New sound card sounds smoothed over
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luxxum

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Due to a problem with my computer's audio jack, I have had to use the external sound card that came packaged with a pair of g430 headphones I bought several years ago. Recently it started to fail on me, so I bought a Sound Blaster Audigy Rx sound card to replace it. However, the new sound card sounds worse than the (assumedly) crappy external one.

I don't have the vocabulary to explain what is wrong with it, so I'll give some examples:

in
www.youtube.com/watch?v=SLYGnCcakpw

the new sound card smooths over any "bite" that the cymbals had at 00:07, taking any of jaggedness out of it. the cymbals in general sound more like a stream than individual hits.


and in

at 00:30, it sound like there is... some kind of white noise laced in with everything? And everything sounds a little flatter. Everything sounds like it has less resolution.


I have disabled the onboard audiocard and downloaded the latest drivers, so that shouldn't be an issue.


Any idea what might be going on? If it matters, the headphones I am using are ATH-M40x's.

Thanks
 
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ProtegeManiac

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Likely high output impedance on the Audigy RX, and then the Logitech either has low output impedance or it has high output impedance but has a different effect on that particular headphone. It could also be software tuning, like how different firmware versions affect some DAPs' sound.
 
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yage

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One thing to check - do you have 'Stereo Direct / Bit Accurate' mode enabled in the Audigy control panel (page 33 of the manual)? This only works for PCM input with a 44.1, 48, 96 or 192kHz sampling rate.

Note: I do not own an Audigy sound card.
 
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luxxum

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Likely high output impedance on the Audigy RX, and then the Logitech either has low output impedance or it has high output impedance but has a different effect on that particular headphone. It could also be software tuning, like how different firmware versions affect some DAPs' sound.
That's what I get for not doing enough research I suppose. So for a 35 ohm pair of headphones you should have around 4 ohms impedance on the amp, and the Rx has an impedance of... 600 ohms? OK then. I have also been told it could be interference from my graphics card as well. Do you think that is likely? If so, I suppose I'll need to find an external dac/amp.
 
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luxxum

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One thing to check - do you have 'Stereo Direct / Bit Accurate' mode enabled in the Audigy control panel (page 33 of the manual)? This only works for PCM input with a 44.1, 48, 96 or 192kHz sampling rate.

Note: I do not own an Audigy sound card.
just did it, and it did help a little. thanks!
 
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ProtegeManiac

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So for a 35 ohm pair of headphones you should have around 4 ohms impedance on the amp, and the Rx has an impedance of... 600 ohms?
I dont think that's the output impedance on that soundcard, but that's the load impedance its product blurb will vaguely but confidently claim it can handle.

OK then. I have also been told it could be interference from my graphics card as well. Do you think that is likely? If so, I suppose I'll need to find an external dac/amp.
There's an easy way to check that - run your music player but don't hit play. Set volume to max, then run a benchmarking app to load the GPU. If there's no noise then it's not interference from the GPU.
 
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PurpleAngel

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That's what I get for not doing enough research I suppose. So for a 35 ohm pair of headphones you should have around 4 ohms impedance on the amp, and the Rx has an impedance of... 600 ohms? OK then. I have also been told it could be interference from my graphics card as well. Do you think that is likely? If so, I suppose I'll need to find an external dac/amp.
I'm sure the Audify RX's headphone output jack does not have an output impedance of 600-Ohms, Creative just claims it will drive 600-Ohm headphones.
While the RX's output impedance might not be a low as one would like, I doubt the audio quality issue is an impedance issue.
If your big on FPS gaming, replace the Audigy RX with a Sound Blaster Z card.
If more into music (stereo audio) check out the FiiO Q1 USB-DAC/amp
 
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I'm sure the Audify RX's headphone output jack does not have an output impedance of 600-Ohms, Creative just claims it will drive 600-Ohm headphones.
While the RX's output impedance might not be a low as one would like, I doubt the audio quality issue is an impedance issue.
If your big on FPS gaming, replace the Audigy RX with a Sound Blaster Z card.
If more into music (stereo audio) check out the FiiO Q1 USB-DAC/amp
gotcha, thanks
 
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