Auzentech X-FI Prelude 7.1 Sound Card
Published: 30th October 2007 | Source: Auzentech | Price: US$199 RRP |Testing
I started out my gaming test phase with a little bit of Unreal Tournament 3. UT3 uses the Unreal Engine 3. Already known for its extensive graphical capabilities through titles such as Gears of War and Bioshock, the engine now takes advantage of third party technologies such as PhysX physics cards to provide an advanced game experience with destructible environment. Also included is the ability for AI bots to respond to advanced and specific voice commands, improved from previous use of a very small number of voice commands, along with the ability to use a command menu to control bot behaviour. All things considered it is a pretty taxing games on the graphics sub-system.
Please remember that these graphs represent an average of the frames/ second as recorded by Fraps.
The RightMark 3D Sound CPU Utilization Benchmark reinforced what we were seeing in the UT3 and QUAKE 4 benchmarks. Please remember that the X-Fi Crystalizer and EAX settings were activated for all of the following graphs.
(CPU utilisation with the Auzen X-Fi Prelude set at 24-bit/96KHz.)
(CPU utilisation with the Creative X-Fi Xtreme Audio set at 16-bit/44.1KHz.)
(CPU utilisation with the Creative X-Fi Xtreme Audio set at 24-bit/96KHz.)
A couple of times during the testing phase I forgot to change from Entertainment Mode to Gaming Mode, and the Auzen X-Fi Prelude let me know about it quick smart. There's nothing quite like having clicks, squeals and pops attacking your eardrums at above average volume. Apart from this phenomenon the experience was extremely pleasurable.
My god how good does it sound when listening to your favourite tunes on the Auzen X-Fi Prelude! Making sure that I got a good mix of music at different bit-rates, the experience was nothing short of heavenly. In fact I would go out on a limb and say that the Prelude provided the best audio reproduction of any sound card that I have ever tried...period. One weird thing I found with the X-Fi Crystalizer is that it didn't really appear to make a lick of difference to any of the music that I tried, it was just great out of the box.
Once again the Auzen X-Fi Prelude performed very well at faithfully reproducing DVD audio. Listening to Van Halen's Live concert had me feeling like I was quite literally there, and the EAX effects made it feel as if the crowd had enveloped me completely.
Mel Gibson's Apocolypto was extremely satisfying, especially during the waterfall scene and the numerous chases through the jungle foliage. Hearing the arrows, spears and other numerous weapons whistling through the air during the 'running of the gauntlet' sounded exceptionally good on the Prelude.
Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith - laser weapons...fast moving ships screaming past you...'nuff said! Outstanding!
Let's head over the page to see how the Auzen X-Fi Prelude performed as a whole...