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Asus Essence One Headphone Amp/DAC (CeBIT 2011) - Page 2

post #16 of 3016
I wonder went it expected to be out. More importantly I cant wait for reviewers to get their hands on this.
post #17 of 3016
Quote:
Originally Posted by Culverin View Post

Same here.

 

Is that some sort of cheap component or something?

 

It is, a lot of decent opamps are cheap ranging from $2 to $10; only the more expensive ones include AD797 OPA627/637 which are about $20-40 a piece and then there's discrete JBT modules as well. A single component does not break a system, the implementation matters a lot. Also you have to consider that a lot of people cannot tell a difference in the opamp they are listening to unsighted, goes to show how small the differences are. Sure, specs are great and all but that is how it measures by itself and not in a system. A large proportion of this hobby goes by sound, and not measurements. Sometimes you cannot simply dismiss something just by its specification on paper because they may only contribute to a small difference that is inaudible even though measurements show something that not even human ear will agree on. In my book as long as it's just not a trash opamp that is not even audio qualified ,it's good enough. You don't need the best opamp in the world unless you're some specification elitist. If it brings some self satisfaction then go ahead, buy the most expensive opamp and be content but if you don't have any experience with some opamps then you don't really need to concern yourself with them.

 

In short : a lot of good opamps are cheap, only the best ones are expensive.
 

 


Edited by kite7 - 3/7/11 at 10:29pm
post #18 of 3016

It would have been nicer if the amp section were fully discrete.  Also, I dislike the kind of sound National's opamps generally contribute to.  =\

 

Opamp price doesn't guarantee better sound.  ADA4627-1B and OPA827 massacre AD797, OPA627, and those overpriced 'discrete' opamps for less money anyway.


Edited by Mad Max - 3/7/11 at 10:32pm
post #19 of 3016

Point is yes there are better opamps. Do you absolutely need the best opamp? Not really, they're as controversial as cables IMO. I'd rather not go into detail of greatly exaggerating the minuscule differences between opamps or cables, wait... isn't this what this hobby is about? biggrin.gif


Edited by kite7 - 3/7/11 at 10:38pm
post #20 of 3016

  

Originally Posted by Mad Max View Post

 

LME49600TS-based amp?  =\


It's an headphones driver IC, can't be worse than the $2 ear-shredding TPA6120A2 of the STX.

 

Originally Posted by kite7 View Post

a lot of good opamps are cheap, only the best ones are expensive.  

 

I don't agree...I love OPA1641, and it's cheap as dirt. It's advertized as being a perfect choice for high end bluray players, fully agreed...fantastic little chip!

 

Originally Posted by genclaymore View Post

I can't wait for reviewers to get their hands on this.


The problem w/ Asus audio products is that they're usually tested by computer geeks, who don't know jack about audiophile gear...and indeed, you can bet that the DPS will be a noisy SMPS...and the volume pot a cheapo ALPS.

 

Plus, all those computer magazines/websites are freebies wh*res, they have to publish good reviews...otherwise, no more free review samples for you [:neo_xp]


Edited by leeperry - 3/8/11 at 4:35am
post #21 of 3016
Quote:
Originally Posted by leeperry View Post

 

I love OPA1641, and it's cheap as dirt. It's advertized as being a perfect choice for high end bluray players, fully agreed...fantastic little chip!



I agree, OPA1641 / OPA1642 is really something... my favorite Op-Amp so far.  Tonal balance and detail are excellent!  After trying a few op-amps for my Dr. DAC2 DX, I finally settle with OPA1642, the best sounding Op-Amp for my Dr. DAC2 DX.  It even de-throne my favorite AD8066, I found OPA1642 is more natural sounding than AD8066.

post #22 of 3016
Quote:
Originally Posted by kite7 View Post

Point is yes there are better opamps. Do you absolutely need the best opamp? Not really, they're as controversial as cables IMO. I'd rather not go into detail of greatly exaggerating the minuscule differences between opamps or cables, wait... isn't this what this hobby is about? biggrin.gif



Opamps change the sound quite a lot. Compare LM324 to something like OPA627, and then compare your favourite hookup wire with the nastiest chinese one (or even coathanger wire).

post #23 of 3016

I remember you being fond of the essence series 1-2 years ago, I see much has changed :)
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by leeperry View Post

  


It's an headphones driver IC, can't be worse than the $2 ear-shredding TPA6120A2 of the STX.

 

 

I don't agree...I love OPA1641, and it's cheap as dirt. It's advertized as being a perfect choice for high end bluray players, fully agreed...fantastic little chip!

 


The problem w/ Asus audio products is that they're usually tested by computer geeks, who don't know jack about audiophile gear...and indeed, you can bet that the DPS will be a noisy SMPS...and the volume pot a cheapo ALPS.

 

Plus, all those computer magazines/websites are freebies wh*res, they have to publish good reviews...otherwise, no more free review samples for you [:neo_xp]



 

post #24 of 3016

How much more power does this have than the essence?  Just out of curiosity. 

post #25 of 3016

 

Originally Posted by WaveRider69 View Post

How much more power does this have than the essence?  Just out of curiosity. 


I'm not sure what answer you're expecting, but hopefully that 32bit upsampling will allow them to go for 150dB SNR...inflated figures improve sales, or so I heard. 

 

Originally Posted by Fantoon View Post

I remember you being fond of the essence series 1-2 years ago


This was a major change over my even more crummy M-Audio Audiophile USB, that's for sure...but it's like everything, like the m2tech Hiface....that's been dethroned by better gear(better PSU, better clocking) in the mean time. The STX has too many flaws:

-24.576Mhz(48kHz*512) clock so 44.1kHz sounds like ****, they kinda fixed it in the ST by adding a 75ps CS2000 reclocker. Hear the ST, and suddenly the STX sounds like a Realtek in comparison.

-horrid drivers, that do everything wrong...I can't think of more crappy drivers...of course the raving reviews made by self-proclaimed audio gurus forgot to mention this little issue, and several years later their drivers still lack big time: http://brainbit.wordpress.com/2010/07/19/asus-xonar-unified-drivers/

 

"Personally I don’t know what those monkey coders at Asus and C-Media are doing. Maybe someone should ratio their bananas."

 

Asus have a long time history of selling hardware, and never fix their crummy BIOS/drivers. They never bothered fixing all the problems w/ SATA on my P5K Deluxe WiFi mobo...the official board is filled w/ bug reports noone cares about.

 

-very shrill and harsh $2 headamp IC...using the line-out was a major relief [:panzani gino]

-very bassy and upfront signature, prolly nice for hardrock and techno...but for jazz/funk/reggae, it's a no-go.

-cheapo DIP8 sockets, that provide very poor contact...Asus decided to save a few cents and didn't go w/ machined sockets for some odd reason. My ST even came w/ a completely rusty socket, I had to send it back for RMA.

-its DSP is spec'ed at 700ps jitter in its datasheet, and that's what it sounds like.
 

So it's nice if you come from an even more crummy internal soundcard, which would explain all the raving on computer websites...but it doesn't hold a candle to a proper audiophile rig. And it does videogames very poorly, as been thoroughly tested by many ppl: http://www.xbitlabs.com/articles/multimedia/display/asus-xonar-essence-stx_6.html#sect0

 

"If Dolby Headphone is not enabled, the Xonar Essence STX gives you no sense of direction towards the sound at all."

 

Hopefully, Asus will learn from their mistakes....but I don't really count on it...they'll make another shrill sounding board, send it to a few computer websites, get raving reviews = done deal [:bien]


Edited by leeperry - 3/9/11 at 5:40am
post #26 of 3016

I mean output power.  How do they rate these onboard amps in milliwatts or what?  I viewed the data sheets for each of the IC amps but I don't really understand much of it.  The essence I had could barely push 250ohm headphones on max gain, let alone it would be funny to say they could power 600ohm.  I like that Asus continuing to expand in this area I think it's great because they are bringing more people into the better quality audio world.  I've got an external dac/amp now and love it.  These Asus cards would make the majority of the general population happy though.  So I am curious to see if they smartened up a bit by adding a more powerful chip.


Edited by WaveRider69 - 3/9/11 at 7:09am
post #27 of 3016

Does anyone know when this unit have its realse date? And maybe the price estimate too?

post #28 of 3016

  


if this is 250milliamps then what is the orginal xonar essence?

 

post #29 of 3016

    Quote:

Originally Posted by WaveRider69 View Post

  


if this is 250milliamps then what is the orginal xonar essence?

 

IIRC, 80mW into 600ohm. 

The spec sheet suggests that at max it could push about 1.5W using +/-12V supplies.

Power changes based on headphones impedance.

 


Edited by ROBSCIX - 3/9/11 at 1:37pm
post #30 of 3016

Yeah I got that, sorry for being a bit noobish, but how does that translate mW vs milliamps?

 

or if you had to put it simply which has more power and by how much %?  lol

 

 

 

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