Although it isnt a cheap option, you could always go for one of the creative soundblaster cards as many of themn include a front drive bay which would have even more functionality than your current setup, but you may have to splash out a little.
On the front of the skipping audio. If this is just occuring in games it is probably due to your pc devoting most of its power to the graphics, so there is choppy sound. Certinly any creative card in the audigy or x-fi range will help ease the load on your cpu.
I'm currently using the onboard sound, Realteck AC'97 Audio. My computer case has the motherboard plugs that allow me to use the inputs on the front of my case. I use the headset and microphone jacks, and I enjoy the fact that when I have the headphone jack in, the speakers are muted.
But I'm finding now alot of skipping with the onboard sound when playing games.
What I was woundering if anyone knows of a soundcard that would work well with my frontside jacks. The cluge of using cables to access the soundcards external jacks isn't an option, I like the clean look of the computer without all the cables going in and out of the back.
Thanks in advance