Weekend Open Forum: Are you using a dedicated sound card?

By on February 11, 2011, 9:29 PM
A decade ago, most hardware buffs could agree that sound cards played a significant role in performance-oriented computers. In addition to circumventing board-level interference, discrete cards offered more driver functionality and I/O options. Sound cards also reduced load on your main CPU, potentially translating to higher FPS in video games.

While much of that remains true today, integrated audio has improved over the years and most motherboards ship with an onboard solution that provides sufficient quality audio, controls and connectivity for the average user. Meanwhile, in an age of high-speed multi-core CPUs, the performance benefit of having a dedicated sound processor is virtually non-existent.


With that, we ask: what are you using to drive your computer's audio? Have you been relying on an integrated chip all along? Did you "downgrade" from an early Creative SB Live! to modern onboard audio? Do you purchase a new discrete card with every fresh build? No matter the case, feel free to "sound off" in the comments about your existing setup!

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