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View Full Version : Do sound cards work in the pci slot?




ejdge
May 3, 2008, 10:54 PM
I'm thinking about installing an X-Fi in my Mac Pro. Will the card work in both Leopard and Windows or only one? Or neither? Thanks.



brand
May 4, 2008, 12:35 AM
Only Windows for you until drivers for OS X are released.

robbieduncan
May 4, 2008, 03:04 AM
Also note you don't have any PCI slots. You have PCI Express (PCI-e) slots. They are not compatible with each other.

MacsRgr8
May 5, 2008, 05:53 PM
I have ordered this Soundblaster PCIe X-Fi card (http://www.soundblaster.com/products/product.asp?category=1&subcategory=208&product=16770).

It will only work in Windows, but that was my intent: getting 5.1 sound in gaming :cool:

Mac OS X will just "ignore" it, as it has no driver support. But, maybe... hopefully... one day... Soundblaster could make OS X drivers.... ;)

Guiyon
May 5, 2008, 06:38 PM
I have ordered this Soundblaster PCIe X-Fi card (http://www.soundblaster.com/products/product.asp?category=1&subcategory=208&product=16770).

It will only work in Windows, but that was my intent: getting 5.1 sound in gaming :cool:

Mac OS X will just "ignore" it, as it has no driver support. But, maybe... hopefully... one day... Soundblaster could make OS X drivers.... ;)

Creative tried that once, I hope for all our sakes they don't try again. Personally I'm hoping M-Audio comes out with a PCIe card because I had fairly good luck with the Revolution 7.1 in my old G5.

xgman
May 6, 2008, 09:42 AM
The Asus Xonar D2X is a Pcie card, but no drivers for mac and it requires a floppy type power connector to work.

xraydoc
May 6, 2008, 01:34 PM
Mac OS X will just "ignore" it, as it has no driver support. But, maybe... hopefully... one day... Soundblaster could make OS X drivers.... ;)

Don't hold your breath.

MacsRgr8
May 26, 2008, 03:22 PM
Reviving this one.

Finally got my Soundblaster X-Fi PCI-e card for in my Mac Pro '08... and it was worth the wait! :)

Mac OS X ignores it, but both my XP Pro SP3 and Vista Ultimate 64 bits SP1 work gr8 with it.
Finally got my beloved 5.1 sound back in the games. :D

surflordca
May 26, 2008, 03:30 PM
Mac OS X will just "ignore" it, as it has no driver support. But, maybe... hopefully... one day... Soundblaster could make OS X drivers.... ;)

Yea and maybe Microsoft will by Apple...

MacsRgr8
May 26, 2008, 03:34 PM
Almost got my hopes up... :D

But nah... ;)

NRose8989
May 26, 2008, 07:55 PM
just a thought.... but can't the mac pro output 5.1 anyways via toslink out? though i don't own a mac pro, i plan to get one and i was going to hook up my home theater receiver to the mac via optical cable. will this work or will it just output 2 channel audio through all of the speakers?

trainguy77
May 26, 2008, 09:26 PM
just a thought.... but can't the mac pro output 5.1 anyways via toslink out? though i don't own a mac pro, i plan to get one and i was going to hook up my home theater receiver to the mac via optical cable. will this work or will it just output 2 channel audio through all of the speakers?

Yes it can, but it has to be pre-encoded audio, so DVDs etc. Games won't work.

Frozonecold
May 26, 2008, 10:39 PM
Yes it can, but it has to be pre-encoded audio, so DVDs etc. Games won't work.
What will happen if you try to play game audio through the speakers?

trainguy77
May 26, 2008, 11:01 PM
What will happen if you try to play game audio through the speakers?

Stereo audio. So however your receiver works with that.

NRose8989
May 27, 2008, 12:28 AM
What will happen if you try to play game audio through the speakers?

So if DVD's do it but games don't, why does this person want to install a different sound card into his mac pro? I'm no audiophile but how does the factory sound compare to some soundblaster cards?

phalewhale
May 27, 2008, 02:13 AM
I'm not aware of any tests but I'm guessing that the optical out on the sound card is likely to be very good. Would like to hear from any sound professionals to see what they use?

Aron Peterson
May 27, 2008, 02:25 AM
I have ordered this Soundblaster PCIe X-Fi card (http://www.soundblaster.com/products/product.asp?category=1&subcategory=208&product=16770).


Bioshock is amazing with that card.

richard.mac
May 27, 2008, 02:52 AM
Stereo audio. So however your receiver works with that.

so if you plug a toslink cable from the optical out to a 5.1 receiver you will get 5.1 surround sound from both pre-encoded and non-encoded audio?

Aron Peterson
May 27, 2008, 03:13 AM
I'm thinking about installing an X-Fi in my Mac Pro. Will the card work in both Leopard and Windows or only one? Or neither? Thanks.

You could buy an external sound card that works in both OSes btw

trainguy77
May 27, 2008, 03:32 PM
So if DVD's do it but games don't, why does this person want to install a different sound card into his mac pro? I'm no audiophile but how does the factory sound compare to some soundblaster cards?
Well its a digital connection, so its essentially very very good. Just for kicks i played music video the line out, and then the same song through optical, optical sounded way better!

so if you plug a toslink cable from the optical out to a 5.1 receiver you will get 5.1 surround sound from both pre-encoded and non-encoded audio?

No, for non-encoded audio it will send just the L and R channel as thats all the data thats in the file, but some amps can create synthetic 5.1, or just play the 2 channels through all 5 speakers.

MacsRgr8
May 27, 2008, 04:09 PM
Yeah, just for clarification:

I have used the toslink optical audio from my old G5 to my Logitech Z-680 (which is currently occupied via toslink by a Mac mini which is hooked up to my TV, and the 6 Channel direct now to the X-Fi in my Mac Pro...), but only DVD Player.app and VLC.app could do something with 5.1 surround using toslink.
Some games using experimental OpenAL for (like Doom 3 and UT 2004) audio made an effort to get surround support, but it hasn't worked for me.

On the PC OTOH the decoding is done by the X-Fi card, and the amplifier simply directs the audio to the correct speakers. That is why 5.1 gaming on Windows is so good.
There are Mac audio cards (like the M-Audio Revolution 5.1 and 7.1) around that can be hooked up to your 5.1 speaker set via the same 3 analogue cables, but hardly any apps or games use the onboard decoding...

trainguy77
May 27, 2008, 05:23 PM
but only DVD Player.app and VLC.app could do something with 5.1 surround using toslink.

Well any quicktime application can also pass 5.1 data. You just have to set things up just right.