In this article, we compare the Sound Blaster Audigy FX vs RX vs Asus Xonar DGX, which are popular budget sound cards.
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The discrete sound cards have always been the preferred options for those who love better sound performance. If you are one of those with the keen ears and not a fan of the in-built sound chip, the discrete sound card will provide access to an enhanced sound experience when compared to the integrated audio on a computer system. They tend to offer you a better value for money options – especially with the higher lifespan that they are equipped with.
Now that you are aware of the importance of the discrete sound cards, we thought we would compare the three of the best sound card options here. Two of them come from Creative, and one of them is from Asus – making it a level playing field for the major players. Let us check out the basic features and functions offered by Creative Sound Blaster Audigy FX, Creative Sound Blaster Audigy RX, and Asus Xonar DGX in today’s post.
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The Creative Sound Blaster Audigy FX is a budget sound card and offers you an improved sound performance. It can help provide a high-quality audio experience that surpasses most of the integrated audio systems on a low budget motherboard.
The sound card comes with a low profile form factor with PCIe configuration but assures you an enhanced 5.1 surround sound capability to your device. The advanced SBX Pro Studio onboard comes with an advanced audio processing capability. Equipped with 24-bit 192khz audio output, along with 96khz audio input, you can have access to a beautiful musical experience.
The sound card offers a three-port combination for the 5.1 channel surround sound experience and thus should ideally ensure that you have access to almost every Hi-Fi speaker system. The headphone jack comes with a 600-ohm amplifier. This provides you access to a crystal clear sound. You also have access to other standard port options like the line in and microphone. The availability of multiple audio inputs can serve as an option to record from the various sound sources.
The small form factor of the sound card is yet another plus point that lets you fit it inside any small form factor system with ease.
When you compare it to the previous generations of the sound cards, the Audigy RX is quite matured. However, when you compare it with the newer systems, it appears to be quite old. The technology used here is almost 15 years old, and thus we would end up saying the sound card suits a niche market – for those of you who have ancient systems.
However, if you are one of those who are looking for a native 7.1 channel surround sound audio experience, this one would be the perfect solution for your requirements. Then there is a dual-mic configuration as well.
The soundcard comes with the simplest of the design – a PCB with a DAC chip, the other essential components, and a low profile headphone amp. It provides you access to two mic inputs, several lines in options, one headphone input, and an optical output—the visual output support 7.1 channel surround sound. While the sound card in itself is outdated, the only saving grace we would find impressive is the dual mic inputs, which is quite rare enough.
However, the performance does not speak much about it. Quite clear audio with a slightly boosted bass is what you would get. When you compare it to the current breed of integrated audio output on motherboards, you will find the performance below par. However, the recording capabilities of the sound card are quite impressive enough.
If you are looking for the premier budget sound card option, the Asus Xonar DGX should be an excellent choice you should go with. The sound card has been considered to be an excellent option for gamers who are looking for an immersive gaming experience.
The sound card is made available at a budget price, but that does not mean it comes with budget features. You have access to an improved set of features that provide you access to an enhanced crystal clear sound. The card supports Dolby Headphones 5.1 and thus can be one of the preferred options for those of you who love wearing headphones when playing games. Even the headphone jack comes with the amplification support, and thus you would be able to find an exciting sound performance on the headphones as well.
The headphones also provide you with three separate amp gain modes. This can help you achieve the best options for a customized headphone audio performance. Yet another plus point that we found extremely interesting with the product is the precision audio capability that it offers you. The sound card is powered by ASUS GX 2.5 gaming audio engine, and thus you can have access to unlimited support for audio processing functionality.
The realistic 3D surround sound performance can be one of the enormous advancements. The jack availability on the sound card is aplenty – you have access to line-in, microphone, and headphones/speakers, and an optical S/PDIF port. The auto-sensing capability of the jacks is yet another huge advantage offered by the platform.
Having checked out the best features offered by the three competing products, here is a head to head comparison chart to provide you access to a better understanding of the three sound cards and help you choose the best among them.
SBX Pro Studio
Creative E-MU Chip
ASIO: ASIO 2.0
Analog Playback Sample Rate and Resolution : 44.1K/48K/96KHz @ 16bit/24bit Analog Recording Sample Rate and Resolution : 44.1K/48K/96KHz @ 16bit/24bit S/PDIF Digital Output : 44.1K/48K/96KHz @ 16bit/24bit
C-Media CMI8786 High-Definition Sound Processor (Max. 96KHz/24bit)
Microphone In: 1 x 3.5mm jack Line In: 1 x 3.5mm jack Headphone / Front Out: 1 x 3.5mm jack Rear Out: 1 x 3.5mm jack Centre/Subwoofer: 1 x 3.5mm jack
600-ohm headphone amplifier
Output Signal-to-Noise Ratio (A-Weighted) (Front-out) : 105 dB Input Signal-to-Noise Ratio (A-Weighted) : 103 dB Output THD+N at 1kHz (Front-out) :<0.0025 %(-92 dB) Input THD+N at 1kHz :<0.0022 %(-93 dB) Frequency Response (-3dB, 24bit/96KHz input) :10 Hz to 48 kHz
Well, that was all we have concerning the best features and functions offered by each of the three competing sound cards. We found them extremely interesting, mainly because all three of them come at budget pricing.
As you would have already found out, the three options come with a massive set of features, but the Asus sound card takes an enormous lead over the other two. If you are gamer, we would recommend opting for the soundcard as it would indeed offer you an outstanding performance over the integrated sound cards.