Extigy - Latency any good?

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Member Since: Apr 11, 2003

Hi,
I was considering buyingthe Soundblaster Extigy USB connection device for using with my laptop for recording. Is the latency any good with this? Have got 20ms with my normal computer and would accept this with the laptop too.

Cheers,

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Administrator
Since: Apr 03, 2002


Jan 05, 2004 06:59 am

Well, latency is not the only thing to consider when buying a sound card, though we have spoke about it a lot lately in this forum, there is also how well it handles full duplex (which SB stuff is not very good at) which can tell you how many track you can record and playback at once. There is also the spec of the audio it can handle, as I recall Extigy is 24-bit/96kHz max, which is good. Quite often SB card will give you a max of 8-10 track of audio before starting to choke...which isn't very much...

Also, there is the price to consider, depending how much the store is charging you, look what that same money would get you from someone like Terratec, M-Audio or Aardvark. These companies make cards for a decent price that are meant for recording, whereas SoundBlaster cards, while being able to record, are really meant for gaming and playing back DVD's.

That said, SB's give very low latency, depending on the driver you use and the software you record with...but don't judge a card strictly by that spec.

bace135 in the house tonight!
Member
Since: Jan 28, 2003


Jan 05, 2004 12:20 pm

I use an old SBLive internal card and though I'm not sure about latency, I can run more than 20 tracks of audio without any problem. With that being said, I was also thinking about getting an Extigy for a minute, but after a little research, decided on an M-Audio Delta 66 for my recording needs. SB cards are cool because they have the ability to play midi while some that are made strictly for recording do not. I wonder if the USB connection will hamper your latency issue.

Administrator
Since: Apr 03, 2002


Jan 05, 2004 12:56 pm

I remember reading quite a while back that a few trade mags actually bashed the Extigy saying that the live was far superior in terms of quality, which I found really interesting.

coolo, are you doing 20 tracks of audio? if so, wow, that's some sort of record in my book! As I recall you use a lot of soundfonts and such, which is a benefit of SB as well, but sonf fonts and MIDI music don't take nearly the resources that real recorded audio does. I can totally see any SB card (or any card at all) doing many, many tracks of sound fonts and MIDI stuff...

Just felt I should clarify what I meant above, I was referring to real audio tracks.

Member
Since: Jul 02, 2003


Jan 05, 2004 01:07 pm

I've used up to 24 tracks so far with the SB Live and now the Audigy 2. The limiting factor I run into is how many effects per track and how many of those tracks I put effects on, the bottle neck here is the computer. But there are ways around that too, but so far I haven't needed more than 24 tracks. :)

On the Extigy I haven't seen very many favorable reviews on it, so I'd have my doubts it would work well. There may be a new model now that uses USB 2, but the original was USB 1.1 which I'm pretty sure would have problems in a multi-track situation.

Dan

bace135 in the house tonight!
Member
Since: Jan 28, 2003


Jan 05, 2004 03:08 pm

db, I guess when I say audio, I mean .wav files. I do compose mostly with soundfonts and midi stuff, but then I record the midi to wave files and import those wave files to Cool Edit and rebuild my track there so I can really have a go with the effects available in CEP. So basically, I have 20 tracks, each with a different wave file in it (or multiple wave files). I'm not sure what the largest number of tracks I've worked with is (off the top of my head), but I know it is greater than 20.

One other note: I'm pretty sure the Extigy only allows you to record one signal at a time, so if you can envision yourself wanting to record more than one thing at a time into more than one track, you may want to investigate into other recording sound cards.

Bohemian
Member
Since: May 04, 2003


Jan 05, 2004 03:15 pm

Yeah me with the crappy soundblaster card
can also run the maximum of 27 tracks (REALLY)

(innuendo btw from Queen) midi converted to .wav files
into sonar

27 tracks of real audio:D

and there were 7 FX running in realtime

but it was it's maximum I couldn't record any more

but I can do 20 easy actually ^o)

Administrator
Since: Apr 03, 2002


Jan 05, 2004 03:28 pm

Ok point made, as PC's have gotten bigger, the SB-ish sound cards are apparantly capable of doing much more than the old days :-)

Glad to hear it actually...Thats still isn't their main forte' and you CAN get cards better suited for recording for the same price as the costliest versions of SB cards. But they CAN do it, I'm convinced.

Take into account the the Audiophile 2496 is at MF now for $149 and I have run up to 40 tracks or so with one effect (at least) on each of them...and the CPU was only running about 50%...well...I'll stick with the Audiophile :-)

Still, point made guys, thanks.

Bohemian
Member
Since: May 04, 2003


Jan 05, 2004 03:30 pm

But still In 2 months... I'm bying
an M-audio Card don't know which though

Cone Poker
Member
Since: Apr 07, 2002


Jan 05, 2004 04:58 pm

I had the SB Audigy and didn't like it, so I gave it to my dad for his gaming and bought a delta 44, still keep a SB in the box for general midi work though

Member
Since: Jul 02, 2003


Jan 05, 2004 05:16 pm

I do plan to add an MAudio card, it's just not a high priority right now. There's several other things like a keyboard, mixer, new bass guitar, possibly another mic, etc. that I think are more important right now and I'd much rather spend the bucks on. :)

Dan

Czar of Midi
Administrator
Since: Apr 04, 2002


Jan 06, 2004 06:34 pm

Ya, I have had good luck with my SB live as well, but only becuase I run third party drivers. I use my SB strictly for its GM purpose and to work with Sound Fonts. The only draw back is they can be unstable at times, but the latency is very do-able. I am running at about 17ms with drivers you can find at the kX project site. kxproject.lugosoft.com/ However, remember that each PC will run differantly, and I am pushing mine to the mas to get this down to this level. They also have them available for the Audigy as well. But they are a run at your own risk type driver. I suggest reading their readme file completely before you install their drivers. The latest release is a beta only, but they do have other previous versions up as well.


Member
Since: Jul 02, 2003


Jan 06, 2004 09:39 pm

I was going to give those drivers a try till I noticed the part about Hyper Threading problems. I'll have to wait another release or 2 looks like.

Dan

Czar of Midi
Administrator
Since: Apr 04, 2002


Jan 06, 2004 09:43 pm

I think if you go back a couple of version or even just one they have a stabel version without probs like that. and even just updating form the Creative Labs driver might help a bit as well. I know running the newer drivers from them gave me much better results then before.

Member
Since: Jan 13, 2004


Jan 13, 2004 03:22 am

I use sblive on many computer with the kxproject drivers and can get latancy down to 5 ms

www.kxproject.com

Administrator
Since: Apr 03, 2002


Jan 13, 2004 04:18 am

Cool, glad to hear those KXProject drivers are working for someone.

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