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Guest Dean

Frame Rates (FPS) and Sound Cards

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Hi ladies it's MOM here again with a question for the brightest of you in flight sim land! By the bye, I called Creative Labs, the maker of the Sound Blaster (SB) cards and they couldn't give me an answer. Here is the 64 dollar question: Will a good qquality PCI sound card improve frame rates (FPS) over a MB's integrated sound? (I know sound quality would be better on the stand alone card but will the stand alone drain the CPU more, less or the same?)If one hits the "Q" command on the KB to shut off sound entirely, the FPS in MSFS22P increase about 3 FPS give or take.The reason for this question, is that I get great sound with an existing on board card, but I want to improve FPS and thought I read somewhere that a new separate retail sound card might improve FPS across the board, but I am not sure.If anyone can answer this with any clarity then I can keep making those apple pies you like so much!Thanks again,Mom(Kosmo007)KMCO

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Hey Mrs Mom...As far as I know (considering that I can be a bit dense at times!) A more expensive card won't necessarily give you a very big advantage in terms of FrameRates.The Creative SoundBlaster Live and Audigy cards have their own, onboard, sound processing chip (someone will need to back me up on this to double check), so they will affect the amount Processing Power available to your main CPU. However, if you aren't using things like immersive sound and environmental effects, it won't make a huge amount of difference.Imagine if you will... a time distant gone... the land of the Intel 286 and 386. The pinnacle of processing power... A hazy mind remembers a super-processor running at 33mhz. "My GOD" I hear you say.... aaah yes.... I was a powermonger! People bowed before the power of my mighty PC....ahem... I digress....Well.. that had sound. Not bad sound with a Soundblaster card in it. And believe me... if that thing didn't take a huge frame hit with music and sound effects, yours certainly won't! :)However, sound quality is higher these days.Any way... my opinion is that you might get a little extra power, but not very much and if you're not too fussed about having high quality environmental sound, it's not worth shelling out for simply to get an extra 2 or 3 FPS (if that).On the other hand.... someone else might have a bit more knowledge or experience than me............ but I hope my post isn't ill-informed.Hope I helped,SImon.

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Mrs Mom,You hit the number you can expect to see. The motherboard in my new system has an on-board sound chip so I tried it before installing my S/B Live card. I noticed about a 3-4 FPS increase with the S/B Live card handling the audio processing. I also noticed much improved sound quality as the on-board sound chip seemed to have some background noise. Sound has a greater impact on frame rates than many people think. With Fly II I can increase my FPS by 3-4 just by switching to 8 bit mono from 16 bit stereo.

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