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Sound Blaster X7 or...  (Read 26204 times)

Offline antithesis

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Re: Sound Blaster X7 or...
« Reply #180 on: 07:24 PM - 12/30/17 »
I use a V-Moda Boom Mic rather than a ModMic so there's only one cable running to my Fidelio X2 cans.

The Boom Mic plugs into the mic and headphone ports of the X7 and I use a Creative BT-W2 to connect it to the PS4 for voice chat.

Wiring up to a XB1 is more convoluted with another splitter running the mic to the controller (less of a problem for a ModMic), but I don't chat on Xbox so it's not a problem.

My consoles are connected via optical to a TOSlink matrix which runs into the back of the X7.

The only X7 setting I highly recommend is setting Cinematic to Night to pull audio cues closer to your ears. Don't use Scout Mode, it's crap.

SBX Pro Studio and Equalizer settings are up to individual taste. I set Surround to max and leave Crystalizer and Bass at default. Smart Volume and Dialog Plus are disabled.

For Equalizer, I use Acoustic and bump Level up to 2dB.

To add my own personal flavour, I double-up on audio cues by running a second optical cable from the TOSlink matrix to my 32" Bravia, then passing that through to a MixAmp connected via Line-In to the X7. Because there's a very slight audio delay over Line-In, it's set to 50-60% in Mixer compared to 100% for SPDIF-In. If both are set to 100%, game audio tends to sound a touch robotic. Mixing the two signals fleshes out the soundscape to a higher degree than either the MixAmp or the optical port alone.

Furthermore, I run the audio from the MixAmp through a SubPac wedged in the back of my Aeron chair (it fits perfectly and is far more comfortable than placing it on the seat behind my back, which is what you're supposed to do). Every bass sound rumbles through the SubPac and reverberates into your chest cavity, which really adds to the immersion. SubPac doesn't offer directional audio cues, but you'll definitely know when you're getting shot and the impact will be stronger the closer the sound source. A SubPac would be the perfect addition to a deaf gamer's setup.

I also run the X7 out to a set of Logitech Z-5500 surround sound speakers via 6 Channel Direct. The 5500 remains the weapon of choice for PC gaming speakers more than a decade after release and they are kick-@#$% when paired with an X7. I always run audio through the speakers rather than headphones when the family is out.


With all that said, I wouldn't spend the money on an X7 right now. I'd be waiting for a Dolby Atmos compatible audio solution, which likely won't arrive until the next console generation. 5.1 and 7.1 surround sound audio only function on a horizontal plane whereas Atmos adds verticality. I'd be hesitant to recommend spending up to a grand on a gaming audio setup that'll be obsolete in the near future. XB1X has added Atmos audio processing and I'd expect the rest of the console gaming industry to follow.

Save your pennies and buy a second-hand 2013 MixAmp Pro (not a TR model) on Amazon or eBay instead. It's no X7, but near enough is good enough for a fraction of the price while we wait for the Atmos dust to settle.
« Last Edit: 08:03 PM - 12/30/17 by antithesis »

Offline SolitaryNoob

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Re: Sound Blaster X7 or...
« Reply #181 on: 08:16 PM - 12/30/17 »
Great advice Antithesis. Much appreciated. Think I'll get a non-TR Astro Mixamp and give that a whirl whilst waiting for Dolby Atmos and DTS:X to take off 😉👌👍
« Last Edit: 09:53 PM - 12/30/17 by SolitaryNoob »

Offline roads

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Re: Sound Blaster X7 or...
« Reply #182 on: 01:35 AM - 04/15/18 »
Dies x7 have Atmos now wuthering later firmwares ? Can't find specs.
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Offline antithesis

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Re: Sound Blaster X7 or...
« Reply #183 on: 03:00 AM - 04/15/18 »
Dies x7 have Atmos now wuthering later firmwares ? Can't find specs.
Nup. There hasn't been an X7 firmware update for nearly 18 months on Mac and nearly 2 years on PC, I don't foresee any future updates either. The macOS app is also partly broken on High Sierra and they haven't bothered to fix it.

PS5 is due to land in 2020, I'll wait until it drops before investing in a new DAC. Given the X7 has hit end-of-life, Creative will likely have something new and improved up their sleeves. I still love my X7 and use it 12+ hours a day, but Atmos is on a whole other level and should leave it in the dust.
« Last Edit: 03:05 AM - 04/15/18 by antithesis »

Offline roads

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Re: Sound Blaster X7 or...
« Reply #184 on: 12:22 PM - 04/15/18 »
Thx
RookCheck: Relax, no one is attacking you personally.