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REVIEW (more to come) - CEntrance DACport 24/96 USB DAC Amp - Page 14

post #196 of 483

It could be if you want.  Just use an SD memory card or connect a USB drive or thumb key with your FLAC files and you're in business.
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by zilch0md View Post

 

Thanks Twinster!

 

I was hoping it was a standalone source.

 

Mike



 

post #197 of 483

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Twinster View Post

It could be if you want.  Just use an SD memory card or connect a USB drive or thumb key with your FLAC files and you're in business. 

 


Is there any chance that the Squeezebox Touch could "sound" every bit as good with a DACmini as a Mac or Windows laptop?

 

post #198 of 483


The SB Touch is a very good and versatile transport that have USB/COAX/Optic output and the interface and remote is very good too.  It's hard to say if it sound better because the DACmini has a very good Jitter free control over USB  ( the only output from my laptop) but I would say that I prefer the convenience and small footprint of the SB in my living room rig.

Quote:
Originally Posted by zilch0md View Post

 


Is there any chance that the Squeezebox Touch could "sound" every bit as good with a DACmini as a Mac or Windows laptop?

 



 

 


Edited by Twinster - 10/10/11 at 7:59pm
post #199 of 483

Has any one though about the new Halide DAC HD 24bit--96khz that's due for release  this month as A  competitor to the Centrance DAC HD 24 bit --96khz. Both emphasis  the use of  USB hookup.

post #200 of 483

No offense, but I believe that their website is a joke...

Moreover, I can't see any company details, no marketing on their site and no contact information.

 

For me, it looks like being a small company inside a garage.biggrin.gif

post #201 of 483

 

I hear you Twinster.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Twinster View Post

The SB Touch is a very good and versatile transport that have USB/COAX/Optic output and the interface and remote is very good too.  It's hard to say if it sound better because the DACmini has a very good Jitter free control over USB  ( the only output from my laptop) but I would say that I prefer the convenience and small footprint of the SB in my living room rig.

 

 

 


That's the appeal for me, too - it's size and ability to be used portably - as a source for the DACmini in a transportable rig - per the photo, above.

 

I found this very positive review of the Squeezebox Touch, but it left me confused:

 

http://www.computeraudiophile.com/content/Logitech-Squeezebox-Touch-Review

 

On the one hand, the reviewer writes: 

 

 

Quote:

The absolute best part of the Squeezebox Touch is its ability to pass bit transparent digital audio at high resolutions including 24 bit / 88.2 kHz and 24 bit / 96 kHz. Without this capability the device would’ve been nothing special. With this capability the device is now a serious contender. All the extra features and niceties are simply minutiae to the most serious audiophiles. Using the new Weiss Engineering DAC202’s built-in transparency test I was able to verify the following sample rates are completely bit transparent through the Logitech Squeezebox Touch.

16 bit / 44.1 kHz, 16 bit / 48 kHz, 16 bit / 88.2 kHz, 16 bit / 96 kHz
24 bit / 44.1 kHz, 24 bit / 48 kHz, 24 bit / 88.2 kHz, 24 bit / 96 kHz

 

But later in the article, he writes:

 

 

Quote:
The Touch sounded really good with most music in my collection (Jazz, Rock, and Pop). Long term listening through the Touch wasn’t fatiguing but did reveal some sonically rounded edges and a tiny bit of dullness compared to the PC/FireWire system. I will not call the Touch a dull component overall. When compared to one of the best interfaces and software configurations available it appears just a tad dull. Without a direct comparison I’m willing to bet the Touch would fall right into place in most users’ listening environments and not raise any questions about dullness. The biggest weakness of the Touch was evident during complex dynamic classical pieces. One of my go-to tracks is Michael Daugherty’s Niagara Falls from Reference Recording’s Crown Imperial release performed by the Dallas Wind Symphony (16/44.1 release or 24/96 release or 24/176.4 release). Compared to the PC/FireWire system the Touch S/PDIF system was a little muddy and had a bit less separation of instruments, especially the drums, when the symphony really got going. 

 

The way it reads, I might not even notice any "dullness," but it's hard to quantify just how bad it is, reading this.  It seems you are quite pleased with yours, given that you use it as part of your living-room rig, so I'm still intrigued.  

 

I, personally, don't have a problem with the fact that it has a plastic case - I'm after function and if the Squeezebox Touch + DACmini can compete with a small netbook or laptop + DACmini - for sound quality - I'd be content.

 

Question:  Have you ever tried connecting the DACmini to the SB Touch using USB interface (instead of coaxial or toslink)?

I ask, because I'm also kicking around the idea of using the SB Touch with a Centrance DACport LX + Meier Stepdance.  I don't know if the SB Touch has enough power to supply the DACport LX, though - even if it could be connected to a DACmini via USB. 

 

Another question:  Assuming I go with a DACmini via coaxial connection, do you know of the SB Touch can power a small USB hard drive (not a flash drive, but a 2.5-inch form factor hard drive that normally gets its power - and data - from a laptop or desktop PC's USB jack.)

 

Anyone else have any suggestions for a small, lightweight, battery operated source for use with the DACmini or DACport LX?

 

Thanks again!

 

Mike

 

 

post #202 of 483
Quote:

Originally Posted by zilch0md View Post

 

[snip]

 

Another question:  Assuming I go with a DACmini via coaxial connection, do you know of the SB Touch can power a small USB hard drive (not a flash drive, but a 2.5-inch form factor hard drive that normally gets its power - and data - from a laptop or desktop PC's USB jack.)

 

Anyone else have any suggestions for a small, lightweight, battery operated source for use with the DACmini or DACport LX?

It's a well-known limitation of the Squeezebox Touch's firmware that it doesn't deal well with large USB drives (either 2.5" or 3.5") - it's really meant for wireless use (e.g., a NAS). The SBT takes a really long time scanning (and rescanning, after disconnect > reconnect) libraries bigger than approx. 100 albums/folders.

 

Like you, I want to get a hard drive-based solution as well so I asked a well-known Dutch store (WifiMedia) for advice. Their recommendations:

- A PC/laptop/netbook (duh)

- Cambridge NP30

- Olive

 

I also googled, and I think the TEAC WAP series might also work.

 

(Apologies for clumsy phrasing, I'm not a native speaker and my brain is fried from work.)

post #203 of 483

 

Thanks Rappard,

 

I appreciate your reply.  The Squeezebox Touch's USB port probably wouldn't be able to supply enough current to operate a DACport LX if it can't power a small, 2.5-inch hard drive.  And it doesn't sound as if you can use it standalone with anything larger than say a 16 or 32 GB USB flash drive or SD card attached to it, while using the coaxial connection to a DACmini.

 

Thanks again,

 

Mike


Edited by zilch0md - 10/11/11 at 12:02pm
post #204 of 483

Hello

 

I made a mistake yesterday regarding the output option from the SB. It as RCA / Coax / SPDIF (No USB) . The USB is to connect external storage device for your music. I was able to connect and power my 2.5 500 GB drive from it but it is a bit slow to scan and was not always streaming the music smoothly.  I do not think you can connect the Dacport out of the USB port.

 

As per the review the guy is referring to the internal DAC of the SB and the supported sample rate.  Some DAC as problem with the  88.2 Khz rate. By the way the SB internal DAC is quite good too ( Not as good as Centrance DAC but good) and much better than previous version of the SB. It's a bit on the warmer side compare to the DACmini.

 

I only used my Dacport from my Laptop and mostly my Desktop computer at work. I just bought the DACmini a month ago and have been using it in my bedroom rig for now (That is where I  have my quality listening session)

 

I'm using the SB in the living room and I'm streaming music from my music server via the Ethernet port. I was using WiFi before but the SB had problem streaming the 24/96Khz download from HDTRACKS. It was always stopping to re-buffering the song before continuing. It's a common problem.

 

Hope that help.
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by zilch0md View Post

 

I hear you Twinster.

 

 

That's the appeal for me, too - it's size and ability to be used portably - as a source for the DACmini in a transportable rig - per the photo, above.

 

I found this very positive review of the Squeezebox Touch, but it left me confused:

 

http://www.computeraudiophile.com/content/Logitech-Squeezebox-Touch-Review

 

On the one hand, the reviewer writes: 

 

 

 

But later in the article, he writes:

 

 

 

The way it reads, I might not even notice any "dullness," but it's hard to quantify just how bad it is, reading this.  It seems you are quite pleased with yours, given that you use it as part of your living-room rig, so I'm still intrigued.  

 

I, personally, don't have a problem with the fact that it has a plastic case - I'm after function and if the Squeezebox Touch + DACmini can compete with a small netbook or laptop + DACmini - for sound quality - I'd be content.

 

Question:  Have you ever tried connecting the DACmini to the SB Touch using USB interface (instead of coaxial or toslink)?

I ask, because I'm also kicking around the idea of using the SB Touch with a Centrance DACport LX + Meier Stepdance.  I don't know if the SB Touch has enough power to supply the DACport LX, though - even if it could be connected to a DACmini via USB. 

 

Another question:  Assuming I go with a DACmini via coaxial connection, do you know of the SB Touch can power a small USB hard drive (not a flash drive, but a 2.5-inch form factor hard drive that normally gets its power - and data - from a laptop or desktop PC's USB jack.)

 

Anyone else have any suggestions for a small, lightweight, battery operated source for use with the DACmini or DACport LX?

 

Thanks again!

 

Mike

 

 



 


Edited by Twinster - 10/11/11 at 6:09pm
post #205 of 483

Thanks for all the details, Twinster!

 

Mike

post #206 of 483
Quote:
Originally Posted by zilch0md View Post

Anyone else have any suggestions for a small, lightweight, battery operated source for use with the DACmini or DACport LX?

 

 

 

Apparently, the DACmini can be powered by the Energizer XP18000.

http://www.head-fi.org/t/453116/audeze-lcd-2-orthos/15315#post_7627426

 

There is no reason it cannot be powered by your XP8000.

 

XP18000

Power capacity: 18000 mAh

Rated output: DC 19V 3500 mA ...

 

 

XP8000

Power capacity: 8000 mAh

Rated output: DC 19V 2000 mA ...

 

DACmini

DC powering: 9 ... 19V (1A)

 

 

post #207 of 483

 

Thank you DanBa - I agree that the XP8000 would work as well as the XP18000 for this purpose (albeit with less capacity, of course).

 

I'm just disappointed to hear that the Squeezebox Touch doesn't do so well with powering USB hard drives that expect to get their power from the USB port.  That leaves me with using SD cards if I want to use the Squeezebox standalone (without streaming files from a server wirelessly).   And I can't use the Squeezebox Touch and a  DACport LX in combination with my Stepdance, either, because the Squeezebox Touch only outputs via the coaxial or optical connectors. 

 

A transportable DACmini is still very appealing, though - I'm just not so keen on the Squeezebox, now.

 

Thanks for the link, though - I didn't know that my rig was the inspiration for goofyvic's transportable DACmini rig.  rolleyes.gif

 

Mike

post #208 of 483

Could anyone comment on how much drive/power the dacport has compared to some moderately priced desktop amps, such as the Schiit Asgard or the Gilmore Lite.  I'm wondering how much I'd be losing if using this with something like the K701 or HD650.

post #209 of 483

 

I don't own a DACport, but I've have been doing my homework recently.  

 

The specs (http://www.centrance.com/products/dacport/) indicate that it's capable of 750 milliwatts per channel (1.5W total) into 600 ohms (if I'm interpreting them correctly.)  

 

To put that into perspective, consider that the DACport uses the Texas instruments OPA1612 operational amp, which is the dual-channel version (yuck) of the five, single-channel (yay) OPA1611 opamps used in the Meier-Audio Corda Stepdance (the first Stepdance).  The newer 2Stepdance uses five of the inferior (yes, I said it) OPA209 opamps.  The OPA1611/12's slew rate is 4.2 times faster than the OPA209, the OPA1611/12 has half the THD and Noise, and over 4 times the GBP (Gain Bandwidth Product) - meaning it  will offer more headroom and better dynamics at any given frequency, even though it might have the same Watts RMS out (as is the case with these two opamps) for any given supply voltage.  All that said, nobody is complaining about the sound quality of the OPA209-equipped 2Stepdance - a tribute to the design skills of Jan Meier.  Perhaps the OPA1611 was overkill - delivering slew rates, THD, noise, and a GBP beyond the range of audible appreciation.  But...  the OPA209-equipped 2Stepdance does offer twice the battery life of a Stepdance.  We asked; he delivered. 

 

OK, where was I...  Oh yeah...

 

Texas Instruments data for the OPA1611 and 12  can be found here:  http://www.ti.com/lit/ds/sbos450b/sbos450b.pdf

 

The datasheet shows that they have the same output voltage for a given supply voltage, so you could think of the DACport as having the same power output as a Stepdance when it's running with only a 9V supply voltage.  The DACPort can't pull more than 9V DC from a computer's USB port (somebody correct me if I've got this wrong - I'm a bit sketchy here) - and it has to ask the computer to increase the voltage from the usual 5V up to 9V in order to get it - that's not a roadblock - I'm just pointing out how restricted the DACport is when it comes to getting its power.   The Stepdance (and 2Stepdance) can be supplied with up to 15V, with a greater than proportional increase in peak output voltage to the headphones (per the OPA1611 datasheet).  Without considerable modification, there's no way to get 15V into a DACport, even though its OPA1612 can handle up to 18V (just like the OPA1611).

 

So... I'm certain the DACport can't deliver the same output power of a 15-V Stepdance, and athough I don't know the specs of the Asgard and Gilmore Lite, it's very unlikely the DACport can deliver anything like the power of an Asgard .  It might come close to matching the output of a Gilmore Lite, however.   

 

Having never so much as heard a Centrance product, I prefer the idea of the DACport LX over the DACPort - just for the freedom to use a different amp - one that's not limited to the power that a USB port can provide.

 

Now take everything I've written here with a big grain of salt - I'm waiting to be "schooled" by someone who understands this stuff better than I do.  smile.gif

 

Mike

post #210 of 483

From what I know, 750mw x 2 channel @32 ohm.

 

750mw x 2 channel @600 ohm is freaking crazy


Edited by TheMiddleSky - 10/13/11 at 2:36am
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