Audio Winbench 99 measures the CPU overhead consumed while playing multiple DirectSound or DirectSound3D voices. In this case, the graph indicates the load utilized while playing 32 simultaneous DirectSound voices. The voices are stored in 16-bit format, and use a 44kHz sampling rate (44,000 audio samples per second). The test indicates that SoundMAX's CPU overhead is slightly higher than a SoundBlaster Live!. AC'97 provides the lowest CPU overhead, but also provides the worst audio quality by far.
The DVD playback test shows the CPU overhead consumed while playing a DVD movie. Note that this figure includes overhead due to video processing as well (a software decoder was used), and is not entirely due to the audio playback. The three perform similarly, the the SBLive! showing the lowest overhead. The standard AC'97 audio used is not capable of digital output, which is why that bar is missing. Nevertheless, SoundMAX keeps pace nicely.
The Unreal Tournament demo shows the framerate achieved in Unreal Tournament using varying levels of sound quality. In this case, a higher score is better. Using high versus low quality sound doesn't make much of a difference with any of the sound sources, although the SBLive! continues to hold a slight advantage, with SoundMAX close behind. When the EAX effects are enabled, the performance of both slows, however the Live! maintains a slight lead, as the increased CPU overhead required to perform the SoundMAX EAX effects detracts from the overall framerate.
Discuss This Article (1 Comments) - If you have any questions, comments or suggestions about the article and/or its contents please leave your comments here and we'll do our best to address any concerns.
Rate This Product - If you have first hand experience with this product and would like to share your experience with others please leave your comments here.