ESI AUDIOTRAK Prodigy 7.1 HiFi User`s guide

192 kHz 7.1 HiFi Surround Audio Interface
User’s Guide
AUDIOTRAK - Copyright © 2006 - 2007
Revision 2, August 2007
www.audiotrak.net
AUDIOTRAK
Prodigy 7.1 HiFi
INDEX
1. Introduction.................................................................................................................................. 4
2. What’s in the box ......................................................................................................................... 4
3. Key Features................................................................................................................................. 4
4. System Requirements .................................................................................................................. 5
5. Connectors .................................................................................................................................... 5
6. Hardware Installation ................................................................................................................. 6
7. Software Installation.................................................................................................................... 8
8. Prodigy 7.1 HiFi Control Panel ................................................................................................ 10
9. DirectWIRE 3.0.......................................................................................................................... 15
10. Application Setup..................................................................................................................... 18
11. General Information ................................................................................................................ 19
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1. Introduction
Thank you for choosing the AUDIOTRAK Prodigy 7.1 HiFi.
Prodigy 7.1 HiFi is an extremely powerful PCI multimedia digital audio interface ideal for Home
Theater PCs, designed to satisfy both beginners and professionals looking for high quality digital
audio solutions. Its unique design makes Prodigy 7.1 HiFi different from many other consumer
sound cards, providing excellent audio quality, perfect for music and multimedia enthusiasts, game
players and even for hobby musicians for home recording on a (semi-)professional level.
2. What’s in the box
Your Prodigy 7.1 HiFi package contains the following:
- Prodigy 7.1 HiFi PCI card
- 15pin D-SUB breakout cable with 1/8" connectors
- this manual
- Windows driver software CD
3. Key Features
Prodigy 7.1 HiFi is based on the powerful VIA Envy24HT (ICE1724) audio controller and the
Wolfson WM8776 / 8766 audio codecs, providing 2, 4, 6 (5.1) and 8 (7.1) channel support as well
as optical digital I/O with 24bit/196kHz support.
To provide stable high level output signals, Prodigy 7.1 HiFi uses a fine selection of high quality
capacitors from Sanyo (SP series) and from Nichicon (up to 2200uF RU series / Nichicon ES series)
to optimize the power supply of the analog and digital components on the card and to optimize the
audio output quality. The special design of Prodigy 7.1 HiFi with its 4 layer PCB cuts off
electromagnetic waves from the internals of the PC – there won’t be problems with an unstable
power supply caused by the systems CPU or the HDD.
A separation between the analog and the digital part using an aluminium cover that shields the
sound against electromagnetic waves is a major part of the Prodigy 7.1 HiFi design. Even better, the
OpAmps on the card are installed on sockets, providing the possibility to change them to the users
preference.
The Prodigy 7.1 HiFi driver software is based on the EWDM standard from pro audio manufacturer
ESI providing perfect compatibility with Windows 2000 / XP / 2003 / Vista, offering high
performance and low latency operation with all important famous audio applications. The
DirectWIRE 3.0 and Advanced NSP (Native Sound Processing) support in the driver allows you to
virtually patch all your digital audio sources internally between various different software
applications running at the same time and use effect plugins simultaneously. Audio streams can be
transferred between different audio applications, which is especially great when using software
effects, synthesizers or virtual instruments. The driver also includes support for the 3D technologies
from QSound Labs in Canada: Q3D/QEM, QMSS, QRumble, QSizzle, QExpaner, QEQ and
QNormalize.
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4. System Requirements
Prodigy 7.1 HiFi is a high end multimedia digital audio interface with many different functions and
not just a simple sound card. Even though Prodigy 7.1 HiFi does not depend very much on the
available CPU in your system, it is important that the computer meets the minimum system
requirements. A faster CPU, faster HDD and more memory is generally recommended.
Minimum System Requirements
- at least Intel Pentium III or equivalent AMD CPU
- motherboard with Intel or VIA chipset, or 100% compatible
- at least 256MB of RAM
- one available PCI slot
- Microsoft Windows 2000, Windows XP, Windows 2003 or Windows Vista operating system
- Ultra DMA66/100 and 5400rpm hard disk drive
- active speakers or speakers with powered amplifier
5. Connectors
1) Stereo Line Output (left / right), provides the main output signal via RCA connectors
2) Microphone Input (mono 1/8", pink), for dynamic and electret microphones
3) Analog Output 7/8 (stereo 1/8", yellow), provides typically the Backgr. Surround signal
4) Analog Output 5/6 (stereo 1/8", black), provides typically the Center/Woofer signal
5) Analog Output 3/4 (stereo 1/8", orange), provides typically the Rear left/right signal
6) Analog Output 1/2 (stereo 1/8", green), provides the main Front left/right signal
7) Line In, analog input connector (stereo 1/8", blue), the main input
8) S/PDIF Digital In and Output, via Toslink connectors
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6. Hardware Installation
Prodigy 7.1 HiFi and other components in the computer could easily be damaged by electrical
shocks. You should use an anti-static device that can discharge the static electricity of your body to
avoid potential static damage to the cards.
The Prodigy 7.1 HiFi card is shipped in an anti-static plastic pouch to protect it from static
electricity - do not open the pouch before you install the card.
1. Turn off the computer power and remove the power cable from your computer power supply.
Figure 1. Disconnecting the Power Cord
2. Refer to your computer user’s manual and remove the computer cover. Make sure that you have
an available PCI slot on your motherboard to install the Prodigy 7.1 HiFi.
Figure 2. Removing the computer cover
To avoid possible static shock damage to the computer parts, discharge it by touching the computer
case or something grounded. We recommend you use an anti-static device such as an anti-static
wristband.
When holding the Prodigy 7.1 HiFi card, touch only the guide or the edge of card. Do not grab the
card by the board or connector.
3. Find an empty PCI slot on the motherboard
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Figure 3. Typical PC Motherboard Slot Configuration
Figure 4. Removing the PCI Slot faceplate
If the PCI slot is covered by a faceplate, you can remove it by removing the screw holding it in
place or by prying it off with a screwdriver.
Insert the Prodigy 7.1 HiFi card into the PCI slot, firmly pushing the card into the slot until it is
seated securely. Replace the screw, and tighten it.
Figure 5. Prodigy 7.1 HiFi installed in a PCI slot
4. Close the computer case.
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5. Now it’s time to connect the D-SUB breakout cable to the 15pin D-SUB connector. Make sure it
is connected properly.
7. Software Installation
After completing the hardware installation, you need to install the Windows driver. The installation
steps in the different versions of Windows vary, but they are typically very similar. This text refers
to Windows XP.
Note: Depending on your system, you may need the Windows installation CD.
Note: Please make sure that you have installed a recent version of the chipset drivers and patches provided
by your mainboard manufacturer for your mainboard. It is important that this is done before you install the
Prodigy 7.1 HiFi drivers. One way to check this is to see if there are any unknown devices listed in Device
Manager before you install the Prodigy 7.1 HiFi hardware.
1. Turn on your computer. Windows will automatically detect a new device and prompt you with
Found New Hardware Wizard screen. Choose Cancel. Prodigy 7.1 HiFi comes with an automated
installation program that does not require the Hardware Wizard from Windows.
2. After that, open the Windows Explorer or go to Start > Run and Browse to find the driver’s
installer location. For example, it is under E:\AUDIOTRAK\PRODIGY71HIFI, if E: is your CDROM drive. There you will find a program called Setup_Prodigy71HiFi_vX_XX_XP2KME98.exe
(where X_XX is the driver version number) that you need to launch. Follow the instructions on
screen.
3. During installation in Windows 2000 and Windows XP, you will be prompted with a message
warning once or several times that the driver software has not passed Windows Logo testing. Select
Continue Anyway and proceed with the installation. The driver is completely tested and verified by
AUDIOTRAK and safe to use.
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4. After you complete the driver installation (by following all the instructions on screen), you
should restart your computer.
5. After restarting Windows, you will see the Prodigy 7.1 HiFi control panel icon in your system
tray (lower right corner of your desktop). Click on the icon to open the Prodigy 7.1 HiFi control
panel.
6. Go to Device Manager, check the devices under ‘Sound, video and game controllers’. You will
see the Prodigy 7.1 HiFi, Prodigy 7.1 HiFi Controller and QVE 96-24 (WDM) devices if you have
completed the installation process correctly. Your Prodigy 7.1 HiFi is ready to use.
7. Go to Control Panel → Sounds and Audio Device Properties → Audio.
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You can choose each stereo device or multi channel device for your use as Default device on Sound
playback or Sound recording which will be used as default in your audio applications.
8. Prodigy 7.1 HiFi Control Panel
The Prodigy 7.1 HiFi driver software provides a simple yet powerful interface with your computer.
The Prodigy 7.1 HiFi driver provides two operation modes. The normal Prodigy 7.1 HiFi operation
is used for digital recording and normal audio output. The other mode QVE96-24 is based on the
3D sound effect QSound Engine for multi surround sound or gaming. The control panel gives you
control over both driver functions. The following table compares the two different operation modes:
The Prodigy 7.1 HiFi control panel is installed in your system when you complete the driver
installation. To open the panel, double click the red AUDIOTRAK icon in the system tray. While
the Prodigy 7.1 HiFi control panel offers you complete control over various functions, you may find
that the default settings work just fine for your needs. Just to be safe, though, we’ll cover all the
features of the panel in detail.
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The Prodigy 7.1 HiFi control panel features a menu area for configuration:
1. Main
You can control input and output on the MAIN panel. It is also the default screen you see when you
first launch the panel. Basic functions of Prodigy 7.1 HiFi are controlled from this screen.
1) Input: You can change the input level on channels 1/2 by clicking and dragging the fader bar.
The number on the bottom shows the relative amount in dB. Clicking this number enables you to
mute the channel. And you can choose input level MIC or LINE.
2) Output: You can change the output level on all channels by clicking and dragging the fader bar.
The number on the bottom shows the relative amount in dB. Clicking this number enables you to
mute the channel. And you can choose output monitoring from speaker level to output 1/2.
3) WAV·MAS: You can adjust all input / output monitoring levels by clicking and dragging the
fader in the master control panel. Again the number on the bottom shows you the relative
monitoring level in %. Clicking this number enables you to mute all channels.
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Note: MAS (Master) refers to the actual audio output level. WAV (Wave) refers to the actual
playback of (digital PCM) audio data.
4) Digital: It shows digital output signal monitor.
5) M-Clock: Shows the Master Clock of the digital output signal frequency.
6) S.R: Shows the sampling rate. When you click “AUTO” then the setting changes to “LOCK” for
fixed sample rate. The sample rates will be converted during playback when the “LOCK” setting is
active. In QSound mode (QVE 96-24), there is only support for 44.1kHz, 48kHz and 96kHz
2. QSound
You can control QSound® Virtual Engine™ QVE setting on “QSound” tab. QVE provides a full
suite of spatial enhancements for stereo and surround input formats and output configurations.
Applying expansion, virtualization, or surround synthesis as appropriate, QVE automatically
produces the maximum spatial impact possible from every source/output combination. If you want
to use QSound then you must change the audio driver mode to QVE 96-24.
a) QSound Multi Speaker System (QMSS™): It is for multi-channel synthesis from mono and
stereo content* - Outputs: 3, 4 and 5.1-channel speaker systems
QXpander™: It is for mono-to-3D and stereo-to-3D stereo sound stage synthesis and enhancement*
- Outputs: headphones or stereo speakers.
b) QSizzle™, c) QRumble™: It is for Dynamic spectral emphasis. Especially valuable for restoring
compressed audio. (MP3, internet broadcast etc.) - Outputs: all configurations
d) QNormalize: It is for Automatic volume leveling - Outputs: all configurations
* also effective for ambient and music tracks within video games
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3. Speakers
a) Input Gain fader: It is for controlling Input gain when you using 3D effect
b) Select Output Mode: You can select output mode which you want.
c) Test Speakers: You can test whole speakers for proper installation.
4. QEM
QSound Environmental Modeling (QEM™) is an acoustic environment simulation. Outputs are
headphones, 2 to 5.1-channel speaker systems.
a) QSound Environmental Modeling: You can select your acoustic environment simulation from the
choices
b) Intensity: The intensity control for QEM™
5. Equalizer
The QSound Equalizer.
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a) EQ On: The On/Off switch for the EQ effect.
6. QEM
QSound Environmental Modeling (QEM™) on/off.
7. QSizzle
QSizzle™ on/off.
8. QRumble™
QRumble™ on/off.
9. QNormalize
QNormalize on/off.
10. 3D effect
QMSS and QXpander, QRumble™ on/off.
11. QRumble™
QRumble™ panel on/off.
12. DirectWIRE 3.0
Clicking this menu will open the DirectWIRE 3.0 screen. DirectWIRE 3.0 is a unique feature of the
EWDM driver that transfers digital audio data internally within different applications. MME, MultiMME, ASIO and GSIF indicate the different driver interfaces supported by Prodigy 7.1 HiFi. The
numbers along the column designate the channel number of the inputs and outputs. Please refer to
Section 9. DirectWIRE 3.0 in this manual for more detailed information.
13. QSound
If you want to enable the QSound mode, you must turn it on by clicking in the Q logo.
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14. Config
1) Mouse Wheel: Configures the mouse wheel for volume change adjustment. Default value is
±1.5dB per step. You can configure the steps to your preference.
2) Latency: Configures the latency setting for Prodigy 7.1 HiFi. Generally, for multi-track
recording we recommend higher latency for stability. For software synthesizers and mastering
software, we recommend lower latency. The optimal latency setting will depend on your application
and your computer system.
3) Digital Monitor: Digital monitoring from Analog input signal. And you can send S/PDIF digital
signal from analog input.
4) Always On Top: This enables the Prodigy 7.1 HiFi control panel to be always displayed on the
top.
5) Factory Default: Allows you to revert back to the factory default setting for all configurations.
6) MME Panel: Shows the Windows MME sound control panel.
7) Input Gain -3dB: Lowers -3dB on input gain for reducing clipping noise on 3. Speaker tab when
you use excessive effect on QSound.
8) Use only default device: You can control “Use only default device” on “Sound and Audio
devices properties”
9) Clone 4-way from out1,2: This enables a function to copy the same signal from playback
channels 1,2 to all output/playback channels.
15. File
You can save the panel settings or load them in this pull down menu.
9. DirectWIRE 3.0
1. What is DirectWIRE?
DirectWIRE is a 100% purely digital wire!
DirectWIRE is a driver technology, developed by from pro audio manufacturer ESI, which can be
used for routing audio streams internally within applications using EWDM Audio/MIDI drivers,
exclusively available for ESI and AUDIOTRAK.
With the DirectWIRE router, an application can record from other application’s audio outputs
without external wiring or any loss of data when they are running at the same time.
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DirectWIRE also allows you to easily rip any audio stream in real time by transferring data thru
DirectWIRE from MP3s, live On-line Broadcast and On-demand content, and more.
2. DirectWIRE Control Panel
Click on DirectWIRE on the Prodigy 7.1 HiFi control panel. The DirectWIRE panel window as
shown below will appear.
a) the INPUT column is a new feature of DirectWIRE 3.0. It's used to route signals from the card's
hardware inputs. On Prodigy 7.1 HiFi, the inputs 1 to 8 are identical to the left and right channels of
the analog input signal.
b) the MME column represents general application's I/O, for example from programs like
WinAmp, WaveLab (non ASIO mode) or Audition.
c) the WDM column represents Multi-MME application’s I/O, for example from programs like
SONAR (WDM/KS mode), PowerDVD, WinDVD, etc.
d) the ASIO column represents ASIO application’s I/O, for example from programs like Cubase,
Logic, Reason, Nuendo, SONAR (in ASIO mode) or Samplitude.
e) the GSIF column represents GSIF applications like GigaStudio.
f) the numbers in the column on the left represent the number of each input or output port. You can
patch the virtual cables from one point to another by draging your mouse.
3. DirectWIRE Examples
Note: Please set up DirectWIRE first before starting your audio applications.
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1) recording of a stereo mix for internet broadcasting with WinAMP
If you set up DirectWIRE like shown, you can record a mix between a microphone signal and music
(e.g. MP3) playback from WinAmp. If you want to record/broadcast only the MP3-Playback,
disconnect the input lines.
2) internal recording: you can record all WDM playback signals from your PC
3) multi channel recording from DVD or DivX playback
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4) recording from ASIO input
5) recording ASIO playback in a WDM application
6) recording from GigaStudio (GSIF) to Cubase (ASIO)
10. Application Setup
Prodigy 7.1 HiFi is a premium multimedia audio device for (semi-)professional audio. It is simple
to configure Prodigy 7.1 HiFi for use in games, (semi-)professional audio applications and media
applications (e.g. for DVD surround sound). However, every application has its own individual
settings so it is important to check the individual software manual for the audio applications you are
using.
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Windows Multimedia Setup
To configure Prodigy 7.1 HiFi for all normal Windows multimedia applications go to Control Panel
→ Sounds and Audio Device Properties → Audio and select “Prodigy 7.1 HiFi” as the preferred
playback device. As long as you are not changing any setting inside your audio applications, they
will playback all audio signals via Prodigy 7.1 HiFi now. Most applications have individual setup
options as well however.
5.1 and 7.1 Surround Sound for DVD Player Applications
To configure Prodigy 7.1 HiFi for 5.1 or 7.1 channel surround sound DVD player applications, go
to Control Panel → Sounds and Audio Device Properties → Audio and select “Prodigy 7.1 HiFi” as
the preferred playback device.
Note: You must check double check that the DMA modus is enabled on your DVD-ROM drive in order to
have audio playback without clicks and crackles when playing DVD or CD content.
Set speaker configurations in your software DVD player to “6 Speaker”, “5.1 speakers” or “8
Speaker” or “7.1 speakers”, depending on the software you are using. The following table shows a
typical 5.1 speaker setup:
Please note that this order may be different depending on the Windows version you are using and
depending on the DVD playback software that is used.
Please also keep in mind that many DVD titles only have content for 6 audio channels (5.1) rather
than 8 (7.1) – because of that, it might be better or required to setup your playback software for 6
speakers only.
11. General Information
Trademarks
ESI, AUDIOTRAK and Prodigy, and Prodigy 7.1 HiFi are trademarks of Ego Systems Inc., ESI
Audiotechnik GmbH and RIDI multimedia GmbH. Windows is a trademark of Microsoft
Corporation. Other product and brand names are trademarks or registered trademarks of their
respective companies.
The FCC and CE Regulation Warning
This device complies with Part 15 of the FCC Rules. Operation is subject to the following two
conditions : (1) this device may not cause harmful interference, and (2) this device must accept any
interference received, including interference that may cause undesired operation. Caution : Any
changes or modifications in construction of this device with are not expressly approved by the party
responsible for compliance, could void the user's authority to operate equipment.
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Note: This equipment has been tested and found to comply with the limits for a Class A digital
device, pursuant to Part 15 of the FCC Rules. These limits are designed to provide reasonable
protection against harmful interference when the equipment is operated in a commercial
environment. This equipment generates, uses, and can radiate radio frequency energy and, if not
installed and used in accordance with the instruction manual, may cause harmful interference to
radio communications. Operation of this equipment in a residential area is likely to cause harmful
interference in which case the user will be required to correct the interference at his own expense. If
necessary, consult an experienced radio/television technician for additional suggestions.
Correspondence
For technical support inquiries, contact your nearest dealer, local distributor or AUDIOTRAK
support online at www.audiotrak.net.
Disclaimer
All features and specifications subject to change without notice.
Parts of this manual are continually being updated. Please check our web site www.audiotrak.net
occasionally for the most recent update information.
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