- 285 Posts. Joined 3/2009
- Location: Montreal, QC, Canada
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- brandCambridge Audiotagged by System, 6/13/12
- productCambridge Audio Azur DacMagic Plustagged by System, 6/13/12
- categoryDACstagged by System, 6/13/12
- categoryDedicated Source Componentstagged by System, 6/13/12
- productSchiit Audio Bifrost DACtagged by System, 6/13/12
- productYulong D100tagged by System, 6/13/12
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DACMagic Plus Impressions - Page 21
Gear mentioned in this thread:
Just got my DacMagic Plus yesterday and use it with Bootlehead S.E.X. and definitely prefer it over Bifrost Uber because of better details retrieval. Don't want to derail thread with off topic but the cables you use to connect your gear will make difference
Edited by olegausany - 11/7/13 at 5:25pm
Is the dac magic 100 worth getting for about 200 bucks or should I save up more to get this dac magic plus?
I've got the aune t1 atm, are the dac magic (both versions) much better than the aune t1? Is it worth the upgrade?
Thanks in advance
I can support the original review. I had a DM+ on loan when my m-dac was being fixed awhile back (had a dry joint caused one channel to fail). I compared DM+ to a nuforce hdp that normally runs my kitchen speakers and the nuforce sounded better. I did like the DM+ build and features though. It was solid and no annoying personality traits - if it were a car it would be a Toyota Camry.
I would shell out the extra $$$ for the plus. the added features plus the better sound quality are worth it. I bought one about 2 years ago and loved it so much with my main system I bought a second one for my mini system. I can't even imagine listening to music in my home without it. It brings everything to life.
It's the best 'dollar for dollar' dac money can buy, IMO.
Ken Rockwell put up a very thorough review : http://kenrockwell.com/audio/cambridge/dacmagic-plus.htm
"It has the best performance I've ever measured over USB of any DAC at any price. It's completely immune to even the slightest jitter that other excellent DACs can't remove from USB, as well as often the best performances I've measured for distortion. I installed no software, and magically it fed itself with 96 ksps audio via USB from iTunes on my Mac"
Be warned though - it is true clean representation of the music - and very unforgiving for poor recordings or audio!
A friend made me a great deal on a pair of Sennheiser HD-800's and ruined my life. Ok, no, not really, but I'm having difficulty finding something I want to plug em into and I've stuck the jack into every socket I find. I've never done that with any headphones I've had before, but these things are turning me into an obsessive. They are very unforgiving. And because I'm a cheap bastard I'm not going easy into the price bracket that people say these cans demand. So I got the DacMagic Plus from my local used and new audiophile store. I got it from the new side because they don't do headphone gear on the used side. I'll be returning it while I can still get all my money back.
As a DAC, it's not bad at all. For the price, as a DAC, it's not bad at all. If I didn't already have an Oppo BDP-105 blu-ray player that I use for a DAC, I would keep this. I see why the original DacMagic has the fanbase it does. Unfortunately the headphone amp they built into this thing is not up to the same standard. If I had to use one word to describe it, it would be thin. A second word might be shrill, but that would make it sound worse than it is. It isn't too fatiguing, but I did take a few breaks over the course of my 8 hour shift. I don't mind that the volume control doesn't have numbers to show what level it's at, but not having control of bass, treble, and gain is puzzling. Other than the headphone output, this is the best product I've tried from CA. I'd recommend this unit as a standalone DAC, but not as a headphone amp. As a DAC it is better than the output on common disc players and receivers. I have A/B tested it versus 3 receivers (Harmon / Kardon, Onkyo, and Yamaha) and my Integra home theater processor and all of them sounded better. It's a better DAC than the Onkyo and Yamaha, hands down. The HK is a little older so it's DAC won't do 24/192, but for the other tracks I like it better. Newer isn't always better with DACs, but they can be more compatible. All the receivers I tested came from thrift stores for less than $50. The Integra came from ebay and cost quite a bit more, so it's appropriate that it's the best thing I've plugged the HD-800's into yet (with the Oppo as the DAC feeding in through the balanced inputs. I like the Integra's headphone output better than the headphone output on the Oppo even, but I haven't tested that enough to eliminate volume differences and tone control from the equation). Yada, yada, I digress... The point I'm trying to make here is that a dedicate headphone amp should sound better than just about ANY receiver and, sadly, the headphone output on the DacMagic Plus beat NONE of them which is surprising and disappointing. I hope CA takes note and fixes it in the next revision. Could be a killer product at this price point. Great DAC, crummy headphone amp. Also, they really should add an analog input. A phono input would be great too, but seriously, I'm surprised it doesn't have analog in.
Could anyone tell me if Dacmagic Plus should remember volume level in preamp mode because mine does not. Also in the fixed output mode the volume level is too high rather, zooms across my Phonitor gauges red zones all the time.
- DACMagic Plus Impressions
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