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Audio Reviews
15,518 Reviews

Sound Blaster Audigy 2 ZS Video Editor

£200 inc VAT

Manufacturer: Creative

Our Rating: We rate this 4 out of 5

The ponderously titled Sound Blaster Audigy 2 ZS Video Editor is an ingenious combination of 7.1 surround sound and video editing hardware. It's an external box that connects to your PC via USB 2.0, adding almost every variation of video and audio input and output, and even throwing in a forward-facing USB 2.0 hub and a remote control.

The ponderously titled Sound Blaster Audigy 2 ZS Video Editor is an ingenious combination of 7.1 surround sound and video editing hardware. It's an external box that connects to your PC via USB 2.0, adding almost every variation of video and audio input and output, and even throwing in a forward-facing USB 2.0 hub and a remote control.

As a soundcard, the Audigy 2 ZS VE delivers high-quality audio. We tested it with Creative's Inspire T5900 5.1 surround speakers and found the set-up equally good for booming soundtracks, sharp classical and intricate drum and bass.

Dolby EX and DTS ES decoding sweetens DVD playback. The box can also work as a separate AV receiver when your computer is switched off, but its digital hub potential is lessened by the lack of support for Dolby decoding from an optical source in this standalone mode.

The bundled audio software includes the usual Creative applications, plus utilities for arranging your surround sound correctly, for example. The central MediaSource jukebox is effective if ugly.

The Audigy features a fairly comprehensive set of in- and outputs for video capture – pretty much any kind of analog video can be handled.

Creative has provided cut-down versions of Ulead's Video Studio 8.0 and DVD Movie Factory 3.0. These are hardly exceptional applications, but you have to use them if you want to take advantage of the hardware. This is potentially annoying.

Audigy 2 ZS Video Editor Expert Verdict »
S/N ratio 108dB
DV, S-Video, composite, 2x RCA stereo, optical SPDIF and microphone inputs
DV, S-Video, composite, 2x RCA stereo, optical SPDIF, Coaxial SPDIF and surround speaker outputs
4-port USB 2.0 hub
Creative software suite
Ulead Video Studio 8.0 SE
Ulead DVD Movie Factory 3.0 SE
Ulead DVD Movie Player
  • Build Quality: We give this item 9 of 10 for build quality
  • Features: We give this item 7 of 10 for features
  • Value for Money: We give this item 9 of 10 for value for money
  • Overall: We give this item 8 of 10 overall

The Audigy 2 ZS Video Editor spoils a great idea by handcuffing users to a single set of mediocre applications. Owners of older PCs will benefit most from the hardware-accelerated boost to video capture and encoding, and the price is good.

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