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Old 7th December 2012, 08:23 AM   #21
freax is offline freax  Australia
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Everything takes on a whole new light when you get a dac, tv shows, music, movies, games, all of them sound surreal in comparison to a good soundcard.

I was commenting just yesterday to my friend how all of the voices in family guy and the simpsons sound so real now, and I'm using a TDA1543 dac that I bought for $100 from russia!!

Modifying the Russian TDA1543 DAC off eBay.

I replaced the capacitors that came with it tho, the ones that were supplied were dreadful sounding.
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Old 7th December 2012, 08:46 AM   #22
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Very good points there freax !!

I am still running my ole' P4's and this ole Opty 185 and it does do everything just fine.

Outboard DAC's will be a nice add on oneday.
I have the creative X-FI and it sounds good however the old and dated Gina24 card seems to work better.

Trying to setup creatives mixer just to get it to work properly for recording is just BS.
The Gina24 is straight forward and works flawlessly with no setup hassles what so ever and is multi-channel duplex.
A comparable card cost quite a bit more these days.

I agree with going with the outboard DAC's for the most part.

I do like the Asus P8Z68 board and is the one to get for an intel system except for a couple of the Z77 boards.

I have yet to try out the onboard sound system of my Gigiabyte 990XA-UD3 board.
I said that I would do this a while back only I haven't the time lately.
I have been thinking about it the last few days before I have to move the thing as it is taking up room for my project space right now.
I will test it with the GINA card as it's noise floor is nearly -120db or so as it has balanced inputs and outputs.
At least it is better than what Gigabyte claims their noise floor is at -108db.

"Kids these days! " Ahhhh,ha,ha,ha,ha....I agree !!!!

jer

Last edited by geraldfryjr; 7th December 2012 at 08:53 AM.
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Old 7th December 2012, 09:34 AM   #23
qusp is offline qusp  Australia
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@freax, i'm guessing youve not heard a good professional soundcard, which kinda disqualifies you from comment. Chinese tda1543? its a toy compared to the best pro audio cards, not creative. RME, Lynx, Apogee etc...
without isolation having an external USB dac really doesnt mean a great deal, it still has direct connection to the main problem, ground...inside the case or not

I run external too (isolated) simply because you cant get audio cards with the spec I wanted and I like building things, but you can throw all the mods you like at a Chinese 1543 dac and its handily beaten by the best internal cards IMO. I agree you can in general get higher performance externally, but 1543 while it has a particular sound, doesnt set the bar too high wrt performance and many of the ebay PCBs are terrible quality with terrible quality parts

Last edited by qusp; 7th December 2012 at 10:01 AM.
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Old 7th December 2012, 09:57 AM   #24
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Old 7th December 2012, 10:01 AM   #25
freax is offline freax  Australia
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so whats your point qusp? did you just come here to talk **** about my dac? or did you come here to say "disqualifies you from comment"

I'm poor you know, I can never hear the best, so I take it personally when someone disses the only dac that I can afford.

maybe you should consider that 99% of the time the person on the other end has a creative soundcard in their computer, and that the relative age of the posters on this thread are most likely in the 10s or 20s.

Yes there are better soundcards out there, but nobody and I mean nobody can afford them, only a minority of the population can, so is that what you wanted me to say?

I'm putting you back on ignore.
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Old 7th December 2012, 10:08 AM   #26
qusp is offline qusp  Australia
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Quote:
Originally Posted by freax View Post
so whats your point qusp? did you just come here to talk **** about my dac? or did you come here to say "disqualifies you from comment"

maybe you should consider that 99% of the time the person on the other end has a creative soundcard in their computer, and that the relative age of the posters on this thread are most likely in the 10s or 20s.

Yes there are better soundcards out there, but nobody and I mean nobody can afford them, only a minority of the population can, so is that what you wanted me to say?

I'm putting you back on ignore.
cool, dont mind if you ignore me, i'm posting for the others reading the thread who might replace a perfectly serviceable card (even some of the Asus stuff is good) with a crappy Ebay dac based on those comments; which would be a mistake. my point is you make wild claims with no substance; full of untruths. you did not qualify your comment at all, only now you belatedly qualify your comment.

here is what you actually said

Quote:
Even the best and most expensive and flashy soundcard you can buy on gods green earth couldn't match even the cheapest external dacs, and if its made by creative forgeddaboutit, creative is pulling your leg as are all of the other soundcard manufacturers, and I'm glad that I finally got out of that scam years ago.
which is patently ridiculous
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Old 7th December 2012, 07:45 PM   #27
BonkM is offline BonkM  Canada
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Thanks guys, I'm not in the soundcard camp, I've looked at the Lynx AE16, but I can't use it practically right now. If ever I do go down that road I'm definitely looking at the Merging Technologies - Mykerinos X, it's $3k, needs(if you're already spending that money) an external masterclock, and still needs a work station and the Paramix software+station($9k). But once you've got all that it's rumoured to be one of the best computer based sources around.

For now though, I'm sticking to mobos, USB->SPDIF converters, and external DACs. I like putting it all together, and I raelly trust in the sound I have right now, I just want to make it better when I build a dedicated server and stop using my laptop :-D

Thanks for the 2 reco's, Zeonrider, those 2 pieces and the CA C.A.P.S. v2.0 were how I got on this trip in the first place. I'm going to go Intel for my upcoming build, and the enclosure with be the StreamCom F10, or F5 if I can get down to a micro-ATX or mini-ITX, but I haven't figured that out yet. Haha, that being exactly why I'm here~

And Freax, tyhanks again for mentioning about the isolation and what not, I've really gotta get learned about that stuff so that I can give myself the best product possible.
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Old 10th December 2012, 03:12 AM   #28
qusp is offline qusp  Australia
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just remember that the USB panel housing is tied to shield/chassis ground and NOT USB ground....
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Old 10th December 2012, 04:37 AM   #29
zman01 is offline zman01  Bangladesh
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Quote:
Originally Posted by freax View Post
And whats this I hear about using soundcards for analog audio output??? get an external DAC! you won't be disappointed with the sound that comes out of it.

Even the best and most expensive and flashy soundcard you can buy on gods green earth couldn't match even the cheapest external dacs, and if its made by creative forgeddaboutit, creative is pulling your leg as are all of the other soundcard manufacturers, and I'm glad that I finally got out of that scam years ago.
Freax,

Looks (or more like sounds) like a lot of the Creative products are not designed for music listening - they are predominantly "gaming" cards with EAX support and also for "HT" with boosted frequncies at certain points. Kind of like most of the 2.1, 5.1, 7.1 PC speaker systems out there... awful for music.


Motherboard audio has improved in leaps and bounds over the last decade - probably more than good enough for most people (VoIP, Youtube, HT, listening on computer speakers...), but still will leave the audio lover wanting.

Have you tried out the Asus Xonar ST/STX? Pretty decent actually. Then there's Auzentech X-Meridian also. These are examples of 2 cards aimed at the audio market (no EAX and that stuff), with quality opamps (which you can even swap out in some models). the sound is defnitely a cut above generic audio.

But this thread was on motherboards...

Guys,

Sorry if I missed any discussion on this earlier - what's your opinion on boards that run from a power brick? Any benefits?

Intel® Desktop Board DH61AG
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Old 10th December 2012, 05:41 AM   #30
freax is offline freax  Australia
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I can't recommend any of those soundcards as I haven't bothered buying them, for gaming I use the digital coaxial output from my asus p8z68 deluxe gen 3 that goes straight to my dac.

To buy the asus xonar stx I would have to throw out my current dac and I'm not going to do that just because a manufacturer decided to put a bit of colourful aluminium ontop of a pcb board and a fancy pattern on it, then load up the soundcard with electrolytic capacitors and then justify calling it an audiophile soundcard JUST because it has a 8 pin dip socket that lets you "colour" the sound to your tastes. (!!)

It would also be very risky aswell as I am getting a tube amplifier soon too, and tube amplifiers especially if they are OTL types can pass and amplify RFI through them, so essentially if I were to hookup my amplifier to that soundcard there is a significant possibility that my tube amplifier could start to oscillate and amplify the RFI contained inside of a computer and blow up my tweeters (if I had or was going to buy tweeters that were susceptible to this, and they exist)

I don't need to spend hundreds of dollars on expensive soundcards as my dac does all of the hard work, the onboard soundcard is just converting digital to digital, and the money spent on a good soundcard can be better off spent on a good usb transport or some other more beneficial piece of equipment.

I do use foobar 2000 for audio output, and using WASAPI under Windows 7, but I wish I had a USB to I2S converter that was ASIO compatible so I could go back to Windows XP, or debian linux, I've been thinking about giving debian another try on the desktop, Windows is quickly losing its usefulness to me, especially after it quick formatted a 4gb usb flash drive that I owned and destroyed 5 years worth of novel that I had been writing (and was about to backup to hdd, the last backup was 6 months prior, and I had made a lot of progress in that 6 months)

I plugged the usb drive into the computer and got up to make a coffee, I had put the keyboard on the desk wrong and it fell off it, when I had come back I picked the keyboard up and in the process of doing this I had pressed the space bar.

And in its infinite wisdom windows 7 had decided to program the quickformat utility to leave the "quickformat" button selected by default on the dialog box that pops up, I ended up losing 6 months worth of work.

Windows XP never does this, EVER, yes it pops up asking if you want to format but it selects the cancel button NOT the quickformat button!!!!

USB flash drives have issues sometimes where they arent properly recognised.

I was able to save quite a bit of stuff but my novel was garbled beyond recognition, eversince this event I haven't trusted windows 7 and I think microsoft has lost the plot.

I have to wait inorder to save up for one that is ASIO compatible or look for one that works with linux.

There is no need to buy those expensive soundcards at all if you own a dac and aren't using balanced line or mic inputs for audio processing and broadcasting.

If you are then I'm not the one to ask that question, I would suggest the M-Audio external usb soundcards which might not be the right suggestion for your budget or needs.
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