Although not nearly as popular as offerings from Creative, sound cards and motherboards outfitted with VIA's Vinyl audio chips are still looming around the market. VIA now tells us it has teamed up with audio processing firm QSound Labs to add "QHD" support to its Vinyl codecs and controllers. Support is available for Windows Vista-based PCs and laptops, the firm says.
QSound's QHD is a set of processing algorithms designed to enhance sound for home theater systems, PCs, and cars. The QHD suite includes QXpander, which emulates a 3D sound stage on stereo speakers or earphones; QVerb, which generates reverb effects; as well as QSizzle and QRumble, which respectively enhance mid-/high- and low-frequency sounds. Also in the QHD suite is QLimiter, which QSound says is an anti-saturation dynamic range controller that "handles any combination of signals and extreme effects settings, eliminating output distortion with surprisingly little CPU bandwidth."