View Full Version : [ubuntu] Looking for a coax/optical soundcard for audiophile grade sound on ubuntu!

July 3rd, 2010, 10:53 PM
Yep looking to buy a sound card so i can hook up my PC to my coaxial receiver. Yeah its only got a coaxial input (well it has the red and white plugs as well...but im looking to upgrade from analogue to digital)

I basically am doing this for listening to my FLAC collection but also for watching avi divx movies. Im not really a gamer but may want to do that in the future (maybe once i get a better machine).

First I will tell you my set up.

(1) Free DOS
(1) Intel Pentium D 915 Processor 2.8GHz
(1) 1GB PC4200 533MHz DDR2 Memory (1GB x 1)
(1) Intel DQ965GFKR S775 mATX Motherboard w/Gigabit LAN
(1) 80GB 7200RPM 3G SATA II Hard Drive
(1) 350 Watt Power Supply
(1) 16X DVD Drive Black
(1) Logitech Value 100 Keyboard PS/2
(1) Logitech Black Optical Wheel Mouse PS/2
(1) 3.5" 1.44 MB Black Floppy Drive

Running lucid lynx with all updates as well...And ive upgraded that power supply unit.

So here are the options ive found listened by lowest price. I am requesting a recommendation from you all based on ease of installation being the most important (because im slightly newbish) factor. Quality being the second factor (As I want a card that will last me at least the next 5 years of sound appreciation) And then Price being the least important factor. (as long as its less than 200 dollars USD)

(links within quotation marked titles)

First: 38 dollars USD for the "DIAMOND XtremeSound XS71 7.1 Channels 24-bit 96KHz PCI Interface Sound Card (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16829111001&cm_re=coaxial_sound_card-_-29-111-001-_-Product)" which features
Channels: 7.1
Sample Rate: 96KHz
Digital Audio: 24-bit
Hardware Decode: Dolby EX and DTS

Second: 89 USD for the " "HT | OMEGA STRIKER 7.1 Channels PCI Interface Sound Card (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16829271001)"
Which features a million input/output jacks and dolby digital / dts

Third:$157USD " ASUS Xonar HDAV1.3 Slim 24-bit 192KHz PCI Interface Audio Card with True Blu-ray Audio Designed to Fit All Home Theater PCs (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16829132012&cm_re=coaxial_sound_card-_-29-132-012-_-Product)"
which features:
Audio Chipset ASUS AV200
Sample Rate 192KHz
Digital Audio 24-bit
SNR 145dB Dynamic Range (typical value for 44.1K->48KHz, 24bit)
Hardware Decode Dolby TrueHD, Dolby Digital Plus, DTS-HD Master Audio bitstreaming
SPDIF In Coaxial and High-bandwidth Optical Combo Connector
SPDIF Out Coaxial and High-bandwidth Optical Combo Connector
CD/Aux In 4-pin header on the card
Other Ports HDMI 1.3

And fourth!!!:$159USD " HT | OMEGA CLARO 7.1 Channels 24-bit 192KHz PCI Interface Sound Card (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16829271002) "
which features:
Channels 7.1
Sample Rate 192KHz
Digital Audio 24-bit
Encode Dolby, DTS

So as you can see theres a lot of options...I require COAXIAL OUTPUT PORT though!

I am leaning towards the 157 dollar asus xonar because it has the most features.

What do you guys think though? Is there another card I may be over looking? Which of these will be the most compatible for Ubuntu? Will I need to download that fancy audio/video version of Ubuntu or is the standard Lucid Lynx LTS good enough?

Thank you so much for taking the time to read thru this and offer your wisdom! Your computer wisdom is very valuable and I know I dont deserve it! But please appease the gods by taking pity on a humble dork and bless him with your sacred knowledge!

July 4th, 2010, 04:55 AM
Have a look at Turtle Beach (http:///www.turtlebeach.com/products/sound-cards.aspx), they work well with Linux.

July 4th, 2010, 05:08 AM
Get an audiophile 2496 card, for ~$80.

Uninstall pulse-audio.

Enjoy excellent audio recording and playback.


This is perhaps the best sound card for Linux. Works with jack and other audio apps nicely as well in 24bit and sample rates up to 96k.