Dual monitors and audio are pretty much the two places Linux trips up compared with Windows now. NVidia provide software for using dual monitors with their cars which I've heard lots of good about, but I'm under the impression it's still quite clunky and occasionally forgets itself.
I was also under the impression that SoundBlaster support was mostly working out-of-the-box, too. What exactly is the card? If you run
in a terminal and paste the output here, I (or anyone) can have a look for the driver.
Do you have onboard sound in the laptop? Does that work? If so, it might just be a misconfigured default. As root, run
Which will list the available soundcards. Running
asoundconf set-default-card <cardname>
Where you replace <cardname> with exactly the name that came up in the `asoundconf list` command should change the default.