Mad Dog Entertainer 7.1 Sound Card

Soundcards and Speakers 106 Page 2 of 9 Published by


The Box, Features, Specifications

The Box, Features and Specifications 

You've got to ask yourself a question: why would you buy a sound card if your motherboard already had one for free?  The folks at Mad Dog Multimedia might be mad, but they ain't crazy. The Mad Dog Entertainer 7.1 has a few tricks under its collar to distinguish itself from the rest of the integrated sound pack.


Now for the Bark, let me introduce...


Nice collar.  I had a girlfriend once...

 It's not exactly what it says on the box.




The more writing on the box, the more I get sceptical.


The Box:

  • ENTERTAINER 7.1 DSP Sound Card
  • Quick Setup Guide
  • Installation and Information CD
  • One (1) Optical S/PDIF Cable
  • Lifetime Warranty


The Dog's out of the pound.

No frills here. It's a lean, mean, Dog. Would have appreciated software over cable.


If you're wondering about a software bundle, you can stop now. There isn't any. The only bit of frill here is the optical cable.  I would have much rather had something, anything, in the bundle. Even a cheap Xbox port would have been better than nothing.



  • TRUE 24-bit DSP processor providing the finest listening experience
  • Sampling rates up to 192 kHz provide the highest quality reproduction
  • Provides up to 8 independent audio channels
  • Supports EAX®, DirectSound3D® and A3D Technologies
  • Supports 8, 6, 4 or 2 Channel Speaker Systems
  • Line In and Mic In (w/ +10db gain)
  • S/PDIF optical digital input and output
  • 24 bit/96 kHz in two channel mode
  • 18 bit/48 kHz in eight channel mode

The big draw for the Entertainer, besides its price, is its optical input and output. Optical is very useful for musicians trying to import sound from their minidisk recorders for editing on the PC. It can also send a 24 bit/192kHz stream to an outboard AV amplifier for DVD soundtracks and such.


 Optical digital input and output

Lots of shiny polished gold, but none of the connectors are.


The Envy24HT-S does indeed support 24 bit/192kHz output, however, the Entertainer's DAC's do not, at least in part.  The Entertainer makes use of VIA's VT1616, or the SixTRAC, which is part of VIA's Vinyl Audio initiative. While the use of vinyl should be limited to S&M clubs, the short of it is that the VT1616 is a 6-channel DAC that supports only 18 bit/48kHz output. The VT1616 also handles ADC for digitizing, but at a maximum of 18 bit/48kHz. Even though it has simultaneous 2 channel record/3 channel playback, recording in 24 bits won't be in your future with this card.


 It takes two DACs to make this dog bark.

VIA on the left, Wolfson on the right.  Now, roll over!


Those with the quicker math skills will see that with a 6 channel DAC for primary output there are two channels missing. Showing its pedigree, the Mad Dog Entertainer makes use of a Wolfson WM8728 2-channel DAC to empower the 24 bit/192kHz modes for the rear channels.

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