Well, I was just rebuilding my PC and I noticed my new modern Core i7 processor compatible motherboard's on-board audio doesn't have DTS Connect (or Dolby Live) for real time 5.1 encoding any longer.
So, what's a technophile to do? Upgrade more of course! My HT Omega Claro audiophile sound card is on the way. Dolby Digital Live, DTS Connect, Dolby Headphone, digital input, pass-thru and output. Can't wait to see how it does.
The only downside is I ordered the plain jane $150 Claro and not the Claro Halo(/+) accidentally. Saved me $70- $100, but the Halo is the same card as the base, but designed with removable op-amps for the front as well as a headphone amp rated all the way up to 600 ohm.
Did I make a mistake not going for that? My current cans are Sennheiser PC350 (their highest end with built in mic, much like a closed 595) I've also been eying the AD700, Sony MDR-F1 or some Denons for future upgrade. Think any of these benefit (substantially) from the added boost of the more expensive Claro Halo on headphones you think? Or is the impedance on these cans low enough to not matter? I'm using an HK receiver now for DH, so it will be interesting to compare. I'd like to know how the digital input/pass through works in practice, to see if this can really replace my receiver with the PC (like to run a game console's digital audio through the sound card's input...)
I checked and it's being packed for shipment so too late to switch to the Halo + I'm thinking I should have tried. Maybe I'll order it too and return the other? What do you experts think?Here
is product info and comparison