The best quality soundcard?

downhiller80

Platinum Member
Apr 13, 2000
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I'm building an MP3 box. All I want is really _REALLY_ clean stereo output from a soundcard. I really couldn't care less if it has 4.1/5.1 and all trat crap built it. I need the choice of digital AND analogue on the output.

- seb
 

MrHelpful

Banned
Apr 16, 2001
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<< Sporting a special "versajack", the Santa Cruz has the potential to accurately output a six-channel signal, via three analog outputs, to a 5.1 speaker system. This is a major benefit for those who have been looking for an easy way to hook up their home theatre speaker systems to their computer. If needed, the versajack can be configured to be used as a digital output or input port, instead of being a center/sub channel. Santa Cruz's extra output is definitely a step up. In comparison, most sound cards only offer two analog outputs, and possibly a digital output. >>

 

MrHelpful

Banned
Apr 16, 2001
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I'm also 99% sure that the breakout box on the Hercules Game Theatre XP has both digital out and analogue out, along with optical in/out...
 

MrHelpful

Banned
Apr 16, 2001
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Well both of those cards should work for you. As long as you don't need a sub or center channel (the '5' in 5.1), the Santa Cruz will work for you (turn the Versajack into a digital-out). The Hercules GTXP does everything.
 

nicowju

Diamond Member
Jan 30, 2001
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Get the GameTheater XP. It has all those connections, and even has USB on the breakout box. It also sounds really good (was playing around with it at a store:))
 

incallisto

Golden Member
Apr 30, 2000
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For balanced audio, go with an AudioScience. They have a hardware mp3 solution also. Highly recommended. I use these cards all day long and they are solid performers.
Of course, if you have a limited budget, go with the Turtle Beach Santa Cruz.

AudioScience Link
 

pyjujiop

Senior member
Mar 17, 2001
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Either the Game Theatre XP or the Santa Cruz, I have the Santa Cruz but I've built rigs with both and like them both. Whatever you do, stay away from the Soundcrapper.
 

Noriaki

Lifer
Jun 3, 2000
13,640
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71
I have a Santa Cruz and it's audio quality is really good...for a consumer soundcard...and at a reasonable price I recommend it. Certainly much better than a soundblaster live or internal audio...

...But if you want truly good audio output it's a joke. As is any other consumer PC sound card.

You want something like a Yamaha DSP Factory, or AudioPhile 2496.

I like the AP2496 myself.
 

irrigating

Senior member
Nov 30, 2000
442
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From samash.com, this is pro-audio quality, with windows2000 support and WDM drivers. Awsome price, I think guitar center has it for 10 bucks less ($149.99).

"The Audiophile 2496 is an all-in-one high fidelity soundcard solution for a wide variety of applications, ranging from multitrack recording to computer-based home theatre. Analog I/O is available on RCA jacks, utilizing the same professional 24-bit 96kHz conversion as the Delta 44 and Delta 66 cards. S/PDIF I/O and MIDI I/O provide connectivity to both digital devices and the world of MIDI. The Audiophile 2496 includes a powerful digital mixer/router, and control over SCMS (Serial Copy Management System). Delta cards support all computer platforms and major software programs.
Minimum System Requirements for PC.
Windows 95, 98, ME, 2000 or NT4. Pentium II 266MHz - (96kHz operation). Pentium 200 MMX - (48kHz or less). 128 MB of PC100 RAM - (96kHz operation). 64 MB of SDRAM - (48kHz or less). UDMA EIDE or SCSI HDD.

Minimum System Requirements for Mac.
G4, G3 or G3 accelerator. System 8.5.1 or above. 128 MB RAM for 96kHz operation. 96 MB RAM for 48kHz operation.



list price you pay add to cart
Audiophile 2496 (MAP2496XX) $229.95 $159.99 (save 30%)







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downhiller80

Platinum Member
Apr 13, 2000
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Noriaki - are you saying the output on a soundblater isn't very good? In that case I'm maybe not so fussy because I'm very happy with the output from my soundblaster live platinum. Thanks for all your input guys.

- seb