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No more settling for mediocre acoustics with your old onboard audio chip! Turn your PC into a Hi-Fi system with ASUS Xonar Essence ST sound card. A breakthrough in the industry, their Xonar Essence ST, for the first time in the world, features precision-clock tuning for audiophile-class music detail and sound imaging. Top-selected components with proven ASUS design combine in this industry-leading 124dB SNR. Thanks to the built-in headphone amplifier, your luxury headset is capable of unleashing the sound card's full potential with minimized distortion.
Serious listening starts here.
Agreed with Jazzfan
Pros: Sounds fabulous. Low jitter clock.
Cons: Software. Construction quality is lacking compared to Claro Halo. Components on Claro Halo are much higher quality. Lots of cracks and pops than Claro Halo.
Other Thoughts: People said this card is significantly better than Claro Halo because this card output much louder sound than the Halo. Other than louder sound, no much different in terms of sound quality. The construction no doubt Halo wins hands down, you can immediately tell which board is made in China by looking at the PCB. But the sound quality is superb despite the build quality issue.
1 out of 5 people found this review helpful. Did you?
this other guy has downs
Pros: I have had this card (didn't buy from newegg) for ages and have never felt that the construction was sub par. This other guy must be on disability or something because ALL SOUND CARDS ARE BUILT ON PCB. How can one sound could possibly have better build quality than another?? Why does it even matter? Isn't the sound what's important?
8 out of 27 people found this review helpful. Did you?
Not Sure About This Purchase
Pros: Direct Power
Cons: Construction Quality is Disappointing
Other Thoughts: I was a little disappointed with this purchase. As mentioned above, it came with a driver disc for Vista and XP and I had to go online to get the software. Am I being sold old stock? I have a Claro Halo XT in my home theater computer and wanted something different and simpler for the office so I went with this for my ASUS mb office rig, f. The quality of construction on the Claro is a lot better - it's more substantial feeling despite the RF shield on the Asus. The Claro also has audiophile grade line out jacks, which the ASUS lacks. The sound quality seems to be about the same - I read reviews insisting that the PCI version of the Xonor Essence was better than the Claro, but I have not heard a difference. It's definitely better than the motherboard sound but then it better be. I do like the Music (Note) setting on the software, but I am wondering if I am just getting the digital version of the old loudness button on a 70s receiver. I will go back to Claro for my next sound card.
7 out of 23 people found this review helpful. Did you?
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“Direct Power— Jazzfan 4/14/2011
“I have had this card (didn't buy from newegg) for ages and have never felt that the construction was sub par. ...”— steve 8/10/2011