Now you can create MP3s from your CDs easier than ever and digitize your old cassettes and LP records, cleaning up the sound as you do so using Creative's supplied software. (Be aware, however, that LP record playback requires, in addition to a turntable and cartridge, an outboard phono stage or an integrated amplifier equipped with a phono preamplifier; the USB SoundBlaster Live! accepts only line-level analog inputs.)
The unit's onboard 24-bit Advanced HD and EAX Advanced HD technologies encode and decode (record and play back) audio at up to 24-bit, 96 kHz resolution, though you must disable realtime audio monitoring at the highest settings due to limitations in the USB 1.1 data-throughput spec.
Creative Multi Speaker Surround (CMSS) multispeaker technology lets you "upmix" stereo sources to 5.1-channel surround sound. The software includes a professional-quality panning and mixing algorithm, front and rear balance controls, muting, and panning control for mixer sources.
Realistic EAX reverb, panning, and elevation effects bring your music and games to life. The kit also includes advanced time-scaling (which allows variable playback duration without altering the pitch of your original content), an audio clean-up feature (which removes noise and clicks from playback of vinyl disk or cassette recordings), bass boost, smart volume management, and a multi-band graphic equalizer.
Use of the sound card is as simple as plugging it into any available USB port: there's no power adapter required. The card has an infrared receiver for use with an optional Creative remote control, which will let you operate your computer from the comfort of your sofa or bed, at a distance of up to 13 feet.
What's in the Box
USB SoundBlaster Live! 24-bit external sound card, a USB cable, a quick-start guide, and an Installation CD (containing drivers for Windows XP, SP1, and 2000, SP4; Creative Software Applications Suite; and a user's guide).