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  • Chaintech vs M audio? what are voltage outs?

    Okai, im going to buy a new sound card, here in oz the only place that sells the chaintech is selling it for 90 bucks.
    So for a bit more i can get an M-audio card. What i want to know is, is the m-audio worth the extra money over the chaintech, also what are the voltage output on these cards.
    I WONT be using the SPDIF, just the headphone jack thingy, so the voltage output is important, ive tried to find what they are but cant find it, so can anyone tell me? thanks.

  • #2
    I highly doubt that they will be high enough (4+ volts) to be worth anything right out of the sound card.

    will this be oging on an aftermarket audio system or justt he stock system btw?
    Jan Bennett
    FS: VW MKIV Bezel for 8" Lilliput - 95% Finished

    Please post on the forums! Chances are, someone else has or will have the same questions as you!

    Comment


    • #3
      focal 165v2 splits, phoenix gold titatium sub... etc etc...

      Ive had my carputer in for bout 2 months now and im just using an old school sound blaster card i had lying around the house, and i just plug it straight into the amps via RCAs. The sound system works fine, but ive never tried other things so i dont know if it can be better.

      People say sound cards dont have enough voltage out to power amps, but my sound blaster live is working with the amps just fine.

      Its time to take the next step, but im not sure what to do, do i buy a new sound card eg chaintech or m-audio? but then will i need a line driver to increase the output? im not using one now and it works fine (*me* scratches head*), or should i get a digital processor and use the SPDIF out from the mother board (dont have any clues bout this)

      Any help will be greately apreciated, thanks.

      Comment


      • #4
        I know for a fact that the Chaintech is 2Vrms. I couldn't find the output of the M-Audio.
        Pioneer DEH7600MP, Autotek MX-800.4, JL Audio XR650-CSi, Adire Audio Shiva

        Done with CarPCs, using a iPaq 3765 PDA w/ Holux GM210 and TomTom

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Ascension
          t ive never tried other things so i dont know if it can be better.
          it all depends on you. I can guarontee that if I were to have it set up that way in my car I wouldn't like it. But that's me and my listening level/tastes

          for some people, the saying "Ignorance is bliss" is so very true. I'm not saying that in a rude, condensending kind of way, just as a matter of fact statement.

          If it works for you that way then keep it! why spend the extra money! (unless you ust want to, believe me I understand this).

          Just a word of warning about sound. If you are at all like me, once you figure out how to make it sound better, you won't be able to stop. You'll always be trying to figure out new ways to make it sound even better. Hell, I'm redoign the entire rear of my car just to make it sound better...lol
          Jan Bennett
          FS: VW MKIV Bezel for 8" Lilliput - 95% Finished

          Please post on the forums! Chances are, someone else has or will have the same questions as you!

          Comment


          • #6
            lol red gti vr6, if i thought it sound good, i would leave it.

            Im very concious bout my system lol and at some times i get very upset with it and tell it off for sounding **** haha

            Im here asking these questions because i need it to sound better, why would i be running Focal and PG gear if i didnt care bout SQ?

            Anyways im thinking, buy a new sound card (chaintech or m-audio, not sure which one yet) and then put something like this in
            http://cgi.ebay.com/Phoenix-Gold-PLD...QQcmdZViewItem

            How does that sound?
            Or can you convience me of a better way?

            Comment


            • #7
              i heard the M-audio revolution 5.1/7.1 cards have 2v too
              My install... check it out!

              www.mp3car.com/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=56599

              Comment


              • #8
                Okai, well if i go for a sound card im going to need a line driver.
                If i do go this way, which card is better, the Chaintech or the m-audio revolution.

                Second question is, is their a better option for SQ then this way?

                Will using the SPDIF be much of a difference? if so how do i use the spdif, thanks.

                Comment


                • #9
                  2 volt output is sufficient -- thats what gains are for. depends on your amp, but many will take as low as 200mv. the thing is, the lower the voltage, the more chance of induced noise in the RCA's. however, there are many ways around this.

                  first you can use a line driver to boost the output voltage. a decent one can be had on ebay for $100 or less.

                  I don't like that method personally.

                  by doing a solid and smart installation you can get around this with minimal cost. for example I will be mounting my computer such that the sound card outputs are very very close to the amplifier inputs. this serves a dual purpose for my setup. firstly, my sound card has 1/4" stereo outputs, not RCA's. almost every 1/4" stereo to RCA adapter is a 10 inch long cable. I like to have as simple a setup with as few connections as possible. so this allows me to just use a high quality 10 inch adapter cable. secondly, by having such a short interconnect length the chance of noise should be almost non existant and there is also zero voltage drop. any resilient issues can be solved with ferrite chokes, smart cable routing, or even aluminum foil.

                  as for the card. if you're not using SPDIF and the chaintech is that expensive there, I'd go with the m-audio.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    what stapan is saying about using gains is not correct, well should I say it's not kosher? relying on your gains to turn up your signal will mean you are more likely to introduce noise

                    a line driver is an option, though I personaly don't like them, but my standards dictate that

                    going from 1/4" stereo to RCA is asking for induced noise, sure, keeping it short will help, but IMO it's just a cheap way to do it

                    if that's ok with you, then go for it, but I wouldn't be too dissapointed if you aren't happy with the quality (or lack there of) of the sound you will be getting...

                    of course your equipment will come into play a lot as well....but seeing as how you are using good equipment Ascension, I would imagine that you would want to go about doing this the right way, not necessarially the cheapest way, but I could be wrong....I have been in the past
                    Jan Bennett
                    FS: VW MKIV Bezel for 8" Lilliput - 95% Finished

                    Please post on the forums! Chances are, someone else has or will have the same questions as you!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      yes, okai, i know one option now.
                      That one option is to go the m-audio card and a line driver.

                      But now i know the second option is digital and this option is better, but i dont know how to do this.
                      Red gti Vr6, explain to me the digital way, thanks.
                      I know it will cost more but i would rather spend more money in the first place and get it right (dont we all?)

                      Anyways thanks for the help and please explain!

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        what stapan is saying about using gains is not correct, well should I say it's not kosher? relying on your gains to turn up your signal will mean you are more likely to introduce noise
                        no I am exactly RIGHT. Im surprised you don't know what you're talking about here. maybe I shouldnt be, this is a common misconception. I won't share my secrets as I'll be competing at the top but will be happy to explain a few things to ya..

                        why do amps have gain controls? because theres no standards in car audio, head units have different output voltage & impedance. the gain matches the amp to the head unit. thats IT. you set it right and forget it.

                        advertised vs honest power. just like pyramid "1000 watt" amps with a 15 amp fuse (you do the math). many '4 volt' head units output 2.4 volts or less. alpine is notorious for this, some high end alpines measured at 0.4 v.

                        higher preout voltage raises the noise floor for the rca cable. as long as its sufficient (1v+) this is insignificant except in poor installs. most car audio installs are 10 foot+ long rca cables done by an installer who is in a HUGE rush to finish the car and doesnt have time to do it right. even still, it is output IMPEDANCE that is the real important factor. any top competitor will agree with this.

                        to make a long story short, buy QUALITY components and install them RIGHT.

                        the chaintech or revo can give you GREAT sound but you need to do it right. digital to a processor is a lot EASIER. less noise if you have a bad install. awesome TUNING to compensate for other install problems & balance out the sound. external volume control. those are the gains it will give you. if you have the $$ to throw around, definitely go for it, it will save you a lot of headaches in the long run!

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          So what are these "quality" cables that you are going to be using? You say 1/4" stereo phono to L + R rca's? What brand etc are you using?

                          I ask because I had a hard time finding short phono to rca cables. I ended up buying some shielded belkin cables, but could only get them in 6' lengths. I got them for 1/3 of their $19.99 retail price, so I wouldnt feel too bad buying another set that was shorter.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Okai, can someone please give me some examples of a processor i can use?
                            Nothing fancy, just something that does the job without all the extra EQs etc that would make it more expensive.

                            Red GTi VR6 what are you going on about SPDIF cannot connect to these processors? so then how do you connect the SPDIF of the motherboard or soundcard to the processors?

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by stapan
                              no I am exactly RIGHT. Im surprised you don't know what you're talking about here. maybe I shouldnt be, this is a common misconception. I won't share my secrets as I'll be competing at the top but will be happy to explain a few things to ya..
                              more or less what I'm saying is that just settling for 2v because you can turn the gains up is the cheap way out. The multiplication factor going from 2 to say 10 will allow more distortion than say 4 to 10 or 9 to 10 even. Just like placing a penny on a copier and blowing it up, you will lose clarity, same with relying on the amps gain control to multiply that signal.

                              on competing, I've never understood that mentality, either you have what it takes to win or you don't. I help people where I know I can, I don't hide stuff from them, why? because if they DO beat me it makes for better competition. What's the fun in winning a show when you're the only one in your class!? It means more when the competition is fierce....but that's just my $.02 on it.

                              Btw - I don't think you ever answerd me on this, what class will you be competing in and will you be competing in USACi?

                              why do amps have gain controls? because theres no standards in car audio, head units have different output voltage & impedance. the gain matches the amp to the head unit. thats IT. you set it right and forget it.
                              I agree, you should always set the gain right and forget it, most people can't do that, they mess with it and screw it all up. However, I believe that you should at least try and match the inputs on the amp to begin with! The guy is using some quality equipment, he's said that he wants good sound. If this were just some average jo with jensen equipment and just wanted the cheapest way out, sure! 2v is fine, rely on that amp to match it! they probably wont be able to tell the difference in the sound quality, however, this guy has specifically stated that he wants to do better...thus the reason I don't think that a 2v input is sufficient, and especially not to rely on the gians on an amp to boost your signal and introduce distortion...

                              advertised vs honest power. just like pyramid "1000 watt" amps with a 15 amp fuse (you do the math). many '4 volt' head units output 2.4 volts or less. alpine is notorious for this, some high end alpines measured at 0.4 v.
                              I didn't realize this thread was going to be a product bashing thread...if I had known that I wouldn't have been involved in it in the first place....I thought we were talking about gains here?!

                              higher preout voltage raises the noise floor for the rca cable. as long as its sufficient (1v+) this is insignificant except in poor installs. most car audio installs are 10 foot+ long rca cables done by an installer who is in a HUGE rush to finish the car and doesnt have time to do it right. even still, it is output IMPEDANCE that is the real important factor. any top competitor will agree with this.
                              I don't agree that as long as you are greater than 1volt you are good.
                              I do agree with this and this is one are where alpine looses it to eclipse for sure! eclipse has around 55 ohm imedence levels corect? while alpine has sometimes close to 500??

                              to make a long story short, buy QUALITY components and install them RIGHT.
                              I agree 100%, that's why I disagreed with you saying to just settle for a lower quality part and use the gains ont he amp to make up the difference.

                              the chaintech or revo can give you GREAT sound but you need to do it right. digital to a processor is a lot EASIER. less noise if you have a bad install. awesome TUNING to compensate for other install problems & balance out the sound. external volume control. those are the gains it will give you. if you have the $$ to throw around, definitely go for it, it will save you a lot of headaches in the long run!
                              hrmm...sounds like we agree on this aspect at least...lol
                              Jan Bennett
                              FS: VW MKIV Bezel for 8" Lilliput - 95% Finished

                              Please post on the forums! Chances are, someone else has or will have the same questions as you!

                              Comment

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