Pros Direct 5.1 Surround connection ability.
Cons Sound quality far inferior to Echo Indigo IO
Summary I basically listen with a headphone from my Laptop. I use a Grado SR325i and though not quite satisfied, I was happy with my Creative ZS >> Until I heard the Echo Indigo from my friend.
The difference is not subtle at all. Its in fact so much pronounced that even a half deff guy could say the difference. With Echo Indigo, you get pristine clarity in the higher frequencies (crystal clear treble), accurate and eye-blinking Bass and most importantly, a much greater depth to the music. I was literally astounded with the difference, never thought that the laptop could sound so good..
This could possibly be because the Echo Indigo has a built in DSP processor along with an extremely superior quality Headphone Amp that really exemplifies and spatially separates the vocals from the guitars from the drums etc. On the creative, the sound is just flat and really muddy when compared to the Echo Indigo IO.
All said, the Echo Indigo is more expensive than Creative, but I still strongly and wholeheartedly recommend it over Creative ZS.
As for me, I received my Echo Indigo IO a week back and my Creative ZS Notebook is up for sale on EBay
"Great Product"on by dswish926
Pros Finally - great audio for a laptop
Cons None that I can see
Summary This is a great product for gamers and movie / music lovers. This transforms a good set of speakers into movie theater quality speakers. In gaming, you can hear and feel everyone around you. The surround sound in movies is awesome and music audio is enhanced with many software features. It's amazing that such a small device can do so much. A recent update allows you to switch between external speakers and your laptop's internal speakers w/o removing the card.
Pros Great sound quality for a PC card, optical in and out, full suite of Creative software
Cons Kinda pricey; Creative drivers stink; physically rather flimsy; bandwidth limitations with PC card format
Summary This was exactly what I needed as someone who was sick of the ****** sound quality on my laptop (run of the mill RealTek 16-bit sound card) but also got the versatility and power of an Audigy 2 card. Music sounds pretty phenomenal on low-to-mid-range headphones (Grado SR-60, Sennheiser PX-200). Does the job for 5.1 surround for DVDs and video games. Optical SPDIF out for 5.1 surround isn't real digital 5.1, however it hasn't really affected my enjoyment of the card.
Optical SPDIF out doesn't work for DVD audio, although that's not a huge issue for me. Analog or coax digital out is cumbersome with the card attached directly to your computer. If you have a cheap computer like mine (Averatec 6210) the PC card bandwidth won't be enough to enjoy all the features of the sound card, but this is only a problem if you need THX setup, bit-perfect output, advanced atmospheric effects, etc. I'm guessing this wouldn't be the choice for someone who wants a fully-functioning sound card for professional performance, but that's not me.
Really this was exactly what I was looking for and more. I've had it for almost a year now and it's working flawlessly - no glitches, hiccups or any problems. The sound quality is as good as I expected. I just wish the kX Project or someone else could come up with a better driver than the Creative one, which needlessly eats up memory and doesn't allow for any customization.
Pros very light, portable, easy to install good quality
Cons none yet, seems good so far
Summary GREAT product,used on CUBASE . i used the maudio firewire solo, to record on my desktop and it is definetly comparable. when i used the creative and recorded my guitar using cubase i only had a latency of 50ms, and when i used 'direct monitoring' i couldnt even hear the lag. so i was able to record very well. i think its a GREAT PRODUCT
Pros Easy install. Easy speaker set up. Advanced Speaker Control. Lots of easy to use software included.
Cons (NONE) I Could Find At The Time Of This Review!!!!
Summary I have a set of Logiteck X-530's that I use with my laptop. I didn't like the fact that you couldn't adjust the speakers manually. The X-530's sounded ok buy themselves. However the Audigy2 ZS PCMI sound card changed all that. Hands down this is the best sounding laptop I have ever heared period. I have had two different speaker systems set up with my laptop (HP dv1000) an entertainment laptop. So I play DVD's a lot the improvement is stunning. I was geting some strange sounding bass at times like the subwoofer was not up to the task at hand. I also noticed that the center speaker was not providing the dialogue as it sould. Also the highs were not as crisp as I would have liked. As stated earlyer all that has changed. Now I enjoy all the music and DVD's I want and so much more. Simply the Audigy2 ZS lives up to it's promise of high quality sound. The highs are definite and crisp. The bass improvement is what impressed me the most. The bass went from being distorted at times to always being on time with no distortion. I highly recommend the Audigy2 ZS Notebook Sound Card. If you buy it take the time to read the documentation included on the setup disk before you install the sound card. I did this and it really helped me understand the sound card. I was aware of the things required to setup the sound like I wanted it. I read the other reviews. Some of them sounded a little harsh. You will get the sound you want from this card if you use all the software provided. The graphic equalizer that is included will give you the playback experience you desire. Compairing a highend sound card to the Audigy2 ZS is at best unfair. It would be like compairing a BMW to a Ford Focus, oranges and apples and the like. In conclusion if you are thinking of buying the Audigy2 ZS do it. You will not regret it PERIOD!!!