Im looking at selling my aging sb awe 64 sound card, and would like some peoples thoughts on the sb pci 128 card. Im looking at this card specifically, because I can get it from a friend for the same amount i'll get for my awe 64.
Although I have not experienced the PCI128 myself, I know it's based on an older Ensoniq audio processor which causes sound latency problems in Quake2 based games (Half-Life, Sin, and the like) which I found pretty annoying using my ancient Ensoniq SoundScape.
But I also know that using recently released drivers, the PCI128 supports EAX...
I was not aware the pci-128 was based on the ensonic chip. From what I have read, they abandoned that rout with the pci-64 because of compatability issues.
I just read about the EAX support on this card now, but I doubt highly that it will sound as good as the sb-live. It may be able to emulate EAX using drivers and software, but the sb-live does this in hardware, which would make a big difference in sound quality and speed.
Kinda like looking at the sb-live's a3d emulation. It sucks compared to hardware a3d.
I've been surfin looking for info about the pci-128, but the only stuff I have read so far says the midi on this card sucks (has nothing but software wavetable synth).
I guess ill need to keep my eye out for more info.
Ps, does anyone know if the pci-128's drivers allow bass and treble control in the volume control panel like the awe-64 does. This makes all the difference if you speakers do not have bass and treble controls.
PC WORLD magazine just did a comparison of new soundcards, using AWE64 as the old standard. SB LIVE and SB PCI128 were included. I can't remember if it was the November or December issue. You might check their website also.
I just bought a PCI 128, along with the PC WORKS 4-Point Surround speaker system. It sounds great.
If money's not an issue, go with SB LIVE. But, for $45, PCI 128 is a deal.
I suggest u go for the sb live! value coz if u plan to use a 4 speaker setup... not all 4 will work... ie: when playing with old games, listing to mp3s... u will only hear sound comming from the front 2 speakers whereas this does not happen with the sb live... besides... sb live is the BEST soundcard around... n baby does it rock
This is away from the original question, but why doesn't anyone ever recommend the MX300? From all the reviews it is just as good as the SBLive plus supports A3D 2.0 which should make all the difference in the world for gaming. Sharkyextreme just did a comparison and said that for gaming, the MX300 is better hands down. I'll know for myself tonight when I install mine!
I also have an aging SoundBlaster AWE64 (two of them) and was considering a SouldBlaster 128 PCI. But I put a Creative Esonique in my daughters computer and ran into some compatability problems with some Dos based games and read that PCI SoundBlaster had some of the came problems so I've stuck with the old SB64. One thing I can say for the AWE64, it works with everything I've ever intalled. Incidentally, the sound quality of the SB Esonique card is fantastic for the price. I wouldn't hesitate to recommend it to anyone on a budget who doesn't play old games.