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VA / MD / DC meet - Saturday, May 25, 2013 - Page 7  

post #91 of 211
Quote:
Originally Posted by markm1 View Post

Hi all,

I'm a newbie-working with a Grado 225i and forthcoming Asgard 2. I'm looking forward to checking out DAC options in addition to other cans like HE. I need a good place to start the journey.

 

In addition to the Bifrost, the HTR MicroStreamer and Music Streamer's look interesting to me. If any of you are bringing the HTR stuff, I'd love to check them out as well as Schiit DACS

 

I'm interested in:

 

1. Bypassing my PC's soundcard to improve listening to digital music on my PC (PC-DAC & amp-HP's)

2.Using a DAC between between PC and receiver (PC-DAC-stereo receiver)

3. Using a DAC between a NAS AND headphones (NAS-DAC-HP)

4. Potentially using a DAC between a Sonos connect and stereo (router-outboard DAC-SONOS connect-home audio receiver)

 

I'll be looking to pick some brains on good place to start....no, I'm not expecting one DAC to do all of the above!

 

I do know that I want to improve the sound listening to my current Onkyo streaming receiver and PC happy_face1.gif

I'm also fairly new and looking to get my first DAC (I've been using an internal sound card).  I'm 90% sure I'll be getting an ODAC, but I've also been considering the Schiit Modi.  I think any USB DAC should work in your setup, though I'm not sure about the NAS with a USB device.  It needs to be a installed - there would have to be a PC in between managing it.  Depends on the capability of the NAS I suppose.  For the Sonos, I guess you'd need a DAC with analog inputs or optical in (depending on what connections yours has), so entry level options with optical in would be the Audioengine D1 or Audinst HUD-MX1/MX2.  The only entry level DACs with RCA input I can think of at the moment are the Maverick D1 and Aune T1, but they are tube-based.  Basically, there are alot of options out there, so the meet will be very beneficial!

post #92 of 211
Quote:
Originally Posted by modulor View Post

I'm also fairly new and looking to get my first DAC (I've been using an internal sound card).  I'm 90% sure I'll be getting an ODAC, but I've also been considering the Schiit Modi.  I think any USB DAC should work in your setup, though I'm not sure about the NAS with a USB device.  It needs to be a installed - there would have to be a PC in between managing it.  Depends on the capability of the NAS I suppose.  For the Sonos, I guess you'd need a DAC with analog inputs or optical in (depending on what connections yours has), so entry level options with optical in would be the Audioengine D1 or Audinst HUD-MX1/MX2.  The only entry level DACs with RCA input I can think of at the moment are the Maverick D1 and Aune T1, but they are tube-based.  Basically, there are alot of options out there, so the meet will be very beneficial!

I'm excited to be able to attend. I'm really just putting the pieces in place. Currently, I just have the HPs and stereo w/ Asg on backorder. And, I've just ordered a NAS. I know it has a USB.

 

Re: RAC input-How about he Bifrost?

 

Talking to the HRT folks, I know their streamer products are  market as basically external sound cards that connect PC's, do their DAC conversion and and send audio to an amplifier, speaker, receiver, HP, etc. But, they are USB only which would just work  for the NAS  and PC, but not Sonos.

 

 But, if I go w/ Sonos, you're right-I would need analog or optical.  I was thinking Bifrostmight do that...I would use the Biforst w/ USB and SPDIF option-it will just cost me a little more out of pocket. But, shy of buying an expensive DAC might be worth it.

 

I think I'm probably going to need two devices to accomplish all of that.

 

It will be fun to see all the gear.

post #93 of 211
Quote:
Originally Posted by markm1 View Post

I'm excited to be able to attend. I'm really just putting the pieces in place. Currently, I just have the HPs and stereo w/ Asg on backorder. And, I've just ordered a NAS. I know it has a USB.

 

Re: RAC input-How about he Bifrost?

 

Talking to the HRT folks, I know their streamer products are  market as basically external sound cards that connect PC's, do their DAC conversion and and send audio to an amplifier, speaker, receiver, HP, etc. But, they are USB only which would just work  for the NAS  and PC, but not Sonos.

 

 But, if I go w/ Sonos, you're right-I would need analog or optical.  I was thinking Bifrostmight do that...I would use the Biforst w/ USB and SPDIF option-it will just cost me a little more out of pocket. But, shy of buying an expensive DAC might be worth it.

 

I think I'm probably going to need two devices to accomplish all of that.

 

It will be fun to see all the gear.

The Bifrost would definitely be an excellent option from what I've read - I'd ultimately like to get one.  Thought I'd try the ODAC first as it's lighter on the wallet redface.gif

post #94 of 211

To those wanting to get a DAC, as long as I can make it to the meet, I will be selling my Stoner Acoustics UD100. Of course, you can try it out there before you buy it ;) it'll be $40. I used it for 10 minutes.

post #95 of 211
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cante Ista View Post

Nice! A little competition never hurt anyone

what competition ?

post #96 of 211
Quote:
Originally Posted by GrindingThud View Post

How is the headphone jack wired to your SCA and do you ever use it? How does it sound?

so i originally did it how the dynaco manual said to which was to wire a 100ohm 2w resistor in series from the 16ohm tap to a headphone jack with a switch to switch between speakers and the headphones, but then i decided to wire it a bit diffrently with some 16 ohm resistors in parallel and in series some drop resistors. tad bit of hum as with most high power amplifiers that wernt originally designed for high sensitivity devices but its very very quite hum and completly inaudible when any song at any volume is playing. as for how it sounds it sounds great all tube amps sound great i love the punchyness and how thick and life like it sounds. I have much better amps so I dont tend to use this one as much but I still pull it out from time to time, these sound good with inefficent headphones cause of how much raw power it can dump but with high sensitvity headphones like grado ect you may find a bit more hum it depends.


Edited by Spriggs - 3/29/13 at 5:20pm
post #97 of 211
Quote:
Originally Posted by markm1 View Post

I'm excited to be able to attend. I'm really just putting the pieces in place. Currently, I just have the HPs and stereo w/ Asg on backorder. And, I've just ordered a NAS. I know it has a USB.

 

Re: RAC input-How about he Bifrost?

 

Talking to the HRT folks, I know their streamer products are  market as basically external sound cards that connect PC's, do their DAC conversion and and send audio to an amplifier, speaker, receiver, HP, etc. But, they are USB only which would just work  for the NAS  and PC, but not Sonos.

 

 But, if I go w/ Sonos, you're right-I would need analog or optical.  I was thinking Bifrostmight do that...I would use the Biforst w/ USB and SPDIF option-it will just cost me a little more out of pocket. But, shy of buying an expensive DAC might be worth it.

 

I think I'm probably going to need two devices to accomplish all of that.

 

It will be fun to see all the gear.

 

The Sonos Connect has a coax digital output also.  You'll get no improvement using the "analog" output from it.  In fact, analog output from Sonos kinda blows.  Or did you mean to imply using  the RCA coax digital output (which is a single RCA jack)?

 

Either way, I have a W4S-modded Sonos and it was a significant improvement over stock.  Only the digital section and power supply are changed and as such, only the digital outputs are improved.  And coax digital > optical digital, in most cases.

 

All that said, you'll probably get better quality from an async USB DAC.  Not to mention Sonos is limited to 16/44.1 resolution.  The convenience of Sonos is great though, and you do not need a PC.  It can stream from a NAS directly and the iPad, iPhone, and android apps to control it are great.

 

Unmodded, it sounds average to below average.  Modded (extra ~$550), is sounds like a high performance digital transport.  To be clear, to hear the difference, the mod still necessitates a high quality outboard DAC.  I was not going to bring mine because to make it work would require setting up a network at the meet.

 

Second, there are a few DACs that will stream from network/NAS sources, like the PWD DAC with Bridge option.  There are others but they are slipping my mind.  Most use DLNA to access your media, so your NAS will have to have a DLNA server capability.  Most any NAS worth a damn has that.

 

You should be aware also that, despite having a USB port, no NAS (or at least that im aware of) can drive a USB DAC directly.  You still need a PC/Mac with an audio playing application in the middle, in this case.

 

If you want network streaming and flexibility to choose any DAC, consider an outboard streamer like what NAIM or Sim Audio make, there are several others, and some support hi Rez, to an extent.

 

Not sure about your budget, but check out the new Oppo 105.  It can function as an outboard DAC, USB DAC, DLNA streamer over network (will work w NAS), as well as playing virtually all media stored on bluray, sacd, cd, DVD audio, DVD, and audio files burned to a disc!  It will pretty much do anything you can imagine and it sounds fantastic. The Oppo should also be able to interface with your NAS over USB and navigate the contents thru its file browser/mass storage interface capability.  Check the specs, it is a beast: http://www.oppodigital.com/blu-ray-bdp-105/


Edited by RHMMMM - 3/30/13 at 5:45am
post #98 of 211
Quote:
Originally Posted by RHMMMM View Post

 

The Sonos Connect has a coax digital output also.  You'll get no improvement using the "analog" output from it.  In fact, analog output from Sonos kinda blows.  Or did you mean to imply using  the RCA coax digital output (which is a single RCA jack)?

 

Either way, I have a W4S-modded Sonos and it was a significant improvement over stock.  Only the digital section and power supply are changed and as such, only the digital outputs are improved.  And coax digital > optical digital, in most cases.

 

All that said, you'll probably get better quality from an async USB DAC.  Not to mention Sonos is limited to 16/44.1 resolution.  The convenience of Sonos is great though, and you do not need a PC.  It can stream from a NAS directly and the iPad, iPhone, and android apps to control it are great.

 

Unmodded, it sounds average to below average.  Modded (extra ~$550), is sounds like a high performance digital transport.  To be clear, to hear the difference, the mod still necessitates a high quality outboard DAC.  I was not going to bring mine because to make it work would require setting up a network at the meet.

 

Second, there are a few DACs that will stream from network/NAS sources, like the PWD DAC with Bridge option.  There are others but they are slipping my mind.  Most use DLNA to access your media, so your NAS will have to have a DLNA server capability.  Most any NAS worth a damn has that.

 

You should be aware also that, despite having a USB port, no NAS (or at least that im aware of) can drive a USB DAC directly.  You still need a PC/Mac with an audio playing application in the middle, in this case.

 

If you want network streaming and flexibility to choose any DAC, consider an outboard streamer like what NAIM or Sim Audio make, there are several others, and some support hi Rez, to an extent.

 

Not sure about your budget, but check out the new Oppo 105.  It can function as an outboard DAC, USB DAC, DLNA streamer over network (will work w NAS), as well as playing virtually all media stored on bluray, sacd, cd, DVD audio, DVD, and audio files burned to a disc!  It will pretty much do anything you can imagine and it sounds fantastic. The Oppo should also be able to interface with your NAS over USB and navigate the contents thru its file browser/mass storage interface capability.  Check the specs, it is a beast: http://www.oppodigital.com/blu-ray-bdp-105/

Wow!  Thanks  RHMMMM for all your information. I'm going to look into your suggestions. I don't'  own Sonos yet. But, I'm leaning heavily in the Sonos direction and wanted some options . I've got a stereo adjacent to my PC in a computer/office room and I like the idea of connecting w/ the stereo and then expanding from that point. But, I'm still very much in the planning stages. Currently, upgrading my stereo one component at a time. Looking at bringing in Sonos early summer. I don't have a huge budget-I tend to purchase one component at a time, saving a little and then making the next move.

 

I've recentl purchased an Onkyo streaming receiver and I'm not happy w the sound streaming at this point. But, I've got ancient crap speakers and the receiver is pretty entry level. I'm going to upgrade my speakers and see how it improves sound. And, I've just ordered a NAS and need to throw that in the mix.  

 

So, I'm back to thinking about getting a DAC to use for HP listening. First, I  want to see if Sonos changes the way I access digital music before purchasing a DAC for my HP's. I had thought maybe there would be a way to use it w/ Sonso as well. But, I'm thinking probably not.

 

The sound streaming music on my Onkyo streaming receiver (w/ cruddy speakers that will soon be replaced) is poor enough that I'm leaning to using a ADC w/ my amp straight from the PC and taking the receiver out of the equation. But, first may see if using Sonos will change anything...hence my thought of adding an outboard DAC. But, that will probably have to wait until  phase II of my audio improvement plan regular_smile%20.gif


Edited by markm1 - 3/30/13 at 1:56pm
post #99 of 211
Anyone got a balanced cable for the hd650?

I wanna check that bad boy out with the GSX-mkII.
post #100 of 211
Quote:
Originally Posted by GloryUprising View Post

Anyone got a balanced cable for the hd650?

I wanna check that bad boy out with the GSX-mkII.

i have a balanced 4 pin xlr for the hd650s by apuresound

post #101 of 211
Quote:
Originally Posted by Spriggs View Post

i have a balanced 4 pin xlr for the hd650s by apuresound

 

Awesome.  Were you planning on bringing the cable/headphone?

post #102 of 211
Quote:
Originally Posted by GloryUprising View Post

 

Awesome.  Were you planning on bringing the cable/headphone?

i will now. no worries i have a cardas 1/4" cable as well so you may use my apuresound 

post #103 of 211

I'd like to come.

 

Looking to demo any of these if people have them:

 

AKG K702

Beyer DT880

Hifiman HE-400

Audio Technica ATH-AD900

post #104 of 211

I would like to attend this meet. If I am not in North Carolina for a track meet for my daughter I will attend. Als check out the Capitol Audiofest show in July. They want to set up a room and Gary told me he probably attending this meet as well. Great way to meet guys form the DC are and see some really cool gear. I am planning to attend that one as well,

post #105 of 211

Come down Frank..  You going to bring that Taboo?

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