Date: April 22nd, 2010
Article by: Jackie Mueller (Hardware Reviewer)
Edited By: Nathan Glentworth (Owner / Head Editor)
Product was submitted by: Asus
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ASUS XONAR ESSENCE STX INTRODUCTION
Asus is a very well company known in the enthusiast community and do not need much of an introduction. For those who may not be familiar with Asus, know that they make just about everything computer related and generally speaking, their products are of high quality. From motherboards to netbooks to routers and multimedia devices, Asus pretty much makes it all. I've owned many Asus products over the years and have been left satisfied with all of them.
Today we're going to focus on a sound card from Asus, specifically their flagship sound card – the Xonar Essence STX. This is not your average sound card; it boasts some pretty impressive features that come at a premium price. It's optimized for high-end headphone use, although it will work just fine with a set of speakers as well. Asus touts it as an audiophile's card, but is it really worth all that cash? Come along with me and find out and I put it to the test.
ASUS CORPORATE PROFILE (From Asus)
ASUS, a technology-oriented company with a global staff of more than ten thousand and blessed with one of the world's top R&D teams, is renowned for high-quality products and cutting-edge innovation. As a leading company in the new digital era, ASUS offers a complete product portfolio to compete in the new millennium.
ASUS has an unyielding commitment to innovation and quality, a fact borne out by its corporate slogan—"Inspiring Innovation • Persistent Perfection"—and the numerous media, industry and governmental accolades it receives every year. In 2008, ASUS won 3,056 awards—receiving over 8 awards on average every day. The company's revenue for the same year was 8.1 billion U.S. dollars, and it topped the IT Hardware Category of the annual league table of Taiwan 's Top 10 Global Brands with a brand value of 1.324 billion U.S. dollars. ASUS also ranks among the top 10 IT companies in BusinessWeek's “InfoTech 100”, and has been on the listing for 11 consecutive years.
Inspired by the diverse needs of consumers in all areas and phases of life, ASUS' foremost mission is to deliver truly innovative solutions that in turn inspire consumers to reach for greater heights of productivity and fun. By leveraging its intimate understanding of the requirements of today's digital home, digital office and digital person, ASUS has the honor of claiming many world's firsts—such as the introduction of the groundbreaking Eee PC™, the ingenious use of renewable materials like leather and bamboo in notebooks and the incorporation of its proprietary power-saving Super Hybrid Engine technology into its notebooks and motherboards. By pioneering many new innovations, trends and technologies that have had a genuine impact on its customers' lives and the Earth at large, ASUS hopes to garner mindshare as well as market share.
To succeed in the ultra-competitive IT industry, ASUS focuses on speed-to-market, cost and service. That is why every ASUS employee strives to master the " ASUS Way of Total Quality Management" in order to fulfill the ”Persistent Perfection” promise of the brand. Guided by these precepts, ASUS has developed a strong advantage in product design, technology, quality and value/cost. These advantages in turn constitute ASUS' formula for success—allowing marketing to communicate these strengths to win our consumers' hearts.