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  • recommended low-latency sound cards?

    I'm looking to upgrade my computer in the near future. My main concern is getting low latency from the MIDI keyboard while working with things like Cubase, Kontakt and VSL. I don't need too many inputs or outputs, other than connecting the keyboard. I use SPDIF for sound output.

    Will almost any sound card give me low-latency or will I definitely need ASIO support? Currently I use my motherboard's onboard sound (nForce2 Soundstorm) which supports ASIO and allows 2ms latency, so everything works for me now but I'm not sure if this is because my onboard sound supports ASIO or because most sound cards offer low-latency.

    I'm considering the M-Audio Audiophile 192, Audiophile 2496, and Auzentech X-Meridian 7.1 (I also do gaming and HTPC stuff on the computer) which all have ASIO drivers.

    Thanks for any help.

  • For starters, there's a shareware-driver bringing ASIO-support to almost all built-in soundcards (supposing you're on a PC):

    -> http://www.asio4all.de/

    ... this won't give you MIDI-input, though.

    /Dietz - Vienna Symphonic Library
  • last edited
    last edited

    @anon said:

    I'm looking to upgrade my computer in the near future. My main concern is getting low latency from the MIDI keyboard while working with things like Cubase, Kontakt and VSL. I don't need too many inputs or outputs, other than connecting the keyboard. I use SPDIF for sound output.

    Will almost any sound card give me low-latency or will I definitely need ASIO support? Currently I use my motherboard's onboard sound (nForce2 Soundstorm) which supports ASIO and allows 2ms latency, so everything works for me now but I'm not sure if this is because my onboard sound supports ASIO or because most sound cards offer low-latency.

    I'm considering the M-Audio Audiophile 192, Audiophile 2496, and Auzentech X-Meridian 7.1 (I also do gaming and HTPC stuff on the computer) which all have ASIO drivers.

    Thanks for any help.


    I would definitely recommend a soundcard on which ASIO is supported. I know there are third party drivers for nearly every soundcard, but if you're doing audio, you don't want to skimp on the hardware. I have much lower latency on ASIO than on WDM mode with the same card.
    M-audios are okay. I am currently using an Echo Gina3, and I love it. I would also recommend checking out some of the Firewire interfaces like the new Mackie ONYX.

    ~Chris