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Why is there radio-silence on here regarding the Arcam rDock-uni or drDock? Do they just suck?

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

Plenty of users here use iPods or iPhones as their primary source. So here's a well-respected audio company that produces a dock/DAC combo. For only $299. So why does a search reveal basically zero results? In fact, even if they DO suck, why aren't there a bunch of threads with people voicing disappointment? 

post #2 of 7

Simple: they came a bit too late. Why buy them when the people who have iPads can get a $30 Camera Connection Kit? Shortly after that, iOS7 allowed iPhones to use the same feature. At the time the ND-S1, 170i, and i20 for example came out, the CCK option wasn't around, and by the time it did, the iPod and even the Touch weren't as popular.

post #3 of 7
Thread Starter 
No, I get connectivity, it's the DAC feature I'm interested in. If it's a good DAC (and has the little bonuses of attractively holding your device while charging it) for just $299, you'd think there would be more people interested in it... Hence my wondering if the DAC aspect sucked. Put it another way... Forget the dock aspect and form-factor entirely. If Arcam put out a $299 standalone DAC for lightning devices, you'd think some people would have reviewed it, right?
Edited by Earbones - 4/28/14 at 1:58pm
post #4 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by Earbones View Post

No, I get connectivity, it's the DAC feature I'm interested in. If it's a good DAC (and has the little bonuses of attractively holding your device while charging it) for just $299, you'd think there would be more people interested in it... Hence my wondering if the DAC aspect sucked. Put it another way... Forget the dock aspect and form-factor entirely. If Arcam put out a $299 standalone DAC for lightning devices, you'd think some people would have reviewed it, right?

 

Again, this goes beyond connectivity - it's not that they have other options for using their iOS devices, but that given their connectivity option they already are using said devices with a DAC. If they already like the sound, especially if they're using the CCK to output to a DAC that has discrete left and right DAC and analog output circuits, then why bother with a DAC built into a dock? It won't necessarily be better, but the thing is, if you already had this, then why get a dock-DAC? Some may already be using a Made for iPod DAC too, so no need to get a dock unless they're a little OC about keeping it upright like me,* and some may prefer the portable ones.

 

And no matter how many people are on the iPad DAC thread, iOS/iTunes isn't the only option here. For one, there's Android, and depending on which device had better carrier subsidy (phones and 3G/4G tablets), or more likely that the tablets are cheaper than the iPad, there are a lot of people there who are on Android, and a lot of them unlike me* might not need (like with portables) or don't mind keeping their devices upright when in use. Then there's a new type of digital source that came out within the last few years - the music servers - using (network) HDDs without the compatibility issues of wireless drives on iOS and Android. You can also count headless Mac Minis and Android MiniPCs here, but either way you go, the smartphone and tablet does make more sense being used as a remote for those who can already afford these (and they're getting cheaper and less scary to get when more popular manufacturers make entry-level ones, like Pioneer, Cambridge, and Marantz) and need massive storage at home. As for portables, what really got the buzz for the past year have been the affordable audiophile DAPs, which while not without their problems still attracted iOS users (only for them to come back later dazed and confused going about all that file management without iTunes), but for some were still an improvement over the practicality issues surrounding the S:Flo.

 

Then there's the venerable computer (PC or Mac) which, by virtue of it being needed for work or gaming, is technically a free music server for some, as those who use other sources generally want a more focused source that doesn't use as much power and they have no need to work or browse while listening.

 

 

*Like how I use my iOS and Android devices:

*

 


Edited by ProtegeManiac - 4/28/14 at 4:50pm
post #5 of 7
Thread Starter 

I think I see your confusion here... There's not many DACs available right now that are compatible with the newer lightning connector iPods and iPhones. You're correct that there are many options for older generation 30-pin models, and it would be easy for a dock with DAC capabilities to get lost in the shuffle... But with the newer lightning connector stuff... This Arcam is one of a handful of (native, no camera connection kit needed) options out there. The (in my opinion) lackluster Astell & Kern AK10, for instance, has an enormous thread on these forums due mostly to it being one of the few compatible DAC options for newer iPhones, pods, and pads... So I remain surprised more people haven't discussed this Arcam dock on these forums...


Edited by Earbones - 4/28/14 at 5:58pm
post #6 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by Earbones View Post
 

I think I see your confusion here... There's not many DACs available right now that are compatible with the newer lightning connector iPods and iPhones. You're correct that there are many options for older generation 30-pin models, and it would be easy for a dock with DAC capabilities to get lost in the shuffle... But with the newer lightning connector stuff... This Arcam is one of a handful of (native, no camera connection kit needed) options out there. The (in my opinion) lackluster Astell & Kern AK10, for instance, has an enormous thread on these forums due mostly to it being one of the few compatible DAC options for newer iPhones, pods, and pads... So I remain surprised more people haven't discussed this Arcam dock on these forums...

 

AGAIN...iOS7+CCK. People already have DACs, iOS7 said, "alright, USB audio! (oh and bye-bye line out though with Lightning)," and people already have the DACs. Also the Made for iPod DACs still work with Lightning, one just needs the new cable, and can just manage the length of the stock cable until the fancy, short one likely from whoever makes the Made for iPod DAC becomes available or arrives in the mail. So back to the original question: if you already have a DAC, iOS7 enabled USB audio, and you can get a $30 CCK, or already have a Made for iPod dock that can even work with the stock data cable, then why spend $299 get a DAC built into a dock? Not that there are absolutely no people that would find that useful, but it's a bit late considering other people have already set-up their iPads and iPhones in other ways. Remote control? Look in speaker forums and you might have better luck - over here 99% of the set-ups have everything within arm's reach, so you're not likely to have that as an interesting feature around here.

post #7 of 7
Thread Starter 

Dude! CCK and workarounds aside, people are interested in elegant solutions... There are hundreds of pages of threads for people looking for just that. AGAIN, check out the hoopla over newly-released AK10 (and it's even more recently-released clone, the Beyerdynamic A200P). But all that aside, that wasn't even what my original point was about.

 

My original point wasn't about compatibility, although there is no denying that for many people that's a HUGE issue (Again... AK10. Hoopla.)... That aspect was just a bonus. My original point was that it's Arcam. They are pretty well-respected in the full-fi world. And they have a headphone DAC. For $299. Which is perhaps the most ad-nauseum discussed price-point for DACs on this forum. So good company, cheap price-point... That alone should have spawned a thread or two, if the DAC was any good. Or even if it was bad, honestly. But the added intrigue of being one of the few "elegant solutions" available for lightning connected devices... That should definitely have shown up on the radar. Weird literally nobody on here has tried it out or posted something on it. 


Edited by Earbones - 4/28/14 at 6:38pm
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