Soundblaster XtremeAudio PCI-Express
IntroductionCreative is known for making hardware-accelerated soundcards that rely on a computer's CPU for very little, taking the strain off. Creative launched the X-Fi Series of soundcards in 2005 to replace the Audigy as Creative's Flagship soundcard. Right in time for 2007's Holiday Season, Creative launched their first PCI-Express X-Fi card, the XtremeAudio. It promises better features than the Audigy line while being an entry-level card, and we're going to look at how the two stack up.
PackagingCreative's packaging hasn't changed all that much for close to a decade or so. Since around the time of the Soundblaster Live! and before the Audigy was released, the Soundblaster packaging has consisted of "Sound" being written sideways on the box's left- hand side on the front. The easily recognized "Blaster" logo is then centered in the box running left-to-right, with the specific model number next to it. Sure, add some spiffy android character in the background to change things around, but the boxes have remained mostly the same.
< br/> I was surprised to find the internal packaging different from past Creative products. Neatly packed inside of the outer box was... another box, this time an off-white bearing Creative's logo on the front. Inside this box was foam packaging for protection, and a black box being held in the center bearing X-Fi logo.
Behind the X-Fi box is the user manual and driver CD, but those aren't horribly exciting. Overall, Creative's packaging was excellent and definitely something unique. Now just if my videocards came in such impressive packages.
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