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Soundblaster Live! 24-bit USB External Setup

65530 Views 114 Replies 30 Participants Last post by  JohnM
REW (SB Live! 24-bit external)


I have a Creative 24 bit external soundcard but have been unable to calibrate it despite messing with all the various settings there was always some feedback. The only way I can get a normal looking curve was to use the internal card as output and the external card as input. This gave me a calibration curve similar to that for an internal card.
I then tried a sweep for the sub but it seems with limited success :scratch:
I've spent all day on this and achieving very little so far. Can anyone help?

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I guess you mean the SoundBlaster Live! 24-bit External USB card.
  • Ensure in the Creative Speaker Settings that the "Digital Output Only" box is not checked.

  • Ensure CMSS is off (green CMSS LED off - push the button on the front of the unit to turn it off if it is on).
  • Select Line In/Mic In as the Rec source in the Creative Surround mixer.
  • In the Creative surround Mixer Source panel ensure Wave is not muted, Line-In/Mic-In is muted.

  • Ensure monitoring is off (click the + by the Line In/mic In symbol in the Source panel and ensure Monitor is not checked in the Advanced Controls dialogue this pops up (or run the Creative Device Control program and ensure Enable Monitoring not checked).
  • In the Creative Device Control program set the Output Audio Quality to 48kHz, 16 bits and ensure you select 48kHz as the sample rate in REW.

  • In the Creative EAX Console make sure Audio Effects is not enabled, Equalizer is not enabled etc.
  • If a dialogue pops up that says to hear audio you must enable monitoring, click Cancel on the dialog.
  • By default the Wizard sets the output level to 0.5 while setting measurement level, for the SB Live! it is typically better to set output level to 1.000, otherwise can struggle to get sufficient input level - if you find this, use the Master Control in the Creative Surround Mixer to increase the volume to 100% at the point in Setting Measurement Level where the Wizard pops up a message saying that it is about to generate a pink noise signal at -20dB
Hope that helps
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Regarding the output volume, when you exit REW it will be restored to the level it was at when REW started up. It will stay at 100% while REW is running (unless you alter it elsewhere).

The default for the sweep is to cover the range from 20Hz to 200Hz, you can change this in the boxes below the Automatic Measurement button.

When setting the target level make sure the speaker type on the tab you are using corresponds to the speaker you are measuring, i.e. it should be set to Subwoofer when measuring the sub.

Did you hear the sweep when doing the test? It is a tone that starts out very low and gradually rises in frequency over the few seconds of the measurement, if you didn't hear it then start looking at the connections to your sub. If you hear the tone OK and you could see your SPL meter needle reacting then check the connections from the SPL meter and that the channel selected in the SPL Meter box (below the red Record button) corresponds to the input you are using. If the meter needle did not react check that it is set to the correct range (usually 80dB).
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I have set up my Live 24 as instructed in this thread, but when I select the input in REW, Line In is not shown. I only have Microphone and What U Hear. Why is Line In not an option?
Because the SB Live 24 uses the same input channel for both mic and line in which it labels MICROPHONE, the unit detects which is connected. Select the input called MICROPHONE in REW.
Yes, use the L/R outputs. You will only be able to send signals to the left & right speakers and sub, I don't believe the Denon has any facility to route a signal from the L/R input to another speaker. If the Denon has bypass inputs for all speakers you could connect the REW signals to the various bypass inputs in turn and measure other speakers that way, but bass management may not be applied to the bypass inputs.
Set the Sweep Level to -12dB, -40dB is a very low level at which to perform the test.
I have turned up the speakers (output) and microphone (input) to 100%, but still the input ("right channel") is about 12db below the output.
That's close enough. Also worth taking a quick look at this thread for SB live setup.
I ran the soundcard calibration and took a measurement. The SPL curve looks OK. But it seems like something funny seems to going on with the phase. Attached is the measurement file.
The SB Live! is inverting the signal, which is why the phase is sitting around -180 / +180 degrees instead of around zero (phase is cyclic, +180 and -180 are the same point). Tick the 'Invert' box below 'Input Options' in the REW Soundcard Preferences to correct it.
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