Originally Posted by anoobis
Have fun with all that kit! I look forward to reading your conclusions.
Now, this is probably asking for trouble, and I know it's outside your lower limit, but I think it would be great if you could include an ODAC in there (not necessarily directly against everything else); seems like a good opportunity.
The ODAC is nice entry-level hardware, but can it really compete in this class? I'm willing to listen to others' opinions on it, but I've done some research on that unit as a backup/portable DAC, and I've never seen credible analysis that shows it to be competitive with the big boys.
RANT ALERT!!! I've generally found that the folks gushing about the ODAC usually are comparing it to stock computer sound-card DACs or low-fi DAPs, so it sounds great in comparison. And that's a good thing -- they should be commended for making an affordable product that introduces people to better sound than they can get straight out of their PC. I also admit that I've seen a couple of reviewers who love everything sent to them free gush over the ODAC; however, they aren't really doing critical analysis. Sorry for the rant, but I find it really frustrating when I want detailed, critical analysis of a product and I find nothing but generalized fawning. I hate to tell you how many times over the past 40 years I've read "the XYZ can compete with units many times its price" and then when I try it, I find it gets thoroughly thrashed.
If others think it would be worth including the ODAC I'll add it, but if most here think there's no way it can compete I'm not willing to throw it to the wolves. It's not fair to the ODAC. It was designed for a certain market segment, and should not be asked to "compete with DACs many times its price".