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View Full Version : Creative announced next gen Sound Core3D


AthlonXP1800
05-31-11, 07:59 PM
Creative is now about to retire X-Fi soundcards and soon launch next generation soundcard called Sound Core3D, it will incorporated a quad core Quartet DSP. :)

http://www.creative.com/corporate/pressroom/releases/welcome.asp?pid=13233

It will be the first time have a quad core audio chip. :)

cmsmith
06-01-11, 08:57 AM
I skimmed through the specs. On the surface, it sounds nice. However...

What's the freaking point of this?! Microsoft took out hardware sound after WinXP. These left game companies to code directly for the sound card which hardly none of them do. Dirt3 took out the hardware option for sound. Bad Company 2 doesn't use hardware sound at all which leads to the conclusion Battlefield 3 probably won't either.

Yeah, these are good quality sound cards. The components are such they will help shield against inteference so analog sound will [probably] rock assuming this card will do analog which looking at the specs I believe it will. However, you can buy cheaper cards than this with good components to help with analog sound. Heck, since XFi is being dumped you can probably pick one up cheap online somewhere for the analog sound quality. There goes a reason to purchase this card.

As I said, what's the point of this?

MS is saying they are going be doing stuff in Windows 8 for gaming. Perhaps they will add built-in support for offloading sound back into the OS? If so, then this card may be worth it. Wait for it and see what happens. Until then, spend that money on a good vid card.

Just my 2 cents...

Madpistol
06-01-11, 11:50 AM
This truly does seem like a wasted endeavor on Creative's part. I guess we'll see.

frenchy2k1
06-01-11, 01:57 PM
One reason MS took away the low level access to sound cards WAS creative labs crappy drivers.
MS knows from the reporting tools that they caused a ridiculously high number of blue screens.

lduguay
06-01-11, 02:11 PM
Every single product these days has the 3D acronym, including Crest 3D whitestrips :headexplode:

I pass

Yaboze
06-01-11, 02:25 PM
Yeah, I don't see the point of hardware sound. It's true that Creative's cards do sound very nice, I have an X-Fi myself, but I have no hardware support in Windows 7. I can't remember the last recent game that supported hardware still, even WoW went to FMOD for audio stuff, although I think they still support EAX hardware for Windows XP.

HiCZoK4
06-01-11, 03:02 PM
I am perfectly fine with RealtekHD onboard. Its way more compatibile and causes much less problems than any creative sound blaster card I had

FlakMagnet
06-01-11, 04:00 PM
Sorry to be a complete n00b, but what do you mean by Windows 7 doesn't do hardware sound? I have an X-Fi card and it comes with drivers and such. It even comes with a control panel application named 'Creative Console Launcher' which seems to do stuff with my soundcard.

What is not done in hardware on Windows 7 that was done in hardware on XP?

Sorry for being a bit thick :P

proliferazor
06-01-11, 04:10 PM
Sorry to be a complete n00b, but what do you mean by Windows 7 doesn't do hardware sound? I have an X-Fi card and it comes with drivers and such. It even comes with a control panel application named 'Creative Console Launcher' which seems to do stuff with my soundcard.

What is not done in hardware on Windows 7 that was done in hardware on XP?

Sorry for being a bit thick :P

The real story on all this is when Vista came out, and changed up all the driver models they removed directSound. This was because they kept releasing betas to the hardware manufacturers but in every release changed the driver models again and again. This led to very buggy drivers for everyone at vista's release. And also why directSound was removed.

However, creative went and made alchemy which translated all the directsound calls into openAL calls so you really do have hardware accelerated audio now with x-fi, but less games/devs are using it now which means less support.

FlakMagnet
06-01-11, 04:51 PM
The real story on all this is when Vista came out, and changed up all the driver models they removed directSound. This was because they kept releasing betas to the hardware manufacturers but in every release changed the driver models again and again. This led to very buggy drivers for everyone at vista's release. And also why directSound was removed.

However, creative went and made alchemy which translated all the directsound calls into openAL calls so you really do have hardware accelerated audio now with x-fi, but less games/devs are using it now which means less support.

So all sound is 'software' sound through the OS at the moment on Win 7? Wow I hadn't realised! I guess that means that onboard sound is as good as any X-Fi at the moment? No need for a separate soundcard?

I do remember something about DirectSound being removed, but hadn't really realised what that meant :P

cmsmith
06-01-11, 05:43 PM
So all sound is 'software' sound through the OS at the moment on Win 7? Wow I hadn't realised! I guess that means that onboard sound is as good as any X-Fi at the moment? No need for a separate soundcard?

I do remember something about DirectSound being removed, but hadn't really realised what that meant :P

DirectSound did for sound what Direct3d does for video; it offloads some of the processing work from the main CPU to a dedicated processor thereby freeing up the main CPU for more/other things. Additionally, the task is done faster/better/efficiently since it is being done on a dedicated piece of equipment designed specifically for the task (sound processing in this case).

It's not totally worthless to own a Xfi card. A lot of older games still use it thanks to Alchemy. Some newer games still use it but they are fewer and far in between. Dirt 2 used hardware as an example. However, Dirt 3 currently has it disabled, at least in the menus. There is a way to enable it but some sounds, most notably car engine noise, are not reproduced. Codemasters has dropped some hints they may bring it back in a new patch/service pack since they basically only disabled what is still present. However, as games come out and time goes by, hardware enabled games will be fewer and fewer.

Xfi provide features that go well beyond processing abilities. The big thing about Xfi cards is sound quality; some motherboards and their sound chips are better than others but Xfi sound cards will beat out motherboards in analog sound quality probably 99% of the time. The reason being is motherboards put out a lot of interference which can be sent to speakers. Xfi has quality compenents which won't pick up the intereference giving you better sound. The second thing about Xfi cards is their drivers are typically better than motherboard sound drivers. It's well known that motherboard sound don't always play all sounds when playing games. Xfi cards/drivers are a LOT better in this regard; if a sound is meant to be heard then you will hear it and it will come from the direction it is supposed to come from. There have been several reviews comparing an Xfi card to motherboard sound solutions. It's quite common for them to mention how Xfi plays sounds motherboard solutions don't.

A lot of people don't mind going cheap and using motherboards built-in sound. However, if you are willing to pay for it, it has been shown getting an XFi is a big deal. I own an Xfi Fatality PCI Express card; I love it and have no intention of ever wasting my time going to a motherboard sound solution.

It is my hope, despite Creative's well known crappy drivers, MS adds the ability to offload sound to a dedicated processor in the next version of Windows or even in a future SP to Windows 7 (yeah, right!!). 384 distinct sound sources, each comming at you from any direction, at a high sample/bit rate with all sorts of effects applied (volume, echo, reverb, etc.) would be awesome. Keep in mind Creative isn't the only game in town when it comes to sound cards. In particular, I bet Asus would kill at a chance to come out with a dedicated sound card.

We can dream...

nekrosoft13
06-01-11, 05:54 PM
So all sound is 'software' sound through the OS at the moment on Win 7? Wow I hadn't realised! I guess that means that onboard sound is as good as any X-Fi at the moment? No need for a separate soundcard?

I do remember something about DirectSound being removed, but hadn't really realised what that meant :P

only if you use digital sound like optical or hdmi. if you still use analog (like most people) then the sound card components and noise to signal ratio still matters.

Pennyboy
06-01-11, 08:59 PM
Another sound card already, didn't Creative just release the Titanium HD? which I have just purchased.

Sean_W
06-01-11, 09:26 PM
Yeah but their drivers suck or have they fixed them recently?

nekrosoft13
06-01-11, 10:06 PM
Another sound card already, didn't Creative just release the Titanium HD? which I have just purchased.

Titanium HD was the last of the x-fi chips.

Pennyboy
06-01-11, 11:22 PM
Yeah but their drivers suck or have they fixed them recently?

I haven't had any problems with my TitaniumHD. Actually to be honest the last time I had driver issues was way back when I owned a Audigy 2 ZS. I know people have been complaining and Creative has a bad record with drivers but for me I really haven't had any issues. Also the crackling and popping noises you hear people complaining about only ever happened with an old SB Live!. I have owned an Audigy 2ZS, XFi Fatality and TitaniumHD since and have not had any popping or crackling from them.

Pennyboy
06-01-11, 11:30 PM
Titanium HD was the last of the x-fi chips.

The X-fi has been around for 6 or 7 years now I guess?

FlakMagnet
06-02-11, 03:26 AM
@cmsmith & nekro : Cheers for the info guys! It's nice to know there is still a place for a decent sound card in that it gets better sound quality. I really didn't realise MS took hardware acceleration out of Windows! Let's hope it sees a complete return in Win 8 (and yes, maybe Windows 7 SP2? - but then maybe not :)).

On the subject of drivers, I don't currently have any issues with my X-Fi Fatal1ty in Win 7 x64. I think their drivers improved quite a lot while Vista was about (the original Vista drivers were awful as far as I remember). By the time Win 7 came along, most of the issues had been resolved - at least for the X-Fi cards.

Pennyboy
06-02-11, 05:26 AM
@cmsmith & nekro : Cheers for the info guys! It's nice to know there is still a place for a decent sound card in that it gets better sound quality. I really didn't realise MS took hardware acceleration out of Windows! Let's hope it sees a complete return in Win 8 (and yes, maybe Windows 7 SP2? - but then maybe not :)).

On the subject of drivers, I don't currently have any issues with my X-Fi Fatal1ty in Win 7 x64. I think their drivers improved quite a lot while Vista was about (the original Vista drivers were awful as far as I remember). By the time Win 7 came along, most of the issues had been resolved - at least for the X-Fi cards.

Yeah I had no problems either, when I first went to Vista my Fatal1ty worked like a charm, I read about all the other peoples issues and counted myself lucky. However Vista damn that was a piece of junk! I hated it and went back to XP anyways. I had so many other random issue I couldn't be bothered and I used XP until 7 came out.

josiahsuarez
06-02-11, 01:00 PM
I'm interested. currently using on board audio (integrated into motherboard) and it sounds like complete ASS. everything is tinny and sounds have no "weight" at all.

plus I have really nice speakers which are a complete waste with motherboard audio. seriously need to upgrade that ****.