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Surround sound and Windows Vista

I finally have surround sound! After suffering way to long with the built-in stereo sound from the default drivers of Windows Vista, I am finally able to enjoy music on Computer again. I only own a Soundblaster Live! 5.1, which is really old, but still a very nice soundcard. But when Creative decided not to support the Live! Series under Windows Vista, I decided to never buy another Creative sound card again. I hope many of you do the same. Anyway, I wanted my 5.1 sound back on Vista, so what now? Luckily, I came across the kX Project on Driver Heaven. They have made their own Driver for the EMU10K1 chip, which is also used on the Soundblaster Live! Series. Their official download page is kind of old, but on the Driver Heaven forum, they have posted new drivers which work under Windows Vista just fine. I got the 3538m version, which worked perfectly after some configuring. Read more to see how to configure it for 5.1 sound.

First, Settings from the Windows Vista Control Panel won’t work, you have to use kX Mixer vor every setting you want to change. So open kX Mixer and first uncheck the Icon “Swap Front and Rear” located middle left. Next click on the speaker with the question mark on the top center “Speaker Setup”. Now select 5.1, 4.1 or whatever you have and check “Use Subwoofer output” and “Bass redirection”. Slide “Split Freq” to 150Hz if you don’t know what frequency suit best for your speaker system. Now, depending how you want the rear speakers to sound, slide “VRearW” around to virtually increase the distance to them. Close kX Mixer now and you are done!

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