Asus Xonar at CeBIT 2007.
New Sound Card Series to Threaten Creative SoundBlaster?
by Aleksey Razin
[ 03/16/2007 | 09:58 PM ]
The appearance of integrated sound controllers for mainboards that combined high quality and affordable price, discrete sound cards started to enjoy pretty limited demand. Mostly music lovers and hardcore gamers as well as sound editing fans remained the primary user group for products like that. The consumer segment got almost fully monopolized by Creative with their SoundBlaster sound card series. Note however, that these sound cards didn’t really adopt massively the innovations like PCI Express x1 interface for instance.
Asus Company realized that users caring about great sound quality would go for discrete sound solutions no matter what, therefore at CeBIT 2007 they demonstrated Xonar D2 series. The first pictures of these solutions were posted by VR-Zone web-site at first and then got spread over other popular on-line media.
Xonar D2 sound card features PCI interface. It is based on ADI chip providing 118dB signal-to-noise ratio during playback and 115dB during recording. It supports full duplex mode with 192kHz 24bit sampling frequency. The card supports an impressive set of Dolby Digital and DTS standards and the special “musical processor” allows converting tracks from licensed optical media into MP3 and WMA formats on the fly.
Xonar D2K sound card can be distinguished by PCI Express x1 interface, however, it is a little farther away from being a mass product, unlike the model with PCI interface.
The next picture represents Asus Xonar D2 without the screen casing:
Asus Xonar sound cards should start selling shortly after CeBIT 2007, the pricing hasn’t been confirmed yet. We will continue our story of these new sound cards and their attack on SoundBlaster positions as we hear more news.