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Creative is back with a duo of super-sounding sound cards for your PC

It’s coming out for Sound Blaster’s 30th anniversary.

creative sound card
Image: Creative Labs

Creative Labs is back to stay with a dynamic duo of PC sound cards coming to thrill your eardrums. The new flagship AE-9 and it’s little brother, the AE-7, are the most advanced PCI-E based sound cards Creative has er… created.

It’s not hyperbole to say that Creative’s Sound Blaster range is the name in PC Gaming sound since its inception in 1989. Sure, onboard sound is better nowadays, but would it be if Sound Blaster hadn’t kept the industry moving? Anyway, it’s the company’s 30th anniversary this year and it’s going to be a belter.

The Sound Blaster AE-9 is going to knock your socks off

You hear that? That sound blasting through the air? It might be someone singing Happy Birthday to the execs at Creative Labs, but it could also be the sweet amped-up sound of the AE-9. The flagship device comes with a breakout Audio Control Module which has a feature I’ve never seen on a consumer sound card – an XLR microphone input with +48V phantom power and a built-in amp.

That’s big news, as the rise in livestreaming has pushed more gamers to buy external mixers to up their audio game. Now they can get all the features they need from one sound card, saving money (and desk space). Creative didn’t stop there with the mic though, with the all-new ClearLine tech that keeps the microphone path clear from interference.

Other specs include:

  • ESS 9038 SABRE-class DAC that has 32-bit, 384 KHz sampling
  • Swappable op-amps for tuning the sound characteristics to your personal tastes

The only thing? It’s $349.99. That won’t be sweet music to your ears, but then everything else will be.

The Sound Blaster AE-7 is no less capable

The little brother of the range is still a performer in its own right. For $229.99 you’ll get the benefits of Sound Blaster’s new 5.1 and 7.1 virtualizations, Dolby Digital Live encoding, and DTS Connect. Other goodies include:

  • ESS SABRE-class 9018 DAC with 32-bit, 384 KHz sampling
  • A THD of 0.0001-percent, beating the AE-5 we loved last year
  • A new Audio Control Module for physical controls

Upgrade your sound – for less

Creative also wants to thank those who have supported them over the 30 years of its life so far. There’s a new promo giving existing Sound Blaster owners 15-percent off all new products launched between now and the end of the year. Check details at creative.com/upgrade.

What do you think? Interested in these new offerings from Creative? Let us know down below in the comments or carry the discussion over to our Twitter or Facebook.

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Maker, meme-r, and unabashed geek with nearly half a decade of blogging experience at KnowTechie, SlashGear and XDA Developers. If it runs on electricity (or even if it doesn't), Joe probably has one around his office somewhere, with particular focus in gadgetry and handheld gaming. Shoot him an email at joe@knowtechie.com.

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