You could try running without Nahimic installed, with Realtek only - or without both, people have complained about Realtek / Nahimic coloring the source sound. With headphones hopefully the Nahimic sound shaping for the laptop speakers is disabled. Also, there should be ESS Sabre settings available to change aspects of the DAC, and of course Nahimic tuning to remove any sound shaping. Look for the settings icon. Here's coverage from the old MSI ESS Sabre DAC / AMP + Nahimic, looking at the images you can see the settings: https://www.msi.com/blog/ess-sabre-hifi-gives-hd6-mix-headset-greater-sound-experience-on-gs60 You show all of the enhancements off, but Nahimic might still be interfering with the sound. You could try setting the sampling rate down to 48khz instead of 96khz, and see if that sounds better.