I just purchased ‘myself’ and my computer the following new hardware. I had to include it all in one review since it was purchased and installed together.
First product: Soundblaster Live Platinum sound card.
I have upgraded from a SB AWE64 sound card. The Live installed easily in a PCI slot and the included software loaded freely and efficiently. I had no problems with the installation of the card and the installation of the software. It include a large array of Games, Need for Speed – High Stakes, Descent 3, Thief – The Dark Project, CakeWalk Express Gold 8.0 a musical composer and publisher and performer all in one. The enhanced software for the SB Live included applications such as: SB Live Experience, Creative EAX Demo, Diagnostics, A desktop Launcher, Surround Mixed, Audio HQ, Play Center, Recorder, Lava, Media Ring talk 99, Keytar, Rhythmania, Sound Font Studio, Mini Disk Center, and all help guides for each piece of software. The Creative Launcher gives you access to all aspects of the SB Live card. Recorder, Play Center, Mixer allows you control all the functions of a real live rack system and the controls of the Live card. All the other applications either enhances, controls, displays, builds, or modify all the difference environmental settings on the Live card. You will not get bored using, settings, controlling, and listening to the many different effects. The Live comes with an extended microphone stick and a good manual to explain the connections, installation, and use of the card. It also includes the cables necessary for connection to the power supply, digital and audio cables, mounting hardware and a data cable to connect the card to the “Live! Drive”.
The Live Drive is a unit that mounts inside a 5 1/4 drive bay and allows for the connection of microphone, headphones, midi, and SPDIF connectors. It is front mounted and has the connections recessed and volume controls for mic and headphone volume. The connections at the rear of the Live sound card include digital out (digital speakers), line in (cassette and CD player), mic in, line and rear out (connections for Surround speakers), and a joystick/midi/game pad connector. The card also has multiple connectors internal to the card for connecting CD Rom drives. This card worked excellent with the ‘NEW’ FourPointSurround FPS2000 digital Speaker System.
The speakers include four small cubes that can be mounted on the floor, wall, or table top. Each cube provide 7 watts RMS per channel. The included subwoofer has 25 watts of power. This is plenty of power for a small room surrounding your computer with clear digital sound. The system includes all hardware for mounting. Although, I preferred to use double-sided sticky tape over the relative thin hook and latch velcro fasteners. They did not hold well and I did not want the speakers to fall. All SPDIF, audio, and speaker connection cable was also included. It was of good quality and you can easily add addition cable to expand the distance of your speakers. The connections were easy to make to the professional style connectors on the speakers and subwoofer. I especially liked the extended volume control connected to the subwoofer via a long cable. This is used to turn the system off and adjust the volume. The subwoofer included a frequency control for bass variance and all the connectors to connect the speakers, audio cable, control, and power supply too. The sound quality was excellent with what I think was the right amount of bass and clear sound for my 8×12 computer/office room. The system was black which blended in to my color decor in the room.
The first sound I heard with the Live sound card and the surround speakers was the ‘crack’ of lightning as it encircled the room and then faded off in the distance. The sounds of the web audio, CD’s played, and other music was a joy to listen to from the normal stereo sound. I love my system more now and am able to enjoy the full surround sound of audio from the computer. The sound is truly….”LIVE”. My recommendation for this purchase would be a plus and an excellent buy. Search the web for the best prices.
Submitted by: John