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Creative X-Fi drivers restore Dolby Digital decoding in Windows Vista

by Parm Mann on 1 August 2008, 10:16

Tags: Creative

Quick Link: HEXUS.net/qaomv

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547 days after the launch of Microsoft's flagship operating system Windows Vista, Creative has finally launched working drivers for its X-Fi range of sound cards.

The release, version 2.18.004, restores Dolby Digital and DTS for a variety of X-Fi products that featured the capability under Windows XP.

Though the launch will be welcome news to many of Creative's customers, it won't satisfy them all. The new driver supports most of Creative's X-Fi sound cards, but there's no mention of support for Creative's range-topping X-Fi Titanium.

Having been available for a little over 24 hours, many customers have reported various other problems over at the official Creative support forums.

The latest drivers are available from support.creative.com, and the release notes for the latest release are as follows:

Filename: SBXF_PCDRV_LB_2_18_0004.exe

This download is a driver providing Microsoft® Windows Vista® and Windows® XP support for Creative Sound Blaster® X-Fi™ series of audio devices. For more details, read the rest of this web release note.

This download supports the following audio devices only:

  • Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi XtremeGamer Fatal1ty® Professional Series
  • Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi Platinum Fatal1ty Champion Series
  • Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi XtremeMusic
  • Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi XtremeGamer
  • Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi Platinum
  • Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi Fatal1ty
  • Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi Elite Pro 
  • Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi

Added Features:
To find out the Product ID of your audio device and if it supports the following features in Windows XP, click here.
For systems using Windows Vista

  • Dolby® Digital and DTS® decode re-established for sound cards that included decoding in their Windows XP drivers (Not applicable for products that included a 3rd party software DVD player license in the package).
  • DVD-Audio playback re-established for sound cards that included the application in their Windows XP software suite (For Windows Vista 32-bit only).
    Requires the latest Creative MediaSource DVD-Audio Player software. Click here to download. 

Fixes:

  • Resolves issue of system crash when switching to an unsupported sampling rate in Audio Creation Mode while Dolby Digital Live is enabled.

Requirements:

  • Windows Vista 64-bit, Windows Vista 32-bit, Windows XP Professional x64 Edition, Windows XP Service Pack 2 (SP2), Windows XP Media Center Edition (MCE) 2005 or Windows XP MCE 2004
  • Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi audio devices listed above

Notes:

  • Do not install this driver for Sound Blaster X-Fi Xtreme Audio.
  • To install this driver
    1. Download the file onto your local hard disk.
    2. Double-click the downloaded file.
    3. Follow the instructions on the screen.


HEXUS Forums :: 8 Comments

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Some features for 32 bit only, users submitting issues and still no DDL.

Glad I didn't hold out for these drivers ;)
So basically if you have a Creative card stick to XP. If you dont you can move to Vista without all the nonsense.

Thankfully I'm still on XP. However, If Asus were doing a desktop control unit addon I'd move to them in a heart beat. Creative drivers have always been a problem. It was the same when the transition from 9x to XP happened. I remember it very clearly as I was on their newsgroups nearly every other day.
ditto trying to download a 20mb file via dialup


ive supported creative from the first sound blaster IRQ 5 DMA1 Port 220 and 300 for the midi.

there must be other cards out there that don't cause the same issues. but we always seem to stick with what we know
shaithis
Some features for 32 bit only, users submitting issues and still no DDL.

Glad I didn't hold out for these drivers ;)

The Creative X-Fi has never had DDL and its doubtful they will, considering the extra licensing costs that they would need to pay.
Agent
The Creative X-Fi has never had DDL and its doubtful they will, considering the extra licensing costs that they would need to pay.
The X-Fi Titanium apparently does DDL, which, wait for it… requires activation over the internet. You need to activate a sound card… (well, the DDL part of it, be it drivers, app or even the card itself).

I installed these yesterday (just happened to check as I was updating various stuff) and these seem to be the first X-Fi drivers for Vista x64 which just seem to work for me. It's only taken, what… 2 years (and still missing bits).

If the Prelude wasn't X-Fi based, so presumably hampered by the same lax approach to drivers by Creative, I'd buy that on my next sound card upgrade. As it is, I think I'll be another to switch over to ASUS.