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HT Omega Claro Halo or ASUS XONAR Essence ST - Page 2

post #16 of 27
The source is always overrated on head fi, believe me a cheap dac found on every Creative card is a very good source,
If you going to use headphones just invest your money in some good HAmplifier,
then you can try upgradding the source, otherwise there`ll be little difference between these cards..
have fun
post #17 of 27
deleted
post #18 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by New2TheScene View Post
Here's another question, and a potential deal-breaker for me: Is the front panel headphone out (header) amplified by the same TI headphone amp and opamp gain stages as the rear jack?

I ask this about the Halo and Essence ST? While I plan to use the read jack, I have some space limitations and want to be able to get the same signal out of the front panel too.

Does anyone know?
Front panel audio on the STX/ST uses only the TI headphone amp even on the FP2 speaker setting. The D.C. offset is identical on all front panel audio settings. It is also somewhat high to be used for coupling to any high gain D.C. coupled amp. Low gain D.C. coupled amps should be ok (less than 4X voltage gain ok).
post #19 of 27
Thread Starter 
So the front panel connector bypasses the Opamps altogether? That can't sound great.

Also, it wasn't clear, are you saying that this is a requirement of the front panel connector/spec?

Does anyone know about the Claro Halo?
post #20 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by New2TheScene View Post
So the front panel connector bypasses the Opamps altogether? That can't sound great.

Also, it wasn't clear, are you saying that this is a requirement of the front panel connector/spec?

Does anyone know about the Claro Halo?
It bypasses the buffer amp only, not the I/V amps on the xonar.
post #21 of 27
i'm sorry, does this mean that audio quality is affected if outputting to FP headphone?
post #22 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by cschiu View Post
i'm sorry, does this mean that audio quality is affected if outputting to FP headphone?
I find the headphone amp on the Xonar card very neutral I.E. uncolored & very detailed. More so than the unmodded lineout. The modded lineout is practically identical sounding but with far less D.C. offset than the headphone amp has on the Essense STX. The modded lineout is what I recomend to anyone hooking an amp up to the Essense ST or STX as the D.C. offset is sufficiently low to drive any amp including D.C. coupled ones without issue.

In modded form the lineout is capable of neutralizing most of the D.C. offset emminating from the input circuitry of many amps which cannot be cancelled with the unmodded lineout. By cancelling most of the input D.C. offset it can reduce the D.C. offset at the output of the following external amp. This is a very good thing indeed.

The headphone amp though is great for driving headphones directly as the D.C. offset though too high to drive D.C. coupled amp is sufficiently low for driving headphones direct & is better in my opinion than whats attainable from the unmodded lineout driving an external amp as there is some loss in the coupling caps of the unmodded lineout.

Others do not of coarse always agree with me on this but that is ok with me as some types of music is easier on the ears when there is a certain degree of loss as long as it is not excessive & the coupling caps used on the lineout are not terrible but they do have some loss. I have heard a lot worse losses in coupling caps before than the ones used in the ST or STX.
post #23 of 27
thanks for the quick reply germanium. i guess i don't understand what you are referring to when you say modded and unmodded line outs. to my knowledge the ST/STX has a headphone out and an analog line out. and as you pointed out the FP connectors output the same as the headphone jack and so where does the modded line out come into play? if you have the time, i would definitely appreciate your expertise. thanks again.
post #24 of 27
He means the outputs that are coupled with capacitors or modded lineout meaning the caps on the outputs are bypassed. For analog, this card has FP can output, rear can output and the line output.
post #25 of 27

man you should of made a poll

Witch one is better in futures then if there so similar?


Edited by DeltaX5 - 12/12/10 at 7:41am
post #26 of 27

My understanding is that there isn't a real difference in sound between the ST and STX- only how it connects to the motherboard.

post #27 of 27

Unable to be noticed by some ears maybe, but ST does have better clock section designed to reduce jitters.

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