As one would expect, the card sounds great. Since it's based on the same DSP as it's other Live! brethren (the EMU10K1), sound quality is basically as the original SBLive series cards. No, what makes this card da ballz (pardon my French) has to be the Live! DRIVE. I simply love it. The 5 1/4" drive gives the Platinum more silicon on which to connect audiophile goodness, and even if it makes me the lamest person in the world, I absolutely, positively love being able to plug both my headphones and my mic right into the front of my box.
Of course, my love for the card is surely edified by the fact that I was privy to a nice pair of Cambridge Soundworks speakers x 2, which equals FourPoint sound sensations. Indeed, with this setup, my appreciation for the S/PDIF out was diminished to a certain extent. What need I had previously perceived for connecting my box to my stereo was more or less satiated by a combination of headphone intensity and quad-sound gaming. If this is the future, it sounds great under Win32.
Linux performance isn't up to par on the Surround Sound front, but I'd wager that that will be fixed shortly. Since the drivers were open sourced in early November, the developers have moved with lightning speed.
If there's any real complaint about the performance of the Live! Platinum to be made, it's gotta be the unimpressive amount of power they push to the headphone jack. Anyone with a quality set of KOSS or Sony headphones (just to name a few) might find themselves a tad disappointed. Just a tad, mind you.