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3D Spotlight : Hardware : Xitel Storm Platinum review

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Xitel Storm Platinum review
Posted by Julio Franco

box.gif (22371 bytes)Aureal was the first company to push 3D hardware accelerated sound in the home market with their Vortex 1 audio processor and the A3D API, they went a step further with it and until a few months ago, they were the best choice for every gamer out there but with the release of Creative's SB Live!, Aureal also launched a new product, the Vortex 2, they released a whole new API as well, the A3D 2.0 API.

With the release of this excellent chip, some manufacturers announced sound cards based on it, including Xitel, after the great success they had with the Vortex 1 based Storm VX, now they're bringing us the Storm Platinum. Based on Aureal's Vortex 2 reference design board, you'll find out that this card is pretty similar to the MonsterSound MX-300 from Diamond but there are some little extras that make of this card a much better buy than the MX-300 (see page 2).

Here's some technical info of the Storm Platinum:

Features

Aureal Vortex 2 - AU8830 Controller
Quad Channel Output 18-bit AC'97 CODEC
Hardware Accelerated A3D 2.0 and DirectSound 3D
96 DMA Hardware Accelerated Channels
Professional 320 Voice MIDI Synthesizer
Digital 10-Band Graphic Equalizer
Multiple Speaker/Headphone Support
Optical S/PDIF (TOSLINK) Output
Accelerated Joystick Port
SoundBlaster Pro Hardware Support

Signal Specification

Output: 1Vrms Typical (AC'97 Specification)
Input: 1Vrms Typical (AC'97 Specification)
Frequency Response 20Hz - 20 kHz
THD+N: Less than 0.007%
SNR: Better than 95 dB

Hardware Acceleration Features

Full A3D 1.0 and A3D 2.0
DirectSound and DirectSound 3D
MIDI Synthesis Including DirectMusic
48 kHz Sample Rate Conversion
Digital Mixing
10-Band Graphic Equalizer
Joystick Port Commands


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