Any Firewire DAC`s around or behind the corner?
Nov 30, 2008 at 5:15 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 14

Verneri

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I know that Apogee has made some nice DAC`s with firewire, and then there`s couple others with 4000$ price tag on them. But does someone know is there going to be Firewire DAC`s from usual USB DAC manufacturers? I`ve read that USB simply isn`t very good option to transfer audio, that`s why i`m intrested. I`ve owned Apogee Duet, and it was good with my iMac-Duet-RS-1 set, but i just got rid of it since i ordered Woo Audio 6. Cheers!
 
Dec 1, 2008 at 1:28 PM Post #5 of 14
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With Apple removing Firewire from the latest MacBook, the chance of more Firewire DACs coming out is very slim.
 
Dec 1, 2008 at 5:43 PM Post #6 of 14

krmathis

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There are very few FireWire DAC's out there.
Nothing wrong with USB though, imo. Or just use the iMac's optical out, which is also bit-perfect.
 
Dec 1, 2008 at 8:18 PM Post #7 of 14

ROBSCIX

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As was mentioned there are quite a few quality firewire based "recording" cards that have high quality DAC chips installed. This may be your best option without breaking the bank if you still want to go with the firewire output from your system.
 
Dec 1, 2008 at 8:26 PM Post #8 of 14

ronfint

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I got a Weiss Dac2 a few weeks ago. It is a superb dac, the best I've heard, and as good as my analogue system or better. As far as I'm concerned firewire is far from dead.
 
Dec 1, 2008 at 8:53 PM Post #9 of 14

joe_cool

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The M-Audio Firewire Audiophile (~$300 MSRP) is out of production but many are still out there. This is a small PC recording system which has 2 stereo analog outputs plus a headphone output (6 DAC channels total).
 
Dec 2, 2008 at 8:07 AM Post #10 of 14

vagarach

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Does firewire have an advantage over USB for jitter? I vaguely recall some EE on here getting all hot and bothered about how USB was the devil when it comes to sending info to a DAC.

But buying a pro tool for plain listening can't be the best avenue. Wouldn't it be wiser to have ALL of the cost go into better components for the DAC itself rather than mic inputs and such?
 
Dec 3, 2008 at 1:00 AM Post #12 of 14

Scrith

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Quote:

Originally Posted by vagarach /img/forum/go_quote.gif
Does firewire have an advantage over USB for jitter? I vaguely recall some EE on here getting all hot and bothered about how USB was the devil when it comes to sending info to a DAC.


The responsibility for using the data lies solely with the DAC, which means that, as long as the audio data that is being sent to the DAC is error-free (and the protocol being used can keep up with the minimum required rate, which is trivial for audio data), the protocol (and associated hardware) ARE COMPLETELY IRRELEVANT.

Now, some DACs have decided to rely entirely upon the timing by which the associated data arrives (whether it be by USB, Firewire, ethernet, I2S, or the U.S. Postal Service). This is a mistake, because computers have difficulty feeding data to an external source at a PRECISE rate (especially when they are doing a bunch of other things, e.g. running an operating system like MacOS or Windows, an internet browser, some fancy UI for the audio player that is being used for audio playback, etc.).

Short answer: a USB DAC that deals with incoming jitter (or, even better, uses an asynchronous method wherein it asks for untimed data) should sound great, regardless of what transfer method is employed.
 
Dec 3, 2008 at 2:43 AM Post #13 of 14

joe_cool

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Quote:

Originally Posted by vagarach /img/forum/go_quote.gif
Does firewire have an advantage over USB for jitter? I vaguely recall some EE on here getting all hot and bothered about how USB was the devil when it comes to sending info to a DAC.

But buying a pro tool for plain listening can't be the best avenue. Wouldn't it be wiser to have ALL of the cost go into better components for the DAC itself rather than mic inputs and such?



Two points here:

USB was the devil: Most USB audio devices use "isochronous" mode which uses the input data stream to set the pace, and thus is subject to incoming jitter.

ALL of the cost: The main factor here is economy of scale. Most audiophile devices don't have the sales volume of pro audio devices and therefore cost more even though they do less.
 
Dec 4, 2008 at 2:36 AM Post #14 of 14

schalliol

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For $20 (80% off) you can buy a Griffin FireWave. I confirmed that a two-channel source would output with front left & right. I don't know whether it's any good, but it's sure cheap!
 

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