The sound card we are looking at today is a low-profile version that isn't aimed at one market at all. In fact, Auzentech boast that the X-Fi Forte is aimed at: Music, HTPC and Gaming. A big boast indeed and one that strikes me as a brave one.
Having said that, the specs are top-notch with a mix of components not seen on one card before. Op-amps and decent quality DACs are mixed with 'X-RAM' chips and a Creative X-Fi chip. This could make the card an interesting proposition for those not wanting to compromise in one area or the other. Before we check to see if Auzentech have bitten off more than they can chew, let's hit up their website for some specifications...
- Length: 176.900 mm (6.964 inches)
- Height: 56.155 mm (2.211 inches)
- Creative 20K2 PCI Express audio processor
- X-RAM 64M bytes of DDR-SDRAM for audio processing
- PCI Express 1.1 Compliant Interface
- 16/24-bit / up to 192kHz (Stereo playback)
- 16/24-bit / up to 96.0khz (Multi channel playback)
- 16/24-bit / up to 96kHz (Recording)
- WDM, ASIO2.0
- EAX® 5.0, Direct Sound®, Direct Sound 3D®, OpenAL
- Microsoft® Windows Vista™
- Microsoft® Windows XP™
- 3.0Vrms, +12.0dBu max, deviatio+/- 0.1dB
- 109.0 dB A-weighted (1kHz @ -60dBFS, 24-bit/48kHz) for Analog outputs
- 98.0 dB A-weighted (1kHz @ -60dBFS, 24-bit/48kHz) for Analog inputs
- 115.0 dB A-weighted (1kHz @ -60dBFS, 24-bit/48kHz) for Stereo analog outputs
- 109.0 dB A-weighted (1kHz @ -60dBFS, 24-bit/48kHz) for Multi channel analog outputs
- 10Hz to 22kHz, +/- 0.02 dB @ 48kHz
- 10Hz to 42kHz, +/- 0.02 dB @ 96kHz
- 10Hz to 94kHz, +/- 3dB @ 192kHz, Stereo
- Headphone load impedance 16Ω ~ 600Ω
- Line output impedance 330Ω
- Line/Aux input impedance 10KΩ
- Support Stereo and Balanced Mode
Analog Multi I/O Cable
- 4 x 1/8" Stereo mini phone jack for Line outputs
- 1 x 1/8" TRS mini phone jack for MIC input
- 1 x 1/8" Stereo mini phone jack for Line input
- 1 x 1/8" Stereo mini Phone jack for Headphone output
- 1 x 10-pin(5x2) Front audio header with Intel® HD Audio Compatible
- 1 x RCA/TOSLINK Combo jack for S/PDIF transmission
- 1 x 2-piS/PDIF input connector
- Creative proprietary AND_EXT, DID_EXE connector for X-Fi I/O driver
Rear Panel Brackets
The X-Fi™ Forte includes two rear panel brackets, a Standard bracket and a Low Profile bracket. Use the appropriate bracket for your PC.
RCA/TOSLINK Combo Jack: Can connect to external DAC, AV Receiver, and Decoder through a 75Ω Coaxial cable or optical mini cable. Can play S/PDIF Stereo PCM and Dolby Digital AC-3, DTS bit-stream content.
3.5mm(1/8 ”) stereo mini-phone jack: Includes an independent Headphone amp and can activate an impedance 16Ω ~ 600Ω headphone or earphone. Also, can be used, when configuring a Stereo system, not using the Analog I/O cable, as an Front Line Output.
Note If you connect a Passive Speaker (with lower than 16Ω) to this Headphone output, it can cause this audio card to not function correctly.
Analog I/O Multi Connector
D-SUB 15 pin connector: Connect the Analog I/O cable bundled in this package and use for Mic input, Line input and 8-channel line output Jack.
Analog I/O Cable
MIC input connector
3.5mm(1/8”) mini phone jack (Pink color label: ‘MIC IN’): Connect Stereo/mono unbalanced condenser microphone and input, record audio from the MIC through the audio card. Also, connect to Balanced Dynamic Microphone through the jumper setting of this audio board.
Line input connector
3.5mm(1/8”) stereo mini-phone jack (Blue color label: ‘LINE IN’): Connect CD player, MP3 player from their headphone output or line output, and input/record audio through this audio card.
Front Line output connector
3.5mm (1/8”) stereo mini-phone jack (Lime color label: ‘FRONT’): Connect Active multichannel speaker or AV Amplifier’s “Front”.
Rear output connector
3.5mm(1/8”) stereo mini-phone jack (Black color label: ‘REAR’): Connect Active multichannel speaker or AV Amplifier’s Rear. Connectiowheabove 4-channel system is needed.
Center/Woofer output connector
3.5mm(1/8”) stereo mini-phone jack (Orange color label: ‘C/SW’): Connect Active multichannel speaker or AV Amplifier’s Center/Woofer. Connectiowheabove 5.1 channel system is needed.
Side output connector
3.5mm(1/8”) stereo mini-phone jack (Gray color label: ‘SIDE’): Connect Active multichannel speaker or AV Amplifier’ Side. Connection to 7.1 channel system is needed.
- AUZEN X-Fi™ FORTE 7.1 Board
- 1 x Optical TOSLINK to TOSLINK cable, (6.6 feet / 2 meter)
- 1 x Analog Multi I/O cable (D-Sub)
- 1 x Optical adaptor
- 1 x Full size bracket
- Installation CD
- Sound Font Bank Manager
- Creative MediaSource 5 Organizer
- Creative MediaSource 5 Player
Specificatons subject to change without notice.