looking for a USB DAC/headphone amp that is scalable without breaking the bank? well, the good news is, that ideal of yours ain’t too farfetched – thanks to the ASUS Xonar Essence STU USB DAC and Headphone Amplifier. while the Xonar Essence STU may looks like an external soundcard add-on for your computer, it is really more than that. based on ASUS Xonar Essence ST/STX, the STU offers an even more premium audio quality plus easy controls and connectivity for audiophiles who wants both a good DAC and headphone amplifier in one sleek unit. well, maybe it ain’t the sleekest of the sleek, but as far as geek’s gears go, it looks pretty ‘decent sleek’.
main features include 120dB signal-to-noise (SNR) for true hi-def audio clarity, asynchronous USB audio and precision clock tuning technology to further boost fidelity, swappable Op-Amps for DIY sound modification, dual volume controls for speaker and headphone, strong 600 ohm headphone amplifier, selectable DC servo headphone output minimizes unwanted pop noise, and dedicated jumper switch allows for direct audio delivery to power amp, by-passing DAC volume controls. we know. all these technical mambo jumbo makes layman go dizzy, but it is all in good faith. connectivity comes in the form of a 1/4″ headphone output jack, a pair of unbalanced RCA connectors, two digital inputs (Optical TOSLINK, as well as S/PDIF Coaxial), and a 3.5mm auxiliary jack.
so if you are looking for DAC / headphone amplifier that can handle any headphones you throw at it – from the in-ear headphones to premium full-size headphones, the ASUS Xonar Essence STU USB DAC and Headphone Amplifier is certainly a worthy candidate, and at $399 it is certainly not a bank-breaking as far as capable USB DAC/headphone amp is concerned. have a few more look in the image gallery below.