Originally Posted by Hydrocharged
Alright brothers and sisters, let's say that I hypothetically sold my PS3 for around $250 and wanted to spend every bit of that money on a desktop amp and DAC, what are all of my options that are worth considering? I know of the M&M stack and the O2/ODAC, but are those the only ones I should debate among? And what are the strengths of each for the HE-400, as well as how would they scale when I inevitably (within the next 3 years) purchase the LCD-2? Thank you! If you're really helpful, I may PayPal you $1 :) (but only the most helpful person)
I'll put a vote in for the ODAC ($285). Worth every penny. Probably would use 1X gain + 6.5X gain (better for certain sources / listening conditions). Plenty of power for the HE-400s, and would be plenty for the LCD-2s. Its a pretty proven piece of hardware at this point. Separate components will cost more (~$320), but offer some flexibility. Its pricey and less slick than many other options, but there is little worth buying below it, and little worth buying above it. Bang for the buck is amazing.
The Magni and Modi are the cool "new" stack, but the fixed 5X gain, metal d*** switch in the back and possible channel imbalance issues are deal breakers for me. But it does have a great warranty, and it is pretty. The price is also right. With your leftover cash, you could pick up several used CDs. No one has come out and said it is clearly worse, or clearly better than the O2, but I am waiting for some hard data to back up some of the subjective opinions. Mostly on the channel balance, S/N and so on.