The Creative Sound BlasterAxx Speaker Family - Heralding a New Era for Creative

Setting Up

Setting Up

The Creative Sound BlasterAxx was designed to work with both Macs and PCs and for the purpose of this review, we’ve decided to pair the speakers with a MacBook Pro since it offers both Bluetooth and USB connectivity with which we can test the speakers. Do not that Bluetooth connectivity is not offered on the baby SBX 8 model.

To the test Sound BlasterAxx, we will be using our usual suite of MP3 test tracks which are as follows:

  • Hotel California - The Eagles
  • Sail on Soothsayer - Buckethead
  • Melt My Heart to Stone - Adele
  • Elements of Life - Tiesto

We have also tested the Sound BlasterAxx with a variety of other tracks, but more emphasis will be placed the core tracks listed above for scoring purposes. Of course, as we have long maintained, audio is a subjective matter and one man’s meat could be another man’s poison. Nevertheless, we retain a neutral approach during our listening so as not to let our personal preference cloud our judgment.

Setting up the Sound BlasterAxx SBX 20 and SBX 10 on our MacBook Pro either through USB or Bluetooth was a breeze. Once selected as the main audio device, the Sound BlasterAxx will immediately begin playing music. However, to really take advantage and make use of the Sound BlasterAxx’s wide range of abilities, downloading and installing the Sound BlasterAxx Control Panel (available for PC, Mac, iOS and Android) is highly recommended.

The software suite will let you configure your Sound BlasterAxx device and set it up for your different needs. The software has its quirks though. For the Mac version, you can only use the software suite when the speakers are connected via USB and not Bluetooth. If you try to use it while the speakers are connected to your Mac via Bluetooth, you will get an error message saying that the audio device supported by the application cannot be detected. This somewhat limits the use of the Sound BlasterAxx as a wireless speaker for your PC or Mac especially if you want to tinker around the various speaker settings.

The Sound BlasterAxx control panel gives a great degree of control over the speakers. You can even tweak individual settings with SBX Pro Studio such as the amount of bass boost, the crossover frequency, having "Surround" on while turning "Crystalizer" off etc.

The iOS app equivalent is just as full featured. However, it was a little clumsy to use as the controls are not very intuitive. You do get the hang of it after a little while though.

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