View Full Version : Here are the best SBLive drivers!

09-26-03, 06:52 AM
If you use a Sound Blaster Live to play games, you'll know how unstable the thing is. You'll also have had the 'creative' experience, which is terrible drivers and short product support life. But enough about them...

If you own a SBLive, you need this driver:


Just go and get it now.

Frustrated with crummy drivers, poor performance and high latency, our Russian friends have written new drivers for SBLive and Audigy cards.

These drivers sound better, perform better technically and use less CPU time which is great for gaming.

Here are some benchmarks. SBLive default XP driver vs KX Project. Note that the reason not all tests are shown is because the SBLive driver failed to work with the last set of tests.

The test system was a Duron 1.3 with SBLive value and 256mb RAM.
Benchmark was with Ziff Davis Audio WinBench 99.


Note that the attachment below is the same as the image you see here.

09-26-03, 07:00 AM

This is also a good thread. :D

kX users, how are you using the kX Driver? what have you achieved?'

1. (Not exactly sure what you meant by "how" am I using it)
I'm using them with stero speakers with a subwoofer. I'm using Altec Lansing speakers and sub, awesome quality sound. Sharp, loud and never distorts (even with Creative's drivers).

I have achieved an increase in framerate by at least 5fps in non CPU limited areas.

All sounds have become better in general; games and Windows.
I believe kx makes them clearer; that could be because of the ways kX sets up the settings like bass, treble, timbre etc.

Lack of 3d sound isn't an issue at all for me, mostly because I use stereo speakers.

The driver size is EXTREMELY good, even though I have broadband cable with no speed limit, I always HATE downloading drivers (for my soundcard in this instance) that are 20MB+.

Stability of these drivers is far better than Creative's.

kX drivers get updated frequently. Updates can include new features, bug fixes, etc...

kX drivers have absolutely no bugs in my experience.

Other than listening to music and playing games I haven't done anything else on my PC that involves sound.
I'm no musician.

09-26-03, 07:13 AM
Haven't tried these yet on a SB Live Value!, but some items on the 'issues' list aren't encouraging:

-Front and Rear speakers are swapped by default (this is intentional) - explanation why here.
-The default speaker configuration is 'Stereo' (2.0) -- you can change this setting by tweaking the 'Surrounder' options.
-EAX/EAX2.0/EAX3.0 not fully supported.
-MIDI synth volume control may not function in realtime.
-If you have ACPI-aware system you may need to disable it. Refer to ACPI guide for details.
-kX Audio driver is not 100%-compatible with SMP or HyperThreading-enabled computers.
-You may experience certain audio artifacts in 3-D games - in order to solve this issue select 'Wave 4/5' device as default or turn off hardware acceleration in your application.

EAX modes not fully supported? You may have to disable ACPI?
I know many have had problems with creative's drivers for this series of cards, but either one of those 2 that I list above is bigger than any problem Creative gave me.

09-26-03, 07:17 AM
I have ACPI enabled. No problems here.

09-26-03, 08:43 AM
Yes, I forgot to mention some people had issues with EAX, or it wasn't working in earlier/current versions. I can't comment further because I don't use those features myself. The driver is continually being developed. I can only say that for my use, they are WAY better.

With the creative drivers, I can almost 'pick my bug', for example, the default XP drivers crackle and fail in some programs, the latest official drivers blue screen crash other games. The best creative drivers for the old SBLive are actualy modded Audigy 2 drivers! What kind of situation is that?

09-28-03, 05:49 PM
Do these have DOS Emulation support?

I may get them if they do...

The only reason I still hold on to my Live 5.1 is because the Sound Blaster DOS support is bar-none the best, once you configure it correctly...

But, if I could find a generic PCI card that had good SB Emulation (there was this one ISA card that had great SB emulation... ESS 1698 or something...), or if I could find an old SB Pro II (or III) PCI card, hell.. I would move on.

P.S. Yes, I must have an DOS SB Capable sound card... I love old DOS games, and most of the time, sound cards that have SB Emulation under Windows 9x just isn't adequet enough (you can only get a few games to actually play samples), and the WinXP DOS Dox emulation blows donkey.

09-29-03, 03:44 AM
Nope no dos emulation.
In fact, these drivers are not intended for gamers. It is for music production purposes and as such they are very good. But not for games, not yet anyway. I tried them before with my old sblive 4.1, they worked very good for all my music apps I use but it was too much of a loss from a game point of view so I reverted back.

09-29-03, 09:59 AM
Actually, I moved over to these drivers and am so far satisfied...

I never was much for 3D gaming sound.. But, anyway, these drivers would proved good for gamers do to the halfed CPU utilization of the drivers.

Also, DOS sound still works :) When you are setting up the DOS drivers (with SBSET), you just need to (when you have the original SBLive drivers installed) use the -w0 option (will disable the DOS drivers from relying
on the Windows SB16 emulation..). So far, so good.