Asus Xonar U1 USB soundcard

xonar  Asus Xonar U1 USB soundcard

Following the release of the Xonar D2, Asus has launched the Xonar U1 USB soundcard. Touted as the best Portable PC Audio Upgrade Solution for Laptops and Desktops, it is an external USB audio device. It promises clear and crisp audio over built-in audio in laptops and desktops.

Following the release of the Xonar D2, Asus has launched the Xonar U1 USB soundcard.  Touted as the best Portable PC Audio Upgrade Solution for Laptops and Desktops, it promises clear and crisp audio over built-in audio in laptops and desktops by isolating the unit from Electromagnetic Interference (EMI) generated by the computer’s internal components.  The U1 also offers EAX and hardware Directsound support alongside complete Dolby Home Theatre technologies.

IMG 0237  Asus Xonar U1 USB soundcard

We have received a white unit but the Xonar U1 will also come in various colours like Blue, Red, SIlver and Gunmetal.

A microphone input, stereo output (with headphones amplification) and Optical S/PDIF output forms the basic audio I/O of the unit and it interface with the computer via USB 2.0 that is backward compatible with USB 1.0.  With its integrated headphones amplifier, Asus looks to deliver better listening experiences with most stereo dynamic headphones.  Another key feature of the Xonar U1 is in its ability to output digital 5.1 streams via the optical S/PDIF output, thus bringing a 5.1 audio solution to laptops.

For 3D sound APIs, the U1 offers support for EAX 1.0/ 2.0, A3D 1.0, Directsound H/W & S/W and OpenAL generic modes whilst its S/PDIF digital output supports PCM and Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround support.  Dolby technologies available are Dolby Headphone, Dolby Virtual Speaker, Dolby Pro-Logic IIx and Dolby Digital Live.  Virtual 7.1 speaker positioning is also offered via Xear 3D virtual speaker technology.

Specifications

  • ASUS UA100 USB Audio Controller and CODEC
  • USB 2.0 and 1.0 full-speed compatibility
  • Stereo mini analog and digital combo jack x1 (Headphones/ Speakers/ S/PDIF output)
  • Stereo mini shared Line-in/ Mic-in x1
  • THD+N< 0.005% @ 47mW x2 / 32ohms
  • THD+N< 0.006% @ 88mW x2/ 16ohms 96dB SNR
  • >1.1Vrms full-scale output voltage for >8 ohms load
  • Frequency Response (-3dB/48KHz): 20~20KHz for 32ohms
  • >10mWx2 into headphones of 8~150 ohms

IMG 0230  Asus Xonar U1 USB soundcard

 

The audio ports are located at the base of the Xonar U1.

 

The design of the Xonar U1 is fairly elegant and looks very similar to the Griffin Powermate.  It too, sports a similar rotary and push function as the Powermate.

The knob is rotated to adjust the volume whilst pressing down on it mutes/ unmutes the Xonar U1.  When in operation, the light on top of the unit is blue and it fades in and out slowly.  When the unit is muted, the light turns red.

 

IMG 0247  Asus Xonar U1 USB soundcard

A stereo array microphone included in the package has ambient noise supression capabilities of up to 15dB for clearer VOIP conferencing.

A TOSLINK adapter is also bundled for use with the 3.5mm combo jack.

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