Sound cards - from best to worst

Discussion about old PC hardware.

Re: Sound cards - from best to worst

Postby deksar » 2017-4-10 @ 10:33

gerwin wrote:I made an ISA Soundcard Overview that might be suitable to add to this stickified topic. It is pretty big and technical. Also it is not yet complete.
Data obtained from many datasheets, internet articles and pictures as well as some actual soundcards. Suggestions and Corrections are welcome.

Really great list! Amazing effort. Any updated one? Thanks!
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Re: Sound cards - from best to worst

Postby Pabloz » 2017-12-22 @ 04:53

i tried a couple of soundblaster ISA cards and i must say that

1. If the game setup supports awe32 , i can play with an awe64 gold and the sound kicks ass. (TESTED DOOM2 V1.666, SOUNDS AWESOME)

2. With an awe32 i have lots of hanging note bug that ruin the experience. (tested an awe32 with doom1)

3. If the game is older, and does not have awe32 support....then a SB16 sounds better than the awe64 gold. Happened to me on games like commander keen when i had the feeling that with an SB16 card the sound was much much better than with an awe64 gold. And also happened to me on DOOM1 v1.1 which that version does not include awe32 support, i had way better sound with a SB16 card than the awe64 gold
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Re: Sound cards - from best to worst

Postby oerk » 2017-12-22 @ 07:35

Pabloz wrote:1. If the game setup supports awe32 , i can play with an awe64 gold and the sound kicks ass. (TESTED DOOM2 V1.666, SOUNDS AWESOME)


That's because the soundfont (sample ROM) for the Emu chip is identical for AWE32 and 64.

Pabloz wrote:2. With an awe32 i have lots of hanging note bug that ruin the experience. (tested an awe32 with doom1)


With the Emu chip, or with a wavetable card or external MIDI device? The latter is pretty much expected - and also depends on the DSP version. Some are better, some worse.

Pabloz wrote:3. If the game is older, and does not have awe32 support....then a SB16 sounds better than the awe64 gold. Happened to me on games like commander keen when i had the feeling that with an SB16 card the sound was much much better than with an awe64 gold. And also happened to me on DOOM1 v1.1 which that version does not include awe32 support, i had way better sound with a SB16 card than the awe64 gold


That's because the AWE64 doesn't have a genuine Yamaha OPL3, but Creative's emulation called CQM instead. There are also lots and lots of different versions of the SB16 with either OPL3 or CQM. The same is true for the AWE64.
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