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Headphones for Asus Xonar Essence STX

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

EDIT: problem in this post solved, check this post for my current question: http://www.head-fi.org/forum/thread/559963/headphones-for-asus-xonar-essence-stx#post_7568482

 

Today I installed my Asus Xonar Essence STX.

 

I'm currently setting everything the way I want, while listening to some music through the headphones. :) Sounds very good and I'm happy with it.

 

I have a question though, might be a problem:

In the Xonar Audio Center, I don't get why there's so many speaker channel settings if the card is made for stereo only! I know it can handle surround pass-through for the digital out, but this has nothing to do with the channel settings I guess, and I'm not using it for now. I read the manual and it says the channel setting changes the numer of channels set in Windows 7. This still confuses me, but it's not the biggest problem I have at the moment.

 

The real problem is: when set to 2 channels, the monitoring (upper) part of the Xonar Audio Center doesn't show the sound spectrum. It's empty! The music sounds fine, like when I play in 4, 6 or 8 channel mode, but in the 2 channel mode the monitor is either disabled or malfunctioning. I think it's a malfunction, because: in 2 channel mode I can not hear any of the DSP functionality! I can enable everything, but it simply won't change the sound. In 4, 6 and 8 channel mode all the effects work (Dolby Headphone, Equalizer, Karaoke Effects, Flexbass etc.).

 

Does anybody know what the cause is of this problem? I'm running Win7 x64, Asus Driver Version is 7.12.8.1793.


Edited by EDP - 6/27/11 at 2:54am
post #2 of 7

I don't know what causes the problem but it has happened to me before. Something hangs when switching between the windows mixer and running in modes like WASAPI or ASIO. It happened only once before and I fixed it by just restarting. Note that the animations in the settings panel only work when using the windows mixer and not in WASAPI or ASIO. It will just cease to have any movement in the latter modes.

 

As for your other, minor, problem; The drivers are made universally for the two cards in respect to its GUI. Asus is known for pretty shoddy software and this is a prime example. The ST version of the card has an analogue dongle that is sold separately. The driver's gui is laid out with that dongle in mind. Asus just changed some driver.ini information when they released the STX. Even in the STX though, those modes have a function but only when using Dolby Live pass-through mode.

 

 

Hope that clears some things up. Cheers.

post #3 of 7

i think the driver is for many cards

 

like the older one that support 7.1

they use the same on stx

 

so you cant select 5.1

post #4 of 7
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by sulvaat View Post

I don't know what causes the problem but it has happened to me before. Something hangs when switching between the windows mixer and running in modes like WASAPI or ASIO. It happened only once before and I fixed it by just restarting. Note that the animations in the settings panel only work when using the windows mixer and not in WASAPI or ASIO. It will just cease to have any movement in the latter modes.

 

As for your other, minor, problem; The drivers are made universally for the two cards in respect to its GUI. Asus is known for pretty shoddy software and this is a prime example. The ST version of the card has an analogue dongle that is sold separately. The driver's gui is laid out with that dongle in mind. Asus just changed some driver.ini information when they released the STX. Even in the STX though, those modes have a function but only when using Dolby Live pass-through mode.

 

 

Hope that clears some things up. Cheers.

 

How do you disable WASAPI or ASIO?

 

But I fixed the problem already: I set the Windows Audio Setting for the Xonar to 24-bit @ 48kHz in stead of @ 192kHz (92 kHz doesn't work either, and 44.1 kHz does work). Now I see the monitor image and I can use the effects. Why does this happen? In 4/6/8 channel mode, the 24 bit @ 192 kHz setting in the Windows audio settings works just fine!

 

 


Edited by EDP - 6/26/11 at 3:48am
post #5 of 7

Depends on your player. Setting it to WASAPI or ASIO is done independent of the windows mixer - effectively by-passing it - in order to decrease input delay when making music or other professional applications. If you haven't specifically selected it in your music player of choice, you probably are not using it. Like I said though, I am not certain what causes it exactly, it seems to be a problem with switching between access methods over the PCI/e bus. 

 

Glad you fixed you're problem though! It is always a pain when something that costs this much doesn't perform as intended.

post #6 of 7
Thread Starter 

**

I got it at a bargain price though, second hand. I still have to test it's full capabilities, but the software part was already bothering me.

**

 

 

Is it normal for STX users to switch settings all the time? The software recommends so much different settings for movies/music/games! It's a pain you can't use shortcut keys to change to a certain user defined setting.

 

And another question (I'll change the thread title and first post accordingly): what are good headphones for electronic music to be driven by the STX? I read a lot of promising stuff about the Beyerdynamic DT 770 and 990. I am going to my local hi fi store to give them (and others) a listen. And I read there's 32/80/250 ohms versions of these cans. What are the differences, other than how hard they are to drive? I really don't know why you would want a harder to drive headphone, if it has no different sound, so there's got te be a difference! Couldn't find any threads comparing the versions.


Edited by EDP - 6/27/11 at 6:19am
post #7 of 7
Thread Starter 

Ok, now I found a thread with some details on the 32/250/600 ohm versions of the Beyers. But there's also a 80 ohm version. 4 versions, just incredible!

 

Which will be driven better by the STX headamp? I won't use the cans for portable needs, for that I have a Sennheiser PX 200 II (after a PX 200, PMX 200 and HD 238, they all broke in some way, why do I keep buying Sennheisers?)...

I'm inclined to the 250 ohm versions, because their sound spectrums are about what I like. I know the spectrum doesn't tell what it will sound like, I will still have to give them a listen.

 

And I found an interesting thing: there's a 'Pro' edition and a 'Edition' edition of the DT 770/880/990. The Pros are for studio use and have a tighter headband, the Editions are for more comfort, so for home use. The thing is, I found a DT 990 Pro for €149 and a DT 990 Edition for €249! That's a really huge difference... Any thoughts on the differences between the Pro and Edition?


Edited by EDP - 6/27/11 at 7:19am
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