ASUS today announced the compact Xonar U7 USB external soundcard and headphone amplifier, which offers powerful and clear 114dB SNR audio with USB convenience. It incorporates a headphone amplifier, Dolby Home Theater v4 support, plus dedicated microphone and volume controls. Xonar U7 serves the needs of PC gamers who want to enjoy strong and clear sound via headphones, and is also ideal for listening to music as it produces much more impactful and detailed audio than onboard hardware. Connecting via USB, it requires no standalone power supply and works instantly setup-free with no need to open the PC case. Powerful sound from a compact and portable device While other USB audio devices leave out hardware features in order to maintain a small form factor and are typically only capable of 5.1-channel surround due to limited power supply, Xonar U7 engineering overcomes these constraints to offer strong and immersive 7.1-channel performance. The signal to noise ratio, or SNR, stands at 114dB thanks to meticulous hardware design and component selection. Xonar U7 produces clear audio, driven by the high quality Cirrus Logic CS4398 DAC (digital to analog converter). Exclusive ASUS Hyper Grounding PCB fabrication ensures strong signal insulation to reduce distortion and interference, also known as component crosstalk. Gaming audio advantage and music enjoyment The integrated headphone amplifier allows customers to make the most of premium gaming headsets, exceeding the often flat and underpowered performance offered by onboard audio. With stronger headphone performance plus precise and pronounced sound positioning, players can hear opponents and game effects and events clearly. New Dolby Home Theater v4 provides immersive surround and enhanced in-game voice quality. These contribute to more rewarding and realistic gaming experiences. User-friendly design Xonar U7 connects to PCs via USB. It also gets power directly from the USB port, removing the need for a power adapter. Combined with its compact dimensions, these turn Xonar U7 into a highly portable audio-enhancer that can be easily carried and placed anywhere. Dedicated controls allow gamers to quickly adjust master and microphone volume without pausing games or going into software menus, ensuring uninterrupted action. The master volume controls double as a clickable switch for selecting between headphone input (front panel) and speakers (back panel).