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Do most people who invest in high end head-fi listen to just CD's or vinyl?

post #1 of 79
Thread Starter 

I love the sound of great music.

As a matter of fact I cant enjoy music unless it has at least decent quality.

 

I am just wondering if I am overbuying with LCD'3s and LF amps if my source music is LOSSLESS files downloaded with APPLES default itunes encoder?

 

The reason I ask is because I have not received my LF yet. Im told its going to take a few weeks.

 

I did get my LCD'3 a few days ago.

It sounds much better then what I had before, but not 2K good yet.

 

I did not expect it to sound sound 2k good yet because im using a cheap $200 amp with MACBOOK PRO sound cord with no dedicated DAC.

 

But im beginning to wonder if I am overbuying (5K+ so far $3200 amp $2000 headphones) if im not using CD's and vinyl.

 

I dont mind spending HIGH-END money for HIGH-END return if thats what I get.

 

But im not able/willing to inventory 800+ CD's to listen to music directly from CD's. I dont even own a record player.

 

I have gone thru a lot of trouble burning disk lossless onto a 5TB external hard drive and then getting rid of the CD's.

 

I dont own the CD's anymore.

 

I guess what im asking is would I be better off if I lower my equipment quality if I am not willing to listen to CD's and vinyl?

 

Would an LCD2 with LYR and Bitfrost suite me better?


These are questions I should have asked before buying the LF and LCD3.

 

 


Edited by choptalk - 3/3/12 at 5:20am
post #2 of 79

You need a dedicated DAC. Garbage in garbage out.

post #3 of 79
Thread Starter 

thats another question I have that you just pointed out.

the only reason I have not bought a dedicated DAC yet is because I dont know if I need a quality source to feed the DAC

 

Am I justified buying a 1K+ DAC if a MACBOOK pro is feeding it?

 

Is my beginning source good enough?

post #4 of 79

Does your Macbook have an optical out? That should work fine.

post #5 of 79

as long as the computer is feeding the DAC a bit-perfect signal and your music is lossless, you're fine.

 

 

post #6 of 79

I mainly use CDs because I don't want to fiddle around with menus when I want to just listen to music :)

post #7 of 79

those who suggest that a particular transport or digital output device is better than another are full of dren.  the macbook will be a fine digital source for a DAC
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by choptalk View Post

thats another question I have that you just pointed out.

the only reason I have not bought a dedicated DAC yet is because I dont know if I need a quality source to feed the DAC

 

Am I justified buying a 1K+ DAC if a MACBOOK pro is feeding it?

 

Is my beginning source good enough?



 

post #8 of 79
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by graben View Post

Does your Macbook have an optical out? That should work fine.



yes

post #9 of 79
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dubstep Girl View Post

as long as the computer is feeding the DAC a bit-perfect signal and your music is lossless, you're fine.

 

 



dumb question.

 

How do I know if my files are bit perfect?

Thanks

post #10 of 79
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by El_Doug View Post

those who suggest that a particular transport or digital output device is better than another are full of dren.  the macbook will be a fine digital source for a DAC
 



 



finally an answer that does not cost me 4 figures.

Thanks.

Now I can shop for my DAC.

I do have a cheep one, but wanted to make sure before getting  good one.

post #11 of 79

 

USB DAC and Kernel Streaming.

 

 

Optical isn't ideal, since the optical sender<->receiver is usually not high-end audio quality.  I used to think coax sounded better, it's not the coax cable versus optical cable, it's how the data is decoded, however it may depend on specific instances, I'm just assuming the macbook optical-out isn't very good due to size constraints et cetera...

 

You definitely need a DAC, with ASIO or KS via USB audio, in the case of the macbook, I think.

 

I know you're looking for a $1000 DAC, but here is an example - http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/Musiland-Monitor-03-US-USB-sound-card-ASIO-32bit-384KHz-/120766408213

 

thx

post #12 of 79
Quote:
Originally Posted by choptalk View Post

Am I justified buying a 1K+ DAC if a MACBOOK pro is feeding it?

 

Is my beginning source good enough?


There's nothing wrong with a MacBook as a source. If you go to shows like THE or RMAF, you'll find equipment there costing tens or even hundreds of thousands being driven by MacBooks or Mac Minis. That said, optical out into a DAC isn't "good enough". Optical is the worst digital transmission format there is. Jitter is extremely high, and in most cases it can't handle anything over 24/96.

 

Your best bet is an Asynchronous mode USB DAC, or if you prefer, a USB > S/Pdif converter and then into your DAC of choice. One of the premier candidates right now is the Calyx DAC. Further up the price ladder is the April Music Eximus DAC. You should also try Pure Music, Amarra, etc.

post #13 of 79

 

There's also the Fostex HP-A8 in case you're interested in DSD / SACD.

 

With the dawn of the A8, you no longer need a $2000 SACD player.

 

post #14 of 79

For what it's worth, I played Apple Lossless through a Macbook Air and Ayre QB-9 DAC. The combination was very pleasing. Like you, I did not want the bulk of CD's or records.

 

Also, to my ears, the choice of USB cable made a difference, but that is a matter of personal preference.

post #15 of 79
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by kiteki View Post

 

USB DAC and Kernel Streaming.

 

 

Optical isn't ideal, since the optical sender<->receiver is usually not high-end audio quality.  I used to think coax sounded better, it's not the coax cable versus optical cable, it's how the data is decoded, however it may depend on specific instances, I'm just assuming the macbook optical-out isn't very good due to size constraints et cetera...

 

You definitely need a DAC, with ASIO or KS via USB audio, in the case of the macbook, I think.

 

I know you're looking for a $1000 DAC, but here is an example - http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/Musiland-Monitor-03-US-USB-sound-card-ASIO-32bit-384KHz-/120766408213

 

thx



So you are saying I need that EBAY item an addition to a DAC?

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