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Evshrug's "If I knew then what I know now" discussion journal.

Discussion in 'Video Games Discussion' started by evshrug, Jan 17, 2013.
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  1. pack21

    Ok, so sound of chat + game goes by optical cable.

    I'm not near the PS4 to confirm, but i think there is one option bar to balance chat audio with game audio, can you balance this mix in PS4?
  2. Evshrug
    Well, PS4 allows game/chat audio balance if you're in a party. The other way is for you to increase mic gain, so you can sound louder.
    pack21 likes this.
  3. martin vegas
    Happy New year from England and thanks for the review Evshrug!
  4. bavinck
    So, would something like a boompro mic work with the X7 and allow me to mix the chat/audio like the mixamp does?
  5. conquerator2

    Meh, do what you'd like.
    It was just something I gobbled out before sleep :D
    Funny thing though, if you find it just slightly warmer than Bifrost, I find it a lot warmer than the NFB7 (which is dead dead neutral IMO).
    I would like to read your take on X7 vs Bifrost via Toslink/S-PDIF out of X7 to Bifrost.
    I do have the DI-V2014 in between, and the Wyrd between my PC and X7, but the difference is not too substantial IMO.
    That is where my comparison comes from.
    Even at 67 surround, the spatial cues on the NFB7 sound a lot like pure X7 at 100, just still more natural and less processed...
    Kind of a real surprise there.
    I suspected at first that there is some additional DSP at play, but I doubt it now...
    The difference is very obvious to say the least and I do prefer the NFB7 significantly right now.
    A bit of a shocker honestly :xf_eek:
  6. Stillhart
    It's shocking that your $1300 NFB-7 sounds way better than the X7 or that the X7 sounds close to the Bifrost?
    A lot of people say it's very difficult to hear the difference between the Modi and the Bifrost in a blind test.  The main advantages to the Bifrost are upgradability and connectivity.  Given my experiences with the Omni and the Modi, I don't find it surprising at all that the X7 and Bifrost are very close.
  7. conquerator2
    I was mainly talking about the tonality of NFB7 vs X7. Not so much the price or SQ difference.
    I am a bit surprised by the Bifrost similarity.
    That's why I wonder whether the Bifrost and NFB7 really are that different or if there is some additional effect or processing at play on my part of the X7-line out (RCA) testing :)
    I would expect the NFB7 to outperform them... Just the tonality is starkingly different, even to me.
  8. Stillhart
    Oh I see.  The best way to make sure you're bypassing all processing is to use WASPI.  That should answer your question pretty quickly.
  9. pathfindercod
    Excellent review, bravo! Thank you for taking the time to do this.

    Did you try scout mode during gaming and what was your thought compared to sbx surround mode in FPS games?
  10. benbenkr
    Good review Evs! 
    My suggestion next is to play around with op-amps. The stock ones are decent for bright or neutral-ish headphones, but often now a days headphones as you already know are tilting towards the warmish side of things. Considering that, I really did hope that Creative went for LME49720 as the op-amps instead. It would have kept things more neutral, in a way that it wouldn't already affect neutral-ish headphones but at the same time wouldn't make warm headphones even bloatier (omg is bloatier a word?!).
    Btw for anyone reading, op-amps are not significant flavour tweaks. Often times it can be quite subtle and just noticeable enough.
  11. conquerator2

    Will do, thanks
  12. conquerator2

    Would you mind posting all your X7 settings used for testing?
    Cheers :)
  13. Evshrug

    I choose to mention the well-regarded Bifrost because
    A.) I have good experience with it, and
    B.) I also mentioned the effect that motherboards/entry level DACs (particularly console-compatible ones) have on audio, and I wanted to give a reference as to why the X7's DAC is worth it's price.

    I also must point out that, if you're using RCA line-outs to the NFB7, then really you're comparing amps... But that wasn't the impression I got from your earlier post? But anyway, on first impression the X7's stands up very well against well-regarded DACs, and in a review about the X7, that's as far as I'd go in depth. Honestly, it's close enough that it's not interesting enough right now for me to set up a controlled A/B analysis. At least not till I do the other stuff on my plate.

    I pretty much already put my settings in the review, and I didn't just test with one setting. I suggest people play around and fit their taste :)

    Edit: Oh, and the SB z series of headphones had virtual surround designed for speakers when you use the speaker outs... So the processing may be different with the X7
  14. conquerator2
    Well, I was under the impression that RCA line out would only utilize the X7's DAC, bypassing its amp and leaving the amping entirely to the external SA31SE, while going the S/PDIF out would utilize only the external devices [essentially leaving the X7 in pure DSP mode].
    How else would I compare the two DACs, other than using the same external amplifier for both? [X7's HP out unused]
  15. Evshrug
    Yeah, the RCA line-out of the X7 would stop the signal chain after the DSP and DAC (mostly), I just got confused by your wording (and staying up late the past few nights probably didn't help). This is the first time you mentioned the SA31SE...

    How much did your total setup cost (DAC/amp) compared to the X7? If opamps and EQ gave the X7 the same FR character as your high-end setup (I've usually found gear to have very minor differences in FR coloration, relative to the differences between headphones), would you still consider the X7 very good sounding even if it's not top-of-the-line?

    I'm not saying that the X7 can't be bested in ultimate sound quality, but I would say it's solved most of the glaring problems of the other gaming DSPs made for consoles, and competes well against other setups in its price bracket. The ZxR is also a strong value, but it doesn't have all of the X7's features... and the console DDL decoding, flexible source inputs for portables etc, Mac compatibility, and yup even the speaker amp are all unique and desirable for me.
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