Creative has unveiled a new family of audio products that will inherit the reputable Sound Blaster name. The Sound Blaster Z, Sound Blaster Zx and Sound Blaster ZxR all use Creative’s Core3D quad-core audio and voice processor, much like the recent Recon3D cards. Each of the three products offers a unique blend of features, specifications and price points.
The entry-level Sound Blaster Z kicks things off at $100 which gets you an integrated amplifier meant to be used with headphones up to 600 Ω. There’s also 120dB SNR, support for 192kHz direct pass-through to analog out, an EMI-free analog input and output path and there’s even glowing LED lighting if you are into that sort of thing.
The mid-range Sound Blaster Zx ships with all of the same features as the Z card but adds an external Audio Control Module (ACM) with a built-in dual microphone array, volume knob and microphone / headphone connections. The low-end card does have an external mic but none of the other ACM features. Expect to pay around $150 for this configuration.
The top-of-the-line ZxR is $100 more expensive than the mid-range card but your $250 invest provides you with what Creative calls studio-grade components, 123dB analog-to-digital converters with RCA Aux-in and optical input, the same ACM that ships with the Zx card and a daughter card that provides additional ports should you need them.
The Tech Report says the Sound Blaster Z will be available as early as October while the Zx and the ZxR won’t be ready until December.
Downloads and Drivers
From the Forums
Subscribe to TechSpot
Get free exclusive content, learn about new features and breaking tech news.