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The Xonar Essence STX Q/A, tweaking, impressions thread

Discussion in 'Computer Audio' started by telix, Apr 28, 2009.
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  1. aasat
    I think 127dB in unbalanced mode do not make sense.

    Emu 1212m with balanced out is better than unbalanced Xonar
     
  2. ROBSCIX
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by aasat /img/forum/go_quote.gif
    I think 127dB in unbalanced mode do not make sense.

    Emu 1212m with balanced out is better than unbalanced Xonar




    How does it not make sense?
    ...and "better" according to what?
     
  3. laobrasuca
    Fast question about the LME49720 packing. Does the LME49720MA share the same dimensions as the LME49720NA? I mean, does the LME49720MA fit into the sockets (stx, zero or other)? I've ordered a MA and I'm afraid it doesn't, but I'd like to be sure.

    thx, lao
     
  4. ROBSCIX
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by laobrasuca /img/forum/go_quote.gif
    Fast question about the LME49720 packing. Does the LME49720MA share the same dimensions as the LME49720NA? I mean, does the LME49720MA fit into the sockets (stx, zero or other)? I've ordered a MA and I'm afraid it doesn't, but I'd like to be sure.

    thx, lao




    NO the MA will not just fit into the socket. See if you can change your order.
    The MA model is a SOIC chip which means it is physically smaller and meant for surface mount soldering. You cannot use that on the STX or other device with a DIP socket without an SOIC to DIP adapter.

    You need the NA model as that is the DIP8 version and will judt snap into the card or device.

    Here is the MA package: SOIC chip package
    But, you need this:
    DIP8 Chip Package: MDIP Chip package

    Just to clarify, you can really use any of the packages SOIC,SOICN To-99, MDIP..etc. but they will require adapters and some soldering and know how. The Sockets on the STX and most other devices that are meant to allow the end uder to install opamps will be Dip8. -Which means Dual Inline Package with 8 pins.

    Hope that Helps.
     
  5. laobrasuca
    thank you for the fast answer Steven, it helps and clarify a lot. Very stupid from me... I've just send them an e-mail, I hope they did not ship the chips yet...

    thx once again, Leo
     
  6. jfourc
    Can anyone in the US who has got op amp samples from National Semiconductor share with me how long it takes for them to deliver the samples? Thanks!
     
  7. G-Con
    I got a pair of LME49720HA's and after meticulously bending the round grid of pins into the DIP8 square shape and firmly pressing them into the socket, I threw it into the computer to see how I fared!...

    A note to everyone out there: if you look underneath the STX at the dip 8 sockets, you will see 7 round points and 1 square point. The square point is pin #1.

    It was a spectacular failure actually...

    I was damn certain every pin was in contact, but I still got some terrible audio from the card. In short, I lost bass. I mean straight up lost it... poof, it vanished, like the card forgot how to make sound lower than 200 hrz. On a 0 to 500 frequency sweep, it sounded like it never dipped below 200 hrz, - from 200 to 0 it sounded like it was actually 200 to 180, the pitch came down slightly and it got a bit quieter but there was no low frequency response. I wasn't able to give them an extended listen because once I realized there was no bass (took about 1 minute) I quickly turned off the computer and replaced them with the stock JRC's.

    I hope it was just a bad connection (and that I haven't fried these precious opamps) I've ordered a pair of TO-99 to DIP8 adapters from brown dog - I'll have to find a local shop that can solder them to the adapter for me.

    I need these op amps, I can't handle the stock JRC's any longer, they sound terrible. The treble is so painfully harsh I almost can't listen to music. Cymbals have no life; they sound distorted and have no musical quality. Any time a vocalist "SSSays SSSomething" the 'S' sound is almost pure distortion - harshly unforgiving treble. BUT! At least I have bass with the JRC's.
     
  8. leeperry
    so the card is OK now [​IMG]
    you did bend them in the right order, right? and the leads were not in contact w/ the op-amps cap or the STX shield?

    you kinda scare me now...but I know fzman did it on his STX and that it went smoooth [​IMG]

    get some LME49720NA DIP8 samples from the manufacturer?! will cost ya $10 shipped [​IMG]

    oh yes, the stock JRC are simply unbearable..
     
  9. G-Con
    I quintuple checked the pin diagrams - I'm 110% sure the pins were in the correct orientation. It was a pretty sketchy operation getting them snugly in the socket. Upon visual inspection it looked like every pin was seated properly.

    Honestly I don't know what a botched op amp installation sounds like... do you get some sound but not all?... like thin/airy mids and highs and no lows?

    I'll clarify, I was indeed able to play music - but it sounded very light and airy... It's not like I just heard static or nothing at all.
     
  10. leeperry
    ok, but the card is OK now w/ the stock JRC? I mean you didn't kill the card? [​IMG]

    I dunno what an improperly seated op-amp would sound like, might wanna ask on diyaudio.com

    the diagrams were from a top view, you took that into account right?

    tomorrow I should be getting my dummy TO99 + DIP8 holders, if that seems too risky....I'll just fugghedaboutit [​IMG]
     
  11. fzman Contributor
    this may or not be relevant, but i have also been swapping between two versions of the prodigy hd2 sound cards in my other computer, and at one point could not figure out why the sound was thin, and at very reduced volume. when i removed that card, i noticed that there was NO chip in the output buffer position.... so, it seems like you did not have the opamp seated correctly

    bending the pins is a matter of lining up the little tab, which is directly above pin 8, grab it, and the next 3 which are counterclockwise from pin 8


    then take the other 4 pins and make them the other row. when you are holding the card with the outputs to your left, pins one and eight should be to the left side of the socket (the side with the 1/2 circle cutout.....


    pushing it in firmly to the socket, and making sure the pins don;t touch the case of the can are important, and will probably sound a little better than soldering it to another socket....

    see if that works




    Quote:

    Originally Posted by G-Con /img/forum/go_quote.gif
    I quintuple checked the pin diagrams - I'm 110% sure the pins were in the correct orientation. It was a pretty sketchy operation getting them snugly in the socket. Upon visual inspection it looked like every pin was seated properly.

    Honestly I don't know what a botched op amp installation sounds like... do you get some sound but not all?... like thin/airy mids and highs and no lows?

    I'll clarify, I was indeed able to play music - but it sounded very light and airy... It's not like I just heard static or nothing at all.




     
  12. G-Con
    Place the STX face up on a table with the PCI-E pins closest to you (I/O's on the left, 4pin molex on the right)

    The STX DIP8 pin numbers looks like this:

    8-7-6-5

    1-2-3-4

    Looking at the TO-99 top down (cant see the pins) the notch on the edge marks pin 8:

    ______^
    ______8
    ____1__7
    ___2____6 (Sorry for the lines... the forum removed my spaces [​IMG]
    ____3__5
    _____4



    The notched pin (8) and the next three pins going clockwise all get bent into a line and goes into the top row on the DIP8 bracket, remaining four goes on the bottom row. The notch on the 49270HA points towards the I/O ports.

    fzman you said grab the counterclock pins but I'm pretty sure that is incorrect, you mean clockwise yes?

    Here's the pin diagram:
    http://www.audioupgrades.co.uk/lme49720_ha_pinout.pdf

    Pics: 8-pin DIP to TO-99 Adaptor
     
  13. leeperry
    hopefully the card is OK, this would be a slight seating problem [​IMG]

    BTW fzman I see you sell all kind of gear on your website(HD800 and so [​IMG]), how would you rate the STX+LME49720 headphones amp?

    many ppl diss it, but they only tried it w/ the lousy stock JRC...the amount of details on the 49720 is just astonishing.

    SONY CDP101 Modification - AudioKarma.org Home Audio Stereo Discussion Forums

    Quote:

    All opamps from the start of digital era were not made for audio applications.!!! Until a few years back and now like the LME opamp is strictly design for hi-end audio



    Quote:

    so far nothing beats LME49720 except the Burson opamp



     
  14. Shahrose
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by leeperry /img/forum/go_quote.gif
    hopefully the card is OK, this would be a slight seating problem [​IMG]

    BTW fzman I see you sell all kind of gear on your website(HD800 and so [​IMG]), how would you rate the STX+LME49720 headphones amp?

    many ppl diss it, but they only tried it w/ the lousy stock JRC...the amount of details on the 49720 is just astonishing.

    SONY CDP101 Modification - AudioKarma.org Home Audio Stereo Discussion Forums




    I've tried quite a few opamps (see profile) over a period of a few months and have confirmed that the LME49720 sounds the best overall. IMO, it's apparent almost immediately, and long-term listening only supports that finding. I wouldn't say they're the best in every area though. The bass definition and impact (especially deep bass) isn't as good as some of the other opamps I've tried. The transients, while good, are again not as good as the best in that area. All that aside though, they have many advantages over the other bunch and overall have the most accurate, detailed and open sound, without being harsh. Keep in mind they do have a sound signature of their own that may or may not gel with the rest of your system. They have a smooth extended treble, and are warm in the lower midrange. They are also a bit subdued in the upper midrange/lower treble which contributes to their non-fatiguing quality and expansive soundstage.

    Also, connecting a true headphone amp to the line-out or headphone out (even with the high gain setting) improves the sound quality noticeably. It does atleast in my case. I use the STX amped output in high gain mode (not low or extra high...they don't sound as good) fed into the M^3 and it is a combination I'm so happy with, that I don't think I'll be upgrading my headphone setup for a while.
     
  15. leeperry
    the highest impedance setting sounds utterly saturated on my 600Ω cans, the lowest sounds dull and not controlled...the mid one sounds perfect [​IMG]

    these 49720 are not perfect, a slight lack of bass(but it sounds natural! I don't want a DT770/Pro-like subwoofer bass [​IMG]), the upper medium sounds highly detailed and very transparent, the soundstage VERY involving...I understand that all non-discrete op-amps are a compromise, and apparently the TO99 49720 does improve the bass reponse [​IMG]

    and that total lack of distorsion just makes them delightful, they actually carry more details than my ears can hear at once...I usually need several listens to catch'em all [​IMG]
     
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