Long relegated to the tech codexes of old, we all but thought sound cards had died out. With motherboard audio now being at such a strong level, and with anyone after a premium audiophile setup opting for an external USB solution instead for their rig, the demise of the internal sound card seemed almost guaranteed.
EVGA doesn’t seem to think so though. Today at CES in Las Vegas, it announced its latest foray into the audio medium with the introduction of the EVGA Nu Audio. Built in partnership with Audio Note (UK), (a company with over 30 years of expertise in the field of sound), this dedicated internal add-in card promises to pack the very best distortion reducing and clarity inducing components, into its supple and elegant frame, enhancing your gaming and media entertainment in the process.
The Nu Audio card, acts as both a DAC and a headphone amplifier. For your I/O, you get RCA L and R channels for speakers, a 6.3mm headphone jack supporting up to 600 Ohm headphones with separate volume control, TOSLink optical out for 5.1 surround sound, a 3.5mm line in, 3.5mm mic in, and a front header passthrough baked onto the top of the card too.
Audio hardware wise, we’re looking at an AKM (Asahi Kasei Microdevices) AK4493 DAC, and an AKM AK5572 analog to digital converter for all your line ins. On top of that you also get swappable OP-AMPS for your headphones and line out, and a whole slew of other power management stuff courtesy of Texas Instruments and Audio Note (UK) as well.
Past the Jargon
What all that means is that you’re left with a fairly solid sound card, capable of driving stereo audio at 384 KHz at 32-bit, headphones from 16 - 600 Ohms, and recording at either 384 KHz (32 bit) on the line in, or 192 KHz (24 bit) with the mic in, for some serious audio propulsion. Oh and of course, it comes with RGB as well, because reasons.
It fits into a PCIe Gen 2.0 x1 slot on your motherboard, and also requires a SATA power connection as well (I’m guessing for the LEDs?).
It’ll be available in the U.S. as of January 16th, however there’s no mention of a price just yet. Find out more here.