Re: Using Optical Out in HTPC With Xfi.
Optical is better than analog for sure, but optical is old school. Most HTPC builds today use HDMI audio. Almost all modern graphics cards include an audio component in their HDMI output.
I have 3 HTPC's in my house, and for one I just bought a passive cooled Radeon 6450 for $44 and it has HDMI output with bitstreaming support for TrueHD and DTS-MA, as well as high def video acceleration compatible with XBMC and it works great with blu-rays.
I haven't used a sound card in years; they just aren't necessary anymore.
Want to listen to audio without your computer going to sleep? Try this
Core i7 2600k 4.4Ghz 1.385v | Corsair H60 | 8GB Corsair Vengeance 1600 8-8-8-24 | MSI P67A-G45 | OCZ Vertex 3 | Sapphire 7850 OC to Max settings