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Maverick D1 Dac compared to Asus DAC

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 

Can anyone tell me if the Maverick D1 (dac/amp in one unit, not the two devices paired) would be a big step up from the STX?

If I use SPDIF to my on-board RealTek w/ X-Fi MB3 would I be able to get CMSS-3D and EAX through the Maverick D1?

 

I am thinking about getting rid of the STX (it's being sent for repair anyway) and going with an external solution.  I'm looking at using the onboard as it supports X-Fi CMSS-3D through SPDIF and using additional inputs to support my Playstation and Mac machine.

 

I'm looking to get something better than the STX (a lot better) without losing positional audio.

 

I'm willing to spend more than $200 (cost of the Maverick D1) but so far that seems like the best option so far.  I prefer an all-in-one dac/amp if possible, but I'm flexible.  I believe SPDIF is a must have for keeping positional audio and ideally I would like the ability to do additional inputs for my Playstation and Mac.  I hear that using USB is preferred for bluray and music, if this is the case I'd use USB for movies/music and use the SPDIF when gaming.  

 

I really like the source selector and number of inputs on the Maverick, but my gut feeling is it isn't that great of an AMP/DAC.  It's fairly cheap and looks like it has a lot of functionality and they don't even give you a phone number to call them. I have read it is a clone of some $400 amp Gannt or some Chinese name one from the same factory.

 

I want to do something soon, as I'm using the on-board while my sound card is being fixed, but I want to take better advantage of the DT880 which don't feel as impressive as I think they could be.

 

If I could get one with XLR mic inputs, that would be awesome as well but I don't think there is a good solution to handle that as well.

 

The Emotiva XDA-2 looks interesting as well and seems like a good option too.


Edited by Saxi - 11/4/13 at 12:36pm
post #2 of 19

Audio-GD NFB-15.32, DAC/Amp (USB, optical, coaxial)

$255 + shipping + Paypal fee, got mine for $298.

Dual WM8741 DAC chips, plenty of power to drive my 600-Ohm headphones.

http://www.audio-gd.com/Pro/Headphoneamp/NFB1532/NFB15.32EN.htm

 

You can use your current motherboard audio or maybe get a Sound Blaster Z (OEM) on sale.

 

The 15.32 costs a few dollars more then the Maverick Audio TubeMagic D1 plus ($210)

post #3 of 19
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by PurpleAngel View Post
 

Audio-GD NFB-15.32, DAC/Amp (USB, optical, coaxial)

$255 + shipping + Paypal fee, got mine for $298.

Dual WM8741 DAC chips, plenty of power to drive my 600-Ohm headphones.

http://www.audio-gd.com/Pro/Headphoneamp/NFB1532/NFB15.32EN.htm

 

You can use your current motherboard audio or maybe get a Sound Blaster Z (OEM) on sale.

 

The 15.32 costs a few dollars more then the Maverick Audio TubeMagic D1 plus ($210)

 

Anything as good or better that isn't ordered directly from China?

I've read through your posts on this unit compared to your STX and you seem very happy with it.

The website and the order process kind of puts me off, and looking for something that isn't so diy look and feel.

 

If I am willing to put money into it, is there something that is noticeably better, or this the best option until I get way more money into it.

post #4 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Saxi View Post
 

Anything as good or better that isn't ordered directly from China?

I've read through your posts on this unit compared to your STX and you seem very happy with it.

The website and the order process kind of puts me off, and looking for something that isn't so diy look and feel.

If I am willing to put money into it, is there something that is noticeably better, or this the best option until I get way more money into it.

The Audio-GD was the best value I could find, Audio-GD has a good reputation on Head-Fi.

Checked out the Emotiva XDA-2, seems like it's amplifier is not that powerful.

 

Good chance I lot of DAC/amps you have looked into were "Made in China".

I've bought my share of "Made in China" stuff, some of it was not worth the few dollars I saved.

But so far i have not seen anything negative about Audio-GD.

post #5 of 19
Quote:
If I could get one with XLR mic inputs, that would be awesome

 

 

Take a look at this

 

http://uk.focusrite.com/usb-audio-interfaces/scarlett-2i4/specifications

post #6 of 19
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by RonaldDumsfeld View Post
 

 

 

Take a look at this

 

http://uk.focusrite.com/usb-audio-interfaces/scarlett-2i4/specifications

 

I was looking at that for running an XLR mic, I am currently testing a Blue Yeti and Shure PG42 (both USB) but would prefer a XLR one.

I can't imagine as an audio source, this would be HF enough to compete with any of the other options.

post #7 of 19
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by PurpleAngel View Post
 

The Audio-GD was the best value I could find, Audio-GD has a good reputation on Head-Fi.

Checked out the Emotiva XDA-2, seems like it's amplifier is not that powerful.

 

Good chance I lot of DAC/amps you have looked into were "Made in China".

I've bought my share of "Made in China" stuff, some of it was not worth the few dollars I saved.

But so far i have not seen anything negative about Audio-GD.

 

Fair enough, I know most stuff is Made in China, but I just prefer not ordering directly (especially if there are problems and I have to send it in to get replaced).

I will probably end up getting one though, got a lot respect for your opinion.

I don't want to spend more money than $200-300 unless I get a big improvement and then I would happily do it.


Edited by Saxi - 11/4/13 at 4:46pm
post #8 of 19
Quote:
I can't imagine as an audio source, this would be HF enough to compete with any of the other options.

 

And my friend. You would be wrong.A shed load of dollars wrong.

 

It's simple not in the interests of pro audio companies to skimp on the hardware. That's cheap as chips now. Their business is software.

 

Going pro audio might be outside some people's comfort zone. Doesn't match the furniture. Lots of knobs.

 

But poor quality audio? Absolutely not. Not at all. Guaranteed.

 

Likesay. It's a bit of a jump but don't say you weren't told.

post #9 of 19
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by RonaldDumsfeld View Post
 

 

And my friend. You would be wrong.A shed load of dollars wrong.

 

It's simple not in the interests of pro audio companies to skimp on the hardware. That's cheap as chips now. Their business is software.

 

Going pro audio might be outside some people's comfort zone. Doesn't match the furniture. Lots of knobs.

 

But poor quality audio? Absolutely not. Not at all. Guaranteed.

 

Likesay. It's a bit of a jump but don't say you weren't told.

 

Perhaps your right, I wouldn't have expected it to have quality for listening to audio on computers.  I thought it was mainly a mic input (and I have looked at this unit for this purpose as I want to use an XLR mic for recording videos).  


Regardless, it doesn't have the inputs I need.  I would like three inputs (Windows SPDIF optical, PS3/4 SPDIF optical, and Mac USB).  

post #10 of 19
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by PurpleAngel View Post
 

Audio-GD NFB-15.32, DAC/Amp (USB, optical, coaxial)

$255 + shipping + Paypal fee, got mine for $298.

Dual WM8741 DAC chips, plenty of power to drive my 600-Ohm headphones.

http://www.audio-gd.com/Pro/Headphoneamp/NFB1532/NFB15.32EN.htm

 

You can use your current motherboard audio or maybe get a Sound Blaster Z (OEM) on sale.

 

The 15.32 costs a few dollars more then the Maverick Audio TubeMagic D1 plus ($210)

 

Is it possible to have them customize it from optical/coxial/usb to optical/optical/usb?  

I assume the USB upgrade is a must have as well right?

 

My PC & PS3/4 both use Optical S/PDIF and I was thinking I would use USB for the Mac.

 

Do you know if the S/PDIF optical is fast enough to handle Bluray?  I read someone using a similar setup but used USB for Bluray (because he said it had bandwidth issues with full 7.1 output even using headphones) and S/PDIF for gaming.  

post #11 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by RonaldDumsfeld View Post

It's simple not in the interests of pro audio companies to skimp on the hardware. That's cheap as chips now. Their business is software.

I thought Focusrite was a hardware company???
Quote:
Originally Posted by Saxi View Post

Fair enough, I know most stuff is Made in China, but I just prefer not ordering directly (especially if there are problems and I have to send it in to get replaced).

I'm pretty sure that the Maverick TubeMagic stuff ships directly from China, but I might be wrong.

There are definitely some very good brands that ship directly from China, like Audio-GD and Maverick. But I understand the concern about how expensive it would be to ship back if there was a problem.
post #12 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Saxi View Post
 

 

Is it possible to have them customize it from optical/coxial/usb to optical/optical/usb?  

I assume the USB upgrade is a must have as well right?

 

My PC & PS3/4 both use Optical S/PDIF and I was thinking I would use USB for the Mac.

 

Do you know if the S/PDIF optical is fast enough to handle Bluray?  I read someone using a similar setup but used USB for Bluray (because he said it had bandwidth issues with full 7.1 output even using headphones) and S/PDIF for gaming.  


I believe the 15.32 fairly fixed at one optical, one coaxial, and one USB.

If you keep the STX, you can use it's coaxial output.

 

There are $20 no-name sound cards with coaxial output.

 

optical/coaxial is maxed out at 6-channels of 24-bit/48Khz of compressed digital audio.

If all your using is 2-channel (15.32 only takes in 2 channel anyway), then optical/coaxial should sound just as good as HDMI.

The 15.32 does not provide headphone surround sound, something else has to process 6 or 8 channels into Headphone surround sound (2-channel), before the digital audio signal is sent to the 15.32, A PC sound card can do headphone surround sound, the PS3 (and PS4?) can not.

post #13 of 19
Quote:
 doesn't have the inputs I need.  I would like three inputs (Windows SPDIF optical, PS3/4 SPDIF optical, and Mac USB).  

 

There you go. E-MU 0404. Everything you need. Decent price.

 

http://www.creative.com/emu/products/product.aspx?pid=15185

 

p.s. didn't see you wanted 2 separate optical S/PDIF inputs at the same time.  That's tricky. ADAT?

 

It does have digital USB, digital optical and digital co-ax


Edited by RonaldDumsfeld - 11/4/13 at 5:20pm
post #14 of 19
Emotiva XDA-2. DAC/pre-amp/headphone amp that has one usb, dual optical and dual coaxial inputs, as well as RCA and XLR outputs for speakers. On sale for $299 + free shipping at the moment, so no more than the Audio GD. While I believe Emotiva probably sources from China, they are a US company with a record of good customer service and it would be shipped from TN, if I'm not mistaken.
Edited by cel4145 - 11/4/13 at 5:51pm
post #15 of 19
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by PurpleAngel View Post
 


I believe the 15.32 fairly fixed at one optical, one coaxial, and one USB.

If you keep the STX, you can use it's coaxial output.

 

There are $20 no-name sound cards with coaxial output.

 

optical/coaxial is maxed out at 6-channels of 24-bit/48Khz of compressed digital audio.

If all your using is 2-channel (15.32 only takes in 2 channel anyway), then optical/coaxial should sound just as good as HDMI.

The 15.32 does not provide headphone surround sound, something else has to process 6 or 8 channels into Headphone surround sound (2-channel), before the digital audio signal is sent to the 15.32, A PC sound card can do headphone surround sound, the PS3 (and PS4?) can not.

 

So plugging the PS3/PS4 via S/PDIF into the 15.32 wouldn't work since the output isn't processed?  I would need a MIXAMP?

 

I'm only using headphones, but I never understood 5.1 and 7.1 over headphones.  On the STX I can change to 2, 6, and 8 channel but I'm only using headphones (2 channel I assume) but I do hear a big difference.  I assume it's still 2 channel, but encoded.  But I am not 100% sure here so I wasn't sure if say using BluRay software on PC/OSX watching movie with 7.1 (but using headphones) would be considered 2 channel or 8.

 

Ideally, I want one device that can handle PC/OSX/PS3 as I would like to use my DT880's through all sources and they are all on my desk together (I use my PS3 currently with my 27" desktop monitor via HDMI and switch inputs). 

 

The PS3/PS4 issue I can solve how I do now. I have the HDMI going into my monitor and my monitor has 3.5mm jacks for audio out, which I plug into my computers line in or into a jambox when I'm playing with my son.  At some point I'll probably move the PS4 to the living room but I prefer to have it in here.

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