Looking to add richness and detail to the sound from your PC? A good quality USB sound card is your best shot. Once connected, these small devices with significantly boost the audio quality of your computer or laptop and take it a cut above the norm. Whether you are a professional DJ, a hardcore gamer, or just a music enthusiast, these gadgets are designed with you in mind. The sound you get is loud and clear.
Sound cards are also perfect when if your computer sound card develops a fault, so the PC doesn’t produce sound. Due to the countless USB sound cards on the market, a potential buyer might find it difficult to select the best for their use. Below is an in-depth review of the best USB sound cards so buyers can rely on information for decision making.
Top Best USB Sound Cards In 2021 List
Last update on 2021-02-26 at 16:01 / Affiliate link / Image from Amazon Product Advertising API
#10. Sound Card External Converter USB Audio Adapter
This is, without a doubt, one of the best ways to deliver desirable loud levels, resonant bass, and untwisted performance. Expect excellent performance and fantastic sound quality courtesy of the advanced C-Media IC technology. The body is made of tough ABS plastic, making it durable and sturdy enough to stand up to rough use and wear and tear. It sports a solid head and 15cm cable that allows you to create your connection without straining. You can simply adjust the volume from your windows sound icon in the taskbar or Mac preference settings.
You are only required to connect the USB 2.0 head to your computer USB port and attach your headset or external audio system to the 3.55mm TRRS aux port to get the most out of this device. Also, you can comfortably use this unit as long as your PC runs on Mac OS, Windows 10/8.1/8/7/Vista/XP, Linux, Google Chromebook, Windows Surface 3 Pro, or PS4. Setting this thing up is pretty easy and doesn’t demand that you install any drivers. You don’t need any external sources of power as well since the device is USB bus-powered.
#9. 7.1 Portable HD Gaming USB DAC & Sound Card
The next best way of accentuating the sound levels of your average system is using the Creative Sound BlasterX G1 7.1 sound card. With the true 7.1 Channel Audio support, you can expect superb quality sound. The headphone amplifier makes it convenient when you need to plug in your headphones or sound system. The Sound BlasterX G1 features a 4-pole combined headphone-out paired with Mic jack making it compatible for both headphones and headsets with built-in microphones.
You will absolutely love how the sound effects are depicted, especially in competitive gaming, thanks to X-Plus mode. The Scout Hearing Mode gives you a tactical advantage over your opponents and ensures that you always win. It is designed compatible with both USB 2.0 and USB 3.0. The company recommends using it on Mac OS X version 10.8 and above, Windows 10, Windows 8.1, Windows 8, Windows 7, and Windows Vista. It works perfectly on game consoles such as PlayStation and Xbox. Highly recommended for hardcore gamers.
#8. Sound Blaster PLAY! 3
By: Creative Labs
For deep bass and theatre thumping output capabilities during gaming and playing media files, look no further than the Sound Blaster PLAY 3. It has the ability to deliver unsurpassed sound quality in any listening setting. The device will also improve the mic recording capability with a commendable 24-bit 48kHZ quality so you can effectively make podcasts and in-game communications. Whether you have a Windows 10, 8.1, 7 PC at home, or Mac OS X10.9 or higher, this device will function impressively. You can easily use your analog headphones by connecting with the singles or split stereo/mic connector without the need for a Y-splitter.
Users are free to use standard mobile phone earphones or studio-grade headsets, and they will still work well. You are free to download the powerful software and have access to the control panel for significant audio enhancements and unprecedented control. If you like using earphones, you will want to note that you will find optimized profiles for a number of earphone brands for maximum performance. You will get to use this device straight away since it doesn’t demand the frustrating download and installation of drivers.
#7. USB External Audio Adapter Stereo Sound Card Converter
BENGOO professional engineers designed and crafted this best sound card to meet the ever-rising market need for purely a high-performance device. Indeed it was a massive success since the device has undisputedly lived to its expectations. You can use it for standard stereo or connect it to your earphone, headphone or microphone with the 3.5mm jack. You only need to connect it to the USB 2.0 port of your computer. Most versions of Windows, including Windows 98SE/ ME/ 2000/ XP/ Server 2003/ Vista/Windows, Linux, and Mac OS, can work well with this piece. You can still connect it to your Raspberry Pi 2/3 Xbox PS4 Surface Tablet Laptop, and ensure gaming with enhanced audio effects.
The mixer function lets you adjust the output levels to what suits your needs. You can switch between the microphone mute, speaker mute and adjust the volume using the volume roller. You don’t need any special skills to set up and use this thing, you get to use it right away without having to download and install drivers. It comes with an instruction manual to guide you through this.
#6. USB Audio Adapter External Stereo Sound Card
We couldn’t resist adding another entry from UGREEN because of its unmatched performance and versatility in matters of boosting your computer audio levels. Like the earlier model, this sound adapter also offers a mono-microphone-in and a stereo audio-out port so you can connect headsets, speakers or microphone with a 3.5mm jack. The audio adapter connects to your computer or console’s a USB 2.0 hub. This best USB sound card is 15cm long so it won’t restrict you to working very close to your machine.
The audio adapter also offers protection against electromagnetic interference, ensuring stable and quality audio. Users of Windows 10/8/7/XP/2003/Vista and Linux, Mac, OSX/ PS4/ Google Chromebook/ Windows Surface Pro 3, and Raspberry Pi devices will find this audio kit compatible with their devices. It is, however, not compatible with PS3. You don’t have to install drivers to use it with your computer. It is USB powered, meaning you won’t have to buy extra batteries. You can choose to go with the black or white color options. The manufacturer chooses to stand by their product with an 18-month warranty.
#5. 7.1 Channel USB External Sound Card Audio Adapter
The position the DSYJ 7.1 Channel Sound Card manages to attain is on the basis of stiff competition and not an insinuation of superior quality. It is a Xear 3D 7.1 Channel sound card, so expect a super quality sound that will help create the ambiance you always yearn for when listening to music or gaming. Also, it comes with a superfast USB 2.0 full speed head that can clock amazing speeds of up to 12mbps. This best USB sound card comes with a stereo output jack and mono microphone for plugging in your headsets and speakers.
Another notable feature is the pair of USB indicators that notify you when it is in microphone-mute mode and the activity. Like other top models in its class, the DSYJ sound card doesn’t require any source of power since it is USB powered. Similarly, it doesn’t demand to install any drivers before using it. Inside the package, you will find a software disc for simulation software Xear 3D for Windows XP and Vista.
#4. Pro USB Audio System With SBX SB1290
The Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi Go! Delivers an incredibly natural, high-quality sound projections. You need to connect it to your computers USB 2.0 port. It uses SBX Pro Studio Surround to ensure to boost the sound level, enhance the bass, and ensure multichannel surround from your headphones. The EAX 5.0 feature optimizes gaming audio and ensures that you get the true beat of the game. It is compatible with Microsoft Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows XP (Professional x64 Edition, Service Pack 2 or above) PCs.
To ensure that there is absolutely zero ambient noise and your voice is clearer to the person on the other end, the makers used the creative silencer. It is a breeze to use and only requires that you plug in without the hassle of installing drivers. This device is covered by a 1-year limited warranty so you can click to buy with more confidence.
#3. Aluminum USB External Stereo Sound Adapter For Windows & Mac
The Sabrent Aluminum USB adapter will deliver intense yet brilliant sound that will impress even the most demanding music and gaming enthusiasts. It is known to give different sounds clearly to indicate the different effects in the music or game. It plugs to your computers USB 2.0 port and offers a 3.5mm stereo port for connecting your headsets, speakers or mic. You use the sound card adapter on computers running on Windows 98SE/ME/2000/XP/Server 2003/Vista/7/8/ and Linux/Mac OSX operating systems.
You are free to use it right after arrival since the audio adapter doesn’t need drivers and is USB powered, so no batteries needed. It comes with a USB extension cable, so you won’t have to strain to access your ports when you need to plug in the sound card. The company has confidence in its products and chooses to stand by this piece with a 1-year warranty.
#2. External USB Stereo Sound Adapter For Windows, Mac, Linux
For gaming, music and watching movies and microphone input, this sound adapter promises desirable sound quality and terrifying volume levels. The USB head is capable of achieving blistering full speeds of 12mbps. The other side offers a stereo output jack and a TRS mono microphone input jack. It is compatible with most Windows PC and Mac System. It sports a small and compact design with premium quality material and superb durability. The LED lights indicate when the audio adapter is in microphone-mute status or activity. You won’t need to make arrangements for a source of power since the sound card is USB powered. Like you’d expect, you can use it straight from the package since no drivers are required. You can either choose the black or white option.
#1. USB External Stereo Sound Adapter
It is not a surprise to see Sabrent carrying the day in our post today, and the company has earned a reputation for producing excellent products that never disappoint. It is a 3D stereo audio adapter that is backward compatible with USB 1.1. You have to plug it to your computer USB 2.0 port and connect your headset, speaker or microphone to the stereo output jack or mono microphone input jack.
Whether your PC is running on Windows 98SE/ME/2000/XP/Server 2003/Vista/7/8/ or Linux and Mac OSX, this sound card will still work for you. Being USB powered, it demands no external power supply and can be used right away after delivery due to its driverless operation. This product is covered by a 1-year warranty.
Things You Should Know About Sound Cards
- You plug a sound card into your computer to produce good quality sound for various use. It simply converts digital data and transmits it to the hardware in analog form.
- Some computers come with embedded sound cards, but they are not enough. This is why a USB sound card can take your entertainment such as movies and TV shows to the next level.
- The sound cards help to provide users with top quality sound and full clarity in audio and video conferencing. It can improve the inaudible or crackly sounds to offer better quality for better conferencing quality.
- USB sound cards play a great part when it comes to providing supreme quality sound in online gaming. It helps you to communicate with other players while delivering superior music and sound effects experience in the game.
Benefits Of USB Sound Cards
- Apart from improving the quality of sound, USB sound cards are very easy to install.
- It can remove echoes while balancing sound levels even if you are away from the mic.
- Most USB sound cards come at a low price yet high quality which is so convenient to use.
- USB sound cards are compact and portable which is easy for you to bring along with to places.
USB Sound Cards Buying Guide
If you are new to USB sound cards, you have to know what to look for in them. We put together a quick list of important features in USB sound cards below, so feel free to check them out.
Different USB sound cards come with different channels that you can choose from. Each channel benefits differently from the sound and audio quality that you will get depending on your purposes. There are two options actually which are 5.1 and 7.1, and either of which is ideal for gaming. In case you aim for 7.1 channels, just make sure that your device’s speaker system is compatible with it. If it does, you will get to hear the sound of your applications at its fullest.
Before anything else, make sure that the USB sound cards that you choose is compatible with your PC or desktop. If your device does not support the standards of the sound card, it will not work. This is why you have to check for compatibility first before you purchase one.
Some high-quality USB sound cards come with Dolby support for microphones. In case you want the best sound quality on your microphone for gaming, look for this feature. It ensures a clear sound on the headphone along with adequate audio levels. With this, you will absolutely be able to enjoy gaming for hours no matter which one you play.
With dual stereo microphone output, you will be able to connect with two devices simultaneously. In case you want the sound in both your external speaker and your headphones, this feature is definitely useful for that.
We spent time thoroughly testing and reviewing the best USB sound card with the intention of giving you an easy time when you choose to buy one. All the option we have highlighted passed our test with flying colors and are a worthy investment. Click to buy the one that works for you and you will hear the quality sound you have been yearning for.