computer> dac (undecided)> studio monitors (Adam A7)
Nov 20, 2008 at 8:14 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 7

athenaesword

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hey guys, thinking of selling my AEGO Ms and getting a dac+ Adam A7 studio monitors.

the adams I'm getting for about 1k. i haven't decided on the dac yet.. budget should be <500.

list of considerations:
1) oritek omz modded zhaolu v4.1
2) cambridge audio dacmagic
3) frankenzero
4) zhaolu d3

i watch HD on my computer so I'll need 24bit out for DTS.
i'm not sure what the differences in soundquality between balanced/unbalanced are, so if anyone wishes to chime in on that, feel free to do so.

so what dya think?



regards,
howe
 
Nov 20, 2008 at 2:38 PM Post #2 of 7

athenaesword

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need some advice on dacs guys =]

i need something with 24bit/192khz, usb or no makes no diff. the adams have both balanced/unbalanced inputs so i'm flexible there too. any comments on whether there's a big difference in speaker performance between balanced and unbalanced would be welcome.

currently considering a modded zero, or a oritek omz modded zhaolu
 
Nov 21, 2008 at 1:58 AM Post #4 of 7

AudioPhewl

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Quote:

Originally Posted by athenaesword /img/forum/go_quote.gif
currently considering a modded zero, or a oritek omz modded zhaolu


I've got an old pair of Rogers monitors, which I absolutely adore. Most of my listening these days though, is done on my Stax 4040 rig.

The Zero DAC is a good sounding little box. A few tweaks and it gets substantially better for very little cost. Mine doesn't feel at all out of place with the rest of my gear.

Personally, I'd say give the Zero a go. It's a minimal investment, costs to "tweak" are also minimal If you don't like the result, or are "itching" to try something more expensive, then you'll either have a good little box to use as a reference, or should recoup the majority of your money back quite easily.

The Zero DAC does seem to have a strong following, which means resale values at the moment are fair.

Be sure to thoroughly research where you are buying from.

~Phewl.
 
Nov 21, 2008 at 3:57 PM Post #5 of 7

b17m4p

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wait so if you don't care for usb what digital input are you planning on using? this might make a lot of difference for a lot of dacs because some implement 24bit/192khz on some interfaces and not on others. I mean in fact I don't think anything does 192khz on usb - I could be wrong. but unless you give more pertinent details in terms of what type of sound you're looking for, what genres of music, what budget then you can't really hope for any better responses than what always gets recommended which is a list of about a dozen dacs at various points between $100 and $2500.
 
Nov 21, 2008 at 4:14 PM Post #6 of 7

athenaesword

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Quote:

Originally Posted by AudioPhewl /img/forum/go_quote.gif
I've got an old pair of Rogers monitors, which I absolutely adore. Most of my listening these days though, is done on my Stax 4040 rig.

The Zero DAC is a good sounding little box. A few tweaks and it gets substantially better for very little cost. Mine doesn't feel at all out of place with the rest of my gear.

Personally, I'd say give the Zero a go. It's a minimal investment, costs to "tweak" are also minimal If you don't like the result, or are "itching" to try something more expensive, then you'll either have a good little box to use as a reference, or should recoup the majority of your money back quite easily.

The Zero DAC does seem to have a strong following, which means resale values at the moment are fair.

Be sure to thoroughly research where you are buying from.

~Phewl.



there are a couple of reliable local dealers for the zero where I'm from so acquiring one should not be a problem. I have been advised to consider getting a balanced setup though, to make use of the Adam's balanced input. If I choose to go balanced, then I won't be able to use the zero, or any of the similiar Chinese dacs.

do you guys think balanced would make a difference?
 
Nov 21, 2008 at 5:00 PM Post #7 of 7

athenaesword

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Quote:

Originally Posted by b17m4p /img/forum/go_quote.gif
wait so if you don't care for usb what digital input are you planning on using? this might make a lot of difference for a lot of dacs because some implement 24bit/192khz on some interfaces and not on others. I mean in fact I don't think anything does 192khz on usb - I could be wrong. but unless you give more pertinent details in terms of what type of sound you're looking for, what genres of music, what budget then you can't really hope for any better responses than what always gets recommended which is a list of about a dozen dacs at various points between $100 and $2500.


testy. but well-intentioned I guess.
wink.gif


i'll try to go into more detail. I'm just beginning to delve into home audio so pardon me if I'm not making myself clear enough because I don't know what are the right questions to ask in the first place.

After reading quite abit over the last 2 days, it seems that USB is actually a viable option (for some odd reason I was under the reason that it's inferior to spdif). However, I still have some confusion about the sampling of bit depth along the digital line.

I guess the only way to ask it would be with specific equipment examples.
1) if I played a 24bit/192khz track, and had a Zero Dac 24bit/192khz connected via spdif, there would be no downsampling and subsequent upsampling right?
2) similiar setup, but this time from usb to usb--> spdif converter, then to zero dac. what about this then? would the usb output 16bit and then get umsampled to 24bit? or would the usb carry the 24bit signal to the zero?

i know i've asked this question elsewhere, but somehow I never understood it.

I've mentioned a couple of Dacs in my OP. it should be fairly obvious I'm gunning for <$500. again, with the balanced/unbalanced issue, i'm not sure what're my options for a balanced dac at this price range besides the dacmagic, and if it's worth skipping over the modded bang for buck unbalanced dacs.
 

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