AWE64 Value: Worth upgrading to Gold?

Discussion about old sound cards, MIDI devices and sound related accessories.

AWE64 Value: Worth upgrading to Gold?

Postby GiSWiG » 2017-10-30 @ 01:14

I was thinking of upgrading my AWE64 Value to a Gold. Soon, I'll be using an external MIDI synth via USB to SC-55 or MT-32 emulator but eventually the real deal.

Is it worth upgrading from the Value to the Gold?
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Re: AWE64 Value: Worth upgrading to Gold?

Postby ElectroMan » 2017-10-30 @ 01:43

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Last edited by ElectroMan on 2017-12-03 @ 13:45, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: AWE64 Value: Worth upgrading to Gold?

Postby GiSWiG » 2017-10-30 @ 02:19

I think I'll hold off until I don't know what else to buy. I've got DOSBox setup to use the Sound Canvas VA, MUNT and the Yamaha S-YXG50 and I can display them on a second monitor but having the real box, that orange backlit LCD, just seems so cool (yes, the SC-55) but I definitely would love a MT-32 too. Once I got that going on a nice DOS/Win98 PC, then I'll consider the AWE64 Gold.
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Re: AWE64 Value: Worth upgrading to Gold?

Postby firage » 2017-10-31 @ 05:14

Yeah, the differences aren't huge. The 4MB onboard SoundFont capacity might make a difference, depending on your needs.

The AWE64 Gold (CT4390/CT4540) has RCA line outputs and no amplifier chip. Other AWE64's (CT4380, CT4500, CT4520) have a TDA1517P driving a speaker output, which is also usual on other mid-90's Sound Blasters after the TEA2025B. I don't think there's been any real consensus about one design outperforming the other, quality wise.

The big chips are pretty similar. The Gold had two further mixer revisions (CT1745A-S and -SCP), and the CT4540 has another revision of the main AWE chip. The CT4520 is a lot more integrated than the rest, don't know much about them.

Lastly, you get a coax SPDIF output header (and bracket, unless lost) with the Gold.
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Re: AWE64 Value: Worth upgrading to Gold?

Postby appiah4 » 2017-10-31 @ 10:19

Yeah it's a significant upgrade. The 4MB onboard RAM can hold some significant SF2 soundfonts including the 4MB Creative one, the SCCT and the Yamaha XG ones. And that can make a huge difference.

That said, given what a Gold usually costs you may want to grab one of the SIMMCONN adapters currently in production by Dreamblaster instead IMO.
A500:Rev6|512K+RTC|ACA500+|HxC/df1|C1084S
1994:PCI597-1|P133|32MB|Trio64|ES1868/S2
1997:S1573S|K6-2/400|64MB|M220|V2/SLI|CT4500/32M
2000:GA-BX2000|P3-700E|256MB|GF2GTS|V2|MX300
DELL:GX110LP|PIII1000|512MB|G450|ES1938S/X3M
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Re: AWE64 Value: Worth upgrading to Gold?

Postby leileilol » 2017-10-31 @ 22:22

ElectroMan wrote:I would probably grab something like AWE32 with SIMM slots instead (less hassle in my opinion)

until the noise floor gets to you that is
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Re: AWE64 Value: Worth upgrading to Gold?

Postby dexvx » 2017-11-01 @ 17:11

Finding a good AWE32 (CT2760, CT3980) is more expensive than an AWE64 Gold + new SIMMCONN.
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Re: AWE64 Value: Worth upgrading to Gold?

Postby CodeFuApprentice » 2017-11-07 @ 20:41

Many years ago, i wanted to get an AWE64 Gold, though when i discovered the memory upgrades were more difficult to acquire, i went for an AWE 32.
Wait....CT2760? How expensive?....what kind of price do they sell for?
I only ask because after i bought mine in 2000, i ended up buying a second one as it was bundled with the DB50XG daughterboard i have. (Both were second hand when i bought them, and i got them cheap) Basically i only needed 1...though i kept both of them all these years.
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Re: AWE64 Value: Worth upgrading to Gold?

Postby The Serpent Rider » 2017-11-10 @ 06:08

Finding a good AWE32 (CT2760, CT3980) is more expensive than an AWE64 Gold + new SIMMCONN.

Sound Blaster 32 models got you covered.
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Re: AWE64 Value: Worth upgrading to Gold?

Postby MKT_Gundam » 2017-11-12 @ 12:16

Hi guys
I just got a AWE32 3670 ( use AWE 64 chips) and i have 2 x 1MB 30-pin ram to put. Will be enough to load some basic soundfonts?
I am aware about the lack of true OPL3 and i plan to use it on my p2 450 with win98SE. I want just use for later and non speed sensitive DOS games.
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Re: AWE64 Value: Worth upgrading to Gold?

Postby chinny22 » 2017-11-17 @ 14:22

MKT_Gundam wrote:Hi guys
I just got a AWE32 3670 ( use AWE 64 chips) and i have 2 x 1MB 30-pin ram to put. Will be enough to load some basic soundfonts?
I am aware about the lack of true OPL3 and i plan to use it on my p2 450 with win98SE. I want just use for later and non speed sensitive DOS games.


Its more then the 512kb onboard so wont hurt to have it.
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