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Meier Audio StageDAC - Page 31

post #451 of 633

If I wanted to take advantage of the stagedac's coax what specific cable would I need and what would I need to buy to allow my computer to output coax?
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by sokolov91 View Post

no, I doubt it. But you could try using the coax out if your ground is clean. Optical is only better over long distances, otherwise coax will beat it.
post #452 of 633
Quote:
Originally Posted by tisb0b View Post

If I wanted to take advantage of the stagedac's coax what specific cable would I need and what would I need to buy to allow my computer to output coax?
 


 


Well he was talking about his STX, which already has a very robust coax out.

 

Your motherboard might already have coax out, as many recent ones do.

 

Other than that, there are all kinds of aftermarket cables, but very few are more than overprice snake oil.

 

What is your budget? If your computer doesn't have coax already, the cheapest and "Hi-fiest" way would be to buy a cheapish soundcard that provides coax out. Asus has a few that are under 100$

 

As far as the cable goes, you would need a 75 ohm RCA cable.

post #453 of 633

I've been reading through this thread and becoming interested in the StageDAC.

 

For some time now I've been reading up on DACs as I have a Mac Pro and I wish to get a DAC so it can become a source from my (much loved) Sudgen HeadMaster.

 

I think this "Toslink or USB?" question gets asked over and over again so I've decided to maintain this tradition and ask about it.

 

The Mac Pro has a Toslink optical connector on its built in sound card.

 

My feeling it that this should be a good connection with the StageDAC but for years Hi Fi people have been negative about Toslink optical connections.

 

Maybe they are right, I don't know.

 

I find the website of Vincent Kars to be useful for finding out about the technical side of these things. He seems to think that perhaps Toslink is underrated today.

 

I notice that at the Meier Audio website there is a deal where you can buy the M2TECH HiFace USB to RCA (S/PDIF) for a bit less than the usual price if you are buying the DAC from Meier Audio. So, I wonder should I get it? Maybe I should just use my Toslink optical connection?

post #454 of 633

It seems my mobo does have coax so I might just buy a 75 ohm rca cable and experiment as I have heard that it is better than spdif. 
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by sokolov91 View Post

 

What is your budget? If your computer doesn't have coax already, the cheapest and "Hi-fiest" way would be to buy a cheapish soundcard that provides coax out. Asus has a few that are under 100$

 

As far as the cable goes, you would need a 75 ohm RCA cable.

post #455 of 633
Quote:
Originally Posted by p a t r i c k View Post

I've been reading through this thread and becoming interested in the StageDAC.

 

For some time now I've been reading up on DACs as I have a Mac Pro and I wish to get a DAC so it can become a source from my (much loved) Sudgen HeadMaster.

 

I think this "Toslink or USB?" question gets asked over and over again so I've decided to maintain this tradition and ask about it.

 

The Mac Pro has a Toslink optical connector on its built in sound card.

 

My feeling it that this should be a good connection with the StageDAC but for years Hi Fi people have been negative about Toslink optical connections.

 

Maybe they are right, I don't know.

 

I find the website of Vincent Kars to be useful for finding out about the technical side of these things. He seems to think that perhaps Toslink is underrated today.

 

I notice that at the Meier Audio website there is a deal where you can buy the M2TECH HiFace USB to RCA (S/PDIF) for a bit less than the usual price if you are buying the DAC from Meier Audio. So, I wonder should I get it? Maybe I should just use my Toslink optical connection?


I would just use the toslink optical connection and save the cash... I do see any logical reasoning behind the usb to coax sounding better. Jan knows what he is doing... primarily as an electrical engineer, and secondly as a salesman. He knows many people won't want to use USB, but also don't have coax on their computers, so he offers that cable.

 

He has also said on numerous ocaisions the best performance would be to add coaxial support to your computer.

 

Yes optical generally has higher jitter, but there is lows of jitter reduction in the DAC anyways, and its not like jitter is something widely apparent in the first place.

post #456 of 633

There is no doubt the STX is incredible as a DAC and to be honest the Stagedac is better but by a very tiny margin (slightly smoother and more musical). I only kept the STX because for some strange reasons its optical output sounds better than the one on my motherboard. I didn't think it would be the case as the sound isn't processed by the card. The STX's virtual Dolby headphone is also brilliant when watching movie using headphone as I don't have a 5.1 system. 

I will eventually get a nice quality coax cable to compare it to the optical but I somehow doubt there would be an audible difference. I was also planning to try the JKenny modded Hi-face but the tiny improvement, if any, is unlikely to justify the price.

post #457 of 633

There have been a consensus that coax was better than optical but I think an increasing number of people are starting to realize that it isn't the case anymore.

post #458 of 633


Thank you sokolov91 and zenpunk.

 

If I get this DAC which is increasingly likely I will just use the optical connection to my Mac Pro.

post #459 of 633

I've just ordered a StageDAC :)

post #460 of 633
Quote:
Originally Posted by zenpunk View Post

There is no doubt the STX is incredible as a DAC and to be honest the Stagedac is better but by a very tiny margin (slightly smoother and more musical).

 

 

Which Headphones did you use when coming to this conclusion?  TIA
 

post #461 of 633

Ultrasone Pro 900 and Grado 225 mainly. I won't deny the Stagedac is more enjoyable but I also realised how good the STX actually is. Anything in this hobby is relative and people would go to great length and spend thousands to get a perceived 0.1% increase in SQ. I have no experience with an other DAC but I believe any  well designed dacs would be really hard to tell apart in a DBT test. 

post #462 of 633
Quote:
Originally Posted by zenpunk View Post

There have been a consensus that coax was better than optical but I think an increasing number of people are starting to realize that it isn't the case anymore.


I don't know whether or not people actually ever heard the difference, but technically coax is better because the signal is not as manipulated as it is with optical.

 

Coax is electrical, optical has to be converted to light, then from light back to electrical info. 

 

So maybe over really shot distances you could hear a difference, maybe not. All i know is that technically one is purer, but I have never tested myself.

 

With jitter reduction optical is by no means bad. I mean even Jude, the head honcho of this site uses optical  out of his macbook pro.... can't be that bad haha.

post #463 of 633
Quote:
Originally Posted by zenpunk View Post

Ultrasone Pro 900 and Grado 225 mainly.

 


I don't know the STX and it may very well be almost as good as the Stagedac. But your phones might be the weak Link in a Stagedac -> Concerto chain. Maybe you would hear bigger differences with more resolving cans. Can you borrow some? Or travel to a meet with your rig?


Edited by Kurt - 9/7/10 at 3:42pm
post #464 of 633
Quote:
Originally Posted by repo064 View Post

Hey zenpunk I have the STX , but my onboard sound was shocking, I really noticed the difference when installing the STX, maybe is over kill.

Perer would you recommend this over a sound card ?

Well I haven't compared this to a sound card, but my motherboard (Asus P5Q Delux) actually has both Optical USB and SPDIF however I'm currently using the HiFACE.

Will play around more with the different options once the system is broken in properly


The main feature of the StageDAC really is the crossfeed, would have been a real loss to get a system without that feature.

post #465 of 633


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kurt View Post




I don't know the STX and it may very well be almost as good as the Stagedac. But your phones might be the weak Link in a Stagedac -> Concerto chain. Maybe you would hear bigger differences with more resolving cans. Can you borrow some? Or travel to a meet with your rig?


The Pro 900 are pretty good headphones... Probably on par with most of yours, minus the HD 800. So resolving is probably not the best word. Neutral is probably better, but both are great qualities.

 

At the end of the day there is only so good music can get , as it is limited by the recording. So it is very possible the STX and Stagedac, and many other sources for that matter are much more similar than they are different... otherwise there would be issues in their design. 

 

 

Plus, no one said it was as good, just very close, and more competitive in terms of cost.

 

Remember, we are spending tons of money for these 1,2,3,4,5% changes at most.

 

As a DAC the STX is probably not as good as it does not have jitter reduction and such, but as a source it is probably close.

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