Originally Posted by Mr Bigman
True, but is the quality of the audio from the HDMI good enough to that of xfi?
You have properties on the XFI you can adjust unlike on the hdmi passthrough.
I use the blue 50 dollar version of the xfi pci-ex with optical, but if i spend the
extra hundred bucks and get the fatality version with the black casing, will the
optical sound better?
From my experience digital is digital, anything else is just equilizer adjusting the db per frequency range. X-Fi likely has the ability to add reverb by why? That's done in the studios for movies.
I've always used on-board. Granted, up until about a year ago I had a rather extreme 5.1 setup and used optical out to my receiver. I say if you're limited to using optical go with the cheaper card.