Concero worth it as a SPDIF converter only in comparison with the Audiophileo 2 without PP? I guess you can slap an iusb on either.
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I think there have been comparisons out there. I think digitalaudioreview may have, I Know he is very fond of the Concero.
I am pretty sure the iusb power is not worth it on the Concero, the implementation of how resonessence regulates the power is pretty amazing. I tried using the Vaunix Usb Hub with the concero, and found it yielded no improvements.
I personally don't think the Concero needs any help cleaning up the usb power. Just use a decent quality cable and you are set. Which I deem as a huge plus in the budget factor of the original Concero.
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I sent it back to the Australian Distributor, Terry @ c-ear. Such a great guy to deal with. Sending the replacement while the bricked one is in the mail back to him. Amazing service :)
I hope that brick incident is just an isolated anomaly. It would really suck if that happened to me... can't imagine my life without my Concero. (Software update went just fine for me, both times)
Can't really help you because I do not have that item to compare to.
What I can say for sure though is that the Concero is an overachiever. It usually competes and often wins IMO against some dacs 2 to 3 times its asking price. So maybe the vdac is an overachiever too, but I am thinking it may not reach as high as the Concero does.
Edited by kcee - 7/19/13 at 7:24pm
Concero came today. Little sad because there's a chunk in the rear aluminum that is dented, will reach out to Concero to see if I can swap.
The first few minutes in I am really liking the blackness of the background/noise floor. The lower voltage output is definitely noticeable but as long as you have room on your volume knob of the amp it's a non-issue.
You can hook up as a DAC only then use SPDIF out to hook to another DAC and play out of both at the same time which is useful for a/b (volume differences will then be quite evident). Compared to a Stello da100 Signature with upsampling off, the bass sounds like it has slightly less texture with the Concero but it still plays very cleanly.
It looks like I'm going to have to send mine back over the dent in the back - good news is Mark at Resonessence is on-point with e-mail responses. This thing really is as good as what other folks have stated in this thread, and having heard some decent DACs in my time as well as some absolute crap, the Concero does not disappoint. I admit I don't know how it's possible without more "guts" to the box but it's doing things right despite not being a giant killer. Reminds me of what Apogee was able to pull off with the Duet and Mini-DAC or Headamp with the Pico DAC. I suppose this is where you can say it's all about proper implementation.
OTOH for some casual name dropping of DACs in similar price range that I've heard: The Concero and the Parasound ZDac to my ears are quite different; the Concero is more neutral and spacious while the ZDac will push more bass and speed. The Asus Essence One Muses may be more detailed but a bit too forward sounding. The PS Audio NuWave is way too clinical and dry and not even a contender.
To be fair, the Lynx Hilo absolutely slaughters the Concero the second I swapped sources over. I really like my Hilo. Will be interested to hear moar about the HD, HP, and Herus from you guys!
Edited by Mr.Sneis - 7/22/13 at 2:59pm
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At more than 4x the price it had better!
Mark is the best, I swear I have emailed him a hundred times with questions and inquiries he always responds quick. It's a really good company to support.
Stop bothering him!
You're delaying new products!
I am not going to get into a whole lot of details, I find it difficult to write about perceived differences between 2 audio products. I tip my hat to anyone who can do it well.
I also have alot of respect for Resonessence and what they are doing with the Concero line and all of their products. I can't say one bad thing about their products or service. Both exceptional.
Some things to keep in mind my budget is a huge factor, I am trying to setup the best sounding (to me) budget minded desktop setup. A few years ago I got silly and comfortable and had a huge desktop setup that was reaching past 10k when I was let go from a job that I had planned at being at for a long time. It was almost getting to the point were the gear itself was more important then the actual music itself.
Anyways, onto my listening habits and my decision and impressions, but I felt the need to mention that cost is a huge factor for me now.
I almost always listen to 320kbs MP3 files, I don't have much in the way of hi-res audio files. Some day, some day I know.
I tend to flip back and forth between audio players, I listen on a macbook pro as well as a desktop windows pc setup.
When looking for a budget friendly dac, I had a few requirements. It had to be small, it couldn't be ugly and it had to perform to a level at least justifying the price if not exceeding it. It also had to handle the material I tend to use most, and handle it well. Not to get too deep into the initial rundown I did but I found about 4 or 5 Dacs under about a grand that I could spend a little time with and actually listen to. To make a potentially long story short the Original Concero ended up winning out. It looked great, I loved the lower output it made everything sound effortless. It was not forcing the music down my ears. The way they clean up the usb signal is amazing, I tried a vaunix usb hub and it did nothing beneficial. I also loved the implementation of the filters used with 44 and 48, and how it would 4x upsample the material. It pretty easily beat the Aneido D2 with my 320 mp3's. Maybe it wouldn't using higher res material who knows that's for another review.
I ended up selling the Original concero when I heard about the new models. My friend still had an original Concero and I ended up buying a new Concero HD. With the thought in mind of comparing the two of them in my room. If the HD was better I would keep it, if not I would send it back and get the original Concero which I already loved. It honestly did not take long for me to realize that the Original Concero is something special. Back to back using my files and listening with my speakers and my headphones I felt like the original Concero was more of a value than the HD was. That is the case for me, not necessarily for anyone else. I am sure if someone was interested in DSD capabilities and has a ton of hi-res flac and wav files the newer HD model might put the Original Concero to shame, who knows.
I ended up sending back the HD in favor of the Original Concero. What I am mainly wanting to say with this is the Original Concero is a tremendous value, and in my findings meets and on occasion surpasses DAC's twice its price. I am happy that I am back to enjoying the music more than the gear and the Concero was a big part in getting me back there. Props to Mark and the Resonessence team for keeping the little guy's like me in mind when thinking of new gear and also making such fine products at a realistic price we can afford.
Edited by kcee - 7/24/13 at 4:17pm