I have a different approach. I use my Cambridge Audio 840C CDP as my DAC. I haven't done a thorough A-B test, but my friend who has the Benchmark DAC is going to try the 840C after hearing my system. It uses twin Analog Devices 24 bit DACs, and the digital gets converted to analog differentially, meaning the left & right channels get split in the digital domain & then get converted into analog with 2 DACs per channel. So if you use balanced output? You'll get killer results. Who else uses Analog Devices DACs? Esoteric... enough said.
Is it tube-like? I can't categorize it as that, but I can't also categorize its sound as solid state... I often think that way of analyzing sound is reductive. Music just sounds really warm, less digital.
And, oh yeah. It's one hell of a good CD player. The music sounds fantastic from my Cambridge on both the solid state Plinius 8150 and tube Leben CS600.
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