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Submission + - Do you really need a discrete sound card? (techreport.com)

crookedvulture writes: Integrated audio has become a common freebie on motherboards, causing many to question whether there's any need to have a sound card. The Tech Report takes a closer look at the issue by testing the latest integrated Realtek codec against a couple of sound cards: Asus' $30 Xonar DG and its considerably more expensive $280 Xense cousin. Everything from gaming performance to signal quality is explored, and it's the blind listening tests that prove most revealing. The integrated solution is obviously flawed, and in a bit of a surprise, the cheaper Xonar is the one most preferred. Discrete sound cards certainly have their benefits, and you don't need to spend a lot to get something that sounds a lot better than the average motherboard.
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Do you really need a discrete sound card?

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