Just How Serious Creative is(n’t) About Open Source….

To show you just how serious Creative is about open source and the Linux community, just take a (good) look at two of their sites: the main site, and the open source division. No, your eyes aren’t playing tricks on you, nor is the open source site run by 3rd graders from 1993 – it’s just that Creative doesn’t think it’s open source division deserves at least a moderately useable interface for their users.

Forget the quality of the drivers – after all, the Windows drivers are utter garbage as well compared to some of the other companies out there. So if you put aside the fact that their Linux drivers hardly work, the X-Fi isn’t even supported (they ask you to upgrade to Windows if you want to listen to hi-def audio…), and that the site looks like it hasn’t been touched since the X-Fi originally came out, you’re still left with a little problem: Linux users like music too! 

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Digital/Analog Audio & Sound Drivers for Windows Vista

While Windows Vista may tout a “all-new and improved” audio stack with superb quality and resonance, it’s of no use if you don’t have the right sound card drivers for Windows Vista. The biggest problem with audio drivers for Windows Vista is with Digital Audio – most people can get their SPDIF or Digital outputs to spew analog sound – which just doesn’t work with hi-fi, digital speakers. NeoSmart Technologies has compiled a list of audio drivers for the most popular sound cards that experience trouble with Windows Vista, in hopes that our readers will find it useful.

  • SoundMAX Integrated Digital Audio Analog audio with the drivers works fine, but digital audio doesn’t.
  • Creative Sound Blaster Live! Series No sound by default, Creative drivers won’t install.
  • Creative Audigy 1 No sound by default, Creative drivers won’t install.
  • Creative Audigy 2 No sound by default, Creative drivers won’t install.
  • Creative Audigy 4 Creative drivers install but constantly stutter.
  • Creative X-Fi Series Creative drivers install but constantly stutter.
  • SigmaTel HD AudioDefault Vista drivers don’t well in digital, bad bass
  • SigmaTel Integrated AudioNo compatible drivers; Digital N/A.
  • Other AC ’97No compatible drivers; Digital N/A.

The last two entries do not support Digital Audio, and are simply a manner of finding the right drivers compatible with your chipset; making them at once the easiest to solve due to the lack of complications, and the hardest due to the large variety of AC ’97 implementations.

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