Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Dedicated Source Components › FIRST IMPRESSIONS: NEW Nuforce uDAC-2 with 24/96 - USB DAC AMP with line out and S/PDIF out
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

FIRST IMPRESSIONS: NEW Nuforce uDAC-2 with 24/96 - USB DAC AMP with line out and S/PDIF out - Page 7

post #91 of 874
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by sushantV View Post

Just a question about UDAC2 buying.

 

I am a new buyer and have never bought UDAC / UDAC2 (for the matter any DAC/HP Amplifier). Have already bought HiFiMan RE0.

 

Now I have the option to buy UDAC as well as UDAC2. The UDAC2 costs nearly 45% more.

 

My question is, is it worth paying that much premium for the UDAC2 when I do understand that only the receiver chip is new and that I'll be using my Netbook as a source.

 

Since I am not finding many UDAC2 reviews online, I am kind of confused.

 

Any help will be appreciated.


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by HONEYBOY View Post



I do not quite understand the technical jargon associated with DACs. However, I do not think I can extrapolate degree of perceived improvement over the original uDAC from such information. Nevertheless, I shall continue to look forward to this thread for incoming impressions. I am happy that the uDAC-2 has retained the form factor/enclosure of the original. I'd be happy to pick one up after a bit more feedback.
 


There are several improvements in the uDAC-2 over the original uDAC.  

 

(1) Improved USB receiver chip that can decode in full resolution your 24/96 high bit-rate music like what you might buy from www.hdtracks.com or www.linn.com

 

(2) This new USB receiver chip does a better job decoding the music even at 16/44 CD-quality bit-rates, so the RCA line-out now sounds very much like my more expensive Pico DAC-only (I couldn't tell the difference when switching between the two DACs).

 

(3) An improved headphone amplifier combined with upgraded DAC which results in a more naturally balanced and transparent sound out of the headphone amp - the sound is now less forward in the mids and not rolled off in the highs.  I have heard the prototype uDAC-2 which had upgraded DAC but with the original headphone amp, and the old headphone amp was holding back the performance of the upgraded DAC.  However, the upgraded headphone amp now allows one to hear and appreciate the improvements in the upgraded DAC.  

 

(4) An improved volume control, where I can listen to the music several decibels quieter than with the original uDAC before going low enough to get channel imbalance between L and R channels.  For people with very sensitive IEM, this allows a wider range of volumes that you can listen to the music.

post #92 of 874

Thanks for the replies guys. I appreciate that.

 

Now I do understand that there are improvements. I just want to quantify them a bit.

 

The channel imbalance thing is of no use to me since I am anyway using RE0s, which are anyway not too sensitive.

 

Again, the headphone amplifier section. What and exactly how much do you guys think will be the span of improvement ?

 

On another note, I just got fresh quotes of both the UDAC and UDAC2. I am getting the UDAC for like 82 USD and the UDAC2 for 129.

 

Now this boils down to: If the improvement is worth the odd 50$ premium ? Thats a good 60% over the original UDACs price.

post #93 of 874
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by sushantV View Post

Thanks for the replies guys. I appreciate that.

 

Now I do understand that there are improvements. I just want to quantify them a bit.

 

The channel imbalance thing is of no use to me since I am anyway using RE0s, which are anyway not too sensitive.

 

Again, the headphone amplifier section. What and exactly how much do you guys think will be the span of improvement ?

 

On another note, I just got fresh quotes of both the UDAC and UDAC2. I am getting the UDAC for like 82 USD and the UDAC2 for 129.

 

Now this boils down to: If the improvement is worth the odd 50$ premium ? Thats a good 60% over the original UDACs price.


I don't know how I can help more, because I haven't tried the RE0 and don't know what amp they'd sound best with.  As much as I enjoyed the original uDAC, the uDAC-2's improved headphone amp sounds more natural, balanced, detailed and transparent than the original uDAC.  You could search the original uDAC review thread and see what people had to say about pairing RE0 with the uDAC, and what they would have wanted if it could be changed.

 

The ONLY downside I have found to getting the uDAC-2 in lieu of the original is not being able to use it with an iPad via camera connection kit, which the original uDAC can do.

post #94 of 874



 

Quote:
Originally Posted by sushantV View Post

Thanks for the replies guys. I appreciate that.

 

Now I do understand that there are improvements. I just want to quantify them a bit.

 

The channel imbalance thing is of no use to me since I am anyway using RE0s, which are anyway not too sensitive.

 

Again, the headphone amplifier section. What and exactly how much do you guys think will be the span of improvement ?

 

On another note, I just got fresh quotes of both the UDAC and UDAC2. I am getting the UDAC for like 82 USD and the UDAC2 for 129.

 

Now this boils down to: If the improvement is worth the odd 50$ premium ? Thats a good 60% over the original UDACs price.


Just conceptualizing the notion of "quantity of improvement" in audio is a diffcult task and it'll not be surprising to me if most folks are reticent to give an exact quote as to % improvement. As mechanical as this may sound, since it's been reiterated on many occasions. Only you can decide if the additional investment was worth it. No one else can do that for you. There are just too many variables involved in my opinion.

post #95 of 874

It's $47 dollars . Unless you want to use an iPad it's sort of a no-brainer. If $47 is that big a deal perhaps waiting until it's not such a big deal would make more sense.

 

We're talking about toys here, if someone is buying something that keeps them from putting food on the table or paying the rent, they should reevaluate their priorities. If you're a Kid and you're buying a toy with money that you've saved (Congratulations! Saving for a goal is one of life's most important lessons) it really boils down to if you have sufficient funds. If you buy the uDAC when you could have purchased the uDAC-2 you are likely going to regret it later (Once the reviews for the new one start hitting). The other option is to wait for a month (You might be able to save the $47) and see if the reviews of the uDAC-2 make it seem like it's worth the difference.

post #96 of 874

It looks like the channel imbalance is better managed on the uDAC2. I'm a bit tempted as a better transportable solution than what I have now when I take my netbook out with me.

 

The amp section seems to be less forward which is good (for me) since I don't need any more forwardness. Maybe I shouldn't have sold my uDAC and could have gotten a nice upgrade price instead :P At $30 more than the uDAC it seems like a good deal. I'm a bit surprised about it being in stock since the original ran out of stock faster than any product I've seen. It's nice to know they improved on the amp.

 

Thanks for your impressions Larry.

 

 

Also if spending $47 is a concern then don't spend it until you can afford it. Something like this is nice but not a necessity such as eating, bills or any of that stuff assuming you are an adult.


Edited by rawrster - 8/21/10 at 8:07pm
post #97 of 874

I don't think Nuforce should discontinue the uDac1. In the uDac's price category $47 is a significant amount. Is the uDac1 44.1 or 48 mHz? If it's 44.1 with redbook, then it's NOS and it's bit perfect. That along with iPad compatibility makes it attractive to some people, and it's nice to have some product diversity.


Edited by grokit - 8/21/10 at 8:11pm
post #98 of 874

I figured they were going to discontinue the uDAC but haven't read anything on that but I haven't been following it.

 

It's rare and not very smart imo for a company to have two products that are so similar in price and function. That is basically what the uDAC is. The biggest difference is improved amp and 24/96 correct and the $30 price difference. Some people may not care much about the difference and go for the $99 one which would lower their profits a bit.

 

Although it would be nice to keep both since the original one works with the ipad but other than that I can't see any reason to keep them both in production. I don't own an ipad so it doesn't matter for me but it might for others.

post #99 of 874

Thanks again for the replies.

 

Just to add, its not that I can't afford the UDAC-2 and 47$ is definitely not the question. The question is about value addition those 47$ will fetch me, over the original UDAC.

 

Again, IPAD is out of question as well, I ain't gonna buy one.

 

I wouldn't have asked this question if I'd have seen some reviews. Its just that I am not being able to make my opinion about the newer version and thats precisely why I was soliciting your opinion.

 

It seems that waiting for some time should be the right approach.


Edited by sushantV - 8/21/10 at 11:05pm
post #100 of 874

Hi Larry, how about the udac 2 vs the dacport? It seemed to be the best portable dac in your opinion.
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by HeadphoneAddict View Post




 


There are several improvements in the uDAC-2 over the original uDAC.  

 

(2) This new USB receiver chip does a better job decoding the music even at 16/44 CD-quality bit-rates, so the RCA line-out now sounds very much like my more expensive Pico DAC-only (I couldn't tell the difference when switching between the two DACs).

 

 

post #101 of 874
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by GTL View Post

Hi Larry, how about the udac 2 vs the dacport? It seemed to be the best portable dac in your opinion.
 


As a DAC feeding another amp the DACport is a little smoother or rounder around the edges of transients, but not slower by any means.  DACport has a nice refined sound like a Stello DA100 or DLIII (based on memory) when feeding my Woo WA6. The uDAC-2 RCA out is a little more energetic or lively and crisp sounding like the Pico DAC, but not to the point of being slightly aggressive like my Apogee mini-DAC.  

 

As a headphone amp driving my Westone ES5 (just did this last night) the uDAC-2 is slightly warmer than the DACport, with maybe slightly stronger bass and very slightly more forward mids than DACport, but it's significantly closer to the DACport in sound signature than the original uDAC was, which is a very good thing. I have not been able to decide which I like better, but they don't sound exactly alike although they are close.  

 

When listening to my Macbook, lately I most often use the uDAC-2 because I can connect it to my AudioEngine A2 speakers via RCA and have it turn off the speakers when I plug in a headphone.  The DACport is a small improvement, but not enough to make me want to keep unplugging my A2 from the DACport whenever I want to plug in an IEM.  The uDAC-2 is so convenient that I'm often using it ahead of better gear.  The original uDAC didn't sound as good with the A2 speakers so I used the DACport the most on my desktop, despite the inconvenience.  But the uDAC-2 is a noticeable upgrade over the original, that sounds better with the A2 speakers, allowing me to use it more.

 

My second USB port is taken up with a USB hub that sits under my listening chair, which always has the 4 ports full (either an EyeTV, iPhone, Pico DAC, HDP, Apogee mini-DAC, or TimeMachine backup).  If I plug in a USB hard drive or thumb drive into my Macbook's other USB port in place of the uDAC-2, then I'll always have another DAC connected that I can use. 

post #102 of 874

Just to update, I bought the UDAC for a while. Will be pairing it with the RE-0. The indian dealer has given the option to upgrade tp UDAC-2, once he has the stock.


Edited by sushantV - 8/23/10 at 10:40pm
post #103 of 874

listening to the uDAC-2 through my laptop feeding my t50p.  seems a bit warm... not sure if i like it or not.  the unit is so small though. feels solid. i never had the original uDAC so i had no idea of its size.  i was hoping to leave this in the living room with my laptop and keep the pb1/db1 with my desktop.  maybe ill see how it sounds with the combo now. 

post #104 of 874

Jason, when will this unit be on sale on nuforce europe?

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by jasonl View Post

The following differences between uDAC2 and uDAC are listed on the product page on the website:

 

As a step beyond the successful uDAC, the uDAC-2 boasts a highly linear TOCOS volume control for improved channel tracking at low listening levels, in addition to 24bit/96kHz USB DAC and an improved headphone amp.
 


 
post #105 of 874
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fantoon View Post

Jason, when will this unit be on sale on nuforce europe?

 

 


 

You Europeans know how to enjoy life, so many distributors are just coming back from the usual nationally imposed summer vacation :).

You should check with your dealer or distributor. Or just order it directly from our online store if you can't find it in your country.  We are trying to get our products into the retail chains in Europe, but it is a long process. I just heard that Nuforce is spreading fast through a chain of Apple resellers in Finland. In Sweden, you can find it at the biggest retail store Dustin. There are a lot of talk and meetings with resellers in other countries with our rep. It will take months before anything happen.
 

New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Dedicated Source Components
Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Dedicated Source Components › FIRST IMPRESSIONS: NEW Nuforce uDAC-2 with 24/96 - USB DAC AMP with line out and S/PDIF out