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Srs Audio Sandbox Is Worth Buying

Reviewing: Srs Audio Sandbox  |  Rating:
lynlyn By lynlyn on
Badge: Publisher | Level: 5 | Computers & Laptops Expertise:
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SRS Audio Sandbox is audio enhancement software for PCs, especially useful for enhancing 5.1 or 6.1 speaker systems. The good news is that your computer speakers really can sound better, and Audio Sandbox is the software to do it. The bad news (and it's not so bad) is that even though the advertising makes it sound like this plugin will turn your speakers into the sound system at Carnegie Hall, there's only so much software can do if you don't have quality equipment. I found Audio Sandbox when my new computer speakers sounded as small and limited as they looked. I noticed the difference right away. Through Audio Sandbox, the sound is fuller and larger. I can turn the speakers up louder before they start sounding like someone is rattling rocks in a tin can. When I turn Audio Sandbox off, my speakers sound sickly in comparison, like I just switched to an old Victrola. My speakers still don't sound nearly as good as I'd like, but they do sound significantly better. I usually seek out freeware solutions when I need software, but in this case it was more than worth the $19.95 purchase price to have better sound. Audio Sandbox is especially designed to enhance 5.1 or 6.1 speaker systems, but it also makes 2.1 speakers (what I have) sound better and less two dimensional. Audio Sandbox has several presets and adjustments you can make so the sound suits what you're listening to. You can enhance it specifically for music, games, movies, or voice. There are also presets for different styles of music from Rock to Hip-Hop to Classical, or you can adjust the levels manually to get the sound you like. I personally haven't seen much need for changing the presets. I put mine on Rock and everything else sounds fine too. The negatives on this software mostly have to do with installation. I'm pretty computer savvy, but I had trouble getting this to work right away. There was something with my computer's configuration that kept the software from installing itself in the usual way, and the troubleshooting guide wasn't much help. After much fiddling with it, I finally got it to work, but it did take some time. I suspect this won't be a problem for most people, but I'm including it here so you can be prepared just in case. The other negative came when my hard drive crashed and I had to reinstall. SRS has all kinds of security measures in place to keep people from stealing their software, and these can be an annoyance if you need to move it to another computer. They're not like other companies who simply give you a key you can re-enter. You have to be online and register the software through their site any time you reinstall. The process doesn't always work correctly, which then requires you to get a code from the software, leave it open while you email the code to customer support and then wait for their response. To the company's credit, their customer support people responded with lightning fast speed, and after going through this process with them twice due to various problems, they finally just send me a registration key to end the difficulties. Dealing with the security measures was definitely a hassle, but dealing with customer service was not. If you're looking for software with good customer support, SRS definitely comes through.