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Audigy owners will get ALchemy, for a low cost, later this year

Microsoft Windows Vista features a new audio stack, which completely revamps how the operating system communicates with audio devices. The new audio stack, dubbed Universal Audio Architecture, or UAA, requires companies to develop new drivers. Hardware accelerated audio devices are treated as an independent device, separate from the audio output capabilities of a sound card under Windows Vista.

The way UAA handles hardware DSPs is a problem for Creative Labs when it comes to delivering hardware acceleration for DirectSound 3D and EAX algorithms. Earlier this year Creative Labs launched its ALchemy project that enabled hardware-accelerated audio on Sound Blaster X-Fi owners. ALchemy translates DirectSound 3D and EAX calls into OpenAL, which can still take advantage of the DSP hardware.

Creative Labs left Sound Blaster Audigy owners in the dark, in regards to hardware-accelerated audio in Windows Vista. However, Creative Labs stated ALchemy support for Sound Blaster Audigy 2 and 4-class products are to be determined depending on demand. Due to demand, Creative Labs has begun ALchemy development for Sound Blaster Audigy-series sound cards.

Creative Labs expects to have ALchemy for Audigy sound cards later this year. It does not appear as if ALchemy will be free to current Audigy owners. Nevertheless, when the cards are ready, Creative Labs “hopes to offer this product as a low-cost upgrade to interested Audigy owners.”

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RE: Are they serious about it?
By RW on 5/3/2007 11:24:54 AM , Rating: 2
I just need to say that from all my computer parts that I did have buy over the years my Creative Audigy 2 ZS was proven to have the biggest price compared to its quality.
In reality the card proves to be a piece of crap that costs me nearly 100 $ at the time of purchasing but it values a maximum of 10 $.

At first the sound quality is the worst especially on CDs or MP3s that are at 44.1 KHz rate because the Audigy card works on 48 KHz and multipliers of it 96 and 192 KHz.
When playing a song on it that has a different samplerate than it's default 48,96,192 KHs the result is somehow catastrophic meaning that the sound is not clear and you can hear the aliasing.
At first u did not notice it but after 1-2 months of using the card it became the most annoying thing.

And you just wonder how such a sound card costs you so much money when in fact it turns out to be totally crap.

RE: Are they serious about it?
By GlassHouse69 on 5/4/2007 1:33:34 AM , Rating: 2

audigy 2 zs is for gaming. it massively reduces cpu load for games. also, eax: the only thing that game designers use as clickable settings in their audio console. Or x-fi now for new games. I dont care if you have a diamond plated geek squad 2000 dollar audio "pro" card. it still will not offload your cpu. It gives significant frames in every game you use it in, and, it was less than 100 dollars, like 60 dollars.

only vista it doesnt work in. consider vista a joke and buying it a bigger one. getting rid of directsound was really dumb. its sound. it makes noise. we dont need another format for gaming, really we dont. 99.99% of users have sub 500 dollar a piece speakers on their computers. I dont think we need to split hairs about signal to noise ratios, bit rates, or whatever as none of this means anything when you are listening to digitized gun clicks or plain old music cds on your 100 dollar 2.1 klipsch's.

I truly think that M$ made the new format to knock out creative. notice how AMD is doing 5.1 hdcp sound through one hdmi(or dongle) this r600 version. That is not a coincedence! video,cpu,physics, and now audio is attempting to be all monopolized by one company.

RE: Are they serious about it?
By JSK on 5/4/2007 4:08:07 AM , Rating: 2
What a retarded assumption.

Do you know how many issues the hardware abstraction layer for the audio in previous versions of windows had? Way too damn many...

While you may not like the new audio stack in vista, it is 10x more stable and reliable.

RE: Are they serious about it?
By jrb531 on 5/4/2007 10:32:00 AM , Rating: 2
I use Vista and it is far far better on release than XP was when it was released. While I'm not happy to lose Directsound the only thing you really lose is surround sound and the newer games all use openal so at least with the new stuff everything is fine.

Why do "some" people feel they have to bash whatever they do not use?

The old.... Whatever I use rocks... whatever I do not use sucks :)


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