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Know Thy Sound Capabilities

Ever since they've built sound cards into motherboards, I have never bought a seperate sound board for my computer. So whenever I play games, I never use the fancy sound options. That is, until recently, when I ran Neverwinter Nights (NWN) on a ECS EliteGroup RS400-A motherboard with a Intel Pentium 4 531 CPU and an ATi Radeon X1300 graphics card. NWN ran exceptionally jerky on this computer, even though this computer has more than adequate processing power for NWN. After all, NWN ran exception fast and smooth on my AMD Athlon XP 2200+ processor with an ATi Radeon 9600.

I tried adjusting all of the video setting. But nothing made a difference. After trying all of the video combinations, I decided to try the sound options. Surprisingly, EAX and Hardware Sound could be enabled on the RS400-A motherboard. I was surprised to see that, because on my Athlon computer, all of the sound options are disabled (see screen shot below).

I decided to enable EAX and enable Hardware sound to see what the difference is. Apparently, that made all the difference. NWN ran faster and smoother with Hardware Sound on. And it ran even faster and more smooth with EAX on. I guess knowing what your computer equipment is capable of really makes a difference.

Attached Image:

NWN Sound Options.png

Chieh Cheng
Sun, 11 Mar 2007 23:52:28 -0800

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