Need help deciding on a Soundcard, between Asus ASUS Xonar DSX and HT OMEGA eCLARO - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 7 Old 09-11-2013, 03:40 PM - Thread Starter
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I finished a haswell build and to my misfortune im having issues with the included Realtek 1150, in the past i had nightmares with Creative and their drivers, to the point that on my PC i use only realtek and accepted the worst sound for stability. But im willing to go into a dedicated sound card again, as i have lot of static noises on the realtek.

Setup
Sound card ---> 3x 3.5 mini stereo plug to RCA ---> Emotiva UPA-5 amp ---> JBL NSP1 speakers + Sony SA700 sub

Use
Mostly gaming, most of the time im playing alone on the 5.1 setup, but i do play with friends regularly maybe couple of hours at night, but the rest of the time im speakers. I play BF3, LOL, WOW, SC2, DOTA2, CS:GO, D3. I do use it for music but still more on the speakers, i do play ocasionally a movie or two but not what i spend most of the time.

The Sound card needs
5.1 analogs - 3.5 mini streo plugs
No static at all when gaming or playing music
Has to sound better than Realtek
Below $300
Stable drivers for windows 7 pro
Has to be PCIe, i have no PCI slots

What im considering atm, but open to any none creative suggestion,

HT Omega eClaro
I have read good things about HT Omega over the years, but one thing that has remained is they are expensive, but as long as it works well, i don't care. I like some features of it, like serial cable for speakers, this will help me a lot when cleaning and not needing to replug individually. I like also has a dedicated connection for the headphones, so i don't need to do what im doing atm to have the 2 channel front go to my headphone amp and then to the speaker amp, but not a big deal either. The other thing that worries me is that the last windows 7 drivers that i see from them are dated 2010... thats a long time, either they are really good into their drivers and no issues have happen on 3 years, or their support lacks.

Asus Xonar DSX
A friend has one and he says been perfect for a year, he is using asus drivers, but i have read a lot of support on asus lacks and that many go into unified drivers, but checking asus web for the card, has 2013 windows 7 drivers, so maybe is not as bad as im thinking or not with this version. One thing that i like is the price, more than 3 times less than eClaro.

So what do you recommend me? im open for other sound cards as long as they are not creative.
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post #2 of 7 Old 09-11-2013, 08:48 PM
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I have the Asus Essence ST, which is PCI, but they have the STX which is PCIe. It has a built in headphone amp, it's why I bought it. But it also has an add on card that you can use for 7.1 speaker setups. Which I also have. All the connections are 3/4" or RCA jacks.

I really don't know the difference between the two cards because I got it mainly for the headphone amp. I've never had any issues, and it's been a long time since I even checked for drivers. I've never had any issues, and I would guess they aren't even 2013.


Don't know if you have any interest in those 2 but they would run you $220 at the current amazon prices. I don't think you would have any issues with that DSX card.

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post #3 of 7 Old 09-12-2013, 10:17 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for the reply,

If i were on the market for pure heaphone card, i would have gone with Asus Xonar STX or ST, the problem is that i dont have PCI slots anymore and i personally dont want to invest $200+ on PCI, hgiher end mobos dont have them anymore, so looking for lower end mobos isnt my flavor just to use the ST, i know there is the STX and this was one of my routes, but apperently the ASUS Xonar H6 addon card is not meant for the STX, only the ST, there is no connector that i see from any picture, nor in the information on asus.



Its missing the pins on the end, so the STX is not useful to me if the daughterboard cant be ran to get the 5.1 on rca.
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post #4 of 7 Old 09-12-2013, 12:38 PM
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I've had a HT Omega for two years. Love the card. I mostly use it to drive my HD 595's so I have never played with teh analog connections. I've had no issues with the drivers both on 7 and on 8.

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post #5 of 7 Old 09-12-2013, 02:31 PM
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I had to go check my box because I could swear there was a second card on the front. But it was the HDAV 1.3

I wonder why they chose not to put the extension plug on the STX, the layout in that pic is just slightly different right at the corner where the jack would be. Maybe assuming people would only have one PCIe slot at the time?

When I go with a newer CPU I'll be picking up one of the motherboards that has built in headphone amp. Asus has a few now, and I think there was another brand that was putting one out too. Because, unfortunately that lack of PCI slot makes my card useless when I upgrade. frown.gif

That motherboard will probably go into a new case and turn into a dedicated HTPC.


I don't know how the eclaro works but the xonar essence ST, with dedicated headphone jack, has to be switched in the software. You have to tell it which output you want to use. It won't produce sound out of both at the same time.

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post #6 of 7 Old 09-12-2013, 08:00 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for all the feeback, i decide to go with eClaro, out of very few people have issues with drivers, and it has good track of quality, if it doesnt work out ill give a shot to the Asus, but some suggested the D2 and DX over the DSX, so will research more if it comes to that.
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post #7 of 7 Old 09-12-2013, 08:36 PM
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Let us know what you think of it when you get it. Also, remember that its opamp is user replaceable. While the opamp with is is decent there are far better ones that you can buy.

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