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Asus Xonar Xense Premium Gaming Audio Set Review



Rightmark Audio Analyser (RMAA) works by sending test signals out of the soundcard and then recording the signals back into the soundcard, and making comparisons and measurements to assess the soundcard performance.

I chose to use a loop-back cable for RMAA because if you use internal hardware loop-backs, some soundcards bypass some of the output and input stages, to pipe the playback audio directly into recording. This is essentially cheating, and doesn't represent an actual loop-back, so an external cable ensures each soundcard is doing a complete loop-back during the tests.

The test results page shows you the average values across the frequency range. The frequency response you want to be as near to flat as possible, so small numbers are better. The noise level is the amount of background hiss, etc, so this needs to be as low (large negative values) as possible. The dynamic range is almost always nearly the same as the noise level, except positive. The remaining measurements of distortion, noise, and crosstalk, need to be as small (or large negative values) as possible.

There are two sets of results here. The first set was conducted on all soundcards, at 24-bit and 48 kHz. The second set was run at 24-bit and 96 kHz, but only on the modded X-Fi XtremeMusic and the Xonar Essence STX. The X-Fi can only record at a maximum sample rate of 96 kHz, so this was the highest test I conducted.


24 bit, 48 kHz


Each of the graphs are included here to show the measurements vs. frequency.





24 bit, 96 kHz


Each of the graphs are included here to show the measurements vs. frequency.





Rather unsurprisingly, the Xonar Xense is very similar to the D1 and Essence STX. One thing that did catch my eye, was the frequency response of the sound card at high frequencies. The Xense actually outdoes the Essence STX, albeit only by ~0.25 dB at 20 kHz, in the 96 kHz test.

  1. Introduction & Closer Look
  2. Closer Look: Sound Card
  3. Closer Look: Headset
  4. Closer Look: Drivers & Programs
  5. Specifications & Features
  6. Testing: Setup & Listening Gear
  7. Testing: Rightmark (RMAA)
  8. Testing: Subjective Listening (Music)
  9. Testing: Subjective Listening (Movies)
  10. Testing: Subjective Listening (Gaming)
  11. Conclusion
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