Saturday, January 8th 2011

ASUS Combines Killer NIC and Xonar Audio into Single Addon Card

It seems like Bigfoot Killer, the family hardware-accelerated latency-chopping network controllers is really taking off after garnering interest from the motherboard industry. First, it was MSI announcing a strategic partnership with Bigfoot to bundle NICs using Killer 2100 and the probability of integrating it onto its motherboards, then Gigabyte beating MSI to that by unveiling not one, but three LGA1366 motherboards under the G1.Killer series with integrated Killer controllers, that leaves us with ASUS.

ASUS' first encounter with the Killer NIC is in the form of a multifunction addon card called ASUS ThunderBolt. Multifunction addon cards aren't new to ASUS. Recently, it released U3S6, a card that integrates USB 3.0 and SATA 6 Gb/s controllers with two ports of each kind. The ThunderBolt, on the other hand, integrates Bigfoot Killer 2100 network controller and ASUS Xonar sound. So in one package, it gives gamers access to a more responsive network and clearer audio.

The ASUS ThunderBolt is a PCI-Express addon card, integrating a Killer 2100 controller with its own dedicated memory; and in probability, an ASUS AV100 audio chipset found on low-profile ASUS Xonar sound cards such as Xonar DS. It provides 7.1 channel audio out with over 100 dBA SNR, and packs software that emulates popular positional-audio technologies such as EAX, and various Dolby/DTS mojo. The card draws power from a 4-pin Molex connector. The entire card is covered by an EMI shield, which also gives it a nice "product" feel.

To begin with, ASUS will bundle the ThunderBolt with its new upcoming LGA1366 motherboard, the Rampage III Black Edition. In the near future, it may also sell the card separately.
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35 Comments on ASUS Combines Killer NIC and Xonar Audio into Single Addon Card

#1
nINJAkECIL
by: Aleksander Dishnica
Proofs?
it's true that ASUS will bundle it with Rampage III Black Edition.

Source
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#2
MadClown
I already got a 2100 coming in, and now i hear about this, and yesterday my soundcard was pissing me off, I could have gotten this!
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#3
happita
by: Mussels
sound card in a video card sounds weird, but it works fine.

dont forget that the latest HDMI specs actually include 100Mb networking, so network on video cards is likely to appear
But what is the quality of sound like on it vs. something like a pre-packaged x-fi card with an asus MB or integrated sound? For watching Blu-Ray discs and having sound come from the video card, can it still give you a movie theater kind of experience? I'm not sure.

And networking on HDMI too? geeeez....what will they come up with next?
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#4
Mussels
Moderprator
by: happita
But what is the quality of sound like on it vs. something like a pre-packaged x-fi card with an asus MB or integrated sound? For watching Blu-Ray discs and having sound come from the video card, can it still give you a movie theater kind of experience? I'm not sure.

And networking on HDMI too? geeeez....what will they come up with next?
its digital audio, so sound depends 100% on your receiver. the networking i guess is so that you can wire up the TV to your network, and your game consoles automatically get internet (or vice versa)
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#5
Phxprovost
Xtreme Refugee
by: Vancha
I imagine this could lose companies more sales than it'll get them due to people who don't want to spend extra on something that's nearly pointless.
Maybe but i doubt it. As long as the price is right i don't think many will care and companies get to proudly put another dumb ass sticker on their products.
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#6
Aleksander
by: nINJAkECIL
it's true that ASUS will bundle it with Rampage III Black Edition.

Source

Yes, but none says that mobo is exactly the mentioned one....
And sorry but the link is broken for me :(
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#7
Bjorn_Of_Iceland
by: happita
No, I mean the ADD-IN physx card that you put into a slot just to get PhysX physics. Integrated physx on a video card is very understandable. But, an NIC on a sound card, that sounds a little weird.
Might I interest you on some NIC on a video card instead?
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#8
[H]@RD5TUFF
I hope they sell just the card, I would really like to own one!
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#9
Wile E
Power User
by: Cratzky
The benefits is that you can control every single application running on Your computer that uses any kind of internet bandwidth, you can also change alot of other stuff that you havent seen at all on a intel built-in NIC, also you can make it so it prio the gaming. That normally means lower response time and better ping in games.
A decent router already allows this, and works on every device on your network.
Posted on Reply
#10
Mussels
Moderprator
by: Wile E
A decent router already allows this, and works on every device on your network.
i got a $60 TP link router not long ago that allows me to assign minimum (reserved) and max bandwidth per IP address, as well as setting it for specific ports only.


setting the DHCP serve to auto assign IP's works well enough, since all decent routers can reserve IP's for specific mac adresses
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