Earlier this week we contacted Creative with the hope of getting to the bottom of the bizarre frequency response behavior we observed with RightMark Audio Analyzer and Windows Vista when testing for our Xonar DX review. We had been following driver control panel settings Creative provided when it first released the X-Fi audio processor, but additional tweaking is required when running the X-Fi in Microsoft’s latest operating system. These Vista-specific tweaks aren’t so much new as they are a subset of the Creative Audio Console settings that must also be applied to Vista’s own audio control panel. This additional audio control panel didn’t exist in Windows XP, and it appears that settings defined in the X-Fi’s driver control panel don’t necessarily override what’s set in Vista’s control panel.
We’ve re-tested the X-Fi XtremeMusic with the Vista audio settings defined by Creative, and frequency response is much improved in RightMark Audio Analyzer. The updated results have been added to the Xonar DX review, although they don’t change our overall impressions of the card.