Some AMD AM4 motherboards (Ryzen CPUs) have some compatibility issues with ASUS Xonar sound cards. These issues will manifest as system rebooting or showing a BSOD when installing Xonar drivers or when changing various Xonar settings such as switching from speakers to front panel headphones. Below you have a list that I’ve compiled with user reported compatibility status of their Xonar card and AM4 motherboard. The list will be periodically updated.
Boards that are listed as having compatibility issues with specific Xonar sound cards may also have issues with other PCI/PCIe cards like other sound cards, network cards, RAID cards, etc.
Note that the compatibility status may vary depending on BIOS version, it may vary depending on which Xonar card do you have, if it’s a PCIe or PCI card, it may be affected by whether the Xonar card was plugged in a PCIe slot that is connected to the chipset or one that is connected to the CPU (1st and 2nd x16 slots on X370, X470, X570 motherboards). Particularly affected by these compatibility issues seem to be the Xonar Essence STX II cards, which have an ASMedia PCI-to-PCIe bridge instead of the PLX PCI-to-PCIe bridge that the rest of PCIe Xonar cards have. So a motherboard on which the STX II card has problems, might actually work for different Xonar card. Xonar D2X might be another card that’s particularly affected, waiting for more reports to confirm this.
- 21 Sep 2019: Added D2X with Gigabyte X470 AORUS ULTRA GAMING and STX with ASUS ROG Strix X470 F Gaming entries.
- 17 Sep 2019: Added STX with ASUS ROG Strix X570-F Gaming entry.
- 15 Sep 2019: Added DX with Gigabyte X470 Gaming 7 entry.
- 13 Sep 2019: Added DGX with ASUS X370 ROG entry.
- 11 Sep 2019: Updated intro and “Other info” sections. Added STX with MSI B350 and D2X with ASRock Fatal1ty X470 Gaming K4 entries. Updated “Possible solutions” with another possible solution (no. 3).
- 02 Sep 2019: Updated table with Gigabyte X570 Aorus Master and ASUS X570 ROG Crosshair VIII Hero. Updated “Possible solutions” with another possible solution (no. 6).
- 25 Aug 2019: Updated table with additional entries from ASUS ROG forum.
- 26 Jul 2019: Article published.
|Audio card||Motherboard||Works||Doesn’t work|
|Xonar Essence STX II||ASRock X370 Taichi||#1|
|ASUS TUF X470-Plus Gaming||#1|
|ASUS Prime B450-Plus||#1||#1?|
|Gigabyte X570 Aorus Master||#1|
|Gigabyte X470 Aorus Gaming 7||#1|
|Gigabyte B450 Aorus M||#1|
|ASRock X370 Killer SLI||#1|
|ASRock AB350 Pro4||#1|
ROG Crosshair VIII Hero
|ASUS Prime X470-Pro||#1?|
|ASUS X370 ROG CROSSHAIR VI HERO||#1, #2, #3, #4|
|ASUS X370 Prime Pro||#1|
|ASUS X370 Prime||#1|
|ASUS X370 Pro||#1|
|ASUS PRIME B350-PLUS||#1|
|ASUS ROG STRIX B350F||#1|
|MSI B450 Gaming Pro Carbon AC||#1|
|Xonar Essence STX||ASUS ROG Strix X570-F Gaming||#1|
|ASUS Prime X470-Pro||#1|
|ASUS ROG Strix X470 F Gaming||#1|
|MSI B350 Tomahawk||#1|
|Xonar Essence ST||ASUS Prime B350 Plus||#1, #2|
|MSI B350 Tomahawk||#1|
|ASUS Prime X370-a||#1|
|Xonar D2X||ASRock Fatal1ty X470 Gaming K4||#1*|
|ASRock Fatal1ty B450 Gaming K4||#1|
|Gigabyte X470 AORUS ULTRA GAMING||#1|
|Xonar DGX||ASUS X370 ROG CROSSHAIR VI HERO||#1|
|ASRock AB350M Pro 4||#1|
|Xonar DSX||MSI X570 Meg Ace||#1|
|Xonar DX||ASRock Fatal1ty B450 Gaming K4||#1|
|Gigabyte X470 Aorus Gaming 7||#1|
List will be periodically updated. If you have a Xonar PCI/PCIe card and a AMD Ryzen AM4 motherboard leave a comment below with the compatibility status.
*works with solution 3 from possible solutions section
Here are some things you could do that could fix or workaround the compatibility issues:
1. Update the motherboard BIOS to the latest version.
2. If you’re using the Windows installation from your previous system, do a clean Windows install.
3. Try switching the PCIe connection where the Xonar card is plugged from Gen 3/4 to Gen 1 in BIOS. This method has been described in detail here by b1tmaster0 for his ASRock Fatal1ty X470 Gaming K4. Such an option is not available for all the motherboards. Some info and other ways to do this:
- Location and name of the settings is board specific. For ASRock it may be under “Advanced\AMD PBS\” and may be only listed as “M.2 PCIe Switch”. For MSI it may be under “Settings\Advanced\PCI Subsystem Settings\PCI_E* – Max Link Speed”.
- For his ASRock Fatal1ty X470 Gaming K4, b1tmaster0 changed the “M.2 PCIe Switch” connection speed, which was for his M2 slot that was also shared with the PCIe slot where the Xonar card was placed. You can check which M2 and PCIe slots share the same connection by consulting the motherboard manual.
- You can figure in the name/number of the PCIe slot the card is placed in by going to (MSI) “Board Explorer” or (Gigabyte) “System Information\Plug in Devices Info”.
- “PCIe x16 Switch” or similar named options are for setting the connection speed of the first x16 slot and it’s where you usually have the GPU. If you have a X370, X470 or x570 motherboard which has a second PCIe x16 length slot that is directly connected to the CPU, you could place the Xonar card in the 2nd x16 length slot, enable the slot by setting “PCIe x16/2×8 Switch” or similar to “2×8” and change “PCIe x16 Switch” to “Gen 1”. If it works your could also try with the speedier Gen 2. Your GPU may run a bit slower, see benchmarks here and here, which depending on your computer use case and GPU may or may not be important.
- “Promontory PCIe Switch” or similar named options are for controlling the connection link between the chipset and CPU. If you don’t have the option to set the connection speed for a specific PCIe slot you could try setting this to Gen 1 and if it works your could also try with the speedier Gen 2. This may limit the speed of the devices connected to the chipset (NVME M2/PCIe SSD), USB3.x flash drives, other PCIe cards.
4. Move the card to a different PCIe slot, try one that is connected directly to the CPU which are the 1st and 2nd x16 length slots on X370, X470, X570 motherboards. The 2nd x16 length slot needs to be enabled in BIOS, see the description on (3) “PCIe x16 Switch”.
5. Install UNi Xonar v1.71.1 driver as it might reduce the frequency of these issues.
6. Avoid IRQ sharing between Xonar card and other devices. To do so you could try switching the other devices interrupts from Line-based to MSI, see info here. Do not switch the Xonar card to MSI as it will prevent your system from booting. You can try this in conjunction with moving the card to a PCIe in which the Xonar card IRQ is shared with less devices.
Please leave feedback in the comment section below if one of these methods worked for you.
Other info & ASUS’s response
ASUS official FAQ response about these issues here. The statement from ASUS that the cards (at least STXII and D2X) are not compatible is, at the very least, inaccurate. Furthermore, you would think that making both the Xonar sound cards and their own AMD Ryzen AM4 motherboards, most of which are affected by these compatibility issues, would make it much easier for ASUS to find the problem. Speaks volumes of how “great” their support is. To make matters even worse, after concluding that the cards are not compatible, they closed the main forum thread discussing this issue, thus roadblocking any community driven investigation for a possible solution.
On the topic of ASUS motherboards compatibility with soundcards, it’s worth noting that you may run into issues with Creative cards as well (#1). It’s unclear at the moment if you will have the same problem with other motherboard brands or this problem affects mostly ASUS X570 boards.
- ASUS Xonar DG, Xonar DGX, Xonar DG SI, Xonar DS, Xonar DSX, Xonar D1, Xonar D2, Xonar DX, Xonar D2X, Xonar HDAV, Xonar HDAV Slim, Xonar Essence ST, Xonar Essence STX, Xonar Essence STX II, Xonar Xense.
- Other C-media CMI8786 and CMI8788 audio chipset cards:
- Auzentech: HDA X-Purity 7.1, X-Meridian 1G, X-Meridian 2G.
- HTOmega: Claro, Claro Plus, Claro II, Claro Halo, eClaro.
- Razer Barracuda AC-1.
- TempoTec HIFIER Serenade.
- AMD B350, X370, B450, X470, X570, A320, x399 chipset motherboards.