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The Xonar Essence STX Q/A, tweaking, impressions thread - Page 314

post #4696 of 4911
Quote:
Originally Posted by ady1989 View Post
 

Hello everyone, first time poster here! I've had the Essence STX for a long time now and I am not satisfied with the sound I'm getting through my HD595's. It's decent, but I feel like it could be better. The bass feels lacking and muddled while the highs seem too harsh. I had a very ghetto setup dedicated to my headphones, including an old Sony receiver and it seemed a bit better. That being said, I am content with what I'm getting out of my speakers but there's always room for improvement! Can someone please recommend some Op Amps that are best matched with my setup? Thanks a ton!

 

Xonar Essence STX --> custom RCA cables -> NAD C730 Stereo Receiver -> Polk TSi 500 towers and Polk 8" sub

                            --> Sennheiser HD 595 w/ soundstage mod

LME49720 are a low cost (under $10) way of improving the Essence STX's audio quality.

I use three AD797BRs op-amps in my STX, LME49990 have gotten good reviews.

both cost around $50 for three.

Technically with the LME49990 and AD797BRs you need to use 6 op-amps (cost $50) as they have to be added in pairs to the three DIP-8 slots on the STX

 

Have you compared the audio quality of the HD595 plugged into the Essence STX and the NAD?

Did you disable the motherboard's on-board audio when you installed the Essence STX?

post #4697 of 4911

Thanks for the replies as well as the link Sandbo. I should have mentioned before that cost is not an issue. Which op-amps would be better suited specifically for the 595's, do you think?

 

To answer your questions PurpleAngel - yeah I've disabled onboard audio long ago and the jump to the Xonar was like day and night but I now want to see the full potential of the STX. Saves me from building a dedicated headphone amp, at least for the time being (with the only concern being my wallet). While the NAD is an awesome receiver for the speakers, it doesn't shine with the headphones. The Sony sounded much better to me but I don't have enough desk room for a giant setup just for the cans. By the way, the C730 was free! It was just collecting dust and given to me :beyersmile: 

post #4698 of 4911
Quote:
Originally Posted by PurpleAngel View Post
 

LME49720 are a low cost (under $10) way of improving the Essence STX's audio quality.

I use three AD797BRs op-amps in my STX, LME49990 have gotten good reviews.

both cost around $50 for three.

Technically with the LME49990 and AD797BRs you need to use 6 op-amps (cost $50) as they have to be added in pairs to the three DIP-8 slots on the STX

 

Have you compared the audio quality of the HD595 plugged into the Essence STX and the NAD?

Did you disable the motherboard's on-board audio when you installed the Essence STX?

 

I was playing around with my audio setup last night and boy, do I ever feel retarded. I did NOT have on-board audio disabled. I can't believe I've been "using" this card for 2 years like that. Audio quality went up dramatically when I installed it but nothing like this. Since I have an IT background I should know better - I can only bow my head in shame! The headphones sound worlds better but the sound is not nice and defined like I would prefer. The bass sounds muddy and everything else is distant and almost hollow/tin-can like. I ordered 3xLME49990 op-amps today and I'll be giving that a shot. Thanks for asking me about the on-board audio or I would have never checked. I was dead sure I had it all set up properly when I built and overclocked the system.

 

How hot do the LME49990 op-amps get? If it's a big concern I could easily fab up some aluminum heatsinks.

post #4699 of 4911
Quote:
Originally Posted by ady1989 View Post
 

 

I was playing around with my audio setup last night and boy, do I ever feel retarded. I did NOT have on-board audio disabled. I can't believe I've been "using" this card for 2 years like that. Audio quality went up dramatically when I installed it but nothing like this. Since I have an IT background I should know better - I can only bow my head in shame! The headphones sound worlds better but the sound is not nice and defined like I would prefer. The bass sounds muddy and everything else is distant and almost hollow/tin-can like. I ordered 3xLME49990 op-amps today and I'll be giving that a shot. Thanks for asking me about the on-board audio or I would have never checked. I was dead sure I had it all set up properly when I built and overclocked the system.

 

How hot do the LME49990 op-amps get? If it's a big concern I could easily fab up some aluminum heatsinks.


I'm assuming you ordered the 6 LME49990 op-amps presoldered in pairs on to three Dual SOIC to DIP-8 adapters?

I'm not aware of any heat issues with the LME49990.

 

What gain setting for the headphone amplifier, do you have set on the STX?

post #4700 of 4911
Quote:
Originally Posted by PurpleAngel View Post
 


I'm assuming you ordered the 6 LME49990 op-amps presoldered in pairs on to three Dual SOIC to DIP-8 adapters?

I'm not aware of any heat issues with the LME49990.

 

What gain setting for the headphone amplifier, do you have set on the STX?

 

Yep, I ordered 3 of these: http://www.ebay.ca/itm/190928099571?ssPageName=STRK:MEWNX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1497.l2649

 

I'm using normal (0 db) gain for the 595's.

post #4701 of 4911
Quote:
Originally Posted by ady1989 View Post
 

 

Yep, I ordered 3 of these: http://www.ebay.ca/itm/190928099571?ssPageName=STRK:MEWNX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1497.l2649

 

I'm using normal (0 db) gain for the 595's.


That is the exact eBay seller I was going to recommend.

You might try setting the gain on the STX to "64~300-Ohm", might improve audio quality.

post #4702 of 4911
Quote:
Originally Posted by PurpleAngel View Post
 


That is the exact eBay seller I was going to recommend.

You might try setting the gain on the STX to "64~300-Ohm", might improve audio quality.

I tried that and while the bass seems to sound a little deeper the definition issue is still there. It makes it louder and I actually have no idea if it's placebo or if it actually sounds better. Besides the op-amps, what else can I change on this card? I have read about changing the clock and the power supply - are there any guides on doing so?

post #4703 of 4911
Quote:
Originally Posted by ady1989 View Post
 

I tried that and while the bass seems to sound a little deeper the definition issue is still there. It makes it louder and I actually have no idea if it's placebo or if it actually sounds better. Besides the op-amps, what else can I change on this card? I have read about changing the clock and the power supply - are there any guides on doing so?

I'm not too knowledageable about other hardware updates, besides the op-amps

 

Try the third party drivers "Unified Xonar Drivers".

http://maxedtech.com/asus-xonar-unified-drivers/

 

Foobar2000

http://www.foobar2000.org/

 

Might be time to sell off the HD595 are get new headphones.

post #4704 of 4911

Yeah, I think you're right about getting new cans but for the time being the 595's will have to do. It's an expensive hobby, I'll have to sell some rifles to fund an amp building project and new headphones :)

post #4705 of 4911

sell all the rifles.. what are you gonna do with a bunch of rifles, there're no zombies. with the cans, you can listen to as much music as you want. 

post #4706 of 4911
I just got a set of LME 49720HA from ebay but I notice they didn't come with a 8 dip adapter is there a way of installing it by just bending the pins but they are pretty long ??? Or is there a way to just buy the adapter??
post #4707 of 4911
Quote:
Originally Posted by howzz1854 View Post
 

sell all the rifles.. what are you gonna do with a bunch of rifles, there're no zombies. with the cans, you can listen to as much music as you want. 

 

 

I compete with them :wink_face: 

post #4708 of 4911

Just got my hd600s after using ad700s for a while.

 

I have:

Xonar STX >>> RCA >>> Matrix Mstage >>> HD 600

 

Can't really hear much of a difference between:

Xonar STX >>> HD 600

 

 

Am i doing something wrong, what settings should i be using?

post #4709 of 4911
Quote:
Originally Posted by azif View Post
 

Just got my hd600s after using ad700s for a while.

 

I have:

Xonar STX >>> RCA >>> Matrix Mstage >>> HD 600

 

Can't really hear much of a difference between:

Xonar STX >>> HD 600

 

 

Am i doing something wrong, what settings should i be using?

 

Set the output to 2 speakers and set volume to 100 in asus control center (to control volume use m-stage only).

Set the appropriate gain on the m-stage for HD600. They are 300 ohms, so i guess you should try both 10 and 18 gain settings and see how do you like it.

post #4710 of 4911

Hey everyone, got some questions:

 

1. If I'm using s/pdif passthrough to an Icon HDP, I will not benefit from OpAmps, correct?

2. When gaming (Counter-Strike:GO, for example), using s/pdif out, which will offer the greatest precision: 2ch HF, 8ch HF, or 6ch with Dolby Headphone? Open to suggestions!

3. I mainly listen to Spotify Premium. I assume 24/96 in both the STX panel and the digital out in Windows 7 audio panel with 2ch HF are my best bet for sound quality?

 

Thanks in advance!

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