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BuildOrBuy News - Creative Sound Blaster Extigy

Press Release... Posted 1/21/2002

CREATIVE LAUNCHES SOUND BLASTER EXTIGY - FIRST EXTERNAL SOUND BLASTER Notebook and Desktop PC Users Can Experience Stunning Digital Audio Fidelity and Simple USB Connectivity

MILPITAS, Calif. - January 8, 2002 - Creative Technology Ltd. (NASDAQ: CREAF), the worldwide leader in digital entertainment products for users of the personal computer and the Internet, today unveiled the Sound Blaster® Extigy, the first external Sound Blaster in Creative's history. The Sound Blaster Extigy delivers stunning 24-bit 96kHz multi-channel audio playback and 100dB signal-to-noise ratio (SNR). It enhances audio for digital music, DVD movies and games from an easy-to-use, compact external device that connects to the notebook or desktop via the Universal Serial Bus (USB) port. The Sound Blaster Extigy is slated to ship this month at an estimated street price of US $149.99.

"The Sound Blaster Extigy ushers in an entirely new era in PC audio," said Sim Wong Hoo, founder and CEO of Creative. "We have shipped more than 150 million Sound Blaster audio cards to date; and the Sound Blaster Extigy extends our leadership in PC audio by delivering the stunning digital audio clarity of the Sound Blaster Audigy™ for the first time in an external audio solution. We are excited to meet the demands of PC users who have been clamoring for a convenient, easy-to-use external Sound Blaster solution with the digital audio fidelity of the Sound Blaster Audigy. Notebook users can also enjoy great multi-channel MP3 and digital music, DVD movies and games on their notebooks."

The Sound Blaster Extigy features EAX® ADVANCED HD™ technologies for music, including audio enhancement technologies such as Audio Clean-Up, Time Scaling, DREAM™ and EAX ADVANCED HD audio effects. Audio Clean-Up removes scratches, pops and hisses when playing back recordings of old tapes and LP records. Time Scaling allows the user to speed up or slow down audio or spoken word content while maintaining accurate pitch - ideal for musicians, students and executives. DREAM technology (Dynamic Repositioning of Enhanced Audio and Music) allows the interactive repositioning of stereo content in a surround 5.1 environment by redirecting the path of a specific frequency range. EAX ADVANCED HD Audio Effects enable the user to customize the listening environment to replicate specific acoustic venues.

For anyone listening to music, Sound Blaster Extigy ships with Creative PlayCenter™ 3, a personal digital music center that enables creation, organization and playback of digital quality music enhanced with EAX ADVANCED HD effects, along with Dolby Digital® file playback and integrated CD burning capabilities. When used with a NOMAD® digital
audio player, PlayCenter 3 allows fast and easy transfer of playlists and digital music.

The Sound Blaster Extigy incorporates CMSS® (Creative Multi-Speaker Surround™) so users can up-mix stereo content for a 5.1 surround sound experience. For stereo headphones or two-speaker systems, CMSS also provides virtual headphone and stereo spatialization.

Desktop or notebook owners can use the Sound Blaster Extigy to enhance their gaming experience with 5.1 multi-channel positional audio and EAX 1.0 and 2.0 technology with hundreds of games out in the market. This application provides surround sound to PC notebook users who would not have previously been able to enjoy positional audio.

In addition to enhancing the audio experience on the desktop and notebook PC, the Sound Blaster Extigy functions completely independent of the PC. It can be used without the PC as a Dolby Digital decoder for a set-top DVD and is an ideal device for providing 5.1 surround sound from a video gaming console such as the X-BOX™ or PlayStation 2(tm). It also functions without the PC to enhance audio quality and provides CMSS functionality for a number of additional devices such as a digital audio player, compact or mini-disc player or cassette player. All of these devices can easily connect to the Sound Blaster Extigy's front panel, which also has connections for a microphone or headphones.

The rear panel of the Sound Blaster Extigy provides analog connectors for an amplifier or a speaker system such as the incredibly priced $99.99 Creative Inspire™ 5.1 5300 and digital connectors for a speaker system such as the Cambridge SoundWorks® MegaWorks™ 510D. When combining the Sound Blaster Extigy with these speaker systems, the user experiences true Dolby Digital 5.1 audio in movies, music and games. DAT players and a MIDI keyboard can also be connected to the rear panel of the Sound Blaster Extigy.

Features and Benefits:

  • Hassle-Free Set-up and Installation: With its simple USB installation, the Sound Blaster Extigy can be connected to a notebook or desktop PC in seconds to become fully functional without requiring the user to uninstall previous audio hardware or applications;
  • High-Definition Digital Audio Clarity: Notebook and desktop PC owners can experience a dramatic increase in audio clarity with 24-bit/96kHz digital-to-analog converters (DACs) across 5.1 audio channels and an outstanding 100dB signal-to-noise ratio (SNR);
  • True Dolby Digital decoding: The Sound Blaster Extigy also incorporates a true Dolby Digital decoder for accurate 5.1 audio experience with content such as DVD movies, Dolby Digital AC-3 music and even DVD video games;
  • EAX ADVANCED HD: Digital music enthusiasts can utilize Time Scaling to slow down or speed up a track while retaining accurate pitch, and Audio Clean-Up to remove hiss and scratches from recorded LPs. Users can also sample the exciting new DREAM technology which allows the interactive repositioning of different bands of music in a surround 5.1 environment;
  • Ease-of-Use: Sound Blaster Extigy can be used interchangeably with a notebook or desktop PC; and it includes a wireless remote to control audio applications and easily access front panel connectors.


Included Creative Applications:

  • Creative PlayCenter 3 - Enables creation, organization and playback of digital music;
  • Creative AudioStreamRecorder - Provides playlist setup of favorite Internet radio stations and recording of shows for easy transfer in MP3 format to any NOMAD digital audio player;
  • Additional Creative applications include a MiniDisc Center, Recorder and Mixer.


Additional Applications:

  • iM Networks Inc.'s iM Tuner™ - Users can listen to the 'Best of Planet'™ Internet Radio on the PC and select from more than 30 stations per genre;
  • MixMeister Technologies' MixMeister™ - Enables DJ mix compilation from MP3 music files.


About Creative
Creative (Nasdaq: CREAF) is the worldwide leader in digital entertainment products for users of the personal computer and the Internet. 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 NOMAD® Jukebox. 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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Web Development, Gill Boyd & Team - Posted 01/21/2001; Updated 03/18/2003