World's first Precision Clock Tuning for Revolutionary PC Hi-Fi audio
Industry-leading 124dB SNR
Choosing only the best components and finest design, Xonar Essence STX achieves unprecedented 124 dB SNR – 64 times clear than on-board solutions, bringing top-o-the shelf audio experience for audiophiles.
Precision clock tuning for perfect audio
Xonar Essence ST is the world’s first audio card to focus on precision clock tuning to minimize audio jitter. The result is extensive musical details and lively sound image presented for revolutionary experience.
Essence ST is designed to allow full 7.1 surround enjoyment with future upgrade. The high fidelity Xonar H6 multi-channel extension board sold separately in the future provides 120dB signal-to-noise ratio, offering the ultimate surround sound quality ever in the market.
Built-in headphone amplifier
Most quality headphones require extra driving power from amplifier to perform their best, otherwise, they distort and lose details
Driving with Ease and Quality
Xonar Essence STX’s built-in headphone amplifier is ready to drive ANY headphone to it’s full performance stage, with under 0.001% distortion
Designed in Essence to achieve Excellence
EMI-free analog output path EMI shielding seals all analog output signals perfectly from noise, offering distortion-free audio enjoyment
Independent power for analog signals Draw additional power from MOLEX ensures the power-sensitive analog signals treated with the cleanest power source
Hyper-Grounding circuitry design Utilizing multi-layer PCB design to separate audio from noise
- by David_W @Nov 09, 2009
Output Signal-to-Noise Ratio (A-Weighted): 124dB for Front-out,117dB for Headphone-out (600ohms) dB Input Signal-to-Noise Ratio (A-Weighted): 118 dB Output THD+N at 1kHz: 0.0003% (-110dB) for Front-out, 0.001% (-100dB) for Headphone-out Input THD+N at 1kHz: 0.0002% (-113dB) for Line-in Frequency Response (-3dB, 24-bit/192kHz input): <10Hz to 90KHz Output/Input Full-Scale Voltage 2 Vrms (5.65 Vp-p)
PCI: PCI v2.2 or above bus compatible
Audio Processor: ASUS AV100 High-Definition Sound Processor (Max. 192KHz/24bit) 24-bit D-A Converter of Digital Sources: Texas Instruments PCM1792A*1 for Front-Out (127dB SNR, Max. 192kHz/24bit) 24-bit A-D Converter for Analog Inputs: Cirrus-Logic CS5381* 1 (120dB SNR, Max. 192kHz/24bit) High Fidelity Headphone Amplifier: Texas Instruments 6120A2*1 (120dB SNR, 100dB THD+N @ Vcc±12V, RL=600Ω, f=1kHz)
Sample Rate and Resolution
Analog Playback Sample Rate and Resolution: 44.1K/48K/96K/192KHz @ 16/24bit Analog Recording Sample Rate and Resolution: 44.1K/48K/96K/192KHz @ 16/24bit S/PDIF Digital Output: 4.1K/48K/96K/192KHz @ 16/24bit, Dolby Digital ASIO 2.0 Driver Support: Supports 44.1K/48K/96K/192KHz @16/24bit with very low latency
Analog Output Jack: RCA jack *2 (Front R / Front L), 6.30mm jack*1 (Headphone out) Analog Input Jack: 6.30mm jack *1 (Shared by Line-In/Mic-In) Other line-level analog input (for CD-IN/TV Tuner): ux-In (4-pin header on the card) Digital S/PDIF Output: High-bandwidth Coaxial/TOS-Link combo port supports 192KHz/24bit Front-Panel Header: Shared by Headphone out / 2 channels out / Microphone in S/PDIF Header: Connects to compatiable graphic cards for HDMI output
Operation System: Windows Vista/XP(32/64bit)/MCE2005 Dolby® Technologies: Dolby® Digital Live Dolby Digital Live encodes any audio signal on PC in real-time to Dolby Digital (AC3) 5.1 surround sounds to your home theater environment through one single S/PDIF connection
Dolby® Headphone Dolby Headphone technology allows users to listen to music, watch movies, or play games with the dramatic 5.1-channel surround or realistic 3D spacious effects through any set of stereo headphones.
Dolby® Virtual Speaker Dolby Virtual Speaker technology simulates a highly realistic 5.1-speaker surround sound listening environment from as few as two speakers.
Dolby® Pro-Logic II Dolby Pro-Logic II is the well-known technology to process any native stereo or 5.1-channel audio into up to 6.1 channel output, creating a seamless, natural surround soundfield. Smart Volume Normalizer™: Smart Volume Normalizer™ Normalizes the volume of all audio sources into a constant level and also enhances your 3D sound listening range and advantages in gaming Xear 3D™ Virtual Speaker Shifter: Virtual 7.1 speaker positioning Karaoke Functions: Music Key-Shifting and Microphone Echo effects like professional Karaoke machine FlexBass™: Professional Bass Management/Enhancement system 3D Sound Engines/APIs: Vista: DirectSound3D® GX 2.5, DirectSound® HW, DirectSound SW, A3D®1.0, OpenAL generic modes, 128 3D sounds processing capability
XP: DirectSound2.5 SW, A3D®1.0, OpenAL generic modes, 128 3D sounds processing capability VocalFX™: the latest vocal effect technologies for gaming and VoIP, including: -VoiceEX: produces vivid environmental reverberation for your voice in EAX games -ChatEX: emulates different background environment effects when you chat online -Magic Voice: changes your voice pitch to different types (Monster/Cartoon…) for disguising your real voice or just for fun in online chatting
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Best PC sound card available period. I've been using Creative sound cards since the SB16 and recently replaced an X-Fi Xtrememusic with this. It's my first Xonar and it just blows away the X-Fi. It is hooked up to Logitech Z5300 speakers (front only). It is a 2.1 soundcard (through analog RCA) but it does support digital coax/optical for 7.1. Since I play all my movies on the home theatre, 2.1 is good enough for music and the headphone amp is great for gaming.
For anything looking to buy an STX, do NOT. The Xonar ST actually has better sound quality due to a different way of managing the sound, Other than that they are the same card. NCIX actually has the ST for cheaper than the STX which is rare.
Just built a new Computer Jan 23 2012 from parts off of NCIX and I'm happy to report that the new Motherboard I went with had 2 PCI slots available. (Gigabyte GA-990XA-UD3 AMD 990X AM3+ ATX DDR3 3PCI-E16 2PCI-E1 2PCI SLI SATA3 USB3.0) Placed my card in the new build, installed the drivers for Windows 64bit (old computer was Windows 32bit)and I'm just as happy as the day I bought it. No issues with the 64bit drivers or the new build at all. Now I'm good for a possible 5-6 years with the new rig and sound card. Since my original review I've updated my entire music collection to FLAC, sounds sooooo good! A modest 500 gigs worth. So yes, still a fantastic card and remember to price match kids!
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