Our tests show that Aureon 7.1 Space can become a worthy opponent to popular audio cards from Creative. At least, it may be an appropriate solution for the user who wants to buy a card without an additional commutation unit. We guess there is no reason to buy an eight-channel card now just because of this extra channel, hoping to buy an eight-speaker system in the future. But it makes sense to purchase Aureon as a high-quality and affordable audio card with the bonus of the eighth channel. Most of us don’t buy a sound card to enjoy the movie-house effects when watching DVD. Listening to music on the PC and having sound effects in games are the most demanded things.
In Europe the card is now selling for the retail price of 149 Euro (around $160).
In fact, we guess that we are approaching the time when multimedia PCI audio cards become the thing of the past and leave the slot in the chassis for specialized professional sound solutions. And this time is going to come as soon as the VIA Envy24PT audio controller, coming to us from the world of professional audio, gets integrated into mainboards.
- Excellent sound purity;
- High-quality hardware implementation;
- Support of all popular API;
- Digital optical in- and output;
- Detailed electronic manual and FAQ;
- Good technical support service.
- Daughter cards and extension modules cannot be connected;
- No digital composite connector;
- Eight-channel speaker systems are not available in the market.
TerraTec DMX 6fire audio card can be viewed as a rival (or alternative) to Creative Audigy Platinum with Live! Drive commutation module, but it proves much better than Audigy in playback and recording quality as well as in multi-client functions support. This card doesn’t support (yet?) EAX 3.0 and so doesn’t aspire for a slot in the system of a hardcore gamer. Besides, such features as IR-port and wireless remote control available by Audigy should add some points to Creative’s card in the view of a mass user.
Anyway, we are quite certain about one thing: TerraTec DMX 6fire is a worthy alternative to Creative Platinum.