I'm traveling back and forth between two cities. To save cost, I rent a flat instead of sleeping in hotels. It is not feasible for me to set up a "full gaming rig" at my flat, but recently I just bought a Lenovo B460 - a laptop with GeForce 310M and Windows XP support! The GeForce 310M ain't probably much for newest games, but I can re-live old games with full AA and good frame rate. Yeah!
However, many old games like MDK 2 and Neverwinter Nights support EAX, so I'm interested to buy EAX-capable USB sound cards. Right now I'm interested in Asus Xonar U3, because:
a) the spec says it emulates EAX 5.0.
b) it also supports Dolby Virtual Speakers. In my flat, I already have a pair of bookshelf speakers. Right now, I don't have the time to set up 5.1 home theater monitors in my flat. So I want to be able to hear virtual surround from my stereo speakers.
c) while it doesn't have multi-channel analog output, it supports real-time multi-channel digital audio encoding, so I can still upgrade to 5.1 setups later if time permits.
Short question: with Asus Xonar U3, will I be able to enjoy virtual 3D sound on games like Neverwinter Nights through my stereo speakers?
(1) does the Dolby Virtual Speakers work with games' 3D sound, or does it only work with movies?
(2) since I'm playing old games, how backward compatible is the Xonar U3's EAX 5.0 emulation with older games? Does it emulate, for example, EAX 1 or EAX 2?
(3) how good is Dolby Virtual Speakers on stereo speakers instead of headphones?
(4) how about Creative X-Fi USB? Considering my situation (old games, stereo speakers), which one is better choice?