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Sound Card?

Discussion in 'Sound City' started by HungryHippos, 27 Feb 2006.

  1. HungryHippos


    Joined: 25 Mar 2004

    Posts: 8,801

    Location: Fareham

    My mates building a new computer soon, and myself and one of his friends are speccing him up a machine, now we've come to the point where his friend is arguing that he needs a soundcard and that his spec is better because his contains one. Now this is really irrelevant to this topic but to put my friends mind at ease over the subject my question is does he actualy need a sound card or will the onboard sound be ok?

    As I understand it the onboard sound on most mobos about atm is AC'97, and the mobo I specced for him is the Asus A8n-E Ultra, but it's just a placeholder so will probably pick something different for him to use. Would an audigy 2 really sound much better than the onboard sound using some 5.1 speakers or would there not be too great a different until you start to actually use some really decent speakers or have like a home cinema setup or something?

    cheers :)
  2. FirebarUK


    Joined: 9 Dec 2004

    Posts: 5,637

    Location: Dorset

    From my experience it will be much much better. AC97 isnt awful but to me it sounds nowhere near as rich.


    Joined: 12 Sep 2005

    Posts: 1,165

    Location: Up A Tree

    The Creative Labs XI-F1 Platinum is awesome!
  4. Curio


    Joined: 14 Mar 2004

    Posts: 8,020

    Location: Brit in the USA

    Having used AC97 and proper sound cards I can honestly say that a soundcard is the way to go! I hated AC97 - I had problems with it cutting sound off in games for no reason, music sounded muddy compared to another machine I had with a SB inside, and it was always bugging me that on-board sound takes up a few CPU cycles when a proper card doesn't. I ended up buying a brand new SB Live for about 20 quid......was one of the best upgrades I ever made :)

    Do your friend a favour - spec him a soundcard!
  5. Nikolic


    Joined: 19 Sep 2005

    Posts: 503

    I went from an AC'97 to an X-fi Xtreme Music and noticely the noticed the difference hugely. Sounds better in everything - even the little windows sound that plays when you log in sounds a lot sharper!