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WOW hannibal my sound with my x-fi under vista have been excellent for a long while even in FC, x 4 machines as well. No issues. I use no hacks either. What issues you run into specifically? Much of what you mention in your post were indeed issues that were there way back at Vista's launch when virtually all hardware manufacturers drivers were very young and problematic. The later versions of X-Fi drivers/Alchemy work excellent for me with both FC and DCS as well as many other titles.

 

Also of all the X-FI soundcards available the Xtreme music is the only one I would not choose/recommend as it alone in the X-fi line lacks true full blown EAX support. AFAIK it is the lowest end card in the X-Fi line.

 

Out


Edited by PoleCat
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I have an XFi in Vista. The sound is better than on-board sound cards. Anyone that argues that there is no difference simply has worse headphones, speakers, or ears than the average audiophile.

 

Also, I agree with the assertion that the XFi hardware is nice, but the drivers (particularly in Vista) are bad. Apparently the Azuntech cards solve this problem by using XFi chipsets with better drivers and some better DAC on the card. I haven't tried one yet, but I think I will soon.

 

The other main advantage of Creative cards, specifically for Black Shark in Vista, is that you can use Alchemy to get decent multi-channel audio, and fix the sound problems that other (Realtek etc.) users just have to live with.

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Another advantage I found with my X-Fi Fatality Pro Titanium over onboard sound is volume, this doesn’t necessarily mean I like to keep the neighbours awake. The main advantage from more volume is better "Dynamic Range" meaning the sounds that are meant to be quiet remain quiet and sounds that are meant to be loud remain loud. Any amp that isn’t powerful enough once a certain volume is reached begins to reduce the dynamic range giving the impression that you are going louder but it’s just the quieter sounds going louder, the louder sounds stay the same.


Edited by Washer UK

Q6600 3.2Ghz, 4G DDR2 1066, ATI 4870, x52, TrackIR 4, Vista 64

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WOW hannibal my sound with my x-fi under vista have been excellent for a long while even in FC, x 4 machines as well. No issues. I use no hacks either. What issues you run into specifically? Much of what you mention in your post were indeed issues that were there way back at Vista's launch when virtually all hardware manufacturers drivers were very young and problematic. The later versions of X-Fi drivers/Alchemy work excellent for me with both FC and DCS as well as many other titles.

 

Also of all the X-FI soundcards available the Xtreme music is the only one I would not choose/recommend as it alone in the X-fi line lacks true full blown EAX support. AFAIK it is the lowest end card in the X-Fi line.

 

Out

 

I thought the ALchemy mod is only necessary to get EAX out of certain specific older titles. For any new game it should work right out of the box. At least, that's how I interpreted the description on Creative's site.

 

You're right PoleCat, the lowest X-Fi is actually Audigy 2 hardware (last I looked anyway, they might now have a new lowest model). I hate that Creative did that, but all the other X-Fi's are terrific. I bought an X-Fi Platinum when they first came out, and my sheer enthusiasm for it caused a bunch of my friends to upgrade, and they all love it too!

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Sure, add-on sound card is better, period.

I f**cking hate on-board sound device.

But it doesn't come at top of the list in BS considering budget limit for ordinary people.

You shouldn't give delusion to anyone that fps will soars up by accelerated audio and it will sounds damn better.

 

First, for me, sound is not the first thing for simulation. Music? I love it.

Does BS sounds dramatically different between on-board & add-in?

In some games, it is yes. I love those games.

But in BS, it's nono. Did BS ever support EAX? I hope so.

Even good old IL-2 supports accelerated sound better than BS.

BS sound is matter of preference not like plain simple fps count so I hope you don't ignore other people's cochlea or eardrum whatever that easily.

 

Second, playing BS on XP for better sound? in XP? Not Vista? That would be BS.


Edited by =815=TooCooL

System: Core2Duo E8500, 4G ram, GTX260, SLC SSD, and Vista 32bit. LG W2600HP 26" LCD.

Controls : MSFFB2, CH Pro throttle, Saitek rudder, Saitek throttle quadrant, and TrackIR4

BS Setting : medium with visibility HIGH

More skill you get, more you Love DCS:Black Shark.

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I thought the ALchemy mod is only necessary to get EAX out of certain specific older titles.

 

Here's the deal with it: Any game that was coded to use DirectSound will not have access to hardware-accelerated or 3D sound (including hardware effects like EAX) under Vista. Alchemy allows you to get round this by taking all the game's calls to DirectSound functionality, and turning them into something that Vista drivers can work with.

 

For any new game it should work right out of the box. At least, that's how I interpreted the description on Creative's site.!

 

Not exactly - most developers will aim to use OpenAL (which works properly in Vista) in their new games, but some are still releasing games that rely on DirectSound. This is usually the case with new games that are based on an old engine - for example Black Shark, X3: Terran Conflict, etc.

 

Rewriting the sound engine for a game will usually be a pretty big undertaking, which is why this issue is rarely patched or fixed after release. It's usually not worth the development time, because as we've seen in this thread, the average PC user is fairly impartial to or naive about sound quality. For example, I've seen loads of people that get a 7.1 system and just bunch all the satellites up around the front of their monitor - obviously 3D sound is not a priority for these dudes! So if a developer is going to rewrite parts of their engine, they'll go for stuff that people will notice, like graphical sugar or frame-rate improvements.

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does sticking the speakers next to each other increase FPS?

 

if not, think i'll stick to my cheapo audigySE until i have a room big enough to put 7 speakers spread out, and get top end sound card at same time

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Speaker placement has nothing to do with FPS. The computer has no idea where those speakers are, though it expects them to be all around you.

 

If you have a 7.1 sound card, you don't necessarily need to fill up all those speaker slots. I have 5.1 speakers and it's just fine. If you already have an Audigy, but only have 2 speakers, I'd recommend you save money for surround speakers first, and then upgrade the sound card, since the AudigySE is 5.1 (7.1?) already, and not too bad a card either.

 

Just keep the X-Fi in mind for down the road. It WILL improve your music, movies, and games (doubly so if you wear headphones a lot). I was skeptical when I bought mine, being the X-Fi Platinum was $180, and my Audigy was only $45 (and that was years ago), but it turns out the X-Fi was one of the best computer upgrades I've ever bought. My buyer's remorse disappeared the moment I first tried it. :)

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Hm, well, now that the X-Fi has been thoroughly recommended, here's something to at least look at. Mayhap it'll confuse you even further, but informed purchases always smell better the following morning.

 

http://www.cmedia.com.tw/ (Good luck finding their gear for actual purchase, though...)

http://www.m-audio.com/ (Mostly geared for professional sound-processing, it seems. Probably not what anyone of US are looking for.)

http://www.turtlebeach.com/ (It doesn't look like a classy line-up, but it's affordable. Remember to look for reviews!)

http://www.asus.com/ (Now we make soundcards too! XONAR would be your quarry.)

http://www.club3d.nl

http://www.auzentech.com (Uses the X-Fi chip in a number of cards. As good as Creative's X-Fi? :) Seriously, get a load of that Home-theater-monster!)

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http://www.auzentech.com (Uses the X-Fi chip in a number of cards. As good as Creative's X-Fi? :) Seriously, get a load of that Home-theater-monster!)

 

Everyone I've spoken to, and every review I've read says that the high-end Auzentech cards are superior to Creative's X-Fi. Apparently vista driver support is good too. I think I'll pick up their new Theatre one once it finally gets released.

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Here's the deal with it: Any game that was coded to use DirectSound will not have access to hardware-accelerated or 3D sound (including hardware effects like EAX) under Vista. Alchemy allows you to get round this by taking all the game's calls to DirectSound functionality, and turning them into something that Vista drivers can work with.

 

 

 

Not exactly - most developers will aim to use OpenAL (which works properly in Vista) in their new games, but some are still releasing games that rely on DirectSound. This is usually the case with new games that are based on an old engine - for example Black Shark, X3: Terran Conflict, etc.

 

Rewriting the sound engine for a game will usually be a pretty big undertaking, which is why this issue is rarely patched or fixed after release. It's usually not worth the development time, because as we've seen in this thread, the average PC user is fairly impartial to or naive about sound quality. For example, I've seen loads of people that get a 7.1 system and just bunch all the satellites up around the front of their monitor - obviously 3D sound is not a priority for these dudes! So if a developer is going to rewrite parts of their engine, they'll go for stuff that people will notice, like graphical sugar or frame-rate improvements.

 

 

Ok, I gave in and grabbed a card because I also listen to a lot of music on my polk audio system with a yamaha sub and there is a difference in sound quality. NO difference in game performance btw as I initially said earlier in the thread.

 

My question is this:

 

Somebody explain to me the benefits of Alchemy and does it work in Vista X64 specifically with Black Shark.

 

alchemy.jpg

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My question is this:

 

Somebody explain to me the benefits of Alchemy and does it work in Vista X64 specifically with Black Shark.

 

Seeing as you quoted me explaining the benefit, and then asked what the benefit was, I guess I should try making more sense :)

 

If, as a game developer, you want to make use of your users' sound cards to do such things as 3D (or 'surround') sound, EAX effects, or hardware processing that would otherwise take up CPU time, you need to make use of an API - this is a common way that games and programs can talk to a soundcard, without knowing about the hardware.

 

In the old days (up to about 2005/6 I suppose) the most common way to do this was to use DirectSound - this was the sound library provided as part of DirectX.

 

When Vista came along, Microsoft dropped support for DirectSound, because OpenAL was much better, and was becoming much more popular. Unfortunately, this meant that any games that tried to use DirectSound would sound crap - because they couldn't use any special features of the sound card, or hardware acceleration.

 

Creative Alchemy came along to fix this. It replaces the crippled DirectSound that Microsoft provided in vista, and reroutes all of the stuff the game tells it to do to an OpenAL library.

 

How to make it work in Black Shark Just click on 'add game', write in the path of the DCS.exe, and then add the game. Leave the other settings on their defaults. Job done :)

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Hi Glottis

 

Just a quick question, I followed your guide and added the game path not reg path, DCS now appears in the left hand box. If I try to move it to the right hand box I get an error message saying it cannot be moved.

 

1. Have I done it right having it under the heading "Installed games"

 

2. Once I load DCS will Alchemy work automatically or do I need to run a program?

 

Thanks

 

Wash

Q6600 3.2Ghz, 4G DDR2 1066, ATI 4870, x52, TrackIR 4, Vista 64

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*edit*

 

Ok fixed it, there is a guide here http://connect.creativelabs.com/alchemy/Downloads/ALchemy%20Quick%20Start.pdf

 

seems to be working now :D

 

Cool, glad you got it working. Just FYI, when you move the game from left to right in Alchemy, it just copies the dll that does all the work into the game's folder. So yeah, it should work straight away if you chose the right folder :)

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*edit*

 

Ok fixed it, there is a guide here http://connect.creativelabs.com/alchemy/Downloads/ALchemy%20Quick%20Start.pdf

 

seems to be working now :D

 

It looks like they want you to specify the game root folder as well as the sub-folder \bin\stable. I noticed a new dsound.dll in that stable folder. So Washer, any noticeable difference with Alchemy turned on?

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