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Luxman DA-200 or W4S Dac-2 - Need help finding the right DAC - Page 3

post #31 of 49

Very attractive casework. Personally though, I don't care for tubes in my DAC. I think a source should be as neutral as possible, and no tube DAC I've tried (Havana, Isabellina, etc.) has cut it for my tastes.

post #32 of 49
Thread Starter 

Sounds logical to me, yes.

I just came across it since I use their Power Strip Active in my speaker setup and was wondering what else they had.

I was thinking of buying a second power strip for my headphone setup. That's about as far as I go for power gear: a good strip and some half decent power cables.

post #33 of 49
Thread Starter 

Since I used to have the Perfectwave Dac ...

Any opinions on the pricey PWD in comparison to the W4S or Lavry?

 

post #34 of 49
Thread Starter 

I must say I find the headphone output of the DA-200 to be a good match with the K701, as crazy as it seems, even to me. I was going to sell the K701 but now I changed my mind. It isn't the first time I want to sell it though, I have some kind of love/hate relationship with that thing.

 

As far as other Dac's go I seem to get the impression from reading the PWD is the best thing out there. I'm interested only to feed it with USB though. Any opinions?

post #35 of 49

PWD the best thing out there? I don't know if I'd go that far.

 

Right now I've got the Onkyo DAC-1000 on the way. I've put the Lavry DA11 order on hold, but I'm still considering it, as I'd like to have two DACs (one for home, one for work).

 

I'm very interested in the Calyx DAC 24/192 and have been talking to some people at Calyx about it. I think it'll come down to either the Calyx or the Lavry for me, and right now the Calyx has the edge. Impressions are indicating it's comparable to the Weiss DAC 202, but with a less involving and more analytic sound. Which sounds good to me.

post #36 of 49
Thread Starter 

Just got that impression from reading around a bit. I used to have a PWD. The sound of the Luxman is pretty good, pretty much neutral I'd say, no warmth but not overly analytical (metallic sound from my point of view) as well.

If I'd have to compare from memory I'd say the PWD was a bit more natural, organic, more alive or "real" sounding if that makes sense to anyone. From memory though, so take it with a grain of salt.

 

I don't need one for work as I am used to listen to the radio with speaers there all day, gives me a chance to discover some new music.

I have a netowork player/Dac in my speaker setup at home, not that special but it has Airplay for streaming from my Mac. I'm fine with that one.

 

As you know I have the DA-200 in my headphone setup now but would love a second Dac so I can connect 1 or maybe 2 more amps and have the chance to do a bit of Dac comparison. If there is one I like less I can then sell it off and replace it by another one. A bit of fun in the hobby. :)

I would however like a 24/192 on USB Dac this time as the Luxman is 24/96. Would like to hear the difference myself.

I checked out the Calyx but the sound signature you describe worries me a little. I'd love to hear your impresssions on the Onkyo once you get it.

post #37 of 49
Thread Starter 

The W4S Dac2 seems to draw my attention more and more I must say. I can even get a 7 day free trial at home. the price is fairly reasonable as well.

I'll do some more reading on HF about that one tonight.

 

Edit: Their upcoming Music Server might be interesting as well.


Edited by AppleheadMay - 12/21/11 at 3:52am
post #38 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleheadMay View Post

...

If I'd have to compare from memory I'd say the PWD was a bit more natural, organic, more alive or "real" sounding if that makes sense to anyone. From memory though, so take it with a grain of salt.

...

I would however like a 24/192 on USB Dac this time as the Luxman is 24/96. Would like to hear the difference myself.

...

 

AppleheadMay,

If you want 24/192 USB, you can have that with your Luxman DA-200 if you get something like the Audiophilleo 2, JKMK2, or Stello U3, etc, etc. and connect it to your DAC's S/PDIF connection.  Another benefit of using a USB to S/PDIF converter is that it may improve not only hi rez files but regular 44.1 files as well because of the jitter reduction.  I have 2 PWDs, W4S DAC2 and a highly modified Havana DAC.  For playback of computer audio through my PWD, I use a Halide Bridge (24/96) and I like it a lot even though it is not state of the art for USB converters.  The new MKII version of the PWD will be 24/192 asynchronous USB but it will retail for $1000 more than the current PWD.  For current owners of the PWD, upgrades to the MKII version are available before Dec 31st for $800.  I also have the PS Audio PWD Bridge but I don't use it because I like the Halide Bridge sound quality better.  I just ordered the Audiophilleo 2 USB converter and I think it will be even better than the Halide.  Even though the W4S DAC2 has a very good asynchronous USB input, I've read a few reports of users getting much better sound using the Audiophilleo 2 feeding S/PDIF connection.  Considering the ultra low jitter specs of the A2, I wouldn't be surprised if what they are saying is true.   So I'm going to try the Audiophilleo 2 on my 3 DACs to see what improvements it will make.

 

 


Edited by SteveM324 - 12/21/11 at 9:27am
post #39 of 49
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the info Steve. I'll check out the convertors you mentioned.

 


Edited by AppleheadMay - 12/21/11 at 8:39am
post #40 of 49
Thread Starter 

Steve, take a look at this.

I wonder if their USB converter connected to their DAC via I2S-Ethernet cable could be a solution to stream audio from the computer to the living room speaker setup. All depends on how long the cable can be for I2S of course.

post #41 of 49


Quote:

Originally Posted by AppleheadMay View Post

Steve, take a look at this.

I wonder if their USB converter connected to their DAC via I2S-Ethernet cable could be a solution to stream audio from the computer to the living room speaker setup. All depends on how long the cable can be for I2S of course.



I exchanged e-mails with Steve Nugent of Empircal Audio just yesterday concerning his new Off Ramp 5 that will be coming out around February.  You could send him an e-mail.  He usually responds quickly.  His USB converters are supposed to be among the best available.

 

post #42 of 49
Thread Starter 

Will send him a mail as well, thanks.

post #43 of 49

I'm in a similar predicament @AppleheadMay - I'm probably leaning towards the Lavry, if only because I'm interested in the digital crossfeed implementation, but I'm going to hold out to see what Schiit have in store with their mid-tier and statement DACs in the new year.

post #44 of 49
Thread Starter 

I've heard only good things about the Lavry DAC's SQ in my search here I must say, so I bet it would be a good choice.

I am now looking for a 24/192 DAC though, as I already have the 24/96 Luxman which I am going to keep.

I am thinking about the W4S DAC2 or the Fostex HP-A8 Amp-DAC.

The Fostex will be released in Japan on 31 January, so I may have to wait a few months.

post #45 of 49
Thread Starter 

I just came across the Wadia 121, seems like a good contender as well.

I see it has been announced for about two years but now their website says "almost there".

Or has it been like that for a while as well?

Since I'm waiting for the W4S Music Server details to help decide on whether or not to buy the DAC2, I might as well hold on for this one as well.

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