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Nuforce uDAC vs Headroom Total Bithead

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

so, are these two even remotely comparable? From what I've gathered so far it seems that the uDAC is the best choice if you're in this pricerange, but as im about to get a new amp and really like the sound of my current soundcard/headphone combo I would really appreciate having the option just to amplify the signal without sending it through a DAC (which you aren't able to on the uDAC)..

 

I'm truly at a loss as to which one to pick here and would really appreciate the opinions of those who have tried them both, or perhaps some other nuforce/headroom products to compare

 

Thank you for your time

/Andreas


Edited by Chesus - 8/8/10 at 2:04pm
post #2 of 7

Have tried and used both extensively.

 

uDAC:

+ better DAC section = better detail retrieval and clarity

+ virtually silent noise floor even with sensitive IEMs

- amp section is subpar and, IMO, sounds edgy at times (alleviated with external amp). Still okay/usable.

 

 

Bithead

+ all-in-one unit

+ amp section is decent for price range

+ can be battery operated for portability

- DAC section isn't that good and mediocre at best

- higher noise floor means using IEMs and low impedance headphones reveals hissing in background

 

Overall, I liked the uDAC better, but I eventually upgraded to a better DAC and a tube amp. I would have to say that the Bithead is mostly for portability and the uDAC is far superior, especially if you will upgrade your headphones or get an amp later. In my experience and depending on your soundcard, you will notice a bigger difference through the uDAC in terms of detail than you will with the amp and DAC of the Bithead.

 

Two more for you to consider are the Musiland Monitor 02 USD ($125) and the uDAC-2 ($129), which is coming out soon.

 

Hope that helps. Feel free to ask any other questions you may have.

post #3 of 7

Actually, I reread your post and it looks like you want an amp, not really a DAC. If your soundcard has RCA outputs, it would be real easy to find a nice amp in that range. If your soundcard doesn't have RCA outputs, don't fret. You can either use the line out/headphone out and send it to an external amp to amplify (not recommended) or use the optical out or USB out on your motherboard to send to an external amp/DAC (bypassing your soundcard).

post #4 of 7
Thread Starter 


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by KnightK View Post

Have tried and used both extensively.

 

uDAC:

+ better DAC section = better detail retrieval and clarity

+ virtually silent noise floor even with sensitive IEMs

- amp section is subpar and, IMO, sounds edgy at times (alleviated with external amp). Still okay/usable.

 

 

Bithead

+ all-in-one unit

+ amp section is decent for price range

+ can be battery operated for portability

- DAC section isn't that good and mediocre at best

- higher noise floor means using IEMs and low impedance headphones reveals hissing in background

 

Overall, I liked the uDAC better, but I eventually upgraded to a better DAC and a tube amp. I would have to say that the Bithead is mostly for portability and the uDAC is far superior, especially if you will upgrade your headphones or get an amp later. In my experience and depending on your soundcard, you will notice a bigger difference through the uDAC in terms of detail than you will with the amp and DAC of the Bithead.

 

Two more for you to consider are the Musiland Monitor 02 USD ($125) and the uDAC-2 ($129), which is coming out soon.

 

Hope that helps. Feel free to ask any other questions you may have.


Awesome post man thank you so much! not that it made it easier for me though, ah decisions decisions...

post #5 of 7

another 2 cents, according to what HPA has written on the udac-2 so far, its fixed the poor amp section...might want to check out what hes written so far.

 

http://www.head-fi.org/forum/thread/505523/first-impressions-new-nuforce-udac-2-with-24-96-usb-dac-amp-with-line-out-and-s-pdif-out

post #6 of 7
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by KnightK View Post

Actually, I reread your post and it looks like you want an amp, not really a DAC. If your soundcard has RCA outputs, it would be real easy to find a nice amp in that range. If your soundcard doesn't have RCA outputs, don't fret. You can either use the line out/headphone out and send it to an external amp to amplify (not recommended) or use the optical out or USB out on your motherboard to send to an external amp/DAC (bypassing your soundcard).


Yeah totally man, what i really want is an amp but there doesn't seem to be any good ones in my price range and the best alternative seemed to be a combined amp/DAC. I guess i should totally be going for the total bithead but i live in Sweden also so I'll have to import it, thats another part of the equation..

 

or perhaps i should get the Creek OBH11? could import from the UK.. man, i dont know


Edited by Chesus - 8/10/10 at 4:05am
post #7 of 7
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by SoupRKnowva View Post

another 2 cents, according to what HPA has written on the udac-2 so far, its fixed the poor amp section...might want to check out what hes written so far.

 

http://www.head-fi.org/forum/thread/505523/first-impressions-new-nuforce-udac-2-with-24-96-usb-dac-amp-with-line-out-and-s-pdif-out


totally sweet man, just wish i could have one NAO!

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