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Audio Quality

This is one area that I like testing. I have a Vortex-2 soundcard! I shelled out for the Klipsch Promedia speakers! Forget hearing pins drop, With the volume cranked up, I *FEEL* em drop! My NEIGHBORS hear em! :)

VaroDVD doesn't leave you wanting for raw sound, but it seems to be a split-image audio description. In some ways it's great, and some others it's not-so-great. VaroDVD supports Stereo, Dolby digital mode, and Q-Surround for 3D audio. Q-Surround is a 3D decode standard by QSound labs. While it may be a fine standard, it requires Q-surround support to fully exploit it. Don't expect to be blown away by it unless your soundcard lists Q-Surround support. I did turn it on and leave it on for my testing as it seemed to improve the sound, (listed as a 2 channel downmix), but I still would rather have Cinemaster's 2 channel LFE, or WinDVD's 4 channel bang. If you DO have Q-Surround support, you may PREFER VaroDVD's sound, much like A3D owners often prefer PowerDVD since it supports A3D. Sound always comes down to personal preference and supported standards.

With all background applications off, the sound was GOOD. Since I don't use an external digital amp, and the player doesn't support a 4 speaker downmix on non Q-Surround soundcards, I didn't run the spatialization tests and stuck to sound quality. The quality was generally very good. There is a checkbox for AC3 BOOSTUP that I can't find a good description for, but I suggest you use it! The sound is fuller and more booming with it. Seems to be a bass/loudness expander that works best at low to mid volumes.

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