Quote Originally Posted by Luke_Wolf View Post
I'm not an audiophile, and you don't need to be to be able to tell that difference because it is very literally like going from adlib to "cd music" just by replacing the card even on $30 speakers, quite frankly whenever I hear the "You don't need a soundcard" It's like someone using pre-sandybridge intel graphics asking why they should use a videocard when gaming. The difference is seriously that much.

And on the topic of gaming, you know the section in Crysis Warhead, where the troop transport crashes and then things start microstuttering all to hell? That's 3D audio being calculated and the sound codec hammering the CPU with interrupt requests to try to do it, that goes away when you put in a sound card, and it helps to smooth out things in general, because the problem with microstuttering it creates is not CPU Usage, it's that it's interrupting the CPU.

Oh and while I'm at this: The biggest boost you can do to the performance of your games is not getting a new CPU or a better Video Card (assuming you're starting out with at least a Radeon ?670 level card which current gen integrated graphics are close enough to), though those will help of course but what's really going to give you the biggest boost is actually maxing out your memory and setting up a RAM drive. With a RAM drive and a sound card, a Radeon HD 5770 can play Crysis Warhead completely maxed out at 1080p, and it plays so very different when you do that.
There is an astounding amount of ridiculously inaccurate information in this post. Sounds cards barely have any effect on game performance these days, most modern games don't even support any kind of sound card hardware acceleration anymore. Justify your sound card purchase all you want, it doesn't make your post any less hyperbolic.

Yes a good sound card coupled with very high quality speakers or headphones can produce noticeably better sound quality, but telling people that a sound card will give them a huge boost in gaming performance is completely false.