Do I Need an Additional Sound Card in a PC Build?

Do I need an additional sound card in a PC build? Over time, sound cards have become essential parts of personal computers. They were always included on computer motherboards as time went on. They are tools that help relay audio from and to PCs to speakers, headphones, and other audio equipment. PCs are used for various tasks, including music production, video displays, game development, and video and audio editing. They are also essential for voice-over-IP and teleconferencing.

Regarding professionalism and better audio, the value of sound cards cannot be overstated. Indeed, excellent audio hardware components (chips) are built into motherboards, but these components are susceptible to interference and electronic noise from the circuit. They don’t produce sharp sounds; as a result, they necessitate the purchase of a sound card. Additionally, it may only sometimes be possible to run multiple audio devices simultaneously on a PC because the majority of motherboards only have a limited number of audio jack ports. A sound card will then be needed.

Do I Need an Additional Sound Card in a PC Build?

Sound Card Specifications

The following characteristics of sound cards contribute to their exceptional performance, including:


When playing MIDI, a sound card can simultaneously process and generate numerous sounds. Typically, a voice is released on each channel. Some songs, though, are linked to instruments that employ multiple voices. An example is a piano that uses one MIDI channel but can release three voices when three-note chords are played. Do I need an additional sound card in a PC build? Software- or hardware-based voices are used by sound cards. 64-voice polyphony, including 32 in software and 32 in hardware, is supported by basic sound cards. Beyond 64-voice polyphony, high-quality sound cards can support up to 1024 voices.

Several Channels:

Each of the 16 channels on a MIDI link is for a different instrument. They can all play at once if each channel has a musical instrument. These cards are utilized for both secondary and general purposes. Nonetheless, cards with 32 channels are typically utilized to create realistic sounds.

Some more advanced sound cards enable up to 48 instruments to be played simultaneously. They are employed in challenging circumstances. The Creative Labs Sound Blaster Live! Platinum is an illustration of one of these. Often Responded To Similar to how human ears operate, sound cards have been designed to operate with response to a broad frequency range of 20Hz to 20KHz. The frequency response range of well-developed cards is 20Hz to 20KHz at 3dB. The response of higher ones is even 20Hz to 20KHz at 1dB.

Sampling Rate:

Waveform audio playback at 44,100 and 22,050 Hz is compatible with sound cards. Some even have 11,025 and 8000Hz support. Even though different sound cards operate at different rates, 44,100 Hz is the most common recording rate, yet, 48,000 Hz is the DAT standard.

Do I need an additional sound card in a PC build? Noise to Signal Ratio (SNR) The signal-to-noise ratio, or S/N ratio, is a metric for gauging the strength of the signal. It is expressed as dB. Lower values provide audible whizz sounds, whereas more significant levels indicate higher performance. Sound cards can operate in full- or half-duplex mode, depending on the duplex setting. Half-duplex cards can only play or record sound; they cannot do both simultaneously. Half-duplex cards are used for activities like listening to CDs and playing games.


  • Sound cards considerably improve audio quality.
  • The presence of sound cards lessens the workload on the CPU or graphics card.
  • The computer has room for other processes, such as boosting graphics performance.
  • They lessen background and internal noise.


  • Prices for high-quality sound cards are often high.
  • As sound cards frequently have compatibility problems, using them might be tricky.
  • All dedicated sound hardware does not support operating systems like BSD and Linux.


Do I need an additional sound card in a PC build? Sound cards are necessary for higher CPU performance and audio quality. Once you start using a sound card, switching back to your motherboard audio chip will be challenging. No matter what audio listening equipment you choose, from high-end speakers to pricey headphones, audio created by motherboard chips will always sound retro. No matter how poor the sound card’s quality, there is always a change once installed.

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