1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Bits PC Audio 101

Discussion in 'Article Discussion' started by Tim S, 12 Sep 2007.

  1. Tim S

    Tim S OG

    Joined:
    8 Nov 2001
    Posts:
    18,881
    Likes Received:
    78
  2. The_Pope

    The_Pope Geoff Richards Super Moderator

    Joined:
    3 Jul 2003
    Posts:
    2,663
    Likes Received:
    52
    I don't mean to be funny, cos I'm a bit of a n00b when it comes to this sort of thing, but after reading the above statement I had just one question: why? I *do* understand why this sort of technique is a bit rubbish, but I don't understand why it does it, especially since there are ways to avoid it doing it.
     
  3. neonplanet40

    neonplanet40 New Member

    Joined:
    3 Mar 2003
    Posts:
    479
    Likes Received:
    1
    I cant find the ASIO drivers for the X-Fi Fatality. Anyone know where to get them? The search engine on creatives website is woeful.

    Neon
     
  4. Seraphim Works

    Seraphim Works New Member

    Joined:
    18 Apr 2007
    Posts:
    167
    Likes Received:
    3
    Alas, if only I had the money for a low cost setup, denon amp and a couple of b&w bookshelf speakers....

    Damn you Joshua Moore, now I'll end up trying to get a new audio setup as well as upgrading the pc!
     
  5. stoff3r

    stoff3r New Member

    Joined:
    20 Nov 2006
    Posts:
    185
    Likes Received:
    0
    so my integrated soundcard has both optical and coaxial digital outputs. whats the word on those? will the sound become "lossless" in terms of computer-interference and crappy windows decoding? i am planning to send the signal to my amp but haven't got around to what cable to buy...
     
  6. yakyb

    yakyb i hate the person above me

    Joined:
    10 Oct 2006
    Posts:
    2,064
    Likes Received:
    36
    well im still using winamp2.93 and i have to say im not all that impressed by it (i only use it because its quick) ill check out foobar when i get home
     
  7. Bogie

    Bogie Banned

    Joined:
    29 Apr 2007
    Posts:
    28
    Likes Received:
    0
    I remember having ASIO drivers up before on an old creative X-Fi driver. Now they are nowhere to be seen.
    Anyone have any ideas how to get ASIO working on X-Fi cards?
    I have X-Fi Elite Pro?
     
  8. Bogie

    Bogie Banned

    Joined:
    29 Apr 2007
    Posts:
    28
    Likes Received:
    0
    PS. Anyone know any good foobar skins and where to get them please?
     
  9. Bogie

    Bogie Banned

    Joined:
    29 Apr 2007
    Posts:
    28
    Likes Received:
    0
  10. Bogie

    Bogie Banned

    Joined:
    29 Apr 2007
    Posts:
    28
    Likes Received:
    0
    Didn't work. :(
     
  11. Bluephoenix

    Bluephoenix Spoon? What spoon?

    Joined:
    3 Dec 2006
    Posts:
    968
    Likes Received:
    1
    The ASIO drivers are built into the manager software with everything else.

    simply set it to audio creation mode and it will change the handling to ASIO, which you can then use with the winamp plugins (then play FLAC and rock all night :rock:)

    note however that only the X-Fi Platinum and X-Fi Elite have the ASIO drivers built into the manager software, the Fatality had that removed to lower the cost compared to the Elite
     
  12. wharrad

    wharrad New Member

    Joined:
    26 Jul 2003
    Posts:
    869
    Likes Received:
    0
    Not quite sure on the technicalities within a soundcard (does the sound get passed through a DAC, processed and then back through a DAC) but that 'should' be the best option. However, you'll then need to spend a good amount of money on an external DAC before your amp/speakers to simply get back to the quality you would have had just using the onboard DAC. Of course though with some cash an external DAC will be better... Just depends on how far you want to take it.

    Oh, and people tend to state that CoAX is the better option for a digital out.... Although if the sound is passed digitally I'm not completely sure why!!


    Regarding the article, congratulations! You need stones to write that... Out of all fanboy, over the top arguements I've been part of, audio always generates the most 'debated' forums!

    Personally like an external Amp and bookshelf speakers on the desk over anything with PC Speakers written on them, but I'll always state that you'll never get the same quality out of a computer than you will from a good CD seperate with a brick on top. There's simply too much going on electronically in a computer. In fact, last time I was looking for a hi-fi that could be classed as in a 'sensible' budget I remember audiophiles telling me about how the circuit boards are even 3 degrees out of plain to reduce interference!

    As one piece of advice I give to anyone thinking about getting better sounds from a computer - check Richersounds (if you're in the UK) and just see if you can get a basic amp and bookshelf speakers for the same price of your 'Obber loud fau1it3y edition 7.1 pc speakers'. Yeah the amp take up more space... but really not anymore than a sub and 5 other mini speakers. I'll also shave my entire body if a 7.1 set sounds better - even for movies (no comparing a 20 year old Amstrad to a 7.1 Mordaunt-Short system just to see the shaving please!).

    On the otherhand however, you already have a computer if your on these forums, and so a large part of the cost is already spent and articles like this are a great way to introduce people into the audio world, who would have otherwise missed out.
     
  13. Renoir

    Renoir New Member

    Joined:
    19 Jul 2006
    Posts:
    190
    Likes Received:
    0
    I believe from my reading that it's due to the fact that windows mixes together all the audio streams being played on the pc e.g. music, windows sounds etc and so needs to get them all to the same sample rate. In addition I'm not sure the article was right when it said kmixer resamples from 44.1-48-44.1. I believe it merely resamples from 44.1 to 44.1. Josh am I totally wrong? In addition creative cards have traditionally resampled all 44.1 content to 48 due to the audio processor not supporting 44.1 streams natively. Not sure if that still applies for the X-Fi (think it does but is done better due to more horsepower) but it was one of the big advantages of cards based on Via envy chipsets due to them not resampling 44.1 content to 48 but rather they just sent the 44.1 straight to the dacs.

    Using onboard digital per se will not avoid the kmixers resampling and in addition many onboard codecs have traditionally resampled from 44.1-48 much like the creative cards mentioned above (again not too sure about the latest codecs?)

    Hope that helps
     
  14. maha_x

    maha_x New Member

    Joined:
    12 Sep 2007
    Posts:
    15
    Likes Received:
    0
    WOW

    Had to register just to comment... Now I was familiar with foobar before but not asio and wow, I can tell the difference clearly now between foobar and winmediaplayer on my logitech Z3 speakers which are not exactly hifi...

    I read that the audigy has quality problems cos it allways has to go internally to 48khz, so going from 44.1 to 48 was bad cos of the small difference. So now I can directly upsample to 24/96 that has plenty of detail for upsampling. Standard windoze audio sounds clearly muffled now...

    Thanks alot for this info!!
     
  15. Rocket733

    Rocket733 Austerity - It's the only way

    Joined:
    27 Dec 2003
    Posts:
    1,166
    Likes Received:
    3
    Great guide for a beginner in computer hi-fi. Another low cost usb dac option is the silverstone EB01; while not as high end as the 0404 it does a great job for about $80 (us).
     
  16. Jipa

    Jipa Avoiding the "I guess.." since 2004

    Joined:
    5 Feb 2004
    Posts:
    6,363
    Likes Received:
    125
    After saying this: "A few upgrades and tweaks down the line, all of my music is ripped in lossless, and in nearly all cases, the difference between 320k MP3 and FLAC is apparent" I feel I'm forced to ask you for some setup-details. I have some doubts about anyone hearing the difference, and atleast I like to hear on what kind of setup do the differences appear?
     
  17. RTT

    RTT #parp

    Joined:
    12 Mar 2001
    Posts:
    14,120
    Likes Received:
    74
    Welcome to bit-tech ;)
     
  18. Bluephoenix

    Bluephoenix Spoon? What spoon?

    Joined:
    3 Dec 2006
    Posts:
    968
    Likes Received:
    1
    the one best thing to do with any soundcard is to mod an EMI shield onto it.

    I did it with my X-Fi (was an absolute pain) but ultimately worth it.

    the best soundcard for those who don't want to deal with a lot of external gear is the X-Fi platinum. set it to ASIO mode (to avoid all the processing that can cause artifacts) and use the playback methods outlined in the article.

    as for those asking if their MP3 will become 'lossless' quality by using external equipment, the answer is no. MP3 is MP3 and as such will always sound like crap.
     
  19. pendragon

    pendragon I pickle they

    Joined:
    14 May 2004
    Posts:
    717
    Likes Received:
    0
    i'm in the 'can't hear a difference' camp, so i'll be happy to stick with the MP3/onboard audio for now...

    however, I would like to also recommend ExactAudioCopy ..great program.
     
  20. hughwi

    hughwi Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    23 Dec 2003
    Posts:
    1,584
    Likes Received:
    36
    well Josh, I would just like to say that having recently upgraded both my hi-fi equipment and my computer audio equipment in my latest step up the audiophile ladder, it is great to read such a well presented, thought out and ultimately unbiased (excepting the alliance to foobar, EAC and FLAC which make sense) article. I have been using foobar and ASIO to play my music for a while now (ever since i upgraded my speakers) however i did not know about EAC, and can i just say it eats my old CD ripper for breakfast! I can now clearly tell the difference between one of my albums ripped in FLAC and mp3, wheras before i went back to 192kb/s mp3 as i couldnt hear the difference over FLAC. I guess now i am going to have to go out and purchase a new 500gb monster hard drive to store all my FLAC on!!!!
     
Tags: Add Tags

Share This Page