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Opinions on budget sound card for PC?

Discussion in 'PCs & Music Servers' started by swechsler, May 20, 2018.

  1. swechsler

    swechsler Frog Whisperer

    Messages:
    5,120
    Location:
    7th row center
    I'm looking for an inexpensive sound card for a low profile PC (Dell Optiplex 9020) running Windows 10. I'm not looking for anything high end, I just want to be able to drive a pair of powered speakers (Sony SA-S900 - 2 way with an electrostatic tweeter) and a powered subwoofer, without needing a separate preamp or crossover. Ideally I'd like the ability to select a low pass and high pass filter for the sub and satellites, respectively. I'm considering the Xonar DGX - I've already got a Xonar DG in my office (Lenovo) PC driving a pair of Genelec nearfield monitors, and I'm happy with the sound, but the Optiplex doesn't have a PCI card slot, only PCI-e. Will that do what I'm looking for? Alternatively, is there anything else in the same price range that might do the trick? An external USB interface is also an option.
     
    Last edited: May 20, 2018

     

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  2. imral3

    imral3 Super Member

    Messages:
    2,294
    Location:
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    Get an external USB DAC.
     
    nyhifihead likes this.
  3. imral3

    imral3 Super Member

    Messages:
    2,294
    Location:
    Blackwood, New Jersey
  4. EngineerNate

    EngineerNate AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    3,098
    The inexpensive behringer usb soundcards measure very well if you don't care about the headphone output, which is usually crap.
     
  5. crackerbuzz

    crackerbuzz Active Member

    Messages:
    149
    Buy a cambridge audio DAC and run the dedicated software to bypass the kernel. Then you will have pure digital out to your pre amp or direct to amplifer (if you use the built in volume control option). The software is KEY as i dont know of any other DAC that has software to bypass the kernel audio inside the PC. Ensure you run TIDAL or similar than runs CD quality streams.
     
  6. cpt_paranoia

    cpt_paranoia Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    794
    What's wrong with the WASAPI driver?

    https://wiki.jriver.com/index.php/WASAPI
     
    botrytis likes this.

     

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  7. botrytis

    botrytis Trying not to be a Small Speaker Hoarder Subscriber

    Messages:
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    WASAPI does that. I don't know what you are talking about. Win 10 has buit-in WASAPI now and works better than ASIO. I think you should stop with the mis-information.
     
    Chris Brown likes this.
  8. BigElCat

    BigElCat Mmm Hmm Subscriber

    Messages:
    7,775
    Location:
    South of Kansas City
    The Windows Media Player that comes with Windows 10 ( WMP 12 ) does not have WASAPI. It can't be added either.

    You can use ASIO with it.
     
  9. Silentnet

    Silentnet AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    800
    Location:
    Charleston, SC
    And who uses it?
     
  10. BigElCat

    BigElCat Mmm Hmm Subscriber

    Messages:
    7,775
    Location:
    South of Kansas City
    Me, and one other guy I know of.
     
  11. botrytis

    botrytis Trying not to be a Small Speaker Hoarder Subscriber

    Messages:
    29,351
    Location:
    PODUNC USA......
    Well Windows Media Player is a hold over from Windows 7. There was no Windows 10 Media Player. They got sued and lost. That is why it is only ASIO and why I don't use it. It doesn't get updated either.
     

     

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  12. swechsler

    swechsler Frog Whisperer

    Messages:
    5,120
    Location:
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    Actually, I use WMP as well, it's not the perfect player, but does several things fairly well (including working with the Windows remote), and the UI is at least half decent. However, I'm not averse to changing if I find something better - I'm just too lazy to start looking around
     
  13. qjm101

    qjm101 Member

    Messages:
    74
    MusicBee
     
    cpt_paranoia likes this.
  14. cpt_paranoia

    cpt_paranoia Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    794
    MusicBee and MediaMonkey are the two apps I use on Windows.

    Long term user of MM4, but migrated to the better UI of MB as a player. Haven't tried MM5, which is supposed to be an improved UI. Each as their benefits as a media manager.
     
  15. cpt_paranoia

    cpt_paranoia Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    794
    <finger trouble>
     

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