Reader Feld noticed on Creative’s Open-Source site mention of both X-Fi (Creative’s current line of sound cards) and more interestingly EAX support. Linux has never had EAX (3D hardware accelerated audio effects), and this would be a great boon to Linux gaming:
The X-Fi series of products are not supported under Linux. Closed-source drivers will be available for the X-Fi series of sound cards in the second quarter of 2007. These drivers will have full support for ALSA (playback, recording, mixer, MIDI, synthesis) and OpenAL 1.1 (with EAX effects).
Of course the closed-source nature of the drivers will probably upset RMS; we’ll see if this plan of added support comes to fruition. The X-Fi series’ main benefit is the on-board RAM of the top model for storing samples and whatnot locally to the card.