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Asus Blu-ray Drive Has Integrated Xonar Sound Card and Headphone Amplifier

By - Source: Tom's Hardware US | B 5 comments
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Still have the need for a disc drive? Might as well make it great for playing movies!

It may be one of the product categories with less fanfare, but Asus decided to make one anyway. The SBW-S1 is a Blu-ray drive with an integrated ASUS Xonar sound card and headphone amplifier, something Asus boasts as a world's first.

Today, with ultrabooks shipping sans an optical drive, those who still want a big cinematic experience from optical media will find this useful. Asus says that the Xonar sound card will help deliver "clear distortion-free audio output" and that those who like to keep the experience private will appreciate the amplified headset output.

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  • 1 Hide
    dgingeri , January 8, 2014 8:22 AM
    hmmm... I kinda like the sound of this. (no pun intended.) I could take the optical drive and the PCIe sound card out of my machine and run them through USB. That makes room for 4 more SSDs and an additional GTX680.
  • 1 Hide
    bjaminnyc , January 8, 2014 9:08 AM
    Interesting product. I like the idea of hiding the PC entirely and just having that on my desk.
  • 0 Hide
    warezme , January 8, 2014 10:08 AM
    Interesting how a BD player can integrate a full audio card and headphone boost but a fairly good Reciever like my Yamaha RX-671 does not provide amplification for headphones and unlike my old Kenwood disables the speakers when I plug in a headphone. My old Kenwood boosted the headphones to perfection and gave you the option to disable the speakers in sets or all of them or leave them all on. 1 step forward and 2 steps back.
  • Display all 5 comments.
  • 2 Hide
    BulkZerker , January 8, 2014 10:52 AM
    Now just make it fit in a 5.25 bay and I'll rip out this LG unit I've had for 6 years.
  • 0 Hide
    Shin-san , January 8, 2014 7:04 PM
    This sounds interesting to me. A higher-end headphone amp costs $100 by itself. On top of that, I bought 250 ohm headphones (DT 770s, baby!) and with an amp, they sound amazing.