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I have been using this for a couple years now. At this point I'm regularly using it with my Sennheiser HD700 and Beyerdynamjc Amiron Home headphones, along with my Sound Blaster XM7 book shelf speakers. I use the Bluetooth and built in equalizer and SBX functions everyday and the only things I definitely don't use are the mic functions and the scout mode. This is a great amp/dac.
i agree 100% with JustFluxz on this product. I have been using this for about 6 months now and have to say that I'm very satisfied with this product. I was looking for a small desktop "dac/amp" to power my "onix" book shelve speakers and play my vinyl collection. This little amp doses both very well. The speakers are 4ohm and the volume (you can switch between 4ohm/8ohm on the back of the unit) I get from this amp is great. I listen to music at low volume most of the time and the clarity is very good to my ears at the low volume. The volume can get very high if you like that sort of thing.
I use almost every port on this device. I have it connected to my PC for playing my local music collection, it is connected to my mac mini (using the optical out for the mac to the optical "in" on the SBX7 . I have my turntable (with built in preamp) connected to the line level inputs. I also use the RCA line outs to my PC for recording my albums in 48/24 flac format (using VinylStudio software). This works very well.
I have the Massdrop 6xx headphones and the headphone amp on this thing works fine for powering those. The DSP in this amp has a lot of functions and is very good for gaming. It also has a "Direct mode" for the speakers and optical "in". I leave it on this for most of my music playing.
As far as the mic setup, I have never really used it so I can't comment on that. The Bluetooth works fine but I don't like the way it "announces" that Bluetooth is now connected/disconnected.
BTW you can even charge your phone by connecting it to the USB port located on the side of the unit. For a small desktop Dac/Amp this would be hard to beat for the price.
Here are a couple review links:
Yes, that Bluetooth announcement thing is annoying lol. Scared me once when I was having issues connecting my phone to Bluetooth devices and it randomly connected. That announcement thing is on other dac/amp sound blaster makes as I believe the one I had before was the E5.
Thanks for the great feedback. I've actually reported the "Bluetooth Announcement" item you noted to the product team. Might be able to get it to be a toggle-able item in the interface.
Any insight on how to solve an issue with the card not outputting through the rear 3.5 female jack for 5.1 sound. I am using powered bookshelf speakers (kanto YUMI) and they work fine, but won't sound through the X7 even though the X7 is set up for 5.1 (not even testing works).
I upgraded firmware already
Any idea? (Thanks!)
Did you by any chance just do the latest Windows update?
Microsoft changed the surround recognition settings once again and it defaults units to Stereo.
Here's how you can get the X7 to be recognized as a surround device again:
(copied over from a similar issue on the Sound BlasterX Katana drop page)
In you system tray right click on the Speaker icon.
Then instead of clicking on Sound Settings (where you think it would be!), click on Sounds.
Then click the Playback tab.
Then highlight the X7 (will be listed as a "Speakers" option).
Then click the Configure button in the lower left hand side of the Window. The options to choose the X7 as a Stereo or 5.1 device will appear.
This will ensure that Windows is recognizing the X7 as a 5.1 device.
Hope this helps!
Thanks for taking the time for answering me. I did what you suggested but windows did actually recognize the X7 as a 5.1 device. It showed the 5.1 speaker config and allowed me to test them. They all played the music during the test, except for the rear speakers, the same as when I did the test through the X7 control panel or cellphone app. Further testing actually allowed me to realize that there is a very minor sound outputting through the rear speakers, only perceptible when I turn up the volume to the max (they are powered bookshelf speakers). Is there any chance the dedicated amplifier for the rear speakers 3.5 jack output blew in the X7? Is it something that can be replaced?