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ProDigy 7.1 (HD) Sound Card

Demands by today’s games on sound systems are growing, and technology is growing rapidly to meet them. This year we’re seeing a lot of 7.1 sound cards being rushed to market, and game publishers and others are taking advantage of their technology. People love realistic and/or movie theatre sound on demand; there isn’t anything else like it. I’ve always said that if you can’t feel the music, then it ain’t loud enough!

Will a man be severely beaten for coming home with a larger stereo system for his computer or entertainment center? Nowadays I’d have to say not, but that mostly depends on your needs, and how well you can hear, I guess. Quality comes in much smaller packages, with more affordable price tags. For under $500 USD, you can have high quality speakers and high end sound card to drive ‘em. But let’s be honest here: $500 is still quite a bit to spend.

The ProDigy 7.1 Sound Card, developed by AudioTrak and VIA Technologies, is very affordable, yet its features separate it from the ‘kiddy’ level, with an emphasis on providing a very clear quality of sound. It is also one of the very first to hit the market with 192 kHz High Definition.

VIA Technologies contacted me after my review of the Chaintech 9CJS Motherboard, where I had remarked that I wasn’t very happy with the quality of the built-in audio on the board. I was asked if I’d be interested in looking at the ProDigy 7.1 Sound Card, and reluctantly agreed to review the product. Much to my surprise, I found it to be much different than most I‘ve worked with. It offers a very, and I mean very, clean background–actually no noise whatsoever.

Mfr. Specifications

  • Experience High-Fidelity Surround Sound up to 7.1
  • Transfer up to 24-bit 96 kHz Pure Audio with Coaxial Digital Input and Output
  • Controllable Extended Input Connectors (Line, CD, Aux, and CD Digital) on Board
  • 24-bit, 8 Channel 192 kHz Playback and 96 kHz Recording
  • Experience Stereo Audio Sources with Expanded 7.1 Channel Surround Sound
  • Emulate Multi-Channel Surround Sound with SRS TruSurround XT with Enhanced Bass and Dialog Clarity
  • Expand Audio Versatility with Advanced NSP featuring E-WDM and DirectWIRE
  • Plug In with Analog Inputs (2) and Outputs (8)
  • Independent Surround Sound Channel Volume Control
  • Enjoy High-Fidelity with Integrated Headphone Amp and Microphone
  • Pass Pure Audio Signals to Dolby Digital and DTS Decoders
  • Support Windows Media 9 with 24-bit, 96 kHz 6-Channel Audio
  • Support Game Surround Sound APIs such as EAX 2.0 and A3D
  • High-fidelity 24bit 192 kHz D/A converter; 106 dB Dynamic range
  • High-fidelity 24bit 96kHz A/D converter; 102dB Dynamic range
  • 24bit 96 kHz Digital Coaxial Input and Output
  • Analog 2 In / 8 Out;
  • -10 dBV unbalanced 1/8″ (3.5mm) mono and stereo input and
  • 4 x stereo -10 dBV unbalanced 1/8″ (3.5mm) output
  • 2 channel recording and 8 channel playback at the same time
  • Supports multiple sampling rates : 44.1 kHz up to 192 kHz
  • Full Duplex – Simultaneous record/playback
  • Uses 32bit PCI slot: PCI bus-mastering support
  • Microphone preamp with +5V phantom power
  • Headphone amp
  • Supports the E-WDM driver:
  • WDM and ASIO 2.0
  • Direct KS support for SONAR
  • OS: Microsoft Windows XP/2000/ME/98SE
  • Includes WinDVD Player, providing 24-bit 96kHz High Resolution Playback

 


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