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Sound Blaster Play! 2
USB Audio Recordings - allows for clearer recordings for podcasts and video conferencing.
Compatible with all analog headsets and earbuds, with optimized audio profiles for select earphone brands.
Scout Mode - This gaming centric technology allows you to hear your enemies from further away and gain a distinct tactical advantage in combat.
SBX Pro StudioTM - increases and expands the virtual surround spaciousness, allowing you to enjoy cinema-quality sound in the comfort of your home. Specially designed sound profiles. improve the audio experience to all your headsets.
Customizable audio settings for PC and Mac, via the Sound Blaster Control Panel.
|Average Customer Rating:
|| based on 20 reviews|
Average Customer Review:
( 20 customer reviews )
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
7 of 7 found the following review helpful:
Works, but sounds like garbage with good headphonesJan 29, 2015
By Thomas F. Beauchamp
I had high hopes for this, but was very disappointed with the audio quality. There is a distinct background hiss whenever the device is enabled for sound output. The hiss is especially noticeable on the Sony MDR-7506 headphones that I used for testing. By comparison, it is better than the on-motherboard audio outputs but far worse than the headphone output on a Dell U2713HM Monitor (which is by no regards a high end headphone amp).
This would probably work fine with cheap headphones or earbuds (or if you are half deaf and can't hear the high end hiss). But with a good setup, it's really annoying. I am surprised that SoundBlaster would put their name on something that sounds so poor.
6 of 6 found the following review helpful:
Too much Hiss spoils a great productFeb 25, 2015
By Mike Palmer
Excellent sound quality EXCEPT for a very annoying and persistent hiss that is clearly audible in quieter music tracks. I can hear it quite clearly with $15 headphones. There is no such hiss on the built-in sound card. Sound output is loud of good quality and has good bass, Would be perfect except for the annoying hiss.
4 of 4 found the following review helpful:
Great sounding with no feedback issues or driver install out of the box...Jan 15, 2015
By CE from CA
tl;dr great sound without feedback & no driver needed
Some background first... I have a Gigabye BRIX gaming machine i purchased as a door buster in December 2014. The machine is really cool and super small for what it is. Anyhow, I was listing to some music with earbuds, got up from my desk after removing the earbuds and they caught on my chair, ripping the earbuds in half. I didn't think anything of it other then loosing my earbuds until i tried to plug another pair in and realized something was wrong. Unplugged the earbuds and plugged them back in and the phono plug (that is soldered to the motherboard) releases its hold and breaks free :( Now i have a box that sounds like a mystery present being shaken by the kids on Christmas morning... "OK, sure, I can fix that" I say to myself. Take the BRIX apart and see parts of the circuit board still attached to the phono jack and then realize that it's probably not worth the risk. I even asked my brother who builds robots and electronic circuits and he looks at me like, well, yeah, probably could fix it soldering surface mount wires to the circuit board....so i disappointingly turn to amazon to look for a usb soudcard...
I should also say that I'm usually brand loyal when i find a company that makes a great product for a great price. Sometimes I might even pay a few dollars more for a brand I know will be good and have had great past experiences with. Not owning a creative labs sound card since my sound blaster 16 days of the 90's, I think, well, if the company is still making sounds cards, and that card outlived my PC of the day,...I should give it a try? The first usb sound cards I came across on Amazon were under 10$ and although mostly positive reviews, a lot of them talked about minor buzzing and other sound issues that took "tuning" settings before they worked correctly. I was a bit sceptical of the 10 sound cards. After searching for a bit, I found this usb sound card from Creative Labs for 20$ and it has 0 reviews? That also seemed odd to me.
With the somehow long drawn-out struggle of loosing 10 or even 20$ (lol) I reluctantly purchased the 20$ Sound Blaster Play 2 over the cheaper alternative...
Received the sound blaster play! 2 at Prime speed :) Packaging looks fine, etc. although the first thought is that they are really aiming for a world wide audience with this product. Included in the box is the small sound card, small adaptor for mic & headphones, install cd, and a bunch of paperwork....most of which I immediately threw in the recycle bin...
I'm running Windows 8.1 x64 with the latest updates. I should also note that my system itself only has one manually installed driver for the WiFi card and aside from the AMD video card drivers, all are stock windows hardware drivers. The soundcard comes with a bunch of software drivers, and tuning tools, (SBX Prostudio), etc. I immediately skip any sort of install and plug the USB soundcard into my computer because, hey, I don't have time to be bothered with such details... After about 40 seconds, windows has already installed the sound card drivers and I immediately have access to the sound card device/volume.
Tested this sound card without changing any settings in windows and it has performed great. I have yet to encounter any feedback or hissing as a lot of reviewers have stated with other less expensive USB soundcards. After testing with Pandora using my cheaper Panasonic earbuds (# 1 seller on Amazon), I did notice a very small amount of hiss when the music is stopped. If i close the Pandora page this noise goes away and thinking it may be do to Pandora? I haven't noticed this issue with any other game, etc. Also, I have yet to install any other software or bloatware as I really like to have a clean version of windows with the least amount of drivers and 3rd party drivers, etc.
I definitely recommend this USB sound card over other USB sound cards in the price range based on my experience vs other reviews for the 10$ Syba & 8$ Sabrent.
2 of 2 found the following review helpful:
Playback is distorted and with an audible hiss. Recording works fine.Feb 24, 2015
By Jesse Schalken
There is an audible hiss in the background while the device is playing sound, making it unusable for my purposes. There is also obvious distortion for approx 1-2 seconds whenever sound first starts playing. This was most noticeable when adjusting the volume slider in Windows 7 with the "ding" sound it makes every time you release the slider. Even the demo in the bundled software has distorted sound for the first second or two.
Recording audio, on the other hand, worked great. After increasing the recording volume to 100% it picked up sound with good clarity and much better than the microphone port on my computer (which has an unusable amount of noise).
But I need usable recording *and* playback, so I hope where I bought this from will accept a return.
2 of 2 found the following review helpful:
Some caveats for Mac usageFeb 10, 2015
Great device for use on a PC but not so much for Mac. I'm running OS X 10.9 Mavericks and for some reason it will only output some sounds through this adapter and others still go through the Mac's built-in speakers. So I'd hear my music through the headset but when I got a text in Messages, it would play through the Mac. OS X does not offer any sort of customizability to where sound is output on a per-app basis and neither did the Creative software (which didn't seem to do anything, honestly). Depending on your setup it may work for you however for me, I wanted everything through my headset and so I had to send it back.
See all 20 customer reviews on Amazon.com