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on 13 April 2011
Just to give you an idea, I am running a 2.80Ghz Dual Core on 4GB DDR3 and Windows 7 Professional 64bit.

This device is really easy to install. It does help if you download the Soundblaster drivers from their website (related to the X-FI Pro of course), else youll get imbecilles morons writing negative reviews on here complaining about the poor sound quality!

Just plug to the an available USB port on your Laptop. Theres no need to disable your previous soundcard settings (unless you really want to), because once X-FI is plugged out of the USB & no longer to use, you can easily revert back to your built-in soundcard settings.

The XFI Pro is miles better than my legacy soundcard/chip inside my laptop. Great for audio editing (e.g. on Wavelab, or Adobe Audition), and playback. Im so pleased to have the "What U Hear" functionality back again! Sound quality is exceptional. Creative Labs has never let me down (expept once in 1999, when their Soundblaster Live wasnt not fully compatible with my Cyrix Processor, but that was a tiny little blip)! Highly recommended for those using laptops. If youre on a desktop, I advise to buy a PCI-E sound card & not this.

The box is prone to electrical noise, but the simple reason is because a jack is incorrectly plugged in, so give it a firm push and the noise will disappear.
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on 5 July 2012
Set-up:
Initial software set-up a doddle. had to download latest version from internet.
Next I set up my speaker system.
To check I had plugged everything in correctly, I used the noise test, and got a confirming noise from each speaker and a rumble out of my sub.

Problem:
Next I played a music file, and the sub was not doing anything.

Fix:
Click in Creative studio Entertainment Console on the Third blue button "THX".
When THX TruStudio is on , goto Settings at the left top.
This shows a crossover frequency slide.
Adjust this to your liking.

Sorted!
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on 6 August 2011
Every internal sound card I have ever used in the last 20 years has suffered from crosstalk so mouse movements and changes to the display create buzzing and other irritating noises-off. These are especially noticeable when using headphones. This USB external sound card completely cures these problems. At full volume there is unavoidable hum and hiss but absolutely nothing from the PC internal electronics. At sensible volume settings the hum and hiss are negligible and the sound quality is excellent. The graphic equaliser is useful, as is the remote control. I had unusual set-up problems. I had installed virtual-audio-cables to connect between applications like Audacity and sound card signal generators. All the audio I/O defaulted to the virtual cables and it took a while to figure out how to undo this problem. Most buyers will not hit this type of problem. The free PowerDVD player upgrade was a useful bonus. A happy customer.
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on 17 October 2012
My reason for purchasing this card was to do with building a new computer with a Windows 7 64 bit professional O/S.
I was happy with the previous Creative audio cards - specially with the ability to tailor the low end frequency response to the sub-woofer. The problem was that my XiFi-audio extreme card would not do 'what u hear' so recording off the Internet etc was excluded. Looking at replacement cards - the only ones which did surround sound without an optical to analogue decoder were aimed at gamers, or I couldn't ascertain whether they were 100% compatible with the O/S
So I purchased this new device which is a USB external card packaged in a plastic case. It has the usual surround sound outputs and seperate line and microphone inputs as well as headphone out. It also comes with a small remote control, and a large knob on top acts as a master gain control.
There was no problem in installation, but a number of issues have since cropped up - so a few comments.
1. The unit is susceptible to interference. I discovered this the hard way! I was dismayed to find background noise on the speaker output, and wrongly concluded that this was generated by the computer. It turned out to be caused by my placing the unit near to a DEC phone. Changing the position eliminated the noise!
2. I don't think there is so much of an overhead in the system and I notice some distortion on certain tracks, which may be caused by a heavily modulated track not being coped with very well.
3. Setting the speaker levels is fine - except that Windows keeps re-setting them! I can set individual speaker levels, but at some point they all get reset to the same percentage.The reason for that is that when I use the master control to turn the output levels very low, and then turn them up again, the system doesn't remember the difference. Just something to watch - need to use the mute button instead!
4. Microphone volume levels are still too low for the majority of ordinary microphones.

Apart from those criticisms the unit has performed well. So provided you aren't looking for the smae quality as a prvious higher-end card then you shouldn't be disappointed.
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on 18 April 2012
great looking bit of kit. the sound is far superior than my onboard soundcard.
only problem is that the latency on this device is awful! ive tried all kinds of troubleshooting steps, drivers, bios tweaks and still no luck. bought the card for recording guitar, vocals etc so its completely useless in this respect. beware if using windows 7 operating system as it seems that plenty of other people have the same problem.
its a shame because as i mentioned before the actual sound is great.
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on 11 March 2013
Amazing sound card!!!
My sound card as stopped working on my PC so i needed a new sound card. Then going out buying a new sound card and opening the PC up i have gone for this one. Never got let down by it! :-)
Works lovely on Windows 7 with out any problems!

The only thing i had to do is install the new drivers as the drivers on the CD are out off date and did not have Creative Audio Control Panel on it.
So i had a look on the Creative labs website for the drivers and the download page was down. So the driver you need is XFXATHX_PCDRV_WIN8_LB_1_02_0061.exe for this item and it's the new driver for Windows 8 and 7 :-)

From reading some of the reviews that may be why the sound was bad on your computers!
The sounds is Amazing on mine :-)

Thank you Creative labs and Amazon.co.uk, Seller.
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on 27 July 2013
Bought to use for an SDR radio I/Q decoder for which I needed a small unit. Nicely balanced vol control knob and software pop-up to report anychanges to volume; needed a tracking vol control, so pleased not to have two separate ones for L/R. Looks very good on top of the radio and has all the I/O I needed. Has some internal noise that is easily reduced with a couple of caps, reducing the spurs to neglible levels. The remote IR control was an unexpected and handy addition.
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on 8 September 2013
I have a small form factor (SFF) computer which has a fairly poor on-board sound system. As there seems to be few sound cards available that fit this newer case size, my only option was to use an external one. Although I have been aware of external sound cards for some time, my expectations were low.
How wrong was I!!!?
This sound card is every bit as good as a 'conventional' internal card. The sound is what I would expect from a Creative Soundblaster and the accompanying software affords all the control I need to achieve a reasonable level of quality.
It is subject to the occasional crackle when 'idle' but overall I am very pleased with the performance. Also, as it plugs in to a USB port, I will be able to use it on my next PC.
I would certainly recommend this item to anyone with a SFF or laptop who wants to improve the sound from their machine.
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on 30 November 2012
The missing link for music! I'm running this on Windows 7 and playing it through a Logitech 5500, which is awesome by itself, however bought new pc and the on board sound card is poor. Read the reviews for this product and took the chance. The software didn't all load on and had to look through disc to find the Entertainment Console and loaded it by itself, look out for that. However after panicking and rectifying this, plugged an optical cable and a 3.5mm jack lead to play it through. Instantly sounded ridiculously better and after playing around with the graffic and THX settings, my sound system sounds awesome, I love it! Thinking what have I been doing for the last 10 years without it. I'm sure this will enhance any music system, but as my Logitech also has THX, its a match made in heaven! The optical connection is punchier and clearer although it still sounds great through the 3.5mm. If you use Dolby Digital, the sound can only be controlled through the exterior device. The only gripe is it should have another optical in, as to play Blue ray etc through this, you need to run a 3 cable out to surround sound using the optical connection from the Blue ray instead of running out through the optical to your surround sound. The fact this is usb and you have the control knob sitting on your desc, makes this a pleasure to use. The remote control is a bit hit and miss, but does work even on my I tunes. I would ignore the bad write ups, these people must be really fanatical and have had superior sound cards or indeed have sub standard music systems, or haven't played with the settings correctly and considering I am really picky with the sound of my music, if I say its great, it must be great as far as i'm concerned. All in all, if you want to play fantastic sounding music, especially through a decent system, for £50 there abouts, its for you, BUY IT!
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on 20 September 2013
Simply plugging the neat box into a USB socket immediately transformed the sound of my PC from indifferent to excellent. Perhaps because I have 3 speakers (rather than the 2 or 5 specified during setup), when I added the extras on the accompanying CD, the maximum volume actually decreased without adding any appreciable gain to the quality and there was an irritating background hum. Removed the extras and am now back to my initially delighted state. As many of the previous reviewers are obvioualy audiophiles, it is relevant to add that I am a professional musician and well used to recording studio sound.
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