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Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Brian Gendron, Sep 18, 2002.
Any suggestions.... Price range $100/$150
You'll find a lot of really GOOD audio cards for that price range. "Cheap" sound cards actually range around the $20-40 range. I'm a Creative Labs bigot, personally. If you're doing gaming, stay away from the Ensonique (PCI 128) because it will freeze your system momentarily if there are too many audio events going on at the same time. I use Sound Blaster Live 5.1 and Sound Blaster Live (non 5.1) in my two gaming machines and I've never had a problem.
an Audigy OEM would cost you about $60, but you could probably find the M Audio 2496 for under $150 I think
i picked up the soundblaster audigy (gamer bundle) for about 100 bucks.
the hardware runs solid, has all the features (firewire, 5.1) i was looking for, and had a pretty good software bundle. the "deus ex" game alone almost makes it worthwhile.
i checked out quite a few reviews and all of them said, especially for the money, that the audigy series was hard to beat.
if you go with audigy, don't be confused about the music/gamer/whatever bundle. the hardware is exactly the same - it's only the software bundle that's different. at least i think so.
if optical connections are necessary, then you need to bump to at least the extigy (external box). or i think the platinum (?) has optical too.
Stay away from the extigy... the platinum does have optical, etc. etc. but if you want a good digital card, I'd go with the 2496 or something similar... and for a decent analog card the Audigy by itself (OEM package) is about 60 bucks... and the Live! 5.1 is $32 at newegg.com... from the tone of your post, it doesnt seem like you'd need frills.
How bout the Turtle Beach Santa Cruz? I saw that at like buy.com for $50 or $60...
John, my Extigy rocks
I second the Turtle Beach Santa Cruz. I own a Hercules GTXP 6.1 ($130) which makes everything a cinch to work with due to the external pre/pro box, but if I wanted budget sound I'd go TBSC, sounds the same (if not better).
Thanks for the sugesstions guys, It's sounds like i can get a pretty good sound card for $150. Maybe i am not so cheap after all.
I third the turtle beach santa cruz. I have been using it and can say I'm quite happy with it