Head-Fi.org › Head Gear › Computer Audio › Sound Cards › ASUS Xonar Essence ST Headphone 7.1-Channel Audio Card for Audiophiles › ASUS Xonar Essence ST Headphone 7.1-Channel Audio Card for Audiophiles Reviews

ASUS Xonar Essence ST Headphone 7.1-Channel Audio Card for Audiophiles Reviews

RushNerd

Not much to say, just very impressed

Posted

Pros: Brilliant design and sound quality. Possibly the best consumer sound card there is.

Cons: Too awesome?

I owned the HT Omega Claro Halo card a week before this, mostly for the headphone amp. I RMA'd it for this one and WOW am I glad I did. Even though they use the same hardware, the headphone amp on this one is at least twice as loud. It powers my cans almost as loud as I would want them too, it does a amazing job. This is a extremely good choice for headphones and replaces the need for more expensive equipment!
Klaatu

I am a complete piker and a novice, but I love it

Posted

Pros: Marked improvement even with my limited speakers

Cons: Heinous drivers. Now the majority of my music is recorded at far too low of a bit rate and sounds awful

First and foremost, I'm relatively new to this whole audiophile thing. I use Klipsch iFi speakers (which as I understand it are more "MidFi" than "HiFi") and a set of Grado SR80 cans. For the moment, all of this is perfectly adequate for my inexperienced ears, but it's a good bet I'll outgrow them.   After installation, which I might ad was actually relatively painless being as I just dropped the card in my system, installed an OS, and downloaded and installed the drivers off the ASUS site, and a bit of rigamarole plugging in the speakers (I didn't know I was supposed to use the RCA to 1/8" adapter) I was off and running.   I was hearing nuances and details that I'd...
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