sound card recommendation

Discussion in 'rec.audio.pro' started by Ken Bouchard, Aug 22, 2003.

  1. Ken Bouchard

    Ken Bouchard Guest

    any recommendations on a good sound card under $100 with decent "line in"
    characteristics?

    thanks, ken



    --
    1st Class Restoration
    "Put your old music on CD"
    www.dvbaudiorestoration.com
  2. Arny Krueger

    Arny Krueger Guest

    "Ken Bouchard" <kbouchard@adelphia.net> wrote in message
    news:Rze1b.14270$2Y6.4454596@news2.news.adelphia.net
    > any recommendations on a good sound card under $100 with decent "line
    > in" characteristics?


    For that price you're stuck with a *consumer* line-in, ca. 1 volt RMS
    maximum input, unbalanced, 16 bits.

    The good news is that you can get 4 such inputs (2 stereo pairs) for about
    $60 with a Turtle Beach Santa Cruz.

    If you check my tect tests
    http://www.pcavtech.com/soundcards/santa_cruz/index.htm you'll see that the
    Santa Cruz is not a SOTA masterpiece, but it is uncolored and the noise
    level is manageable for most practical applications if care is taken with
    the level setting. You can listen to how looping musical sounds through a
    Santa Cruz colors them by downloading files from
    http://64.41.69.21/product/santa_cruz/index.htm .

    Let your ears (and pocket book) be your guide!

    ;-)
  3. Steve L.

    Steve L. Guest

    For about 50 bucks more you can get a Mia or a delta AP2496.

    "Ken Bouchard" <kbouchard@adelphia.net> wrote in message news:Rze1b.14270$2Y6.4454596@news2.news.adelphia.net...
    | any recommendations on a good sound card under $100 with decent "line in"
    | characteristics?
    |
    | thanks, ken
    |
    |
    |
    | --
    | 1st Class Restoration
    | "Put your old music on CD"
    | www.dvbaudiorestoration.com
    |
    |
    |
    |
  4. Ken Bouchard

    Ken Bouchard Guest

    OK, Arny, gotcha, the Santa Cruz looks good according to your review so I'll
    get one.
    Now for sort of a general question: Are there any measurements one can look
    at with a simple VOM, or do you need a good DVM? (like maybe the level of
    the signal going into your "line in")
    I'm asking because even my "cheapo" VOM has a dB scale.

    thanks, ken

    --
    1st Class Restoration
    "Put your old music on CD"
    www.dvbaudiorestoration.com


    "Arny Krueger" <arnyk@hotpop.com> wrote in message
    news:FDudnWAeNZv6YdiiU-KYuQ@comcast.com...
    > "Ken Bouchard" <kbouchard@adelphia.net> wrote in message
    > news:Rze1b.14270$2Y6.4454596@news2.news.adelphia.net
    > > any recommendations on a good sound card under $100 with decent "line
    > > in" characteristics?

    >
    > For that price you're stuck with a *consumer* line-in, ca. 1 volt RMS
    > maximum input, unbalanced, 16 bits.
    >
    > The good news is that you can get 4 such inputs (2 stereo pairs) for about
    > $60 with a Turtle Beach Santa Cruz.
    >
    > If you check my tect tests
    > http://www.pcavtech.com/soundcards/santa_cruz/index.htm you'll see that

    the
    > Santa Cruz is not a SOTA masterpiece, but it is uncolored and the noise
    > level is manageable for most practical applications if care is taken with
    > the level setting. You can listen to how looping musical sounds through a
    > Santa Cruz colors them by downloading files from
    > http://64.41.69.21/product/santa_cruz/index.htm .
    >
    > Let your ears (and pocket book) be your guide!
    >
    > ;-)
    >
    >
  5. Arny Krueger

    Arny Krueger Guest

    "Ken Bouchard" <kbouchard@adelphia.net> wrote in message
    news:2rA1b.14570$2Y6.4733708@news2.news.adelphia.net

    > OK, Arny, gotcha, the Santa Cruz looks good according to your review
    > so I'll get one.


    > Now for sort of a general question: Are there any measurements one
    > can look at with a simple VOM, or do you need a good DVM? (like maybe
    > the level of the signal going into your "line in")
    > I'm asking because even my "cheapo" VOM has a dB scale.


    IME a cheap analog meter is often better for audio than a cheap digital
    meter.

    As you point out, the cheap analog meter generally has a dB scale, which has
    some value.

    IME no cheap meter has good frequency response up to 20 KHz, but the analog
    meter probably has better frequency response than the digital meter.

    Maybe I'm a traditionalist, but I find it easier to relate to relative
    indications on an analog scale - that's probably why so many digital meters
    have an analog-like bar graph as part of their display.

    My last analog meter broke about 20 years ago, and I miss it. It wasn't
    cheap, and I got a lot of good out of it.
  6. drummer

    drummer Guest

    i too will be making the digital leap, mostly because i dont want to
    transfer my adats to dat anymore, and also, i think i could use extra
    tracks about the 8 my adat has for small add-ons.

    However, I am willing to spend more than 100$, probably not more that
    300$ though, american, cause im canadian, so thats about 450$
    canadian.

    any recommendations?
  7. Ken Bouchard wrote:
    > I found a site that APPEARS to have decent prices for sound cards and it has
    > pictures of those cards. One thing bothers me about their higher end cards:
    > They all seem to have RCA plugs! No mini plugs.! Are you expected to get an
    > adapter, or what? Are they ALL like that?


    All the higher-end models either have digital coax out or RCA jacks at
    a minimum. THey assume you are going to connect them to an amplifier.
  8. Arny Krueger

    Arny Krueger Guest

    "Joseph Oberlander" <josephoberlander@earthlink.net> wrote in message
    news:3F47F83D.1090404@earthlink.net
    > Ken Bouchard wrote:
    >> I found a site that APPEARS to have decent prices for sound cards
    >> and it has pictures of those cards. One thing bothers me about their
    >> higher end cards: They all seem to have RCA plugs! No mini plugs.!
    >> Are you expected to get an adapter, or what? Are they ALL like that?


    > All the higher-end models either have digital coax out or RCA jacks at
    > a minimum. THey assume you are going to connect them to an amplifier.


    RCA jacks for anything but SP/DIF digital I/O indicate that the sound card
    is a consumer, medium-quality product. High end sound cards use TRS or XLR
    connectors for analog I/O.

  9. >All the higher-end models either have digital coax out or RCA jacks at
    >a minimum. THey assume you are going to connect them to an amplifier.


    That's higher-end as compared to really-nasty-consumer-end. :)
    Up a few more notches you start seeing balanced connections.
  10. Laurence Payne wrote:
    >>All the higher-end models either have digital coax out or RCA jacks at
    >>a minimum. THey assume you are going to connect them to an amplifier.

    >
    >
    > That's higher-end as compared to really-nasty-consumer-end. :)
    > Up a few more notches you start seeing balanced connections.


    Well, yeah - but considering the OP was looking for an under $400
    solution...
  11. Arny Krueger

    Arny Krueger Guest

    "Joseph Oberlander" <josephoberlander@earthlink.net> wrote in message
    news:3F490DF9.8020403@earthlink.net
    > Laurence Payne wrote:


    >>> All the higher-end models either have digital coax out or RCA jacks
    >>> at a minimum. THey assume you are going to connect them to an
    >>> amplifier.


    >> That's higher-end as compared to really-nasty-consumer-end. :)


    Agreed.

    >> Up a few more notches you start seeing balanced connections.


    Right.

    > Well, yeah - but considering the OP was looking for an under $400
    > solution...


    Echo Mia - under $200 with TRS in and out. I believe the excellent Card
    Deluxe is still going for $399. Again, TRS in and out.

    http://www.digitalaudio.com/

    http://digitalaudioworks.com/manufacturers-d-n-digital-audio-labs.html

    BTW, I notice that this Card Deluxe review site is down...

    www.stereophile.com/showarchives.cgi?280

    There's TRS I/O on the Midiman Delta 44 (ca. $230) and Delta 66 (ca. $280).
  12. drummer

    drummer Guest

    so is cardeluxe considered one of the best?

    i have an 8 track adat, would that be completely obsolete if i buy a
    sound card like that? it goes for 400 american, so i wouldnt mind
    finding something a tad cheaper.
  13. Arny Krueger wrote:

    >
    > Echo Mia - under $200 with TRS in and out. I believe the excellent Card
    > Deluxe is still going for $399. Again, TRS in and out.


    (snip)

    Nice. :) $200 is affordable. Q: how good is the Mia?
  14. Arny Krueger

    Arny Krueger Guest

    "drummer" <imthemanbehindthedrums@hotmail.com> wrote in message
    news:e568ecfa.0308241823.3f652c48@posting.google.com

    > so is cardeluxe considered one of the best?


    It is a very good card. One of the best would be the LynxTWO.

    > i have an 8 track adat, would that be completely obsolete if i buy a
    > sound card like that?


    Well, the Card Deluxe is only a 2-track card so if you want to record or
    play back more than 2 channels at a time, there's no comparison.

    > it goes for 400 american, so i wouldnt mind
    > finding something a tad cheaper.


    Echo MIA...
  15. Arny Krueger

    Arny Krueger Guest

    "Joseph Oberlander" <josephoberlander@earthlink.net> wrote in message
    news:3F4982D8.9070104@earthlink.net
    > Arny Krueger wrote:


    >> Echo Mia - under $200 with TRS in and out. I believe the excellent
    >> Card Deluxe is still going for $399. Again, TRS in and out.


    > (snip)


    > Nice. :) $200 is affordable. Q: how good is the Mia?


    A lot closer to the Card Deluxe than DAL might find comfortable. Up to 24/48
    the two are nearly indistinguishable. The DAL card has stronger analog
    interfaces, if that matters.
  16. "Arny Krueger" <arnyk@hotpop.com> wrote in message
    news:<xsWdnRUuGJE4gtSiXTWJiA@comcast.com>...
    > BTW, I notice that this Card Deluxe review site is down...
    > www.stereophile.com/showarchives.cgi?280


    Incorrect. The link works fine; the review is on-line as usual.

    John Atkinson
    Editor, Stereophile
  17. Arny Krueger

    Arny Krueger Guest

    "John Atkinson" <Stereophile_Editor@Compuserve.com> wrote in message
    news:113bd5e2.0308250304.a97be6c@posting.google.com...
    > "Arny Krueger" <arnyk@hotpop.com> wrote in message
    > news:<xsWdnRUuGJE4gtSiXTWJiA@comcast.com>...
    > > BTW, I notice that this Card Deluxe review site is down...
    > > www.stereophile.com/showarchives.cgi?280

    >
    > Incorrect. The link works fine; the review is on-line as usual.


    Atkinson again shows that he thinks he's omniscient. He obviously can't
    comprehend the idea that a link would be down at one time, and restored at
    another.
  18. drummer

    drummer Guest

    >
    > > i have an 8 track adat, would that be completely obsolete if i buy a
    > > sound card like that?

    >
    > Well, the Card Deluxe is only a 2-track card so if you want to record or
    > play back more than 2 channels at a time, there's no comparison.


    i thought the playback was just 2 outs for stereo, and you could
    listen to all the tracks you mwant to at the same time.
  19. dave weil

    dave weil Guest

    On Mon, 25 Aug 2003 08:13:51 -0400, "Arny Krueger" <arnyk@hotpop.com>
    wrote:

    >
    >"John Atkinson" <Stereophile_Editor@Compuserve.com> wrote in message
    >news:113bd5e2.0308250304.a97be6c@posting.google.com...
    >> "Arny Krueger" <arnyk@hotpop.com> wrote in message
    >> news:<xsWdnRUuGJE4gtSiXTWJiA@comcast.com>...
    >> > BTW, I notice that this Card Deluxe review site is down...
    >> > www.stereophile.com/showarchives.cgi?280

    >>
    >> Incorrect. The link works fine; the review is on-line as usual.

    >
    >Atkinson again shows that he thinks he's omniscient. He obviously can't
    >comprehend the idea that a link would be down at one time, and restored at
    >another.
    >

    You don't seem to acknowledge that it could have been a problem on
    your end. I seem to remember you saying the same thing about *my*
    connection when I claimed that a link was down on *your* site.

    <shrug>
  20. Arny Krueger

    Arny Krueger Guest

    "drummer" <imthemanbehindthedrums@hotmail.com> wrote in message
    news:e568ecfa.0308250441.5b51b4ea@posting.google.com...

    > > > i have an 8 track adat, would that be completely obsolete if i buy a
    > > > sound card like that?


    > > Well, the Card Deluxe is only a 2-track card so if you want to record or
    > > play back more than 2 channels at a time, there's no comparison.


    > i thought the playback was just 2 outs for stereo, and you could
    > listen to all the tracks you want to at the same time.


    If the recording software you use does an internal mix of the multiple
    tracks (many do, example Cool Edit Pro) then you only need 2 sound card
    channels for playback. But, strictly speaking you're not playing back
    multiple tracks, you're playing back a 2-track mixdown of them. In some
    cases this can make a difference. If it doesn't for you, then the Card
    Deluxe can work for you.

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