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Asus Xonar HDAV1.3  (Source: Asus)

Asus Xonar HDAV1.3 Deluxe Expansion Card  (Source: Asus)
ASUS Xonar HDAV1.3 unveiled at Computex 2008

ASUS made another interesting product announcement at Computex 2008 today. The company gave a preview of its upcoming Xonar HDAV1.3 HDMI-ready sound card. The card is HDMI 1.3a compliant and offloads audio processing from high-definition video.

The Xonar HDAV1.3 can decode lossless audio formats from Blu-ray films including Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD Master Audio at 24-bit, 96-192 Khz. The card runs on a PCI Express x1 slot and can deliver up to 7.1 surround sound.

To reduce noise Asus uses analog audio with 120db signal-to-noise ratio with distortion as low as 0.0004% on all 7.1 channels. To handle the video portion of Blu-ray discs ASUS integrates a Splendid HD video processor that provides a clear image form Blu-ray titles without having to rely on the CPU of a computer.

This means that users of desktop systems that don’t have a discrete graphics card or a high-end CPU can enjoy Blu-ray movies and high definition sound by installing one card into their computers. The brain of the Xonar is the ASUS AV200 codec chip that features digital to analog convertors. This card is the first in the Xonar family to use opamp sockets to allow for solder-less modifications to customize sound to the individual's liking.

A deluxe version of the HDAV1.3 offers all the same features as the standard card plus adds a HDAV H6 surround channel expansion card. ASUS declined to comment on pricing and availability for the HDAV1.3. With ASUS’ low end Xonar card—the Xonar DX 5.0—retailing for $89 it’s a safe bet the HDAV1.3 will go for well over $100.



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RE: HTPC <b>EVERYONE</b>?
By Lazarus Dark on 6/6/2008 6:37:09 PM , Rating: 2
All of you are confused.
This thing still requires a half decent video card or processor. It does not decode any video formats, only audio. The video comes out of your vid card or mobo like normal, but then loops back into this Asus card. The Asus card then adds the 7.1 sound (in either decoded lpcm or in its original HD audio codec) to the signal and then outputs it again to go to your 7.1 hdmi receiver. This device is for adding 7.1 sound to the already existant hdmi signal coming out of your system (or dvi with an adapter). Additionally, according to Anandtech, you have to use the included Arcsoft media player, as currently PowerDVD and WinDVD do not support this card. Still, if no better solution exists by the time this comes out (namely a vid card fully capable of this), then I will buy it. I am currently waiting for a 7.1 digital solution for pc's before I will upgrade from my 5.1 reciever. I refuse to output analog sound from a computer.


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