Excerpt: , founded in 1990, is somewhat a jack-of-all-trades when it comes to designing and manufacturing computer hardware and components these days. Currently, the company is pushing their tablets, notebooks, and all-in-ones, but they have firm roots in the manufacturing of computer components that are...
Conclusion: The Xonar Essence STX and Essence ST soundcards are by far the least expensive way of turning a PC into a genuine high-resolution audio source I have yet encountered. Neither the Essences' resolution nor their low levels of noise are compromised by having to operate in the electrically unfriendly...
Conclusion: As the performance graphs show, the ASUS Xonar Essence STX is a high achiever. It blitzed all tests, bar one, where the Xonar Xense got a slight upper hand in frequency response.
Pros: Crisp audio output, Near flat frequency response, Respectable headphone amp, Very low noise levels on both line-in and line-out, Top-tier components, such as the capacitors, DAC and op-amps, Op-amps are user replaceable, Drivers work flawlessly on Vista and 7, Dolby Headphone works well for movie...
Cons: Need pricey equipment to appreciate the added quality of sound, EAX emulation isn't quite as good as a native hardware solution, No hotkeys to quickly alter settings in Xonar Audio Center
Excerpt: There are a few dirty secrets in the tech industry, and one of the best-guarded among them regards multichannel audio—everybody wants multichannel audio but almost no one actually runs the speakers to use it.
Pros: Clean and pure sound output and control over headphone impedance.
ASUS Xonar Essence STX PCI Express sound card review
18 May 2009
Conclusion: When we came to the climax of our review of Auzentech's new X-Fi Forte a couple of weeks ago, we labelled it as our new "king of the hill" as far as discrete audio solutions go. Indeed, it was almost a minor miracle in the way it squeezed so much functionality into such a small board, and without...
Conclusion: As with most products, I was slightly apprehensive about the Xonar Essence STX before I heard it. I asked myself, how could a small, simple amplifier on a soundcard perform anywhere near as well as a standalone headphone amplifier?
Pros: The DAC, capacitors, and op-amps on the card produce an extremely pure and transparent sound, Hugely dynamic and accurate sound on any headphones using the onboard headphone amplifier, Headphone amplification works for the front panel (case) audio sockets, Flawless driver compatibility in Vista 6...
Cons: The GX mode isn't a 100% exact emulation of EAX
ASUS Xonar Essence STX Headphone Amp Sound Card Reviewed
11 March 2009
Summary: One thing that annoys me most about PC audio is just how noisy and dirty sounding it is, especially with good headphones. The most startling thing about the ASUS Xonar Essence STX Headphone Amp Card was just how dark the background was.
Pros: The best music experience you'll ever have on a set of headphones on a PC, Extremely high quality audiophile build with swappable OPAMPS for those with a need to tweak
Cons: Not for gamers or casual listeners, Price may be hard to justify for some
Summary: Based on my long term testing with the STX card, from engineering sample to final production version I have been highly impressed with the Xonar Essence STX. ASUS set out to build a new flagship card for stereo and headphone use and definitely pushed the bar much higher for other companies who want...