Dear readers, I have been using Linux on and off. I have just installed Ubuntu 10.04 via the Wubi installer. I have come across a problem which I can not solve on my own. I therefor need your kind help. This is my setup: Asus Xonar Essence STX soundcard --> optical/SPDIF connection--> DAC--> RCA-connection--> Amplifier--> RCA connection--> 2 speakers and a subwoofer. I think that the drivers for the Asus Xonar STX are installed. I am not really sure about this because in my soundsettings I do not see what is displayed on this picture: http://techgage.com/viewimg/?img=/a..._linux_101909.png&desc=ASUS Xonar Under Linux Source: http://techgage.com/article/using_the_asus_xonar_essence_stx_under_linux/ I am having troubles with this part of the review: "Although the Xonar uses a popular audio chipset (C-Media CMI878 shared by many other high-end cards, such as from Auzentech, there's a special driver in ALSA specifically for Xonar, called "virtuoso". Most Linux distros should detect and install this driver upon booting up, or during the install, but if you have to install it manually (beyond the scope of this small article), it's "Asus Virtuoso 100/200 (Xonar)" you want to look for, under Device Drivers > Sound card support > ALSA > PCI sound devices. Once that driver is compiled, it can be loaded into the kernel as "snd-virtuoso"." Having said that, I have installed the latest ALSA drivers and selected the STX as my default soundcard. I have disabled the onboard sound via the BIOS. Here is my problem: I have been able to get sound, both analog as well as digital. Howevermy DAC displays that I do not have a signal until I play a soundfile. The moment I play a soundfile, the DAC displays 44.1KHz, then I hear a crackling/thunder sound for just a few seconds and then the soundfile plays. The crackling/thunder sound is there for only a few seconds, but it is really annoying. What worries me is that my DAC displays that I do not have a signal unless I play a soundfile. It is as if the SPDIF/optical output is put into hibernation untill a sound is being played. Because of a certain cable I use I can see when the SPDIF/optical output is on, or off. A light will go on when the output is on. When I am not playing a soundfile the DAC somehow loses connection and restarts when a sound is being played. I have tested this with oboard sound as well and I have the exact same problem. My question to you is: what do I need to do so that the SPDIF/optical output won't loose signal but remains on all the time? That crackling sound is really annoying. I look forward hearing from you. PS: the above described problem is not there in windows.