Generic USB-C to 3.5mm adapters are a dime a dozen, but ASUS created this premium adapter which costs S$99. So I requested for a review unit just to see if it is worth the money.
What’s so special about this ASUS adapter? It comes with A.I. noise-cancelling mic that minimizes background noise when carrying a conversation with the headset microphone. It is powered by a digital-to-analogue converter (DAC) that includes ASUS Hyper-Grounding technology to prevent electromagnetic interference. The package comes with a USB-A to USB-C adapter so it can work with computers as well.
Just like any USB-C to 3.5mm adapter, plug one end to the computer or smartphone, and the other end to a normal earphones with in-line mic. On the ASUS website, it lists down compatible devices, but it should work on any device. Its built-in DAC can support up to 96KHz 24-bit resolution.
I observed the following findings during the tests:
- Reduced clarity. The ASUS Mic Adapter removal of noise means the voice sounds less clear, with the upper frequency removed. In some cases, the aggressive noise cancelling resulted in break-ups of the voice.
- Removed background noise. Using normal mic, I can hear distracting ambient sound and environmental hissing noises. With ASUS Mic Adapter, it sounded as if I am in a quiet room. Background noise is muffled and inaudible, making it impossible to pick up any of your family member talking in the background.
When I compared the DAC sound quality, I find that the ASUS Mic Adapter sounds slightly rounded at the upper frequency of the audio tracks. With normal adapter, the upper frequency is slightly less refined and shouty. With the Creative SXFI Amp, the upper frequency is more refined with better-resolved brightness. The difference is not very apparent, so normal users need not be too concerned.
Depending on your laptop model, the ASUS Mic Adapter should offer a higher audio quality with reduced electrical noise interference, unless you are already using a new ASUS ZenBook model.
The ASUS AI Noise Canceling Mic Adapter is a simple solution to eliminate background noise without having to buy expensive headsets. During my review, I find the voice quality is not as clear as I would have desired, but it does a great job in removing ambient noise. It also eliminates electromagnetic interference commonly occurring on laptops using 3.5mm earphones.
If you are working in a very noisy environment that prevents you from carrying out voice conversations, the ASUS Mic Adapter will solve the problem, and the other party will not be able to hear any noise that is going on around you.
- Removes background noise aggressively
- Simple to use
- Improved audio quality with external DAC compared to laptop internal audio processor
- Reduced voice clarity