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Audiophile USB vs. HagUSB

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 
I know a lot of people here use the M-Audio Audiophile USB as a transport to their DACs, but I was wondering if the HagUSB might be even better as a transport. I'm trying to find the best solution for a bit-perfect ASIO compatible USB to coaxial digital output from my computer. I also like that the HagUSB is made by a designer who makes other audio products like DACs and preamps. I cannot afford the products from Empirical Audio or anything like that so these are what I am left with. So which one is better?

I was also looking at the Aegophile USB SPDIF Interface and the PC Link USB to SPDIF converter. But I understand that the Aegophile only works with ASIO4ALL/ASIO2KS and those aren't as good as ASIO 2.0, and the PC Link automatically upsamples everything to 48 khz. I may be wrong about this stuff so if you know better, please correct me. It would also be great because these two are cheaper than the M-Audio and Hagerman.

Thoughts? Opinions? Suggestions?

If I'm missing any others in this price range, please let me know as well.
post #2 of 4
file this under thoughts...

i have an m-audio firewire, similar to the usb edition, i believe. sounds good with a modded dac-ah and tube amplifier.

hagusb is capable of dealing with only 16 bits. not an issue if you will be playing lossless files (like FLAC), but means you may get less than optimum quality from your high bit-rate mp3 if you are using replaygain to avoid clipping. also will not be able to play SACD and the like. i have never heard the hagusb, but people say it is excellent. plus, i like the very simple design. i want one.

hagusb will also use asio4all to bypass kmixer. this is a perfectly acceptable solution. full asio standards support is only important if you are going to be recording or mixing tracks using cubase or the like, afaik. asio4all will do a fine job of bypassing kmixer, and that is all you really want it to do for music playback.

the aegophile... this one is new to me, but i am very interested as it can supposedly handle 24-bits. anyone know anything else about this unit? are the chips referenced on the product's web page any good? might also be good to find out if the spdif out is 75 ohms. hagusb is, and this one should be too if it is a quality product. plus, as you noted, at $75 it is a bit cheaper than the hagusb.

forget about that last one... not worth considering if it is going to be upsampling everything to 48khz.

cheers!
post #3 of 4
Thread Starter 
Thanks for your input.

Reviews on the HagUSB seem to be very positive. However, isn't the fact that it is USB powered a bad thing? I was under the impression that USB powered would not sound as good as a USB-SPDIF converter that is wall wart, or better yet, battery powered.
post #4 of 4
from jim hagerman, designer, over at audiocircles...
Quote:
Clearly you don't want the raw power line from the computer to directly drive the circuits. And that's why I use special filtering prior to the linear regulators, to reduce the effects of such noise. Then I add extra wideband decoupling and layout tricks to optimize performance.
and another guy...
Quote:
if you're using your HAGDAC as an SPDIF converter, it's already an audiophile-class device -- the very well-designed transformer output guarantees this. The type of power supply is not going to affect the qulaity of the digital signal in any way.
hagusb is the one to get, if you have no need for a 24-bit transport. most of us don't.
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