Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Dedicated Source Components › DAC Recommendation Needed, < $300 budget, 24/96 USB, Wide Soundstage, To be paired with Tube amps
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

DAC Recommendation Needed, < $300 budget, 24/96 USB, Wide Soundstage, To be paired with Tube amps

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 

As above. I realized it is extremely hard a decent Dac that does 24/96 under $300. 

I also prefer something that uses its own power sources and not usb powered DACs (such as the HRT series, Audioengine D1, etc).

 

Any recommendations?

post #2 of 9

The Emotiva XDA-1 is brilliant value at 249. It even supports up to 24/192 from every input apart from usb which is 16/44. Detailed with an open soundstage and splendid for less than 500 let alone 249. Just sold mine though as upgrading the DAC for my second/headphone system. However, I'll be spending a lot more in the form of a NAD M51 which runs about 2000.

post #3 of 9
Thread Starter 

sadly, i've checked with Emotiva and it is unavailable through retail in my country, and shipping direct from Emotiva adds another usd 60-70 to the cost :( Additionally, i read some issues regarding the gain as being too high. Is this still an issue?

post #4 of 9

Is the Emotiva xda 1 still available for purchase anywhere?

post #5 of 9
post #6 of 9

Sadly they don't ship outside the US it seems :/

post #7 of 9

They do ship outside the USA but the added freight cost and any import duties may may make give you a total cost that is not advantageous.

 

 

post #8 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by wlvca View Post

They do ship outside the USA but the added freight cost and any import duties may may make give you a total cost that is not advantageous.

 

 



For me anyways, It's looking like a £250-300 dac, which sadly is quite a bit more than $250

post #9 of 9

Probably the best one you will find for that money is the Jolida FX DAC.  It uses two 12ax7 tubes with a capacitor output which are a common value and thus easy to exchange if you want a different sound.  Sweet sounding little dac IMHO, I believe that it does do 24bit but I'd have to check though honestly anything that does 24bit in this price range is going to be more of a gimmic than anything.  Just go for a really nice 16bit and you'll be happy, there is barely a difference between the two.  For $90,000 Audio Note makes their DAC 5 Signature and that is only 18bit...once you hear it though, everything else just sounds broken.  If you want an older DAC that sounds great go for a Theta cobalt (cheaper) or Theta DS Pro Basic.  The Theta Basic will blow the doors off most modern DACs anyway, a friend of mine had one and I bought one to replace my Audio GD Ref 7 a while back.  Very smooth rich sound with gobs of detail, the best part is the 3D space it creates.  I would shy away from USB DACs at this price range.  It will be hard to find one that is properly implemented and even those that are I would argue still sound worse than even an optical connection.  If you must just get a converter from Audio gd and go USB out from your comp to coaxial into your DAC.

 

EDIT - the cambridge audio dac magic is also a great dac for the money, though a tad more expensive than your price range.  All of the dacs i mentioned will fit your tubes very well.  Seems like you have a little dot amp and these will add a bit more lushness to the experience.  


Edited by colinharding - 4/17/12 at 1:26pm
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Dedicated Source Components
Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Dedicated Source Components › DAC Recommendation Needed, < $300 budget, 24/96 USB, Wide Soundstage, To be paired with Tube amps