Sound Card

An expansion board that enables a computer to manipulate and output sounds. Sound cards are necessary for nearly all CD-ROMs and have become commonplace on modern personal computers. Sound cards enable the computer to output sound through speakers connected to the board, to record sound input from a microphone connected to the computer, and manipulate sound stored on a disk.

Nearly all sound cards support MIDI, a standard for representing music electronically. In addition, most sound cards are Sound Blaster-compatible, which means that they can process commands written for a Sound Blaster card, the de facto standard for PC sound.

Sound cards use two basic methods to translate digital data into analog sounds:

  • FM Synthesismimics different musical instruments according to built-in formulas.
  • Wavetable Synthesis relies on recordings of actual instruments to produce sound. Wavetable synthesis produces more accurate sound, but is also more expensive.
  • Webopedia Staff
    Webopedia Staff
    Since 1995, more than 100 tech experts and researchers have kept Webopedia’s definitions, articles, and study guides up to date. For more information on current editorial staff, please visit our About page.

    Related Articles

    ScalaHosting

    ScalaHosting is a leading managed hosting provider that offers secure, scalable, and affordable cloud VPS solutions for businesses. It claims to change the status...

    Data Visualization

    Data visualization is the graphic representation of data so that analysts, readers, clients, and stakeholders can more easily see the implications of the raw...

    RSA SecurID

    RSA SecurID is multi-factor authentication (MFA) technology used to protect network resources, such as applications and websites. Its purpose is to mitigate risk and...

    Logo

    A logo is a symbol, mark, or other visual element that a company uses in place of or in conjunction with its business title....

    ScalaHosting

    ScalaHosting is a leading managed hosting provider that offers secure, scalable, and affordable...

    HRIS

    Human resources information system (HRIS) solutions help businesses manage multiple facets of their...

    Best Managed Service Providers...

    In today's business world, managed services are more critical than ever. They can...