How much are DACs and other misc. questions
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pennylane

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First of all I'm a total noob so bear with me please.

I wouldn't mind getting a DAC for my "cheap" speaker set-up (which I haven't bought yet) because I want to have the source right next to the sofa to make switching CDs convenient, but that means the source and the receiver/speakers will be far away. So (as someone suggested to me), I think it'd be best to get a DAC so I can use a coax cable to go around the room.

1) How much would I have to spend on a DAC for it to be worth buying? What are some recommendations? I'm not looking for (nor do I expect) anything amazing. Is $150 too little for a reasonable DAC?

I don't mind going used on anything and everything.

So far, here's my planned system with my planned budget (going "cheap" because I don't have that much money, am in college, am willing to use this as a "bedroom" set-up later on, etc):
speakers (2, bookshelf) - $300-400 (Axiom M22ti? Polk LSi?)
receiver (digital) ~ $200 (JVC F10? Panny XR50?)
I have a DVD player I can use as a source for now (I'd rather not spread the money I have around too thinly)


2) For the subwoofer, I have the same question. How much would I have to spend on one for it to be worth buying? What are some recommendations? I have no time table on when I'm getting that. I may be able to get it now or I may save up for it depending on price and other factors.


Thanks for the help.

Also, any recommendations or advice on any of the other components would be greatly appreciated.
 
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TheLastDon

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You can definitely get a dac for $150. Ebay would probably be your best source for a cheap dac. A lot of times you'll see Audio Alchemy dacs on there in that price range, sometimes they'll come with a DTI, which reduces jitter and makes it sound a whole lot better. The Musical Fidelity X Dac is also pretty cheap. I'd say $200 is a better price point though, because a lot of people list used dacs for $200. You can also try looking on Audiogon.com, they have a much bigger variety than ebay but the prices tend to be higher than they would be on Ebay. A dac will definitely make a big difference, thats probably the best upgrade you can get for the system you have right now. If you have extra money try to get an Audio Alchemy DTI since your dvd player, unless it costs more than 3K, will probably be full of jitter and the DTI's are going for real cheap now. The only thing is that you'll have to get an extra digital cable. I would also recommend you get a power conditioner. They're selling some of the Monster Cable ones used on Ebay for about $70. This makes a huge difference as well.
 
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clarke68

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Quote:

Originally Posted by pennylane
1) How much would I have to spend on a DAC for it to be worth buying? What are some recommendations? I'm not looking for (nor do I expect) anything amazing. Is $150 too little for a reasonable DAC?


Good thread on cheap DACs. IMO, if you're on a budget, forget about jitter reducers or power conditioning...for what you'd spend on them (even cheap ones) you'd get much more sonic improvement with better speakers or 'phones.
 
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