Dedicated Internal Sound Card? – Getting Started (AKA What is the best…?) Forum

Hey all. Newbie here. As a purely recreational musician, I’ve just started using a DAW (Reaper), banging away on my digital piano as midi input, and playing around with (mostly) free orchestral instrument plugins. I have a very capable PC with a Core i7 chip/motherboard and lots of RAM running Win10. But it only has the built in audio card that came with the PC.

Even after researching around, I’m still confused as to whether I would benefit from a separate audio card to either enhance audio quality and/or get a better driver than ASIO4ALL. As a recreational user, I don’t need exceptional sound quality. But I can certainly afford $50-$75 on a separate “budget” card if it would help on both accounts. I know audio interfaces like Focusrite are out there. But I don’t record guitar or singing…yet.

I don’t fully understand ASIO4ALL stuff (vs WASAPI ,etc) but I do know that the driver “takes over” audio when my DAW is running so YouTube and other programs won’t run.

I’m sure this has been raised countless times before so thanks for answering it yet again!!!


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