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Better Values than the DacMagic Plus?

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

Can anyone recommend better alternatives to the DacMagic Plus to drive headphones and monitors and be connected to a mac computer?  Something that might be a better value?  I'm willing to spend in the ball park of $500 - $600.

 

Options I've identified so far are:

 

 

  • Grant Fidelity TubeDAC-11
  • Nuforce Icon HDP
  • Yulong D100 MKII
  • Matrix Mini i 24 192
  • Apogee Duet
  • Audiolab M-DAC (if I decide to splurge)

 

Thanks.

post #2 of 7
The Apogee Duet 2 is awesome. I use it daily.
post #3 of 7

Audio-GD NFB 17.2 $439 + $60 shipping = ~$500

can get added to the list.
 

If you are considering a small increase to $700, the Yulong D18 is incredibly tough to beat for pure sound quality. It may very well be the best DAC under $1k (and over a bit too!) actually. Bottom line - If you want "value" whether it be flexibility or pure sound quality, ChiFi is the way to go.


Edited by brunk - 7/5/12 at 3:38pm
post #4 of 7

If it has to drive headphones, wouldn't the NFB 10.1 be a better idea? smile.gif

post #5 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by Currawong View Post

If it has to drive headphones, wouldn't the NFB 10.1 be a better idea? smile.gif


Good point :) I glanced over the "headphone" part in the post and was focused on just the title in general. That said, if I was the OP, I would look at the owner threads of the items on his list and see which ones have the most glowing feedback and least amount of issues. If I was to guess, the Yulong D100 MKII would be the champion in this $500-600 DAC/Amp category.

post #6 of 7

The Mini-i is a great unit but the USB input is best avoided.

post #7 of 7

Jolida FX-Tube DAC, around 400 USD.  Uses two 12ax7 tubes with a capacitor output.  Very easy to change those caps if you really want to modify the sound as well, not to mention the tubes.  Has USB, Optical, COAX.

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