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Emotiva Stealth DC-1 DAC - Page 5

post #61 of 417
Quote:
Originally Posted by campj View Post

Are there any other recent impressions on this thing? It looked like several people were ordering them, but only one person spoke up.

I'm just going to order it blind (deaf?). I won't be able to listen to it for several months, so it'll just be sitting and waiting for me to return home. Hopefully it's good!


oh its very good, very well built, i ended up returning it as i went with the wadia 121, but to be fair with the stealth, the wadia is more than 2x the price

post #62 of 417
Did you try out the headphone amp on it, or just use it as a DAC?

My plan right now is to have DC-1 as my DAC/SS amp, and buy a Project Ember as my tube amp. I'm pretty set in this combo. Headphones will be Senn HD600 and either Grado PS500 or Fostex TH600. So many hundreds!
post #63 of 417
Used as both a DAC, and dac/amp, the wadias head amp is significantly better to my ears, as a DAC, wadia still better, but the stealth is good
post #64 of 417
So should I read that as, "DC-1's amp sucks, but the DAC is pretty good"?
post #65 of 417
Quote:
Originally Posted by jaywillin View Post

Used as both a DAC, and dac/amp, the wadias head amp is significantly better to my ears, as a DAC, wadia still better, but the stealth is good

I heard that the  headphone amp in the Wadias is by Ray Samuels, I also heard that the Schiit Bisfrost gives the Wadias a run on the money.

post #66 of 417
Quote:
Originally Posted by john57 View Post
 

I heard that the  headphone amp in the Wadias is by Ray Samuels, I also heard that the Schiit Bisfrost gives the Wadias a run on the money.


i wasn't going to say the headamp on the dc-1 sucks, but i will say if you want an all in one, the wadia is way better, the bigger difference

being in the amp, though i do feel the wadia, as a dac is still better than the dc-1

now as a dac, the  bifrost,(gen2,uber) is pretty damn close to the wadia, my feeling, the wadia has more "air" but its very subjective

i could see some people liking the bifrost at least as much if not more, i'll even still up in the air as to keeping the wadia , or staying with the bifrost, , especially with the bifrost being upgradable , i "better" bifrost would be damn good ! lol

post #67 of 417
Interesting thoughts Jaywillin, thanks for sharing.

I ended up keeping my DC-1 after agonizing over it for a few days. I decided to hook it to my laptop to use as a DAC and headamp, and I ended up liking it well enough to call that its permanant home.


At the end of the day, I find the DC-1 as a DAC to be highly detailed, and refined sounding. Having said that, I would also say that it is a rather "polite" sounding DAC. It's well mannered sound is very good to my ears. Nothing sticks out as being offensive, nor overly aggressive in the least.

Having said that, I do feel that because of its delicate sound signature, the overall dynamics of the unit seem to take a back seat to resolution and detail. The sound never seems to "jump out" at you and overall dynamic "slam" seems a bit truncated IMO.

Being that I have NEVER had a stand alone headamp before, and the fact that all of my headphones are easy to drive (none require amplifiers), I thought the headamp in the DC-1 was pretty good with one major quibble. It is NOT dead silent. With the volume up loud, and the music paused, you CAN hear some noise. It was especially noticable with earbuds in, so I would say the DC-1 would not be a good mate for IEMs, highly efficient HPs, or those who are sensative to noise.

I found it to be an annoyance, but not a deal breaker. In order to hear noise with non-earbuds I would have to pause the music AND turn the volume up a LOT louder than I can imagine anyone ever listening.

I hope all of that flowery language makes sense!


After reading so much about the Uber Bifrost, I REALLY want to hear one. I think it would be an interesting A/B test.
Edited by painted klown - 12/10/13 at 10:16am
post #68 of 417
Cool, that pretty much settles it. I don't need immaculate sound, just good 'nuff and I think DC-1 will cut it.

If the Uberfrost had a built in amp and came with USB, I'd be all over it, but I can't justify the price when there are all-in-one units that are cheaper than the DAC alone, even if the sound isn't quite as good.

Ha, I just thought about it, and if the price on DC-1 new jumps back up to $699 like people are saying it will after December, I could probably sell it for $499 used and make all my money back if I don't like it! smily_headphones1.gif
Edited by campj - 12/10/13 at 10:10am
post #69 of 417
Quote:
Originally Posted by painted klown View Post


Having said that, I do feel that because of its delicate sound signature, the overall dynamics of the unit seem to take a back seat to resolution and detail. The sound never seems to "jump out" at you and overall dynamic "slam" seems a bit truncated IMO.

 



I'm not too sure what to make of this. Do you mean that there isn't enough bass? What do you mean by "dynamic 'slam'"? Any help would be appreciated.
post #70 of 417
Quote:
Originally Posted by campj View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by painted klown View Post



Having said that, I do feel that because of its delicate sound signature, the overall dynamics of the unit seem to take a back seat to resolution and detail. The sound never seems to "jump out" at you and overall dynamic "slam" seems a bit truncated IMO.


 





I'm not too sure what to make of this. Do you mean that there isn't enough bass? What do you mean by "dynamic 'slam'"? Any help would be appreciated.

 

Everything is there, including bass.

The sound is very articulated to my ears. The bass is easlily the tightest bass I have heard on my full size system (where I placed the DC-1 for the first 1.5-2 days of owning it). No bass bloat, nor "one note" bass sounds. Bass lines (weather electronic or from a bass guitar) actually contain "pitch" and sound like notes vs. a booming bass sound.

This lead me to immediately think that the sound of the DC-1 isn't as "full" as it should be. However, within a few minutes of listening, I quickly realized that the sound was just a lot "tighter" than I was used to. Details were more readily audible, and everything sounded more relaxed.

What I am talking about when I mention dynamic slam is when the sound goes from a quiet whisper to a loud bang. Perhaps it's merely placebo effect, but I felt that these dynamics were a bit less dynamic than I am used to. Like the "loud" wasn't as loud as I thought it should be. This could simply be due to the laid back nature of the DC-1s sound, and all in my head. I do not have an SPL meter to measure/confirm anything. So take what I say with a grain of salt.

Hope that helps to clarify. smily_headphones1.gif
post #71 of 417

Cool, thanks.

post #72 of 417

my feeling on the stealth are not in any way meant to be negative at all, its very good , especially for the price, it does nothing wrong, and if you have easy to drive headphones, its great

post #73 of 417
Quote:
Originally Posted by jaywillin View Post

my feeling on the stealth are not in any way meant to be negative at all, its very good , especially for the price, it does nothing wrong, and if you have easy to drive headphones, its great


 

No worries about offending me with your opinions man. I can handle the truth, and know that more experienced head-fi'ers may have a completely different take on a particular piece of gear. I welcome differing opinions as a way to learn and a "free education". smily_headphones1.gif

In fact, I wouldn't mind hearing your "unfiltered" thoughts, especially in regards to the headphone amp section, as I have NO prior experience with headphone amps, and don't honestly know if it's any good or not. I like it with my easy to drive headphones, but that is only in comparison to an ipod or my computers built in sound card. I doubt it would have been too difficult to surpass either one. LOL!
Edited by painted klown - 12/10/13 at 2:39pm
post #74 of 417
Quote:
Originally Posted by painted klown View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by jaywillin View Post
 

my feeling on the stealth are not in any way meant to be negative at all, its very good , especially for the price, it does nothing wrong, and if you have easy to drive headphones, its great

 

No worries about offending me with your opinions man. I can handle the truth, and know that more experienced head-fi'ers may have a completely different take on a particular piece of gear. I welcome differing opinions as a way to learn and a "free education". smily_headphones1.gif

In fact, I wouldn't mind hearing your "unfiltered" thoughts, especially in regards to the headphone amp section, as I have NO prior experience with headphone amps, and don't honestly know if it's any good or not. I like it with my easy to drive headphones, but that is only in comparison to an ipod or my computers built in sound card. I doubt it would have been too difficult to surpass either one. LOL!


this whole hobby is very subjective, so we all have different taste, i wasn't thinking you were taking exception to what i was saying, i was just meaning, for me, compared to the wadia, i preferred the wadia, cpmpared to the wadia's headphone out, with my lcd's, the sound was flat, it wasn't dynamic, no slam ! lol, i actually went to emotiva, i live a little over an hour away from there, and the guy i bought my headphones from , lives near there.

one of the guys there said i'd need an external amp for the lcd's, their amp just doesn't have the current that the lcd's like.

now when i used a headphone amp, and used the wadia, the bifrost, and the dc-1 just as dacs, they were all very close, they are all so good, i think it just comes down to which "sound" i preferred , and someone else might prefer another, and both of us are right ! lol

post #75 of 417
Quote:
Originally Posted by painted klown View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by campj View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by painted klown View Post

Having said that, I do feel that because of its delicate sound signature, the overall dynamics of the unit seem to take a back seat to resolution and detail. The sound never seems to "jump out" at you and overall dynamic "slam" seems a bit truncated IMO.I'm not too sure what to make of this. Do you mean that there isn't enough bass? What do you mean by "dynamic 'slam'"? Any help would be appreciated.

What I am talking about when I mention dynamic slam is when the sound goes from a quiet whisper to a loud bang. Perhaps it's merely placebo effect, but I felt that these dynamics were a bit less dynamic than I am used to. Like the "loud" wasn't as loud as I thought it should be. This could simply be due to the laid back nature of the DC-1s sound, and all in my head. I do not have an SPL meter to measure/confirm anything. So take what I say with a grain of salt.

Hope that helps to clarify. smily_headphones1.gif

I am still sitting on the fence here.

 

The lack of dynamic "slam" concerns me. I find even with recorded classical music the dynamics are a bit compressed as compared with the same pieces performed live. I had two balanced DAC's failed on me this year due to separate hardware issues.  Some DAC's analog outputs are a bit weak sounding on the transit peaks like piano music for example.  Until I got the Onkyo 3070 CD player at $109 I now realized the limitation of my Emotiva XDA-1analog outputs as compared to the 3070.  I need to improve the sound of my DAW Giga station and for all the Blu-ray and streaming from My PC which the Onkyo can not do. Currently deciding between the Emotiva or Schiit.

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