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Creative Sound Blaster X7 review

Richard Easton
9 Dec 2019
Creative Sound Blaster X7 front angle
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
330
inc VAT

The Sound Blaster X7 is a worthy audio upgrade that looks great and can be used in a number of different ways

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Specifications

Warranty: Two-year RTB, Details: uk.creative.com, Part code: Sound Blaster X7

An adjustable equaliser lets you tweak the sound signature of each source using the Sound Blaster software for Windows and Mac, or the apps for iOS and Android. Sound Blaster’s proprietary SBX Pro Studio enhancements can be found here as well; they include a Surround mode that convincingly expands the soundstage, and Crystalizer, which attempts to improve the sound quality of low-quality audio. There’s also Dialog Plus, which is useful for enhancing the dialogue when watching movies.

It’s possible to adjust the extent of each enhancement and we found that adding in a touch more surround and increasing the bass slightly provided the best experience with our test headphones and speakers. Once you’ve set the levels using the app or desktop software, they’re saved to the X7 itself so toggling the SBX mode on and off will remember your settings. For gamers there’s also Scout Mode that enhances the in-game sounds, such as the sound of footsteps, to give you a gaming advantage. 

Sound quality is naturally going to be dependent on what you connect to the X7 and the sources you’re listening to; it can decode Dolby Digital signals and the DAC supports high-resolution, 24bit/192kHz audio. We tested with an array of headphones, including the Philips Fidelio M2BT and the Sennheiser HD 700, which both sounded fantastic. The latter have an impedance of 150 ohms and only required about 30% of maximum volume, so there’s plenty of overhead for more demanding cans. With USB host mode the X7 makes it viable to use more demanding headphones with underpowered devices, such as smartphones, that would otherwise not provide enough volume.

The Creative Sound Blaster X7 serves many purposes and it does them all with gusto. We only wish it had support for more than 5.1 surround. There’s otherwise not a great deal to complain about except the price, which isn’t going to make the X7 an impulse purchase. There are also options that probably won’t appeal to the majority, such as the swappable op-amps in the base that we don’t see anyone using. We also found that we had to re-plug our headphones in after a computer reboot in order to get sound, which was a strange inconvenience.

In the end, though, if you are looking to upgrade your audio and have more than one source you want to use, the Creative Sound Blaster X7 is a great choice.

Buying information
Price including VAT£330
WarrantyTwo-year RTB
Supplieruk.creative.com
Detailsuk.creative.com
Part codeSound Blaster X7