usb vs pcie


May 21, 2017
I need to know what is the best choice for me usb sound card or pcie sound card. My amp does not have hdmi inputs and can't afford to upgrade to something with hdmi inputs that's comparable too what i have (Yamaha 7.1, has every other form of input but hdmi lol) so I'm thinking optical is probably my best choice until i can afford to upgrade. Now my pc does not have onboard optical so i need to either get a pcie sound card with optical or usb sound card with optical. Right now I've got one of them cheap eBay external sound card but i can't help but think it's hurting my sound, as i am sorta a audiophile when it comes to music and movies, i like it loud but i love it clear and crisp. Please I've tried to research my question online but i can't find a direct answer. I know i could just go direct input from the pc's analog onboard audio out into the ampbut then I'm losing the benefit of digital and won't be using the amps decoding abilities. And yes i also know the bestchoice would be upgrading the amp to an amp with hdmi inputs and will be doing that in the future but i don't have the 1000$ right now to do this.
If you run SPD/IF (coax or optical) to you amp, it does not matter. The audio is in digital form all the way whether going out thru PCIe or USB. USB, however, will be probably more versatile.