Creative (NASDAQ: CREAF), a worldwide leader in digital entertainment products today announced the launch of a public beta, dubbed Creative ALchemy, to ensure that popular legacy game titles such as World of Warcraft, Rome: Total War and F.E.A.R. sound as awesome with a Sound Blaster® X-Fi sound card on Windows Vista as they do on Windows XP.
"The result of Microsoft's removal of the hardware audio abstraction layer for Vista will confuse many gamers," said Steve Erickson, Vice President of Audio at Creative. "Many people who have experimented with popular legacy games on the Vista beta release have been unable to experience multi-channel audio with Creative and other sound cards, and even with motherboard audio. This is not something that a driver update can fix. The good news is that we have invented our Creative ALchemy application, so Sound Blaster X-Fi owners can experience the same multi-channel audio quality that they enjoyed with Windows XP."
The removal of the audio hardware abstraction layer from Windows Vista will compromise audio in legacy game titles that use EAX or DirectSound3D (DS3D), usually resulting in stereo output without any effects. Creative ALchemy is a simple download which will detect the presence of a number of top PC games and convert their DS3D and EAX calls into OpenAL calls, allowing users to continue enjoying their legacy titles the way they were meant to be enjoyed - in full, multi-channel sound with hardware effects.
A beta version of the Creative ALchemy software is available for immediate download from http://preview.creativelabs.com/alchemy/default.aspx. Newer versions of the software will add support for more DS3D based games. End-users are encouraged to join the Creative ALchemy community and post their feedback and suggestions on the discussion forums at the Creative ALchemy Project website for games which should be supported in the future.
Creative (NASDAQ: CREAF) is a worldwide leader in digital entertainment products. Famous for its Sound Blaster sound cards and for launching the multimedia revolution, Creative is now driving digital entertainment on the PC platform with products like its highly acclaimed ZEN portable audio and media players. Creative's innovative hardware, proprietary technology, applications and services leverage the Internet, enabling consumers to experience high-quality digital entertainment -- anytime, anywhere.
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This announcement relates to products launched in Asia Pacific. The product names, content, prices and availability are subject to change and may differ elsewhere in the world according to local factors and requirements. Sound Blaster, ALchemy, X-Fi and ZEN are registered trademarks of Creative Technology Ltd. in the U.S. and other countries. All other brand and product names are trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective holders.