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December 2013 Mid-Level DAC Comparison - Page 31  

post #451 of 1331

Hello Drsparis. You may hear many different reasons, here are my comments:

-Convenience - many people use their (noicy) PC as their main source; at work and at home. USB is simply easy. My PC's have fans and that ruins that option for me.

-Asyncroneous USB seems to solve most of the initial problems with USB (search on google or here for lost of detailed explanations)

-Still a lot of people use Sonos or similar which uses spdif. That's easy too.

-Dedicated audiophile sources (like NAD M50, Linn etc) are too expensive for most people.

-People are afraid that dedicated audiophile sources would be out of date within a year.

-Once portable sources such as the Astell & Kern type become even better (and better priced) they may take a larger share of the market since having ones complete catalogue everywhere is easy too...

In any case everything currently points towards the DAC as the main "hub" in a modern HiFi setup. Personally I think it's very interesting, especially the type thats completely regenerating the signal like the NAD M51 and PS Audio Nuwave DAC. In the future I hope to see more clever signal processing options in this kind of DAC which can hopefully improve on the horrible mastering typically used in our present times...

post #452 of 1331
Quote:
Originally Posted by jespersen View Post
 

Hello Drsparis. You may hear many different reasons, here are my comments:

-Convenience - many people use their (noicy) PC as their main source; at work and at home. USB is simply easy. My PC's have fans and that ruins that option for me.

-Asyncroneous USB seems to solve most of the initial problems with USB (search on google or here for lost of detailed explanations)

-Still a lot of people use Sonos or similar which uses spdif. That's easy too.

-Dedicated audiophile sources (like NAD M50, Linn etc) are too expensive for most people.

-People are afraid that dedicated audiophile sources would be out of date within a year.

-Once portable sources such as the Astell & Kern type become even better (and better priced) they may take a larger share of the market since having ones complete catalogue everywhere is easy too...

In any case everything currently points towards the DAC as the main "hub" in a modern HiFi setup. Personally I think it's very interesting, especially the type thats completely regenerating the signal like the NAD M51 and PS Audio Nuwave DAC. In the future I hope to see more clever signal processing options in this kind of DAC which can hopefully improve on the horrible mastering typically used in our present times...

Thanks for the input. this just raises more questions though, some of these points just try to correct the issues with USB, whereas Optical has none. In a decicated audiophile source that has the option of USB and Optical, would't it be wiser to just choose the input that has no chance of interferance? instead of a USB system that has (possibly amazing) technology to remove the problems inherent of it's wires?

post #453 of 1331

Ok I try again - note that I'm no expert in electronics (only reading reviews ;-)

Optical has loads of problems in the conversion stage. True - you can use long long wires and the transfer is perfect, but alas - as with USB and spdif - the problems come at the ends and here the optical solution almost allways have problems as based on the many reviews on different devices I have read. So even though optical sounds great on paper it's probably the hardest to make in practice.

I personally hope for a wireless music transfer standard instead, why use cables in 2013 when you can transfer tons of data via wireless? When I transfer photos or video over wifi I'm pretty sure it arrives bit-perfect and with no electrical connection like with wires one should (beside getting convenience) overcome certan issues which are inherently hard to solve no matter what USB transfer type is used.

post #454 of 1331
A more robust I2S output would do it.
post #455 of 1331

There are a few main limitations that optical has, and USB doesn't when running direct from PC.

1) It's limited to 24/96 

2)The input receiver typically has 50ps of jitter

3)Uses the computer's timing

 

I'm not going to discuss it further here, as it OT and there are plenty of threads to read about it.

post #456 of 1331
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gary in MD View Post
 

Should have gone to bed, but searching for RCA to TRS adapters, happen to be listening to one of the DACs while I start burning it in.  Not critical listening, but I can tell you that this does not sound like my Emo XDA-1.

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by zilch0md View Post
 

Ahh, the first impression of many to come!

 

Great review, 6moons nervously smoking aside. :p

Edited by Andrew_WOT - 12/14/13 at 10:48am
post #457 of 1331

Optical can't do High Res..192 or DSD.  Also the DAC will not be in control...  

 

Edit:

Oops Brunk already said this.


Edited by preproman - 12/14/13 at 9:37am
post #458 of 1331
Quote:
Originally Posted by brunk View Post
 

There are a few main limitations that optical has, and USB doesn't when running direct from PC.

1) It's limited to 24/96 

2)The input receiver typically has 50ps of jitter

3)Uses the computer's timing

 

I'm not going to discuss it further here, as it OT and there are plenty of threads to read about it.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by preproman View Post
 

Optical can't do High Res..192 or DSD.  Also the DAC will not be in control...  

 

Edit:

Oops Brunk already said this.

Cool, thanks guys, this is the kind of thing I was looking for. Even though Schiit says otherwise for point #1:

"Input Capability: up to 24/192 for all inputs, including 24/176.4"

But I did not know optical had jitter, not sure what 50ps of jitter is but I'm assuming it's low since I've never heard of a DAC that tries to correct it...

post #459 of 1331
Thread Starter 

Okay, quick update.  6 DACs are up and running:

 

NAD M51

Emotiva Stealth

Arcam irDAC

Metrum Octave

Chordette QuteHD

Yulong DA-8

 

The Yulong was a pain because the drivers were zipped in an .rar file and I had to go get software to unzip them.  Grumble.  I need to eat.   again...

 

Here's a beauty shot for you visual people:

 

 

 

Can you match the DAC with it's name above?

 

I expect to add one more today, then try the linking thing with JRiver.  Then it's just turn and burn... ...-in.  I hope. 

 

But now I need to start my regular life again for about an hour.

post #460 of 1331


I just passed the "identify each DAC in the picture" test. Does that mean I spent too much time on this forum?


Seriously, I hate to ask this (so, maybe I just shouldn't), but now you have Yulong DA8 up and running, would it be possible to post some initial impressions? 


The reason is that there is a very good deal on the Yulong right now on the website which cannot be spoken of or even hinted at on Head-Fi (but which can totally advertise here). The deal only lasts another 6 days. 

post #461 of 1331
Thread Starter 

Mosorensen:

 

I would really prefer not doing that, since it isn't fair to the Yulong or the other DACs, since none of them are burned in, and I haven't had any time to really listen to any of them.  The un-named DAC I was listening to last night during setup did grab my attention a couple of times, but it is possible that all of them will grab me in the same way... or not.  I really don't know.  So all I would be able to tell you is that the Yulong "doesn't sound like my XDA-1".  Which, as Andrew pointed out, isn't exactly a 6moons review.  More like a crescent moon review.  On a cloudy night.

 

Sorry, but I would like to maintain my process as best I can, equipment willing.  So far so good (DM Source adapter is a bit of a setback, but Amazon should have a set of adapters here on Monday or Tuesday).  On the other hand, the big test will be if I can figure out how to feed multiple DACs through USB at the same time.  If I can't do that, burn-in is going to be limited no matter what, and I will accelerate the Yulong test for you, so that you get whatever help I can give by next Friday.

 

Hope that helps a bit.

post #462 of 1331
Quote:
Originally Posted by mosorensen View Post
 


I just passed the "identify each DAC in the picture" test. Does that mean I spent too much time on this forum?


Seriously, I hate to ask this (so, maybe I just shouldn't), but now you have Yulong DA8 up and running, would it be possible to post some initial impressions? 


The reason is that there is a very good deal on the Yulong right now on the website which cannot be spoken of or even hinted at on Head-Fi (but which can totally advertise here). The deal only lasts another 6 days. 

I was looking at that, I know it's a taboo to talk about it so I didn't say anything but the unit itself seems to be great. afterall, it is part of this lineup of DACs being tested!

post #463 of 1331
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gary in MD View Post
 

Mosorensen:

 

I would really prefer not doing that, since it isn't fair to the Yulong or the other DACs, since none of them are burned in, and I haven't had any time to really listen to any of them.  The un-named DAC I was listening to last night during setup did grab my attention a couple of times, but it is possible that all of them will grab me in the same way... or not.  I really don't know.  So all I would be able to tell you is that the Yulong "doesn't sound like my XDA-1".  Which, as Andrew pointed out, isn't exactly a 6moons review.  More like a crescent moon review.  On a cloudy night.

 

Sorry, but I would like to maintain my process as best I can, equipment willing.  So far so good (DM Source adapter is a bit of a setback, but Amazon should have a set of adapters here on Monday or Tuesday).  On the other hand, the big test will be if I can figure out how to feed multiple DACs through USB at the same time.  If I can't do that, burn-in is going to be limited no matter what, and I will accelerate the Yulong test for you, so that you get whatever help I can give by next Friday.

 

Hope that helps a bit.

Gary, remember to look at my first post I made here on the first page for JRMC setup tips. Second, I recommend "analyzing" your library, even if you don't plan on buying JRMC. The analysis will give you R128 and ReplayGain tags, along with BPM and most likely add extra tag information from the file. Very valuable feature set! If you have a large library, you may want to hold off on starting the process just before you go to bed for the night. My analysis of 12TB took almost a week lol!


Edited by brunk - 12/14/13 at 11:24am
post #464 of 1331

It looks as if you're off and running, Gary!  

 

Today makes two days in a row that UPS tracking shows the Concero hovering somewhere in Laurel, Maryland (40 miles away) with exceptions of "Late Trailer".   

 

48 hours and counting, to travel the last 40 miles.

 

Interesting...

 

Mike

post #465 of 1331
Thread Starter 

@Brunk:

 

I hit the "analyze" button, and it did something... (I think I heard it giggling and saying nasty things about my music collection).

 

@Mike:

 

It's snowing here.  UPS does not have a "Neither rain, nor sleet, nor snow" policy.  I expect they will try to deliver Monday or Tuesday which is fine.  Right now I am concentrating on burning in the new DACs anyway...

 

AND I HAVE 7 DACS RUNNING, LINKED AND BURNING IN AS I WRITE THIS  

 

BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH!!!!!!!!!!!

 

Now I know how Dr. Frankenstein felt. 

 

I've had to do several workarounds: JRiver and the Emo have a serious disagreement about what that DAC wants to be fed (WASAPI?  WASAPI?  You're trying to feed me WASAPI? I told you WASABI, with a "B" you idiot"), and one of the USB 2.0 ports just doesn't like audio devices.  There have also been a few data hiccups, likely due to taxing the bus.  But it seems to have stabilized now.

 

To get to 7 units producing sound I'm using both the Yulong with the TBI driving the Diamond speakers and the Benchmark feeding the Koss E-90 driving the ESP-950s.  The other 5 DACS are feeding into the 5-in-one switch to the Cyclops and LCD-3s.  The switch works well, by the way.  No obvious cross talk, though I really haven't had time to do any careful testing.  At this point the whole idea is to burn in all of these DACs so I can start testing during the week.  Otherwise my schedule goes down the drain.

 

As I sit back and look at all of this stuff with electrons flowing through it I think my electricity bill is going to be about the same as New York City's next month.  Oh well, anything for the cause, I guess.

 

I'll upload a picture later.  I'll have to use my work computer because I have no open USB ports on this one to plug the phone into.

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