To Echohifi- I think we agree about components, cables and that sort of thing. They do make a difference. I experiment as time and money permit. And while I am symphathetic to the argument that wire is wire, when I tried a $100 Shunyata power cord to my amp and heard the results, well, theory had to put its tail between its legs and slink away.
Would I spend $500 or $1,000 for a power cord or an interconnect? Not until I win the lottery. But moderately priced cables, cords and a power conditioner have brought real benefits that I enjoy nearly every day.
When it comes to equipment such as DACs, and the fellow with the AudioEngine speakers (hope I got that right) asking if the upgrade makes sense - well, if the speakers can convey the differences between, say, low sampling rate MP3 files and AIFF or hi-rez files (or CDs), then they are good enough to let you hear the effect of a new DAC. The question of value is yours to answer.
My current DAC is a PS Audio DL III with phase 4 mods by Cullen Circuits, and I've enjoyed it greatly. But I suspect the Bifrost will be different and potentially better because (A) it is built according to a different philosophy, and (B) it's simply newer. As someone else pointed out, digital gear is changing and advancing at an astonishing rate.
For me, the owner of a Lyr, the Bifrost is a worthwhile experiment. Jason said mine should ship Monday, so hopefully by Wednesday I'll know for sure.
Thanks for the input, cant wait to you post your findings on this dac. The AKM dac chip is not new, but the cost of this Bitfrost has got me on edge. I started of with a gigaworks dac at $69US and now I have a mini max plus, to be honest I think the gigawork PCM 1798 is the best value for money and I am looking for something that has the same impact hopefully this Bitfrost will do it? The mini max wilth the Sabre 9018 is more detailed and refined in the top end but thats it!