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DAC for Mac OS

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 
Been looking at some DACs...It seems like the weakspot in my chain as I'm no longer using the ThinkPad as my main computer source, thus no longer using the Indigo DJ as my DAC.

My current home setup consists of iMac --> Cardas HPI --> MisterX SwitchBox w/ CrossFeed --> Monster iCable --> Gilmore Lite LE w/ PSU (Miova Power Cord) --> HD650/Zu Mobius, HD25-1 II/Moon Audio modified HD600 Cable, SR60, E500, MD33S

So how would these compare?

Stock 24" iMac ($0...what I'm using now)
Fubar II ($120 + shipping)
Keces 151 ($250 + shipping)
Headroom MicroDAC 2007 ($399 + shipping)

Would the 16 bit in the Fubar II be a big difference b/t the 24 bit in the others? How much of a jump in SQ can I expect from my stock iMac? Where's the sweetspot? Is each step worth the jump in price?

Thanks ahead.
post #2 of 19
Apogee Duet. My setup is mac mini > time capsule > duet. Are you coming to CanJam? If you are, my set up will be there if you want to check it out before buying. You can get the Duet from Sweatwater.com with 30 days to try it out.
post #3 of 19
Apogee Duet - My set-up is Apple Macbook - Apogee Duet - Headroom Desktop Portable
post #4 of 19
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by tyrion View Post
Apogee Duet. My setup is mac mini > time capsule > duet. Are you coming to CanJam? If you are, my set up will be there if you want to check it out before buying. You can get the Duet from Sweatwater.com with 30 days to try it out.
Unfortunately, I won't be able to make it to CanJam. Full time work and school have me on lock down.

The Duet is more for recording, no? I wouldn't really make use of that function. Its also a bit above my budget...but knowing my habits, I'll probably be ungrading to something like that by the end of the year, lol.
post #5 of 19
duet is more than just for recording. The sound on it is amazing. It's really worth saving up the extra to get one.
post #6 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by JLai View Post
Unfortunately, I won't be able to make it to CanJam. Full time work and school have me on lock down.

The Duet is more for recording, no? I wouldn't really make use of that function. Its also a bit above my budget...but knowing my habits, I'll probably be ungrading to something like that by the end of the year, lol.
When grawk gives some specific instructions I may use it for some needle drops but until then it's been used with my mac mini for listening to music. It's a great dac for the money. I can't help you with the budget issue but short of that, it's an excellent way to go with the imac. Too bad about CanJam.
post #7 of 19
I'll give you instructions in may
post #8 of 19
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by tyrion View Post
When grawk gives some specific instructions I may use it for some needle drops but until then it's been used with my mac mini for listening to music. It's a great dac for the money. I can't help you with the budget issue but short of that, it's an excellent way to go with the imac. Too bad about CanJam.
3/3 recommend the Apogee...hummm. I might have to divert some car modding funds if its THAT good. Thanks for the help.
post #9 of 19
I may have tin ears, but tyrion has been through some gear, his recommendation has clout
post #10 of 19
If you have a Mac...you owe yourself to try the Duet. If you don't like it, you can always return it for full refund.
post #11 of 19
Have not heard the Duet, but the Apogee Mini-Dac running at 24/96 via optical digital works fantastically!
post #12 of 19
I use optical out from a MacBook Pro to a Headroom Ultra Micro Dac and Ultra Micro Amp. Words can't describe how happy I am with this set up!
post #13 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by SK138 View Post
If you have a Mac...you owe yourself to try the Duet. If you don't like it, you can always return it for full refund.
I think that there still has not been a single Duet posted for sale here, which is definitely a very good sign that people who have bought them are pretty happy with them.
post #14 of 19
Unless you have the unusual hi-fi-dac ear, I would try the 0404 usb, or another cheap dac before spending too much on that component.
post #15 of 19
The price is not really that bad, if you take into account that the built-in headphone amp is very good. In fact, I do believe that for the same money I'd take a Duet over an E-MU 0404 USB and an X-CAN v3.
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