Creative Audigy 2 ZS Notebook: High-end Sound in a CardBus Slot

Like all cards of its type, the Creative Audigy 2 ZS Notebook is very small, and we were impressed right away by how Creative has managed to pack all the functions of an Audigy 2 ZS sound card in such a small form factor.

Once inserted in a PCMCIA slot, the Audigy 2 ZS Notebook sticks out by almost an inch (two centimeters), which means you shouldn't leave it in place when carrying your laptop around. For speaker connections, Creative uses a breakout cable that clicks onto the card. That avoids having to make a lot of connections and disconnections. There is a single connector that plugs in and locks in a snap. This also avoids having wires and cables hanging off your laptop, which is a good thing for users on the move.

The software installation process takes a while, since there are many modules that have to be installed. We recommend using the custom installation process, because a number of the modules won't be of much use to you. Either you already have them (often in a better-performing version), or else they go with equipment you might not have - such as a MiniDisc recorder.

Creative Audigy 2 ZS Notebook
Interface CardBus (PCMCIA)
Max. sampling rate 192 kHz
Quantification 24 bits
ASIO 24 bits/96 kHz
MIDI/game port no
Inputs
Card Line, mike, 1 S/PDIF optical (shared)
Outputs
Card 1 S/PDIF optical/headphone (shared)
Breakout cable with 3 3.5 mm jacks (7.1)
DVD and Cinema
Standards Dolby Digital EX, DTS ES, Outputs S/PDIF
Configuration Up to 7.1
DVD Audio yes
3D Game Sound
Standards DS3D, A3D, EAX 4.0
Configuration 2 to 7.1
MIDI
Software synth Microsoft