11:41 PM Post #4 of 11

ooheadsoo

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My revo does direct sound just fine.

However, comparing it to my regular cdp, it's clearly lacking. The terratec ewx cards are getting a good rep. Could be worth checking out if sound quality is your thing.
 
Apr 13, 2004 at 7:17 PM Post #5 of 11

mjw

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The EWX2496 is a pure stereo card, i.e. no 5.1. That's why I wouldn't recommend it for DVD playback.

Regarding AC3 support of the DMX6fireLT:
I never tried that by myself (I have a cheap Pioneer player for watching DVDs), but the Terratec page says that it is capable to output DTS and AC3 via the digital interface. For analog output AC3 decoding is done by the DVD playback software (AFAIK).

HTH,
mjw
 
Apr 13, 2004 at 7:59 PM Post #6 of 11

Haribo

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Quote:

Originally posted by RayEarth

Here's an interesting review from tech-report


They conduct the music test on a 4.1 system that cost ~100$, doesn't seem to serious to me.

"All music playback tests were conducted with a set of Philips MMS305 4.1 channel speakers with volume levels for each card normalized to within a decibel of each other and software equalizers turned off."
http://www.tech-report.com/reviews/2...v/index.x?pg=7
 
Apr 13, 2004 at 8:39 PM Post #7 of 11

Haribo

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Here is a pretty good review of the M-Audio Revo: http://www.firingsquad.com/hardware/...ew/default.asp

They use a slightly better setup to test audio quality
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Apr 14, 2004 at 1:25 AM Post #8 of 11

RayEarth

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Quote:

Originally posted by mjw
The EWX2496 is a pure stereo card, i.e. no 5.1. That's why I wouldn't recommend it for DVD playback.

Regarding AC3 support of the DMX6fireLT:
I never tried that by myself (I have a cheap Pioneer player for watching DVDs), but the Terratec page says that it is capable to output DTS and AC3 via the digital interface. For analog output AC3 decoding is done by the DVD playback software (AFAIK).

HTH,
mjw


Hmm..........What about Revolution 7.1? Does that support hardware decoding?
 
Apr 14, 2004 at 2:09 AM Post #9 of 11

RayEarth

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Oh and check out the review for DMX and Revolution 7.1 here.

Here's a run down (in 16/44.1 mode)

DMX 6/fire (Revolution 7.1)

Frequency response 40 Hz - 15 kHz, dB
+0.03, -0.04 (+0.13, -0.06)

Noise level, dB
-96.6 (-92.2)

Dynamic range, dB
93.7 (92.6)

THD, %
0.0016 (0.0007)

Intermodulation distortions, %
0.0076 (0.0068)

Crosstalk, dB
-89.2 (-93.9)

Seems like Terratec wins out in frequency response and Revolution in distortion department.

Oh and last thing, Envy24HT (ie. Revolution 7.1) scrapped any hardware DirectSound support. Not that it really matters on any computer with >1Ghz CPU.

So here's the run down I guess:

Terratec: Digital in + Digital out (but only optical). Superior frequency response. Hardware DS support. Uses Envy24 chip.
Revolution: Digital Out only (but only coaxial). Superior THD performance. Additional 2 speakers. Uses Envy24HT chip.
 
Apr 14, 2004 at 3:16 AM Post #10 of 11

lini

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What hardware decoding are you talking about? With very few exceptions (like the Creative Extigy, for example), practically every multichannel pc audio device relies on software decoding for ht surround formats -> analogue outputs.

Greetings from Hannover!

Manfred / lini
 
Apr 14, 2004 at 4:28 AM Post #11 of 11

RayEarth

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Yeah I've just realised that too....bummer....

Anyway I have decided to go for the Terratec DMX6fire LT. eBay (jdsounds) was selling them for an attractive $US89 each, new.

Now I just have to wait........
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