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Sound interference with GPU?

Essex23

1 month ago

So I am looking into upgrading the sound on my PC to some quality "audiophile" type components. Looking at getting the Audioengine D1 DAC, and possibly the Sound BlasterX AE-5 or the EVGA Nu Audio card to work in conjunction with it.

But I as I am reading and learning about audio stuff, I have seen a few comments where people have had interference in the audio signal due to their proximity with their GPU's. In my case, I have an SLI rig running a pair of ASUS GTX 1070 Ti's. The PCI-e slot available to me for the sound card is either smack in-between them, or directly under the bottom GPU.

I know shielding has come a long way since I was last really into the sound card arena, but will I run into any sound interference using either of the PCI-e slots with one of these cards?

Comments

  • 1 month ago
  • 1 point

My understanding, which someone can totally correct me on, is that the main issue of interference that you're talking about would be if you're using the DAC in the PCIe sound card instead of the external one because that interference is on the analog signal being near so many other electronic signals. But if you're using that D1 DAC sitting on your desk then its a digital signal all the way to that.

I'm not sure of the benefits of having a PCIe sound card to output the digital signal. (there totally could be and I'm basically curious about that now. lol)

  • 1 month ago
  • 1 point

Yeah, I'm not sure on that either. I know I am connecting the sound card to the DAC with a high-quality S/PDIF cable, and the DAC will run to my speakers with a good high end set of coax cables.

I'm pretty sure I don't have anything to worry about since sound card technology had advanced significantly since the last time I actually had a sound card in my rig, which was literally 2008 with an MSI P45 Diamond mobo that came with an Audigy card that was a tiny little bit of PCB. :)

[comment deleted]
  • 1 month ago
  • 1 point

Ok...but then how does USB work for audio when neither card I am looking at getting, or the onboard motherboard audio section has a USB port on it? At that point is it software driven?

[comment deleted]
  • 1 month ago
  • 1 point

Ok...then again I ask how to use a USB cable for audio with the DAC when neither sound card I listed has a USB port on it. And please don't tell me that the sound cards are redundant. I've already stated that I am going for a high-end/audiophile setup.

  • 1 month ago
  • 2 points

USB uses digital signals. This means that it uses sequences of 1s and 0s to transfer information. Because the signal can only be on or off, electromagnetic interference has no effect on the fidelity of the signal. Similarly, S/PDIF uses digital signals; however, its maximum supported sample rate is significantly lower than USB.

Simply plug your DAC into any USB port on your motherboard and install any necessary drivers and you're done. You don't need an internal soundcard; that's why it's redundant. The only point in using S/PDIF is for compatibility with older audio hardware.

Let me put it this way, since it's a digital signal, it does not matter how it's transmitted outside of the system as any EMI that it may experience within the case is far too weak to have any effect on it. Why purchase an internal soundcard for an external DAC when you already have a perfectly good digital signal source on your motherboard like USB?

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