Thread: High quality laptop sound?
April 30th, 2002, 09:37 AM #1
High quality laptop sound?
I plan on using a notebook primarily for a music playback source.
Currently, I am doing this from desktops using Creative AWE64 and Live series cards.
I bought a Dell Inspiron 8100 recently, and after comparing it to the AWE64 card desktop, was disappointed!
I found the sound quality lacked the clarity that the desktop exhibited. Highs were rolled off slightly with reduced "presence".
The Dell uses an ESS "Maestro" chip or some such thing.
Is anyone aware of any notebook that I might be happy with?
April 30th, 2002, 09:41 AM #2
April 30th, 2002, 09:55 AM #3
Thanks for the quick reply!
I saw one of these for $150 at a local Circuit City yesterday.
It may well solve the sound issue, but it’s expensive and compromises portability.
I may go this route, but not without exploring others first!
April 30th, 2002, 10:14 AM #4
Yes, it is expensive - but not as bad as buying a whole new laptop
As you've discovered, the onboard sound chips that they use on laptops (and desktops with cheap onboard sound) are generally pretty low quality. There might be a laptop with decent sound, but I'm not aware of any. There's very few people that generally use laptops the way you do, so there's not much demand for high quality sound. The manufacturers save a couple bucks by putting in the cheapest sound chip that will satisfy the "average" user.
April 30th, 2002, 10:48 AM #5
The only thing about that extigy is that it does tend to use alot of CPU power to run so that translates into less battery time when using it to play music and/or games.
April 30th, 2002, 12:52 PM #6
I had the same problem with my DellI5k. It's not so much the sound card as it's the speakers. Here's my solution. I found a old sony boombox with left and right audio inputs. That way i had a portable set up to show off my DVD's or MP3's with the least amount of wires and battery drain.
As far as the sound card on your laptop, they don't get much better. It gets the job done, but it'll never be a audigey. If your at home a extigy tehered to your port replicater isn't so bad.
The best laptop speakers I've ever heard were some JBL's on a top of the line Compaq notebook. First it's a compaq, second they were noticbly better, but not good enough to make you want to buy a compaq.
April 30th, 2002, 01:08 PM #7
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Get a Mac.
April 30th, 2002, 02:39 PM #8
I'm using external amplification and speakers, and was using the two tape inputs on my amp to perform the A/B comparison.
Only had the Dell a few days, It could go back (and probably will), if I were to find a unit with better sound.
I atually entertained the Mac thought! Trouble is I've beed battling the Devil (Gates & Co.) for so long, I probably couldn't figure the thing out.
May 30th, 2002, 12:35 AM #9
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In terms of sound cards, you could actually put a PCI card in. Now, before you say I'm crazy, take a look at the Dell Latitudes. If you get the docking station (NOT the Port Replicator), it has 2 PCI slots and an IDE channel. Now, admittedly, at $500, it's probably a ripoff, but you could put in a Game Theater XP or a Audigy Platinum rather than some USB thing. If it's good speakers you're looking for... good luck. Even the Toshibas with the subwoofers have crappy sound. If you want good speakers on your laptop, I suggest you just go out and buy yourself some Sennheiser studio headphones and forget about the speakers...
May 30th, 2002, 12:44 AM #10I suggest you just go out and buy yourself some Sennheiser studio headphones and forget about the speakers...
---edwellyIf you never try anything new,
you will miss out of some of life's many disappointments...
May 30th, 2002, 07:48 AM #11
Thanks for the idea Geeky1, I'll look into the docking station.
Headphones are not the solution, the problem appears to be the chip and/or it's implementation inside the notebook.
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