Do AC97 based PCI sound cards exist?

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SomeGuy
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Do AC97 based PCI sound cards exist?

Post by SomeGuy »

I was just wondering if anyone knows if there are any PCI sound cards based on the Realtek AC97 sound chip. Since this is what Virtual Box emulates, and seems to be well supported in ReactOS, I thought it would be interesting to try AC97 on real hardware if possible.

Although, from my googling around it looks as if Realtek AC97 chips are only built on to motherboards, and not available as a standalone product. There is a StarTech PCI card that has "AC97" in its name, but that uses a C-Media chipset. No idea if they are compatible in any way, but it doesn't seem like it would be.

Any ideas?

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EmuandCo
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Re: Do AC97 based PCI sound cards exist?

Post by EmuandCo »

Many vendors made ac97 cards, including c-media
ReactOS is still in alpha stage, meaning it is not feature-complete and is recommended only for evaluation and testing purposes.

PurpleGurl
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Re: Do AC97 based PCI sound cards exist?

Post by PurpleGurl »

SomeGuy wrote:I was just wondering if anyone knows if there are any PCI sound cards based on the Realtek AC97 sound chip. Since this is what Virtual Box emulates, and seems to be well supported in ReactOS, I thought it would be interesting to try AC97 on real hardware if possible.

Although, from my googling around it looks as if Realtek AC97 chips are only built on to motherboards, and not available as a standalone product. There is a StarTech PCI card that has "AC97" in its name, but that uses a C-Media chipset. No idea if they are compatible in any way, but it doesn't seem like it would be.

Any ideas?

My motherboard is an Asus board with the NVidia chipset, and has C-Media AC97. It is tied on-board to the USB architecture. So to test it, Reactos would need to have USB support. I think we are almost there.

I was reading a bit. The reason it is most common on motherboards is because they rely on a DC97 controller and that is built into the chipset (traditionally the southbridge chip, though new boards call the SB chip the northbridge chip since the modern CPUs have their own NB and the chipsets that use them often rename their SB chip). I guess on my system, NVidia provides the DC97 support in the chipset, and they use a C-Media AC97 chip to provide the rest of the AC97 support.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AC97

AC97 is just a standard, like the ATA commands, for instance. So each chipset that uses this will use their own hardware implementation, but the software end should be compatible with the standards.

We probably should look into Azalia support too. That is Intel's hi-def audio standard that supersedes AC97.

SomeGuy
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Re: Do AC97 based PCI sound cards exist?

Post by SomeGuy »

AC97 is just a standard, like the ATA commands, for instance. So each chipset that uses this will use their own hardware implementation, but the software end should be compatible with the standards.
Ah, so I guess the more specific question then is, will the "AC97" driver posted for ReactOS under VirtualBox work with any specific add-on PCI sound card on real hardware?

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EmuandCo
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Re: Do AC97 based PCI sound cards exist?

Post by EmuandCo »

PurpleGurl wrote:It is tied on-board to the USB architecture. So to test it, Reactos would need to have USB support. I think we are almost there
Quite new for me that this chip is not attatched on a pci or pcie x1. Btw, you should refresh your knowledge of nb and sb chips... what you explain us here is.... bullshit :twisted: Nevermind, but thats what it is ^^
ReactOS is still in alpha stage, meaning it is not feature-complete and is recommended only for evaluation and testing purposes.

Z98
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Re: Do AC97 based PCI sound cards exist?

Post by Z98 »

Daniel, civility rule applies to you as well. Just as it's other moderator's jobs to warn me if I overstep.

nicamarvin2005
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Re: Do AC97 based PCI sound cards exist?

Post by nicamarvin2005 »

bullshit .......
I think we need a Super Mod, I propose Z28 for the JoB... 8-)

jcalvarez
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Re: Do AC97 based PCI sound cards exist?

Post by jcalvarez »

I vote for "Z80" :)

livestrong2109
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Re: Do AC97 based PCI sound cards exist?

Post by livestrong2109 »

You guys want to just stay on topic... Instead of demanding a Super Mod... (btw i too nominate Z80... god help me..! :roll: )

Q. Do AC97 based PCI sound cards exist?

A. Yes
- There are PCI cards using AC97 chipsets manufactured by VIA and produced through MSI. One example is the Msi KT3 Ultra



Hope that answers your question... BTW I googled that in 20 sec try it some time..! :ugeek:
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PurpleGurl
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Re: Do AC97 based PCI sound cards exist?

Post by PurpleGurl »

EmuandCo wrote:
PurpleGurl wrote:It is tied on-board to the USB architecture. So to test it, Reactos would need to have USB support. I think we are almost there
Quite new for me that this chip is not attatched on a pci or pcie x1. Btw, you should refresh your knowledge of nb and sb chips... what you explain us here is.... bullshit :twisted: Nevermind, but thats what it is ^^
Actually, I am right. I build PCs and I assembled this one. The DC97 portion is in the bridge chip on my PC. The AC97 portion is attached on-board through the USB. It is in my CMOS settings under USB configurationg and there is a setting to Enable/Disable CMedia USB Sound. That is what it says and where it is found. And when I disable the USB settings, the sound setting gets disabled and grayed out, and there is no sound in Windows or Reactos that way. I will try digging up the technical specs.

My motherboard is ASUS M2N-E SLI.

Here is my motherboard manual:
http://dlcdnet.asus.com/pub/ASUS/mb/soc ... -e_sli.pdf

Scroll to 4-31 and you will see the setting my board has:

Onboard USB Audio[Enabled]
Enable or Disable Onboard USB Audio.
Configuration options: [Enabled] [Disabled]

This is what AC97 is and how it works:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AC97

By the way, the Northbridge is the memory controller. On all the new Athlon and Phenom processors, the NB is in the CPU. It is faster that way. AMD now calls the Southbridge (what connects between the Northbridge and most of the I/O, including mouse, keyboard, FDC, ATA, SATA, PCI/PCI-E, USB) the Northbridge. That is how my machine is, just a single bridge chip.

Per AMD:
http://www.amd.com/us/products/desktop/ ... tures.aspx

If you look, it says my X2 processor has an "Integrated DDR2 memory controller." That circuitry used to be on motherboards and known as the Northbridge. The Southbridge connected to it and handled all the IO stuff. The pair together was known as the chipset. Intel calls the SB the "I/O Controller Hub." Intel has moved the NB functions to the CPU as well as of the Sandy Bridge architecture.

Per Wikipedia:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Northbridge_(computing)
"The northbridge has historically been one of the two chips in the core logic chipset on a PC motherboard, the other being the southbridge. Increasingly these functions have migrated to the CPU chip itself, beginning with memory and graphics controllers."

If you drop to Recent Developments on that page, you will see what I was talking about, and that is what my motherboard is like.

I apologize for being Off-Topic. I think the real question is if any Realtek AC97 cards existed. Yes, the OP asked about AC97 in the title, but specified Realtek in the text.

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