The Creative Sound Blaster Audigy 2 ZS Platinum features the same audio-processing technology as the Platinum Pro; the only differences between them, other than the price (the Platinum card costs $200, the Platinum $250), are their form factors and their selection of inputs and outputs. Where the Platinum Pro includes an external I/O hub that connects to the sound card's FireWire port, the Platinum uses an internal I/O hub that resides in one of your system's 5.25-inch drive bays, involves a more complicated installation process, and serves up fewer connections.
The backplane of the card itself is the same across the Audigy 2 ZS line and features outputs for up to 7.1-channel speakers, coaxial digital-out, line-out, and microphone-in jacks. The Platinum card's internal I/O hub has a 0.25-inch stereo headphone jack with a minijack adapter; only one line-in (that doubles as the 0.25-inch microphone in) with gain control, compared to the Platinum Pro's three line-in jacks; two RCA audio-in jacks; both optical and coaxial digital input and output ports; a 5.1-channel digital-audio out; a single FireWire port (the Platinum Pro has two); MIDI in and out jacks; and an IR receiver for the remote control. While none of the Sound Blaster Audigy 2 ZS line is on a par with professional audio production hardware, the more serious hobbyist will prefer the Platinum Pro card to the Platinum version for the more extensive array of ports found on the former.