Items tagged with sound

Force feedback has become commonplace in today's game controllers. To many, the simulated forces create a more realistic game-play environment. A group of scientists at the University of Tokyo in Japan are on working on a new technology that can potentially allow force feedback-type sensations and controller input without the need of a joystick or other physical input device at all--all feedback sensations and input could be done simply in "mid air." The scientists, Takayuki Iwamoto, Mari Tatezono, Takayuki Hoshi, and Hiroyuki Shinoda, have developed what they call an "Airborne Ultrasound Tactile Display." Tactile feedback in "3D free space" is not necessarily a new concept: in the abstract for... Read more...
An interesting new conspiracy theory has arisen today. It appears that several laptop OEMs have been having "issues" with their sound card drivers: specifically, the Stereo Mix option is missing from their drivers, which basically means you can't record audio (except from Mic In). Whoops! Is this a case of Dell and others working with the RIAA? A ripten writer noticed this on his Dell laptop. Linkage between Dell (and other OEMs) and the RIAA were posited an obvious theory. Now, while we wouldn't put it past the RIAA to do this, we have what's probably a more likely theory: driver bug. Notably, these incidents seem to have occurred on laptops using a SigmaTel sound card. SigmaTel pretty much... Read more...
Creative has just released the USB 2.0-based Sound Blaster X-Fi Surround 5.1 audio adapter, making it now much simpler to get surround sound on laptops and cramped small-form-factor PCs (LAN party anyone?)--or allaying the fears of those who are hesitant to crack open their systems and start mucking around inside. While Creative calls it a "sound card," it is really a small external adapter, powered by the USB port."Why settle for basic, built-in sound? Your music and movies deserve Xtreme Fidelity. Simply connect the Sound Blaster X-Fi Surround 5.1 sound card to your PC or notebook and turn your downloaded music into your own personal concert. Watch DVDs or downloaded videos with full cinematic... Read more...
Crystal Clear Audio for Gaming and Home Entertainment The ASUS Xonar DX PCI-e 7.1 soundcard delivers 35 times cleaner audio than integrated motherboard solutions FREMONT, CALIFORNIA (March 17, 2008) - Providing an alternative to flat and murky motherboard audio, ASUS, leading manufacturer of high quality computer components, releases the Xonar DX soundcard. Engineered for pristine, clean audio quality with a 116 dB Signal-to-Noise Ratio (SNR), the Xonar DX is equipped with innovative technologies such as Dolby Home Theater and DirectSound3D Game Extensions 2.0 (DS3D GX2.0) offering immersive home theater audio and rich gaming sound features. 35 Times Cleaner Audio QualityToday’s motherboards... Read more...
You can't be missed until you go away, but it's unlikely that Wal-Mart's online video download service will be missed even now that it has gone away. Less than a year after it began, Wal-Mart quietly closed it up four days before Christmas. No one even noticed until now. A message at www.walmart.com/videodownloads said the service was stopped on December 21 and Wal-Mart offered no refunds for the downloaded videos.Videos purchased on Walmart.com can be played using the Microsoft Windows Media Player or the Wal-Mart Video Download Manager, but cannot be transferred to a computer other than the one used to download them, according to the site.The giant retailer's foray into online video downloading... Read more...
Glitchy playback in Windows?  Yesterday Microsoft tried to give us an explanation of just what's happening, besides, say, the bloated Vista OS. Yesterday, Microsoft's program manager for sound in Windows Vista (what a great title!), Steve Ball, posted a blog entry explaining why audio playback sometimes gets glitchy in Windows. There's an air of post-facto justification about the posting--it basically reminds us that a PC is doing a lot more things simultaneously than, say, a $20 CD player--but toward the end of the post, he notes that it's common for certain older device drivers to lock out the CPU for 10 milliseconds to 50ms, causing an obvious problem.Of course, he didn't tell anyone... Read more...
Asus makes bold claims about their new Xonar sound card being the “best” PC audio card on the market currently.  We took the product to task in an effort to prove out these claims.  At the very least, perhaps a company with the Hardware and Software Engineering resources that Asus has, can deliver reasonable audio fidelity and hopefully a better set of drivers than the likes of Creative’s X-Fi debacle.Read on:ASUS Xonar D2 Ultra Fidelity 7.1 PCI Sound Card... Read more...
Claiming to be the best at anything is bold.  From professional athletes to product manufacturers, stating you or your product is the best out there opens things up for closer scrutiny.  Being the best at what you do, or what you make, means near flawless execution.  Regardless of the context, one thing is certain, if you claim you are the best at what you do, you better be prepared to back those statements up.  This is the position ASUS has put themselves in, stating that their latest product is the best of its kind, period.In this HotHardware showcase we're going to take a look at a new sound card from ASUS called the Xonar D2 Ultra Fidelity 7.1 PCI Surround... Read more...
World of Warcraft will run just about any PC that has been shipped in the past 5 years.  Blizzard has obviously spent a lot of time optimizing the game so that it runs well on even the lowest end PC with integrated graphics, and to be honest it still looks pretty decent at those lower settings.  Blizzard has continued to strive to make the game more enjoyable for players on a budget by acquiring a license from a 3rd party developer to integrate a new software sound engine that allows for audio effects similar to those produced by users with a high-end card.So what happens to people who have sound cards?  Apparently they're complaining that they are experiencing a serious downgrade in the game's... Read more...
VIA and QSound Labs, Inc. Bring Superior Sound Systems to Windows Vista VIA Vinyl Audio and QSound’s QHD enhanced audio capabilities to reach growing Windows PC market Taipei, Taiwan, and Calgary, Canada, 24 September 2007 - VIA Technologies, Inc., a leading innovator of high performance audio silicon, and QSound Labs, Inc., a leading technology developer of audio and voice software solutions, today announced the delivery of a superior sound system for Windows Vista based multimedia, personal and laptop computers. QSound’s QHD technology is now available on VIA Vinyl High Definition Audio codecs and controllers. VIA’s advanced codecs and controllers combined with QSound’s QHD technology enable... Read more...
Many companies and haven risen to challenge the almighty sound-card maker that we all know as Creative Labs. Sadly, not too many of them have success that lasts more than a generation or so. So who is next and how long will they last? Well the who is ASUS. How long, might be up to debate, but ASUS is a company that has plenty of other business to fall back on while they get their sound card business on its feet. "It seems that ASUS has decided to enter into the audio segment with their latest Xonar D2 and D2K sound cards. The difference between Xonar D2 and D2K is the interface where D2 is on PCI and D2K is on PCI Express x1. We aren't sure what sound chips are on those cards at this point of... Read more...
The classic sound of Windows start up is by far one of the most recognizable sounds in modern culture. But of course that will all change with Vista... "It has long been a matter of record among those who care about such nonsense that the force behind this OS overture is being composed by Robert Fripp, a guitarist best known for his prog-rock noodlings with King Crimson. A brief glimpse at Elephant Talk, the site for fans of such stuff, suggests Fripp has been recently working on a preface to harmonium music of the 1940s and has recorded material with noted ambient muso sound maker Brian Eno. Recent Fripp concerts have included appearances at cathedrals." Great, now if they could only get... Read more...
Xbit takes on the Creative Labs SoundBlaster X-Fi and has this to say..."Well, we have just got acquainted with the true successor to the legendary sound card family from Creative. It is very nice that the company decided to continue working on the sound processing algorithms focusing on the realistic sounding for headphone listening. This is a pretty logical solution, especially since most users prefer headphones to the traditional acoustic systems. X-Fi will be a true gift for gaming fans, because all new games are expected to support EAX 5.0."Headphones?  I dig my Logitech Z-680s personally... Our assessment of the X-Fi is here, for your edification as well.... Read more...
When it comes to sound cards, think Creative is the only game in town?  Guess again.  While Creative has name recognition cornered, there are other viable options.  Take BlueGears HDA X-Mystique 7.1 Soundcard.  This little gem can encode Dolby Digital 5.1 streams and has a slew of other impressive features, all for less than comperable Creative offerings.  The guys at Penstarsys even list some advantages over the Creative line.   "The sound card market is a very strange one these days. When Creative released the Sound Blaster series computer sound really took off and there were quite a few solid competitors in the... Read more...
These things aren't cheap, but according to techFEAR, the SteelSeries SteelSound 5H Headphones are a nice set of heaphones. They're geared towards gamers, so you comfort and sound quality should be excellent for the $140-$100 asking price."Gamers' headphones require three things to compete: Long-term comfort, impeccable sound, and a quality microphone. The SteelSound 5H headphones may have addressed all three. Read on to find out."... Read more...
When it comes to sound cards, the competition is a lot more "low-profile" than the video card sector.  With audio cards, Creative is enjoyed the most success, being the most recognizable name in the market.  ExtremeMHZ.com has a review of the Creative Soundblaster X-Fi XtremeMusic, which they feel delivers the best PC audio experience...period.  They take a look at the overall hardware and pay an equal amount of attention to the software bundle, which then found equally as impressive."There hasn't been much interest in PC sound cards lately. People are either quite happy with what they got or don't think anything out there that is worth a look. One reason for this is... Read more...
When someone talks about ways to enhance your gaming experience, we typically focus on faster graphics cards and high resolution monitors. Over the years, this has typically been the only way to dramatically enhance the way games were played. However, with the launch of Doom3 roughly a year ago, the gaming world soon realized that there was much more than graphics in an ideal gaming experience. For the first time, developers focused a significant amount of attention towards the sound effects in the game. The end result was a title whose sounds were as dramatic and intense as its graphics. Gamers were hooked and were anxious to have this new level of realism in all their games. Although the main... Read more...
Yesterday, Digitimes reported that Chaintech was pulling out of the motherboard market, instead focusing on video card and memory products.  Well, this morning Chaintech would like to set the record straight.  Looks like they are not going anywhere. Chaintech Remains in Motherboard Business! "Chaintech Computer Co., Ltd claims today that it will continue its motherboard business. In addition, Chaintech announced its new name as Walton Chaintech Cooperation, following its 25% stake acquired by Walton Advanced Engineering, the leading IC testing and packaging house. Chaintech denies it will fade away motherboard market to clarify the rumors wide spread recently. Most people recognize... Read more...
Well today the net is flooded with reviews for the brand spankin new Athlon64 FX-57 CPU(San Diego Core). Here at HH, Marco and Dave both had the pleasure of reviewing one of these bad boys, and of course, there was some overclocking ;) Make sure to check back later tonight for a roundup of the reviews from across the web! If your looking for some different news, check out the selection below, including a different kind of review by The Tech Zone. Enjoy! HDA Digital X-Mystique 7.1 Gold Sound Card Review @ 3DXtreme "Bluegears has released a new sound card, the HDA Digital X-Mystique 7.1 Gold. For years gamers like us have relied on Creative Labs and their Sound Blaster line of sound card to... Read more...
What's happening friends?  With the sun just about to set, I figured this was a good time to crack a beverage and sit on the deck to enjoy the fine scenery with the latest news from around the net.  Why don't you follow suit, and settle in for a while?  Plusdeck 2 PC Cassette Deck @ Bjorn3D "It is not that often that I come across a product that has such a narrow target audience like the BTO Plusdeck 2. In short, it is a product that allows you to play old cassette tapes on your PC, record from cassette to PC and record music onto cassettes from the PC. Considering a lot of today's young computer users haven't even seen a cassette tape, you probably now understand why this... Read more...
Good evening everyone, welcome back :)  Sorry about the late start today, my new laptop developed a "small" problem which resulted in an exchange.  So, after spending a few hours reloading software and kicking myself for not backing up the My Documents folder I am ready to rock. Go grab a drink and settle in, it is time for your nightcap.  PimpRig Review: DFI LanParty UT nF4 SLI-DR Socket 939 Motherboard "Here are a couple of features that are targeted directly towards folks like us. If you are like me, my main rig is rarely completely put together and often runs on my Senfu bench outside the case. DFI included a power and reset switch directly on the board so tweakers... Read more...
Hey folks, up for some reading? How about some updating? Version 1.0.2 of Firefox is now available, it's nothing special unless you consider browser security important :) Now, on with the reviews... Pentium M on your Socket 478 platform: Part 2 @ Legit Reviews "Included with the CT-479 are the installation guide, a heatsink/fan, one 4-pin power cable, and the socket adapter. The only "tool" needed for this kit is a flat head screw driver to secure the Pentium M processor in the socket just like what is done on a notebook computer." SilverStone Temjin TJ06 Case Review @ 3DXtreme "Once again, I have to say that Silverstone has made a quality case. Based on a very solid... Read more...
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