ASUS Prepares PCIe x1 Sound Card
Anh Tuan Huynh
March 23, 2007 11:29 AM
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Xonar EMI shield concept
Xonar D2K at CeBIT, image courtesy of VR-Zone
ASUS readies its upcoming Xonar D2 and Xonar D2K PCI and PCIe x1 sound cards
ASUS last week at CeBIT demonstrated its
sound cards. The upcoming Xonar-series spawns two variants, the D2 and D2K in PCI and PCIe x1 interfaces. Dolby Digital Live and DTS Connect multi-channel audio encoding technologies are available for digital multi-channel audio. The Xonar-series also features 7.1-channel analog outputs for those that prefer analog to digital.
Early reports claim the ASUS Xonar-series feature an Analog Devices audio DSP, however, ADI denies any involvement in the sound card.
“I checked with our sales team and there is not an ADI part in this unit,” said Sandra Perry, product line manager, SoundMAX, DSP Division.
ASUS also touts Dolby Pro Logic IIx, Dolby Virtual Speaker and Dolby Virtual Headphone technologies for multi-channel upconverting and surround sound with stereo speakers and headphones. ASUS rates the Xonar-series with an 118dB playback and 115dB recording signal-to-noise ratios. The upcoming Xonar-series sound cards support 24-bit/192 KHz playback and recording resolutions and ASIO 2.0 as well.
ASUS internal testing reveals the Xonar-series is capable of low total harmonic distortion rates. The Xonar-series has 0.000006% THD on all eight analog outputs and the single line input, between the frequencies of 20Hz to 20 kHz. ASUS also equips the Xonar-series with an EMI shield and touts it provides “stable audio quality.”
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3/23/2007 4:26:55 PM
I agree with most of your points regarding digital signal transfer. However, there are differences in the way video upscaling and deinterlacing is done on HTPC and dedicated players.
Most run-of-the-mill PCs don't really offer the quality per-pixel motion-adaptive deinterlacing found in players with Faroudja or Silicon Optic Realta chips, although a lot of that is changing with ATI's and NVIDIA's new GPUs.
3/23/2007 4:42:21 PM
Yeah, but in software, things can be changed and upgraded. I was thinking more a pure software decoder engines more than incomplete hardware offloading in graphics chips. That is all configurable. Personally I have no interest in upscaling DVDs after seeing 1080p with 1:1 mapping so I don't really pay attention to that realm.
But to say a PC DVD drive isn't as accurate in video rendering as the drive in a dedicated videophile player because of a cheap low quality ribbon cable? Come on... 12345 is going to be sitting in a DRAM chip as 12345 somewhere and fed to a TMDS transmitter all the same.
That is the whole point of digital after all =D
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