Creative launches Audigy 2 (but no PC, OK?)

Cool, quiet components

Today Creative launched the Audigy 2, its next generation sound card, in Singapore. Within hours the hardware maker issued a press release correcting Bloomberg's "inaccurate report" which had stated that it was planning "to introduce a computer for music and movies."

Poppycock, there are no such plans, says the company which relies on the big PC makers for big OEM contracts and has no interest on treading on customers' toes.

So how did Bloomberg get its knickers in a twist? Maybe the Audigy 2 launch was to blame. Sound Blaster Audigy 2 was demoed in a "very quiet PC casing and power supply that has an integrated liquid-cooling system". These ultra quiet components are to be sold by Creative under the SLiX(TM) brand. The SLiX concept PC is a pointer to PC builders, showing the way to go if they are to crack the PC as digital entertainment hub device.

All the noise should come from the speakers and the sound cards, not the fan or the hard drive, or the DVD drive. There is no way that PCs will take centre-stage in the family living room if they are noisy, is there?

Creative is really gunning for the audiophile with Audigy 2, the hi-fi buffs who know their woofers from their tweeters and understand what the company means when it boasts of an "unprecedented SNR of 106 dB". Also, the cards are a helluva lot cheaper than a trip to the local Bang and Olufsen dealer. The Sound Blaster Audigy 2 will have an estimated street price of US$129, while the Sound Blaster Audigy Platinum 2 will retail for around $200. They should be hitting the stores in October.

You want more spec? Then dip into the Creative press release.

Update

One last thing. There's no mention of Digital Rights Management technology incorporated into Audigy 2, and we don't have the answer yet. But this glancing reference to Audigy No Number in this article, suggests that there may very well be.
Audigy 2 launches officially in Europe next week. We'll catch up with Creative then. Maybe before. ®