That's it ?
The Antelope Zodiac / Zodiac + / Zodiac Gold DAC Thread - Page 31
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Well, looks like Antelope is getting a little greedy. Where other companies (eg Resonessence) are retrofitting DSD to their DACs or allowing them to be sent in for the upgrade (eg Ayre), Antelope, which promised DSD on the Gold for months is reneging.
But wait, you can buy their new (undoubtedly more expensive) Platinum DAC which will do DSD.
No word yet on whether their 40k Rubicon DAC can be retrofitted for DSD. I can only imagine the users wanting to return their units for ones that do DSD, but of course once you buy one there is no return as that's kind of the definition of Rubicon in the first place.
But there higher end dac has been upgraded to play DSD true.
Edited by mcullinan - 5/29/13 at 8:21am
I'm talking about the Resonessence product in the same price bracket as the ZG, the Invicta. Other companies are doing it as well, with both more expensive products (DCS Debussy as an example) and cheaper. (W4S DAC-2.)
Here's how I'm reading it.
Antelope said it could be done for quite a while. Whether its a firmware update like the Invicta or hardware like Ayre or W4S, they thought it could be done on their existing DAC.
Then it promptly gets dropped and a new (probably more expensive) model is announced. That means either:
1) They couldn't do it, which I consider a failure and makes their products uncompetitive in a key emerging trend in the DAC market
2) They could do it, but it required updates (probably hardware) too costly to be worth it for them and/or the consumer
3) They could do it, but capitalized on the opportunity to release as a new product and make more money.
If #2 is what's going on, I would want to be informed as a consumer so that I didn't think #1 or 3.
They should give you an answer to why after telling you it could be done, they didnt follow through. In the current DAc environment, since there are so many constant upgrades to performance, there definitely should be some kind of upgrade path. Its smart for the manufacturer, the keep you in the family and for the buyer, adds value to the original purchase.. since you can look forward to low cost upgrades. Hopefully you hear something about it.
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It's better than CD quality audio, but worse than even 24/96 PCM.
If you have DSD tracks, just use a source which can do the conversion. (e.g. JRiver)
Even the designers behind some of the best DACs are saying this - both Benchmark and Weiss have stated that they prefer PCM over DSD - but they're adding DSD to their products because they don't want to be seen as missing features when other DACs are adding DSD support.
It's not about whether one would use it or not, its about telling people you'll release a feature and then not doing it. I agree though, this DSD thing seems more keeping up with the Jones'es than anything else.
With new info about the new Zodiac Platinum coming to light, things are starting to make sense- they didn't just want to go 128, they wanted to be the "best" by going 256 - for which they needed a custom receiver, and a whole new DAC. Still would have been nice to let buyers know but I understand them not offering to totally overhaul all existing DACs in circulation.
Partially marketing too. Seems that next price point after 3K is mid 5K. I own a Eximus DP1.. $3200, now April Music is releasing a mid 5K Dac soon. The Zodiac Gold is 3k, now a mid 5K Dac with the Platinum. I wonder who decides on these pricing schemes.
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A I am about to purchase a Zodiac Gold, I have a question for those of you who already own it.
I see the single ended analog RCA outputs are quoted as -10dBv, while the balanced analog outputs are +8 to +26 dBu. Well, can I use the balanced outputs to feed an headphone amplifier or those are too powerful for this purpose? (I'm really not into the electronic measurements). And in the case it is possible, I can do it with the default +22 dBu or should I trim them to a lower output?