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Sound Cards for High Fidelity Audio at Overclockers UK
In order to fully appreciate content on your PC, as it was meant to be enjoyed, top quality sound is paramount. When you’re listening to your favourite music, a dedicated sound card for your PC will reveal a rich level of detail and clarity that’s bound to enhance your enjoyment. Likewise, if you’re a keen gamer or film buff, there’s nothing better than the potent combination of crisp, colourful visuals and high fidelity audio to bring the experience to life. Most PC motherboards include an integrated sound card, but, to achieve superior audio fidelity and unlock the potential of your set-up, the best step you can take is to upgrade your sound card. Browse our variety of PC soundcards today and revel in crystal-clear audio for your music, games, and movies.
Varieties of Sound Card
There is a comprehensive range for you to choose from at Overclockers UK, including PCI express and PCI sound cards, and external USB soundcards. PCI and PCIe models slot into your motherboard, bypassing the integrated sound and offering greater audio performance, and come in various channel configurations. A 2.0 sound card refers to a stereo output, 2.1 means stereo plus a sub-woofer, whilst 5.1 and 7.1 models are full surround sound cards. The digital-to-analogue converter (DAC) is a fundamental component of a soundcard; in short, the higher quality the DAC, the better the audio. DACs are what convert the digital audio file on your computer into an analogue voltage, or current signal, so that it may be played through speaker or headphone outputs. PCI soundcards also feature an amplifier to boost this signal to an appropriate level for your output.
External PC sound cards perform much the same function and have similar circuitry, but are usually connected via USB rather than mounted to the motherboard. They are therefore fully portable, and can simply sit on your desk as you work and play at your desktop, or join you as you hit the road with your laptop. Most external soundcards are even surround sound compatible, at 5.1 or 7.1, and come complete with an array of powerful features. A combined DAC and amplifier is a great option for those looking for convenience or portability, without compromising on audio quality and functionality.
The Fidelity Benefits of a Sound Card
Even if you have top of the range headphones or speakers, your audio output is restricted by the quality of the source signal. That is, your speakers need a clean signal that lacks interference in order to perform to their full potential. When you buy a sound card, you are taking a step up in audio fidelity from integrated sound for several reasons. Firstly, they are better shielded from electrical interference, which causes unwanted noise, resulting in a purer source signal. In the case of external DACs, they avoid interference simply by being out of harm’s way. In addition, they boost performance with high signal-to-noise ratios, drastically reducing unwanted hiss and audio artefacts. Crucially, the quality of sound card circuitry is superior, they can normally process at higher bit and sample rates, and their converters are significantly more accurate than motherboard-integrated sound. Of course, all sorts of devices have DACs, from TVs to smartphones, but these converters are desirable because of how precisely they read and create an analogue signal from the numeric value of the digital file. Put simply, when you upgrade your soundcard, you will notice a marked improvement in audio performance.
Best Applications for Your Sound Card
Sound quality improvement is something that can benefit many people, no matter if you simply want to enjoy a little more detail in your favourite song, or you’re a highly discerning audiophile. Our collection of sound cards for PCs reflects this range of expectations and requirements, providing excellent quality audio for all. For instance, as a gamer you will find that the extra detailed response of an external DAC or PCI sound card will deepen your immersion and allow for greater game awareness. Delicate mid-high frequency sounds such as footsteps will be more audible, aiding your spatial awareness, and accurate low frequency response will result in earth-shattering explosion effects. If, on the other hand, you’re looking to purchase a soundcard to enjoy your music library, its superior fidelity will ensure what you hear does justice to the original recordings—especially in lossless formats.