ASUS Xonar Essence STX, nice sound card with SNR up to 124dB

Discussion in 'PC Audio' started by DiGiTaL MoNkEY, Oct 20, 2008.

  1. telefragd

    telefragd Member

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    Onboard digital output can handle it.
    It sounds more like you haven't got DTS/DD passthrough enabled.

    Install AC3filter, enable SPDIF passthrough and see how you go.
     
  2. Will S

    Will S Member

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    So the question would have to be is how does digital sound compare to analogue sound ? Is there any reason to use analog ?
     
  3. JuzIE

    JuzIE Member

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    Cheers ;) If i were to buy headphones.. then this would be perfect right?
     
  4. m0tyrider

    m0tyrider Member

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    lol....all speakers are analog.
    Your going to have a analog connection along the lines somewhere, whether it be from your amp or straight off your sound card.

    Its because digital is well...digital. 1's and 0's of data along the connection. Where analog is well what ever the hell analog is. Noise. Where is can be degraded and interfered with alot easier. Im no audio engineer but in my own head i know the difference between digital and analog.

    Its the same debate with hdmi cables how people spend $100+ on one. When hdmi is digital therfor no matter what cable you get. Its still gonna output those same 1's and 0's along it!
     
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2009
  5. Will S

    Will S Member

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    Dig or ana........ have read wiki's and other stuff but still would like to know why if using a digital output from the STX is a waste of time and space ?

    I would have to assume that analogue sound from the STX would be superior to digital sound from my onboard soundchip ?
     
  6. m0tyrider

    m0tyrider Member

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    Depending on Where the digital source is going to.
    Generally it goes

    Digital - Amp - Speakers. Correct?

    So in that case. Me personally would not go out and buy a $250 card just to output a digital signal to a amp. What difference would it make? ITS DIGITAL!
    I have the Essense STX and use the cards built in amp. The whole reason to buy it. If i was using a digital signal i wouldn't bother upgrading because your amp would be doing all the work. Not the Card.

    Digital sound will be converted to analog via the amp. So it depends on the amp you have.
     
  7. m0tyrider

    m0tyrider Member

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    Gotta ask. What sort of setup are you planning?
    Headphones, speakers? What products do you have or are thinking of purchasing?
     
  8. Will S

    Will S Member

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    Have some Logitech Z5500 speakers which you can use digital or analogue on.

    Am getting delivered tomorrow hopefully some AD700 headphones
     
  9. m0tyrider

    m0tyrider Member

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    Ok. If you are primary using the speakers. I would save my money because you will not notice any difference if you are going to use the digital output from your motherboard in comparision to any sound card. The speakers do all the converting and heavey work with the digital signal.

    But in the case for the AD700's, it will make all the difference if you are using the 3.5mm jack off the card. So depending on which you will use and how clear/loud you like your music/gaming/what ever will determine if you want to purchase the card. (also how fat your wallet is to :p)

    So to sum it up.
    Speakers primary use - Just stick with onboard
    Headphones primary use - Buy the essense stx. (Same setup i have with AD700's and would never ever go back to onboard. Reason why i dont use linux 24/7)

    :)
    Anymore questions just shoot away Will!
     
  10. Will S

    Will S Member

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    no more questions


    I will wait and see how the speakers sound with onboard first, then will use an x-fi gamer from an XP machine to compare and then when I have done all that....I will toss a coin :-

    Thanks for the replies
     
  11. m0tyrider

    m0tyrider Member

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    Do let us know if you find a difference when using the digital signal. In theory there should be none.
     
  12. m0tyrider

    m0tyrider Member

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    Now can someone explain how i can get a stable release of ubuntu. 9.04 or something working with my essence STX!
     
  13. Skobb

    Skobb Member

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    It all depends on the quality of the DACs in your amp..
    Unless you've got a real decent setup, I'd say that the DACs on the STX would out perform the ones in your amp.. I base this on absolutely nothing though lol, but I've heard a few people say the same thing too..

    You'd think that 'digital is digital', same, but apparently there WILL be a difference between onboard and a high end sound card.. NFI what it is though..
     
  14. m0tyrider

    m0tyrider Member

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    Mmmm always a minority that go with marketing :p
    Then again with audio, im only going off theory's. Not actual experiance. I could be wrong.

    But in a example....i fail to see the difference between a really expensive monster hdmi cable to the $20 cables from oznetics. :) Digital is Digital to me :)
    Another good example is digital tv, doesn't matter what digital receiver i got. Its still going to be as clear as any other one because its digital. Assuming both units used the same cables of transmission.
     
  15. Kaine[zof]

    Kaine[zof] Member

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    For cabling, digital is digital, particularly when it's optical ;)

    Onboard digital vs sound card digital: both will output essentially the same quality for basic 2-channel un-encoded sound. (barring crappy clocking and such things but 99.9% of the time, that kind of error is undetectable by anything but specific testing equipment)
    Sound cards will usually have a better digital output chip on them, allowing higher resolution encoding, therefore higher quality output.
    A good sound card will also offer more advanced encoding options, like proper surround/positional sound (as in, not upmixed from stereo by the amplifier). These methods require some fairly advanced multiplexing algorithms, most of which are licensed.(ie/ Dolby. NO EAX HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH THIS) They also require support from the receiving unit, like a proper surround sound amplifier.
     
  16. telefragd

    telefragd Member

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    There will be a difference if the onboard digital output internally resamples to 48kHz no matter what sampling rate you're using. Some of the budget Soundblaster cards do this too, which degrades quality by performing unnecessary resampling. Then there's also the problems associated with the various audio implementations used from Windows XP to Windows 7 which is what ASIO, WASAPI and KS is for - if you want to Google for it.

    The above is better left to a whole different topic because it can get ugly :p
     
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2009
  17. oodles

    oodles Member

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    I guess I should update this thread. I was originally having issues with GRID/DIrt not working on the STX. After moving to Windows 7 those issues stopped completely. Not really a solution but its working great now and I love this card.
     
  18. Will S

    Will S Member

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    a quick update :

    have just received my AD700 headphones and am very disappointed with the sound from the onboard audio.

    have x-fi gamer fatality in a folding machine and tried them using that and the difference is pretty amazing and I like the sound

    so looks like the STX is back in the mix


    btw: if you wonder why I just dont use the x-fi ( and I like like it ) , well its pci and I need a pci-e
     
  19. m0tyrider

    m0tyrider Member

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    If you want a PCI-E Card grab the stx then :p
    Got the same setup as you bud. AD700's with the Essence STX. Love it.
     
  20. -=N0N@ME420=-

    -=N0N@ME420=- Member

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