Is a *CHEAP* AES/EBU sound card going to be adequate? - diyAudio
Go Back   Home > Forums > Source & Line > Digital Source
Home Forums Rules Articles diyAudio Store Gallery Wiki Blogs Register Donations FAQ Calendar Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Digital Source Digital Players and Recorders: CD , SACD , Tape, Memory Card, etc.

Please consider donating to help us continue to serve you.

Ads on/off / Custom Title / More PMs / More album space / Advanced printing & mass image saving
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 17th May 2003, 02:24 AM   #1
diyAudio Member
cdwitmer's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Tokyo
Default Is a *CHEAP* AES/EBU sound card going to be adequate?

If my goal is simply to dump the digital audio signal from my computer's CD drive into a Behringer Ultra-Drive Pro DCX-2496, is there any real justification for spending big money on a high-end sound card? For example, the inexpensive Hoontech Soundtrack SB DB III gives the Creative Soundblaster series AES/EBU I/O capability. Or I could just as easily spend 10 times the price of a Hoontech/Creative combo for a high end sound card. However, the high end sound cards are expensive in part because of their nice DAC circuits; if I'm dumping a digital signal via AES/EBU into the Behringer crossover, then all that is superfluous, right? I'd greatly appreciate some informed opinions on this subject. THANKS!
  Reply With Quote
Old 17th May 2003, 04:04 AM   #2
fedde is offline fedde  Netherlands
diyAudio Member
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Eindhoven, the Netherlands
Send a message via ICQ to fedde
Well, I own an older SB-live and basically it more or less sucks for HQ audio. I listen to it, but the difference with my modded Philips CD-960 is *quite* large.

Problems ? Yep:

2 - My SB Live only works in 48 kHz. Yag! So everything is resampled
3 - Even the tone controls can not be turned off (bass/treble control in volume settings).

But I think there must be some cheap cards that are more acceptable! (I can't help you with that, maybe our friend Google can?)

  Reply With Quote
Old 17th May 2003, 04:43 AM   #3
usekgb is offline usekgb  United States
diyAudio Member
usekgb's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Salt Lake City, UT, USA
The biggest advantage to getting a nicer sound card for digital I/O is the clocking. The Creative stuff is great for gaming and system sounds, but the internal clock is nothing to write home about. You may want to check out the Aardvark Direct Pro LX6. Aardvark is well known for making excellent digital clocks, and their Direct Pro line sounds really good. This card only has SPDIF digital I/O, but they also sell an adapter that converts SPDIF to AES/EBU.

  Reply With Quote
Old 17th May 2003, 07:09 AM   #4
diyAudio Member
Pjotr's Avatar
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Netherlands
Click the image to open in full size.
  Reply With Quote
Old 17th May 2003, 07:38 AM   #5
diyAudio Member
cdwitmer's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Tokyo
Default Choices, choices . . .

Thanks, all who have replied so far. I guess with the M-Audio Dio 2496 I would need to get a converter for AES/EBU -- such as perhaps the M-Audio CO3?

The Lynx One also has nice-looking specs, and direct support for AES/EBU.

I wonder if there is a clear hands-down winner in the range of cards with street prices under $400?
  Reply With Quote
Old 17th May 2003, 08:00 AM   #6
diyAudio Member
Pjotr's Avatar
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Netherlands
Default Re: Choices, choices . . .


Yes the M-Audio needs a S/PDIF <--> AES/EBU level converter. But any low-cost card with S/PDIF in/out does need that. It can handle the AES/EBU digital format. Street price around $200

I myself own an M-Audio Audiophile2496. Clock stability and jitter is pretty good. What I like also about M-Audio are the pretty good supplied drivers.

Lynx is also very good but expensive.

  Reply With Quote
Old 17th May 2003, 11:56 AM   #7
weissi is offline weissi  Europe
diyAudio Member
weissi's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: Austria
cards with the dirty cheap CMI8738 are sayed to be very good for S/PDIF usage, but you have to build a AES/EBU converter.... but therefore the card would cost only ~10€......

I´m very happy with my Envy24ht card from terratec..... something similar is the M-audio revolution 7.1....
the major difference between Envy24 and Envy24HT is that the HT has no hardware mixer..... but you had to pay to much for that imho.... I think you can get such a card for ~80€
regards / servus
  Reply With Quote
Old 21st May 2003, 09:41 AM   #8
Josep is offline Josep  Europe
diyAudio Member
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Europe
Default AES/EBU and SPDIF

The Behringer DCX2496 accepts AES/EBU OR SPDIF digital input.

Best Regards
  Reply With Quote
Old 21st May 2003, 09:53 AM   #9
Electrons are yellow and more is better!
diyAudio Member
peranders's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: Göteborg, Sweden
Blog Entries: 4
You could also surf to and ask there.

Rightmark has loads of test resutls of sound cards, tested with their free(!) excellent software.... but beware: they are russians!

Test results
/Per-Anders (my first name) or P-A as my friends call me
PA03 LM4780 amplifier group buy, SIGN UP HERE for the group buy 0 boards left. 118 paid.
  Reply With Quote
Old 24th June 2003, 05:45 AM   #10
amo is offline amo  United States
diyAudio Member
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Texas - USA
You should be able to get a Lynx One for right around $400, if not less, since the MSRP is $500, and most people are going with the 2 or L22... It is a perfect device for the application you need. It supports the format you need via ballanced interconnects. More importantly, it has a top notch clock, and you will not have to worry about jitter at all! If you even feel like using the onboard DAC, you are not compromizing one bit!!! (no pun intended) You get awsome flexibility, and build quality. With a PC, you already have to worry about so much interference, so why have a headache with the interface? Lynx all the way man.
  Reply With Quote


Hide this!Advertise here!
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
PC sound card sound chips kaluchka Chip Amps 6 20th June 2011 03:48 PM
Which sound card? MMeche Digital Source 1 28th June 2008 11:17 PM
USB sound card Jennice Parts 57 17th June 2008 09:07 AM
Looking for a New Sound Card for my PC samsagaz Everything Else 46 18th March 2007 04:39 PM
cheap SPDIF-out sound card for music, movies, and gaming? Dartagnan Digital Source 7 11th October 2004 03:15 PM

New To Site? Need Help?

All times are GMT. The time now is 05:14 PM.

vBulletin Optimisation provided by vB Optimise (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2017 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.
Copyright ©1999-2017 diyAudio

Content Relevant URLs by vBSEO 3.3.2