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

Other Sound: New soundcard or stick? (Headphone user)

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by pac-man, 8 Nov 2011.

  1. pac-man

    pac-man New Member

    Joined:
    5 Sep 2010
    Posts:
    68
    Likes Received:
    1
    Hi there,

    I use my pc for pretty much nothing but gaming, specifically Battlefield 3 at present and always use headphones - Razer Carcharias. I quite like the headphones, I find them to be very comfortable and I think their sound output is good (though I must admit I haven't got much else to compare them to).

    Regarding my soundcard, I've got an Asus Xonar DG but was looking at possibly upgrading to the Essence STX. It's quite hefty at ~£140 so wondered whether this would be a worthwhile upgrade. What I'm looking for really is an even more immersive experience and the ability to maybe hear more than I can at present (for example, I like to try and hear out where my enemies are coming from).

    I've done a lot of research and am still a bit confused. I heard one fellow state that there is not much difference in quality between the DG and the Essence STX. However, I'm sceptical about this because the DG can be had for less than £30 whereas the Essence is over x4 more expensive. Some advice or recommendations would be highly appreciated. :)
     
  2. rob the bank

    rob the bank New Member

    Joined:
    13 Mar 2010
    Posts:
    458
    Likes Received:
    11
    Unless you have THX certified speakers I don’t think you would be able to tell any difference.

    A set or MEGALODON 7.1's may be a better investment, these are USB so take the sound card out of the equation, and are 7.1 surround.
     
  3. GoodBytes

    GoodBytes How many wifi's does it have?

    Joined:
    20 Jan 2007
    Posts:
    12,300
    Likes Received:
    709
    THX certified is a marketing gimmick.

    I don't think you'll hear the difference, especially that you don;t like listen to a music a lot. Your headphones is what limits the sound. And your headphones, are headsets (meaning you pay extra for a mic, and the name "gamer" on the box, and not for sound quality).
     
  4. GuilleAcoustic

    GuilleAcoustic Ook ? Ook !

    Joined:
    26 Nov 2010
    Posts:
    3,277
    Likes Received:
    71
    I second goodbytes about the THX. This is only a marketing label.

    Your headset is not an audiophile one, meaning you won't hear much difference. If you have £140 to spend, you'd better buy a higher grade headphones and a dedicated Mic (or use the.one from a webcam). Thomann sells Akg K701 for 189€
     
  5. pac-man

    pac-man New Member

    Joined:
    5 Sep 2010
    Posts:
    68
    Likes Received:
    1
    So it's actually my headphones which are the bottleneck?
     
  6. GoodBytes

    GoodBytes How many wifi's does it have?

    Joined:
    20 Jan 2007
    Posts:
    12,300
    Likes Received:
    709
    Yes sir.
    Unless you spend even more on headphones, and after you get them, it will be the contrary.. and NOW you get the EssenceXT sound card. And then after that it will be the game recording... and then after that it will be back with the headphones... the sound card.. the recording.. and the cycle repeats over and over and over again until you spend a couple of million dollars for each. Might be cheaper to hire the band and ask them to play next to you in a well acoustic room. :p

    I am just kidding, you won't get that far. Simply purchasing some nice headphones will help greatly. Mix that with a better sound card, only if you listen to a lot of high quality music.
     
    Last edited: 8 Nov 2011
  7. pac-man

    pac-man New Member

    Joined:
    5 Sep 2010
    Posts:
    68
    Likes Received:
    1
    Thanks for the reply, i enjoyed reading your reply.

    In that case, my next question would be what headphones would you recommend assuming I had a budget of max £200?
     
  8. GoodBytes

    GoodBytes How many wifi's does it have?

    Joined:
    20 Jan 2007
    Posts:
    12,300
    Likes Received:
    709
    I am not expert in headphones, so I'll let a person more knowledge answer that (I am also looking for better ones). But I think you can get quiet high (too high?) for that kind of money.
     
  9. rob the bank

    rob the bank New Member

    Joined:
    13 Mar 2010
    Posts:
    458
    Likes Received:
    11
  10. Ficky Pucker

    Ficky Pucker I

    Joined:
    9 Jul 2009
    Posts:
    1,591
    Likes Received:
    95
  11. pac-man

    pac-man New Member

    Joined:
    5 Sep 2010
    Posts:
    68
    Likes Received:
    1
    Thanks for the suggestions. I've heard good things about the AD700 as being very good for gaming because of it's wide soundstage though it lacks bass. Because of this, I'm concerned it might be a set of headphones I only use for multiplayer and not so much singleplayer?
     
  12. GuilleAcoustic

    GuilleAcoustic Ook ? Ook !

    Joined:
    26 Nov 2010
    Posts:
    3,277
    Likes Received:
    71
    I'd go for the AKG K701. Thomann sells it for £162 : www.thomann.de/gb/akg_k701.htm.

    Very wide soundstage, very detailled sound, good bass with the appropriate sound card / headamp.
     
  13. Ficky Pucker

    Ficky Pucker I

    Joined:
    9 Jul 2009
    Posts:
    1,591
    Likes Received:
    95
    Sennheiser HD598 is another great headphone, the soundstage will be slightly worse but it does have better bass.

    AKG K701/K702 is also great for gaming, the only downside is they need an amp if you want to hear what they're really capable of...
     
  14. GoodBytes

    GoodBytes How many wifi's does it have?

    Joined:
    20 Jan 2007
    Posts:
    12,300
    Likes Received:
    709
    When you say the headphones needs an Amp.. do you mean it will work with sound card that support high demanding power headphones... or a real amp, like electrostatic headphones/speakers?
     
  15. GuilleAcoustic

    GuilleAcoustic Ook ? Ook !

    Joined:
    26 Nov 2010
    Posts:
    3,277
    Likes Received:
    71
    They do need an headphone amp to release all of their soul, or at least sound card capable of driving hungry headphones (the Infrasonic Quartet for example)
     
  16. eVoPhantom

    eVoPhantom New Member

    Joined:
    21 Jul 2010
    Posts:
    101
    Likes Received:
    2
    I note you are concerned by lack of bass, I think it depends on your perception of bass a lot of gamer headphones which I assume you are used to will be set up to impress in terms of bass.

    Whereas audiophille grade headphones are supposed to recreate a more accurate representation of the sound as it was intended. This may be perceived as a lack of bass, but I suppose it is more down to what you are used to/expect in terms of sound.

    I have no idea what the razer set you use are like.
     
  17. GuilleAcoustic

    GuilleAcoustic Ook ? Ook !

    Joined:
    26 Nov 2010
    Posts:
    3,277
    Likes Received:
    71
    Good bass are accurate and fast ones. The problem with many headphone (Dr Dre for example) is that it trully drown you under a sea of overinflated bass. The lack of bass often result of an insufficient amp.
     
  18. Blue Fiend

    Blue Fiend New Member

    Joined:
    1 Jun 2010
    Posts:
    43
    Likes Received:
    2
  19. Fredrics

    Fredrics Hmm...

    Joined:
    31 Dec 2007
    Posts:
    276
    Likes Received:
    7
    I also have a Asus xonar DG but I have it paired with a set of Sennheiser PC 350's. I recently turned on the dolby headphone setting for when playing Battlefield 3, and I now have a great experience at being able to tell what direction footsteps are coming from. If you don't have that setting turned on, give it a go as it certainly helped me out.
     
  20. The_Beast

    The_Beast I like wood ಠ_ಠ

    Joined:
    21 Apr 2007
    Posts:
    7,379
    Likes Received:
    164

Share This Page