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  #71 (permalink)  
Old December 18, 2008, 09:16 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RagingDragon View Post
And stranger still:
Robscix: if/when you review the STX it'd be interesting to see what effect swapping the opamps has on headphone and front output quality...
Another thing I think one should test in a review is whether the card makes any noise when you power up/down or go out of/in standby in both the headphone and speaker outputs.

My X-Fi Elite has been a complete letdown in that respect.

Also, it would be great to test how effective the card is at eliminating EMI. This is the main reason why I'm seriously contemplating an expensive outside DAC. The PC power supply doesn't provide clean power for audio applications and EMI is prevalent in PC cases. I wonder if the new card from Asus is as good as a dedicated DAC in that respect.
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  #72 (permalink)  
Old December 18, 2008, 10:18 AM
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Robscix, you're not at all let down by a mere 110db SnR on the 1/4" TRS jack?

I realize you probably have an RCA connection and yours and are using it, but this is highly misleading to keep touting the 124db when it only applies to very high end headphones, where most great phones still use 1/4" jack.
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  #73 (permalink)  
Old December 18, 2008, 11:54 AM
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I don't think it is misleading at all, the card is capble of 124 dB for it's stereo output, which is the cards main outputs so this is what they are advertising. If you want to use the onboard headphones amplifier then you have another set of specifications which relate to that component. While 110dB isn't as nice as 124 dB SNR, there is nothing "mere" about it and 110db SNR for the headphone output will still surpass many soundcards main outputs. The card sound very nice with headphones and for stereo output and that is stock. For all the modders out there this is a nice card to start with.

@GreekJohn, I find many blow EMI/RFI way out of propartion when speaking about soundcards. There is only certain places the card is actually suceptible and soundcards have filtering circuitry to deal with it. While EMI/RFI is a real consideration in some respects many don't understand how it actually affects their devices and if it is actually a issue at all.
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  #74 (permalink)  
Old December 18, 2008, 01:12 PM
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Also realize that SNR, like most published specs for any electronics, is not anywhere near wholly indicative of the product's ultimate performance.
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  #75 (permalink)  
Old December 18, 2008, 02:08 PM
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I am not sure if you are talking to me or the other poster. Of course one measurment doesn't give the entire picture of how a device responds or performs.

SNR, however is a industry standard for measurement of a audio device and the Signal to Noise Ratio (SNR) is imperical measurment that demonstrates the relationship between the audio signal and the noise of the device being measured. You cannot just discount it altogether or rely on it soley. You do however have other measurments that need to be reviewed also, Such as THD,IMD,Dynamic range, Impulse response etc. Audio measurement is a very lengthy topic and the subject of much debate.
You also have many who believe that audio device measurments can only show you so much in relation to how a device will sound -Which is true in some respects.
That being said, until somebody comes up with a better system to gauge and measure these audio devices we are stuck using the current measurment system.

Last edited by Robscix; December 18, 2008 at 04:07 PM.
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  #76 (permalink)  
Old December 20, 2008, 02:17 AM
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Rob, your points agree with everything that I have read - I was just trying to encourage above posters not to get too hung up on those measurements.

While we're on the topic of noise, could you provide some insight into how noise is measured on these cards? It's my understanding that the PC power supply and processing circuitry put out a considerable amount of RFI and higher freq. noise, so how is it that the cards manage to put out these clean numbers when operating in that environment? Is noise above a certain frequency not included in the measurement?

BTW I should also mention where I'm coming from with all this. I've been reading a great deal on forums like audioasylum and diyaudio. Many people on these forums hail from advanced electical engineering backgrounds and/or are extremely anal about sound quality and the things discussed there are far beyond anything I've heard on computer audio forums. I am trying to gauge how some of their concerns jive with folks from a more "down-to-earth"(for lack of a better word) perspective. I am running some fairly nice equipment myself (Hypex amplifiers, Gallo Reference loudspeakers) and I want to get the most out of it, but without driving myself mad over small details.

Last edited by crash01; December 20, 2008 at 02:31 AM.
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  #77 (permalink)  
Old December 20, 2008, 04:27 AM
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Some just go over the top.
I like quality and when hearing the difference, some might not due to how they are not trained to hear those distinctions.
same as some can drink vine and know where the vine was grown, who pressed the grape and even who planted the trees!
Just by tasting a glass of vine. Kinda amazing skill ;)
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  #78 (permalink)  
Old December 22, 2008, 07:38 AM
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Why don't they put a 12v trigger output for power amps already?

Isn't it obvious that people will want to connect this card straight to a power amp?

Last edited by GreekJohn; December 22, 2008 at 07:54 AM.
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  #79 (permalink)  
Old December 22, 2008, 08:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crash01 View Post
Rob, your points agree with everything that I have read - I was just trying to encourage above posters not to get too hung up on those measurements.

While we're on the topic of noise, could you provide some insight into how noise is measured on these cards? It's my understanding that the PC power supply and processing circuitry put out a considerable amount of RFI and higher freq. noise, so how is it that the cards manage to put out these clean numbers when operating in that environment? Is noise above a certain frequency not included in the measurement?

BTW I should also mention where I'm coming from with all this. I've been reading a great deal on forums like audioasylum and diyaudio. Many people on these forums hail from advanced electical engineering backgrounds and/or are extremely anal about sound quality and the things discussed there are far beyond anything I've heard on computer audio forums. I am trying to gauge how some of their concerns jive with folks from a more "down-to-earth"(for lack of a better word) perspective. I am running some fairly nice equipment myself (Hypex amplifiers, Gallo Reference loudspeakers) and I want to get the most out of it, but without driving myself mad over small details.

Depends on the mesurment really. There are many frequencies that are way outside of the audio spectrum which is about 20Hz to 20Khz. This is the "band-width" of human hearing more or less. It changes with age and of course some bass frequencies can still be felt but not heard usually way under 20Hz...
Many audio tests will only concentrate on this area only.
Soundcards usually have filtering sections to remove unwanted signals and only certain parts of the circuit are suceptible to any interference that can be of a issue to playback. Some blow the entire subject of EMI/RFI right out of proportion. If it is a concern for you buy a sheilded card or shiled the one you have.
You are correct in that some get way to anal about the entire subject and worse many use their current audio gear or knowledge to make up for other shortcomings in their personality. People that are rude and jump on others who are just learning. You can know more then another and offer your advice and opinion without turning it into a *issing contest. You will find alot of that going on in the larger "dedicated" audio forums.
I have a background in Electronic engineering and I add a little bit of info to my reviews about electronics as I figure this helps people learn about what makes these cards function so they can make informed decisions based on reading specs and other information. Although I try not to get too complicated just enough to convey the point. Hope this Helps.

Last edited by Robscix; December 22, 2008 at 09:19 AM.
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  #80 (permalink)  
Old December 22, 2008, 09:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GreekJohn View Post
Why don't they put a 12v trigger output for power amps already?

Isn't it obvious that people will want to connect this card straight to a power amp?

Obvious to who? This card is aimed at many different types of people but the main traget market is Headphone users. The card has industry standard line-level output to connect to a vast variety of consumer audio gear but it is not a preamp in the sense your speaking of.
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