followup to my previous sound-card/driver question

C Gray frankfenderbender at
Fri Feb 2 00:35:18 UTC 2018

Creative Lab apparently now only produces/sells/supports "x1" SoundBlaster sound cards.
My slots are for "PCIe x4", "PCIe x8", or "PCI-X". No "PCIe x1".

Creative Labs support is digging through archives to find which EOL'ed cards were which as most are listed on Amazon w/o that pertinent information, rather just listing as a model in a card family. I actually found a telephone number and got an answer in 2-3 rings:  (405) 742-6655.
And, of course, there are the "fake" cards called "SoundBlaster" (clones, unsupported and seldom taken back if incompatible) rather than those named "Creative SoundBlaster" (officially made by Creative Labs).

None show the listed models down to a level indicating {x1, x4, x8} or even if it is a PCI-X slot-fitting card.
So, reverse engineering is what I shall try to do while waiting for the technical support email with a hopeful list.

The FreeBSD page, <>, indicates the following for 64-bit system supported sound cards that are supported by either the "snd_emu10k1(4)" or the "snd_emu10kx(4)" drivers:
	• Creative SoundBlaster Live! (EMU10K1 Chipset)
	• Creative SoundBlaster Audigy (EMU10K2 Chipset)
	• Creative SoundBlaster Audigy 2 (EMU10K2 Chipset)
	• Creative SoundBlaster Audigy 2 (EMU10K3 Chipset)
	• Creative Sound Blaster Live! (EMU10K1 Chipset). 
	  Both PCM and MIDI interfaces are available.
	• Creative Sound Blaster Audigy (CA0100 and CA0101 Chipset). 
	  PCM and two MIDI interfaces available.
	• Creative Sound Blaster Audigy 2 and Creative Sound Blaster Audigy 4 (CA0102 Chipset). 
	  PCM support is limited to 48kHz/16 bit stereo (192kHz/24 bit part of this chipset is not supported).
	• Creative Sound Blaster Audigy 2 Value (CA0108 Chipset). 
	  PCM support is limited to 48kHz/16 bit stereo (192kHz/24 bit part of this chipset is not supported). 
	  There is no MIDI support for this card.

The following doc is less helpful:
The snd_emu10kx(4) driver does not support the following sound cards (although they have names similar to some supported ones):
	• ...
	• All Creative X-Fi series sound cards.

Too bad because the ad for "Creative Labs SB0880 PCI Express Sound Blaster X-Fi Titanium Sound Card"  
on <>.
It "System Requirements" list seems to fit, as far as I'm aware at the present, of what barriers could get in the way.

It appears to tell me that its  work for my slots:

	Microsoft Windows 7, Vista, or XP; 
	Intel Pentium 4 1.6 GHz or AMD Athlon XP 2000+ processor or equivalent; 
	available PCI Express (x1, x4, x8, or x16) slot; 
	256MB RAM (512 MB RAM for Vista); 
	600MB of free hard-disk space; 
	CD or DVD-ROM for software installation;  <<<< [not needed]
	headphones or amplified speakers; 
	Internet connection to download PowerDVD player software.

Unfortunately, there is no mention of the chipset, but having the PCI types listed is encouraging.

The FreeBSD doc, although very helpful, does not tell me which X-Fi models are NOT supported by theFreeBSD's "snd_emu10kx(4)" driver.
So, if anyone knows the "supported X-Fi" list that would be very helpful.
FreeBSD doc's "not specific enough" list for me, logic-wise, arise from the phrases "does not support" (from the list intro) and "All"..." (from the actual list).
Together they form the phrase "does not support... all", which delineates a set, N, with an indeterminant # of elements.
It can support (0-to-N) of the X-Fi sound cards.
Supporting only (1-of-N) X-Fi sound cards meets the criteria of "not supporting all" as does supporting (N-1) X-Fi sound cards.
Even supporting 0 meets the logic of the chosen phraseology.
Thus, I will stay away from the X-Fi family due to the "non-specific list" factor, unless I hear of a very matchable, qualified application by someone.

That's not too much of a loss w/so many supported devices. 
My first list from the FreeBSD doc, is still quite vast, as far as a list goes, though availability may narrow that down a bit.  
I have also read bad reviews of the Audigy family which have proprietary cables. 
Non-standard proprietaries so well-deployed by Microsoft and Apple. No thanks. 
They are the 180-degree flip-sides of clones.

The "chipset" is never listed with the sound card descriptions on,, or web pages.
Some of a chipset's models may not be supported so I must know all vars before I can select and order a card.
Does a list of specific models (selling name as well as actual model nomenclature) exist.
The four-variable algorithm (chipset; x1/x4/x8/-X; model #; FreeBSD-supported) list is what I seek so that I avoid the somewhere-documented failure.

My dragged-out question can be pared down to this:
	which of the FreeBSD driver-supported Creative Labs sound cards (listed above) are made for {x4, x8, -X) slots AND are built with a supported chipset?

It would appear that I am trying to find exact model #s -- and not just the all-encompassing advertisement family called "Creative SoundBlaster Live! - EMU10K1 Chipset)" that will fit one of my PCIe x4. PCIe x8, or PCI-X slots.

[Note: it would also be great to find one that will work with my Ensoniq TS-10 Sampler-Sequencer-Synthesizer via MIDI, so I can move away from another Apple-broken tool, MIDI (like NFS, X11, mail, BSD, ad finitum), however, that would just add another variable into the 'find-a-card' algorithm. Even considering this seems foolhardy. I just want some audio for my Python/PHP/Java/Javascript/Perl/C development server.] 

best wishes (and sorry for the elongated clarification),
Chris Gray
frankfenderbender at

More information about the freebsd-questions mailing list