Xonar Essence STU
Hi-Fi USB DAC (Digital-to-Anolog Converter)
User manual
E8252
First Edition
March 2013
Copyright © 2013 ASUSTeK Computer Inc. All Rights Reserved.
No part of this manual, including the products and software described in it, may be reproduced,
transmitted, transcribed, stored in a retrieval system, or translated into any language in any form
or by any means, except documentation kept by the purchaser for backup purposes, without the
express written permission of ASUSTeK COMPUTER INC. (“ASUS”).
Product warranty or service will not be extended if: (1) the product is repaired, modified or
altered, unless such repair, modification of alteration is authorized in writing by ASUS; or (2) the
serial number of the product is defaced or missing.
ASUS PROVIDES THIS MANUAL “AS IS” WITHOUT WARRANTY OF ANY KIND, EITHER
EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO THE IMPLIED WARRANTIES
OR CONDITIONS OF MERCHANTABILITY OR FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE.
IN NO EVENT SHALL ASUS, ITS DIRECTORS, OFFICERS, EMPLOYEES OR AGENTS BE
LIABLE FOR ANY INDIRECT, SPECIAL, INCIDENTAL, OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES
(INCLUDING DAMAGES FOR LOSS OF PROFITS, LOSS OF BUSINESS, LOSS OF USE OR
DATA, INTERRUPTION OF BUSINESS AND THE LIKE), EVEN IF ASUS HAS BEEN ADVISED
OF THE POSSIBILITY OF SUCH DAMAGES ARISING FROM ANY DEFECT OR ERROR IN
THIS MANUAL OR PRODUCT.
SPECIFICATIONS AND INFORMATION CONTAINED IN THIS MANUAL ARE FURNISHED
FOR INFORMATIONAL USE ONLY, AND ARE SUBJECT TO CHANGE AT ANY TIME WITHOUT
NOTICE, AND SHOULD NOT BE CONSTRUED AS A COMMITMENT BY ASUS. ASUS
ASSUMES NO RESPONSIBILITY OR LIABILITY FOR ANY ERRORS OR INACCURACIES
THAT MAY APPEAR IN THIS MANUAL, INCLUDING THE PRODUCTS AND SOFTWARE
DESCRIBED IN IT.
Products and corporate names appearing in this manual may or may not be registered
trademarks or copyrights of their respective companies, and are used only for identification or
explanation and to the owners’ benefit, without intent to infringe.
Contents
Introduction............................................................................................. 4
Package contents................................................................................... 4
Safety Information.................................................................................. 5
Wet Location...................................................................................................6
Outdoor Use....................................................................................................6
Disconnect Device - The Main Plug or an Appliance Coupler.........................6
Driver installation................................................................................... 7
Functionality........................................................................................... 8
1. USB DAC ( Digital-to-Analog Convertor)................................................8
2. Stand alone DAC....................................................................................9
3. Headphone amplifier...............................................................................9
Front Panel............................................................................................ 10
Rear Panel..............................................................................................11
Hardware Introduction......................................................................... 13
Connections.......................................................................................... 14
Input..............................................................................................................14
1.
2.
NB/PC-USB connections.................................................................................14
Digital audio input connections .......................................................................15
1.
2.
3.
With Amplifier and Passive Speaker System...................................................16
With Active Speaker directly.............................................................................17
With Headphone/Headset................................................................................17
Output...........................................................................................................16
Specifications....................................................................................... 18
Introduction
Xonar Essence STU USB DAC is ASUS Xonar’s innovative response to the world-wide trend
of PC Hi-Fi. With PC audiophile’s number growing fast according to the convenience and high
resolution of digitalized audio contents, Xonar Essence product line is committed to provide
solution for their needs to enjoy extreme high-fidelity music with any PC.
Xonar Essence STU grants any PC audiophiles or PC audiophiles-to-be the best solution
to enjoy their music with extreme clearness, details, and hassle-free controls that help to
re-discover one’s music collection.
Package contents
This package should contain the following:
•
ASUS Xonar Essence STU Hi-Fi USB DAC x1
•
USB cable (‘B-A’ type) x1
•
Power cord x1 (Some versions may have 2 power cords for different countries)
•
Power adaptor x1
•
User manual x1
•
Installation driver CD x1
•
Product Stand x1
ASUS Xonar Essence STU
Safety Information
For your own safety please read the following important safety instructions carefully before
attempting to connect this unit to the mains power supply. They will also enable you to get the
best performance from and prolong the life of the unit.
1.
Read these instructions.
2.
Keep these instructions.
3.
Heed all warnings.
4.
Follow all instructions.
5.
Do not use this apparatus near water.
6.
Clean machine surface with a cloth (no any detergent applied).
7.
Do not block any ventilation openings. Install in accordance with the manufacturer’s
instructions.
8.
Do not install near any heat sources such as radiators, heat registers, stoves, or other
apparatus (including amplifiers) that produce heat.
9.
Do not defeat the safety purpose of the polarized or grounding-type plug. A polarized plug
has two blades with one wider than the other. A grounding-type plug has two blades and
a third grounding prong. The wide blade or the third prong are provided for your safety. If
the provided plug does not fit into your outlet, consult an electrician for replacement of the
obsolete outlet.
10.
Protect the power cord from being walked on or pinched, particularly at plugs,
convenience receptacles and the point where they exit from the apparatus.
11.
Only use attachments/accessories specified by the manufacturer.
12.
Use with only the cart, stand, tripod, bracket, or table specified by the
manufacturer, or sold with the apparatus. When a cart is used, use caution
when moving the cart/apparatus combination to avoid injury from tip-over.
13.
Unplug this apparatus during lightning storms or when unused for long periods of time.
14.
Refer all servicing to qualified service personnel. Servicing is required when the apparatus
has been damaged in any way, such as the power-supply adaptor having been damaged,
liquid has been spilled or objects have fallen into the apparatus, the apparatus has been
exposed to rain or moisture, does not operate normally, or has been dropped.
ASUS Xonar Essence STU
Wet Location
Apparatus shall not be exposed to dripping or splashing and that no objects filled with liquids,
such as vases, shall be placed on the apparatus.
Outdoor Use
Warning! To reduce the risk of fire or electric shock, do not expose this apparatus
to rain or moisture.
Disconnect Device - The Main Plug or an Appliance
Coupler
The mains plug or an appliance coupler is used as the disconnect device for disconnection from
the mains, the disconnect device shall remain readily operable.
ASUS Xonar Essence STU
Driver installation
After connecting ASUS Xonar Essence STU with your computer by the bundled USB cable, you
need to install the device driver that enables the Xonar Essence STU to work with Windows
operating system.
NOTES:
• The driver is only needed when you connect ASUS Xonar Essence STU with
PC/NB.
• The version and content of the support CD are subject to change without
notice.
To install the device driver:
1.
Insert the ASUS Xonar Essence STU support CD into your optical drive. If Autorun is
enabled, the ASUS Xonar Essence STU driver screen appears automatically. Go to step
4. If Autorun is not enabled in your computer, perform step 2.
2.
Click My Computer on your desktop and double-click the optical drive icon.
3.
Double-click the setup.exe icon located on the optical drive.
4.
Follow the on-screen instructions to complete the installation. Read the END USER
LICENSE AGREEMENT in the process and make sure that you understand and accept it
before continuing the installation.
5.
When the installation finishes, you may be prompted to restart your computer. You can
choose to restart the computer later if desired.
System requirements
To ensure a successful installation of the ASUS Xonar Essence STU USB DAC, your computer
must meet the following requirements:
•
IBM compatible PC with one USB2.0 (or higher) compatible port for the USB audio device
•
Microsoft® Windows® 8 (32/64bit)/ Windows® 7 (32/64bit)/ Windows® XP (32/64bit)/
MCE2005, and ������������
Mac 10.6x OS
•
Intel® Pentium® 4 1.4GHz or AMD Athlon 1400 CPU or faster CPU
•
256 MB DRAM system memory
•
60 MB available HDD space for driver installation package
•
CD-ROM drive (or DVD-ROM drive) for software installation
•
High-quality headphones or powered analog speakers to enjoy the ultra-high fidelity sound
of the card
ASUS Xonar Essence STU
Functionality
1.
USB DAC ( Digital-to-Analog Convertor)
Clear, detailed, life-like sound for your digital music collection in PC/NB, with all the
connection(XLR, RCA) you need for end devices.
Steps:
•
Connect PC/NB with an USB cable
•
Need to install driver in your PC/NB to work
•
Select “USB” in front panel as the input source
HP GAIN
R
L
AUX IN
TOSLINK
COAXIAL
USB
USB
DC IN
DIGITAL INFUT
Mini-USB B-A type
connector
Desktop PC
ASUS Xonar Essence STU
Notebook PC
2.
Stand alone DAC
With S/PDIF in and input select, it also serves as an independent DAC which connects with
digital inputs such as CD audio source and then plays to the end devices.
Steps:
•
Connect with other audio resource with S/PDIF input (by Coaxial/Optical cable)
•
Select COA (coaxial input) or TOS (optical input) in the front panel as the input
source
Coaxial audio
connector (COA)
TOSLINK audio cable
CD/DVD player
HP GAIN
R
L
AUX IN
TOSLINK
COAXIAL
USB
DC IN
DIGITAL INFUT
3.
Headphone amplifier
Grants 100% performance of ALL hi-end headphones, even with impedance up to 600ohms,
providing extra dynamics and sound details.
Steps:
•
Connect with high-quality headphones/headsets
USB
POWER
COA
TOS
AUX
BIT PERFECT
Headphone Galn
INPUT
6.3mm connector
Headphones/headsets
ASUS Xonar Essence STU
Front Panel
USB
POWER
1.
COA
TOS
AUX
BIT PERFECT
Headphone Galn
INPUT
Power On/Off
Press to turn on and again to turn off.
2.
3.
Input selection
Press to select audio input source: USB, Toslink, Coaxial, or AUX audio input.
Input selection/Bit perfect indicator
The corresponding LED will light up to show which audio source has been selected.
4.
5.
Speaker volume control
The volume control adjusts the output level of unbalanced RCA output.
Headphone volume control
The volume control adjusts the output levels of the headphone jack.
10
6.
Headphone Gain indicator
The LED will light up based on the selected headphone gain setting.
7.
Headphone output
Connect your high-quality headphones/headsets with 6.3 mm connector. Use a 6.3
mm/3.5 mm connector if your headphones/headsets have 3.5 mm ports.
ASUS Xonar Essence STU
Rear Panel
HP GAIN
R
L
AUX IN
TOSLINK
COAXIAL
USB
DC IN
DIGITAL INFUT
1.
Headphone Gain Selection
Toggle the switch to change between low or high headphone gain settings.
NOTE: If you have a low impedance headset/headphone, please do not switch
to high gain setting. When switching between high and low gain settings, please
remove the connected headphones/headset before proceeding.
2.
Unbalanced RCA Output (line-out)
Conventional stereo outputs for connection to the line-level phono/RCA inputs of a
speaker.
3.
Aux In
Connect iDevices such as iPhone, iPod, or iPad into this port.
4.
Toslink Optical Input
This port is for Toslink Optical Input.
5.
Coaxial S/PDIF Input
Connect your digital source, such as CD/DVD players or computer with S/PDIF output, to
digital input. Use either S/PDIF coaxial or Toslink optical type, each being of equal quality.
NOTE: This unit only accepts two-channel LPCM digital audio (e.g. Dolby Digital
2.0). You cannot connect a Dolby Digital 5.1 or a DTS signal as they will not be
recognized. If you wish to connect a DVD or similar device, please ensure that the
sound output of your player is set to two-channel PCM.
ASUS Xonar Essence STU
11
6.
USB port
Connect a PC via a Type B to Type A USB lead.
7.
Power port (AC in)
Plug the supplied power adapter into the Xonar Essence STU once you have completed
all connections.
NOTE: You need to install the device driver that enables the Xonar Essence STU
to work with Windows operating system.
12
ASUS Xonar Essence STU
Hardware Introduction
1.
USB Audio processor: C-Media CMI6631A (for USB input)
2.
S/PDIF receiver: TI PCM9211 (for digital input)
3.
DAC: TI PCM1792A
4.
Swappable Op-amps: LME49720 x2
5.
Swappable Op-amps: LM4562 x1
6.
Swappable Op-amps: OPA2132 x1
7.
Film Cap (red ones): WIMA FKP2
8.
Op-amps: LM4562 (for Speaker out)
9.
Headphone Amplifier: TPA6120A2 (for Headphone out)
ASUS Xonar Essence STU
13
Connections
Input
1.
NB/PC-USB connections
NOTE: Do not turn on the machine until all connections have been made.
HP GAIN
R
L
AUX IN
TOSLINK
COAXIAL
USB
USB
DC IN
DIGITAL INFUT
Mini-USB B-A type
connector
Desktop PC
Notebook PC
(1) Connect a USB ‘B–A’ type lead (as illustrated at left) from the Xonar Essence STU’s
USB input to one of the USB ports on the PC/NB.
(2) Turn on the Xonar Essence STU using the front panel On/Off switch and make sure
that the USB input is selected (USB LED lit).
(3) Install the device driver that enables the Xonar Essence STU to work with Windows
operating system.
14
ASUS Xonar Essence STU
NOTES:
• The PC’s previous audio output device should now be temporarily disabled
and the Xonar Essence STU becomes the default audio playback device for
the PC/NB. This can be confirmed in the Control Panel’s Sounds, Speech and
Audio Devices properties window under the Volume tab.
•
2.
If you wish to disconnect your Xonar Essence STU and return to using
your previous soundcard, etc., simply disconnect it or switch off the power
on the front panel. If the PC fails to disable the Xonar Essence STU and
automatically re-enable your default soundcard, you can manually disable the
Xonar Essence STU in the hardware device manager. To do this, navigate to
the Device Manager (click Start — Control Panel — (Vista: Performance and
Maintenance —) System — Hardware— Device Manager in Windows XP).
Scroll down the device manager window and expand the heading Sound,
Video and Game Controllers to display a list of the connected devices. Click
on this description to highlight in blue and then click on the Disable icon at
the top of the window. A warning message will appear: “Disabling this device
will cause it to stop functioning. Do you really want to disable it?” Click Yes to
disable the Xonar Essence STU. The previous audio playback device will now
be re-instated by Windows.
Digital audio input connections
Coaxial audio
connector (COA)
TOSLINK audio cable
Edit
AV Receiver/Amplifier
HP GAIN
R
L
AUX IN
TOSLINK
COAXIAL
USB
DC IN
DIGITAL INFUT
TOSLINK audio
cable
Coaxial audio
connector (COA)
Digital
Outputs
CD/DVD Player
ASUS Xonar Essence STU
15
(1) Connect your digital source (ex. CD/DVD players or some PC/NB with SPDIF output)
to Digital Input. Either S/P DIF Coaxial or Toslink optical types can be used, each
being of equal quality.
NOTE: Both Coaxial and Toslink Inputs can be used to connect and run equipment
at the same time.
Output
1.
With Amplifier and Passive Speaker System
HP GAIN
R
L
AUX IN
TOSLINK
COAXIAL
USB
DC IN
DIGITAL INFUT
Unbalanced
Input
L
R
Amplifier
(1) Connect the unbalanced input of an amplifier to the unbalanced (RCA/Phono) output
of the Xonar Essence STU.
(2) Connect the amplifier to a Passive Speaker System.
16
ASUS Xonar Essence STU
2.
With Active Speaker directly
HP GAIN
R
L
AUX IN
TOSLINK
COAXIAL
USB
DC IN
DIGITAL INFUT
Active Speaker System
(1)
3.
Connect Xonar Essence STU with a set of active speakers directly.
With Headphone/Headset
USB
POWER
COA
TOS
AUX
BIT PERFECT
Headphone Galn
INPUT
6.3mm connector
Headphones/headsets
(1)
Connect Xonar Essence STU with high-quality headphones/headsets directly.
ASUS Xonar Essence STU
17
Specifications
Items
Description
Audio Performance
Output Signal-to-Noise Ratio
(A-Weighted):
Line Out: 120dB
Headphone: 117dB
Output Total Harmonic Distortion + Noise
at 1kHz@-3dB (A-Weighted):
Line Out: -108dB
Headphone: -101dB
Line Out: 2Vrms
Output Full-Scale Voltage
Headphone: 7Vrms
Frequency Response (-3dB, 24-bit/192kHz
output):
<10Hz to 48kHz
Bus Compatibility
USB
USB 2.0 High speed
S/PDIF
IEC 61937
Main Chipset
Audio Processor
C-Media CM6631A
S/PDFI Receiver
PCM9211
D-A Converter for Analog Inputs
TI PCM1792A
OP Amp
Balanced / Un-balanced I/V
LME49720
Balanced / Un-balanced LFP
LM4562
Headphone
TPA6120A2
Output impedance
Line out
100 ohm
Headphone out
10 ohm
Clock
Crystal clock
Oscillator
12MHz
45.1584MHz (for 44.1KHz sample rate)
continued on the next page
18
ASUS Xonar Essence STU
Specifications
Sample Rate and Resolution
Analog Playback Sample Rate and
Resolution
44.1K/48K/88.2K/96K/176.4K/192KHz
@ 16/24bit
Power consumption (Max)
12W
I/O Ports
Line Out (Dual RCA)
Output Jack:
6.3mm Jack headphone output
Metal with plated gold, black housing
USB jack
Coaxial / Toslink jack
Input Jack:
AUX in phone jack
Metal with plated gold, black housing
Power Input Jack:
DC in 12V
Balanced Output: Taper A Potentiometer
Volume controller
Headphone Output: Taper A Potentiometer
Power input range
AC 90~264V
LED Indicator
One color LED
Ø3mm Lamp LED White color
Button
Push Button
2-pin Tact switch
Accessories
Power cord x1
Power adaptor x1
USB cable x1
Accessories
Product Stand x1
6.3mm to 3.5mm adaptor x1
User manual x1
Installation driver CD x1
* Specifications are subject to change without notice.
ASUS Xonar Essence STU
19