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ASRock Also Boasts High-End Onboard Audio

By - Source: TechPowerUp | B 20 comments

It appears that ASRock is also working on motherboards with better onboard audio.

Earlier, Gigabyte was teasing us that it would carry much better onboard audio thanks to Creative's Sound Core 3D chip, but it appears that Gigabyte is not the only manufacturer that wants to improve onboard audio to differentiate its products from the rest of the market. ASRock is introducing its A-Style Purity sound.

The A-Style Purity sound would be built using a Realtek ALC1150 codec in conjunction with two TI NE5532 amplifiers. One of the two would work as a differential amplifier, while the other is a headphone amplifier that can support headphones that have an impedance of up to 600 Ohms. The Realtek ALC1150 codec is covered by an EMI shield, and the part of the PCB where the audio hardware is located is isolated to prevent interference.

A-Style Purity sound will feature signal-to-noise ratio of 115 dB, 7.1 channel HD audio, DTS connect and more.

Stay tuned, for all we know there will be even more manufacturers releasing motherboards with higher-end onboard audio.

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  • 0 Hide
    runswindows95 , May 6, 2013 3:17 PM
    It's reasons like this is why sound cards are becoming like ethernet cards for a lot of people: Really don't need or want to install one till the onboard fails.
  • 1 Hide
    TheBigTroll , May 6, 2013 3:18 PM
    first of all, its gigabyte not gygabyte. and as for asrock, realtek is no where near what aftermarket codecs can offer
  • 7 Hide
    vmem , May 6, 2013 3:54 PM
    @TheBigTroll
    Though you're right that aftermarket codecs offer far more and better quality sound, it all comes at a price. fact of the matter is, onboard audio have become (like PCs made in the last 3-4 years) good enough for most people to have no-incentive to spend big bucks to upgrade.
  • 7 Hide
    halcyon , May 6, 2013 4:24 PM
    It is unquestionably appropriate, as well as awesome, that mobo manufacturers are realizing that there are audiophiles among us enthusiasts. More options is not a bad thing.
  • -1 Hide
    bgunner , May 6, 2013 4:36 PM
    About time manufactures figured out the world needs to hear the sound the way it was meant to be. I have run a dedicated audio card for years and would of never considered on-board audio as a solution till Gigabyte started with the 3d recon on its super high end boards a generation ago. Now when, and if they keep this as an option, I build another system I may do on board audio.
  • -1 Hide
    drwho1 , May 6, 2013 5:10 PM
    I might never use on board audio.
    Still this is good news, about time on board audio got some attention.
  • 6 Hide
    DarkSable , May 6, 2013 5:41 PM
    I support that they're trying, but they've got two problems:
    1) This really isn't that much of an upgrade from normal onboard sound.
    2) It's not going to find it's way onto mATX and mini-ITX boards where it would actually be a selling point.
  • 1 Hide
    bgunner , May 6, 2013 5:52 PM
    Quote:
    I support that they're trying, but they've got two problems:
    1) This really isn't that much of an upgrade from normal onboard sound.
    2) It's not going to find it's way onto mATX and mini-ITX boards where it would actually be a selling point.


    AsRock Is known for being low cost. I totally agree with every thing you have said but I just want to say that AsRock's major selling point is price. If they make it too good and add super high quality audio then they lose what edge they have which is cost for us budget challenged builders.
  • 1 Hide
    DarkSable , May 6, 2013 6:09 PM
    ^ Yes and no.

    You're certainly correct that one of their selling points is cost, but having good audio on their high end boards and their specialty boards could be a very good thing.
  • 2 Hide
    nevilence , May 6, 2013 6:30 PM
    Options are optional, but for commoners like me, standard on board audio is enough, especially when I would rather spend money on SSDs or a better graphics card.
  • -1 Hide
    24oz , May 6, 2013 7:04 PM
    I have not used onboard sound for about 5 years now.I like the options aftermarket sound cards give me.don't think I could go back to onboard now.
  • 2 Hide
    InvalidError , May 6, 2013 7:59 PM
    Quote:
    fact of the matter is, onboard audio have become (like PCs made in the last 3-4 years) good enough for most people to have no-incentive to spend big bucks to upgrade.

    And if GT3e delivers, it may be the beginning of the end for low/low-midrange GPUs, which is just about everyone who does not have esoteric display or somewhat serious gaming requirements.

    The thing that bugs me about on-board audio is that unless your mixed-signal engineers or CODEC suck, there is no reason for on-board audio to actually suck at least THD+N wise... all it takes is a little bit more effort on PCB layout and maybe $2 in extra/better parts. The most important things you need are a good CODEC, a section of properly isolated ground+power planes for the analog side with proper decoupling and filtering.

    This is a lot like the difference between a 'good' and a 'bad' PSU: minor detail tweaks in the overall design, $2 on better components and you get a PSU that lasts 7-10 years instead of 1-4. All this corner-cutting is pretty bad for the environment and for people's wallets.
  • -4 Hide
    agnickolov , May 6, 2013 9:53 PM
    There's no comparison between Realtek and Creative. Realtek's hallmark is crappy on-board sound. Creative is known for top of the line PC audio.
  • 1 Hide
    InvalidError , May 6, 2013 10:18 PM
    Quote:
    There's no comparison between Realtek and Creative. Realtek's hallmark is crappy on-board sound. Creative is known for top of the line PC audio.

    Even the best sound IC in the world cannot be any better than the digital/analog isolation around it on the PCB.

    Many low-end boards simply dump the sound chip wherever there is leftover space with minimal design consideration.
  • 0 Hide
    Cons29 , May 6, 2013 10:18 PM
    as long as the price is still good, it is nice that they are trying to add more value to their products.
    personally, i like asrock. but i dont like 3d recon, no thanks creative.. your drivers were a head ache
  • -1 Hide
    spartanmk2 , May 7, 2013 10:21 AM
    This is good, although I prefer a dedicated sound card just because when I built my rig my dealings with onboard sound havent been all too great, the difference between onboard and a dedicated card is unreal.
    Now.. it they can somehow squeeze everything a dedicated card offers onto the mobo with no loss in quality then im all for it.
  • 1 Hide
    mynith , May 22, 2013 7:43 AM
    A bit gimmicky in my opinion. If you are an audiophile then, except for headphones, obviously, you should be using spdif anyway.
  • 0 Hide
    Hexicon , May 26, 2013 3:10 PM
    they are offering the creative chip and the Purity sound chip... what's better ?
    serious question, my build is will have an asrock board for sure.
  • -1 Hide
    douglasw , June 1, 2013 8:33 PM
    The way I see it is there more of a demand now for 5.1 sound systems so Asrock wants to cater to the demand..But it don't matter how good they might think there onboard system is it still won't be as good as a dedicated sound card. Every time I hear someone bragging about onboard sound I can remember how mine sounded like....snap crackle pop....
  • 1 Hide
    InvalidError , June 1, 2013 10:15 PM
    Quote:
    Every time I hear someone bragging about onboard sound I can remember how mine sounded like....snap crackle pop....

    Not all boards are created equal and not everyone has the same requirements either.

    Personally, I have been more than happy enough with on-board sound on my Asus P5Q and current P8H77 - no point in getting a sound system that vastly outperforms ambient noise under normal listening conditions even with headphones on.