Now select the Output
Several output modes are available (depending on
components installed). The mode to select will depend
mostly on your Audio device. waveOut,
DirectSound & DirectSound v 2.0 are safe
choices that should work with any Audio device.
Where supported, you may find
that Kernel Streaming (What
it is -Windows 2000+) or ASIO provide
best output. Both function by working more directly
with the Audio device, bypassing certain Windows
components (KMixer) that can lead to reduced quality.
ASIO support can be determined simply enough as your
Audio device’s ASIO Driver, listed in the ASIO
tab’s Device menu. If not, Kernel Streaming is an
That said, both can be rather tricky to get
functioning at times and you may need to adjust certain
other options (such as Output data format) to get
them to work, e.g. using an Audigy 2 ZS, Kernel
Streaming functioned fine with 48000, 96000Hz resampling
and 24bit fixed-point padded to 32-bit output.
Conversely, ASIO output only functioned with 48000
resampling and 16bit fixed-point output. Otherwise the
console displayed the following error message:
(foo_output_asio(dll)) : unsupported output data format.
As regards ASIO at least you can
determine the sampling rates available by downloading
ASIO caps utility. Simply load the ASIOcaps file,
choose the ASIO device and select the Caps
As you can see, 48000Hz is the
only sampling rate supported by the Creative ASIO
That said, if your Soundcard
resamples anyway (e.g. AC97 soundcards) then there’s
generally not much reason to try using these as you may
be increasing CPU use with no noticeable quality
Once you’ve selected your mode, skip
onto the appropriate section beneath.
From the drop-down menu select the Audio device you wish
to use for audio playback in Foobar 2000, which may be
relevant if you have more than one device installed.
This slider determines thread priority level for ASIO
output. Leave this at the default value of
Normal unless you are experiencing choppy output, in
which case using a higher priority might resolve
the playback problems.
This determines the length of data to buffer. This can
help avoid any playback skipping when working with other
processes. Higher buffering can also lead to
increased memory use as well however, as well as
increased delay in certain processes being applied,
e.g. changing volume takes longer to apply. For best
performance and minimum delay you should set this as low
as you reasonably can without noticing any playback
issues. Personally I’ve had no difficultly using this at
the default of 7.
Shift Output channels.
If you’re using a multi-channel Soundcard increasing
this value allows you to change which channels the audio
is outputted to. Setting this to 0 (default),
outputs audio to the front left/right channels. You
shouldn’t need to alter this.