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How much of an improvement will I get out of a DAC with my Onkyo/Lyr/HE-500 when playing SACD/DVD-A?

Discussion in 'Dedicated Source Components' started by alexnova, Jun 9, 2013.
  1. Alexnova
    My current audio setup:
    Source: Onkyo DV-SP 1000
    Amp: Schiit Lyr
    Headphones: HE-500
    I am a huge fan of the Schiit Lyr and would like to buy the Schiit Bifrost DAC with the Uber upgrades. I plan on using a Belden 1694A coaxial cable to connect the source to the DAC.
    I play SACDs and DVD-As regularly.
    I currently just use Radioshack red/white cables out from the Onkyo to the amp.
    Is the upgrade going to be worth the $419.00?
    Eventhough I like a lot of detail and clarity in my music, I prefer syrupy, meaty and tangible sound which is why I got the HE-500 than say a Sennheiser.
    If I am going to get a significant bump in say the bass then it might be worth it.
    Any opinions on this would be appreciated, thank you.
  2. Alexnova
    Been doing some reading online, so my player is probably converting the SACD layer to standard PCM when outputting. But the Bifrost isn't capable of DSD yet (there will be a future release of that soon according to their site).
    So it looks like to get the most out of SACDs is going to be putting some money down on a DAC.
  3. Alexnova

    Any suggestions?
  4. Radioking59
    One thing we don't know is what the Schiit DSD solution is going to have in terms of inputs. If it does not have HDMI, it will be useless with standard SACD playback. No SACD players output DSD over coax/optical. It is limited to HDMI for copy protection reasons. Without HDMI your only option is to get an original PS3 with 2-3 year old firmware (very hard to find) to rip your SACDs for DSD computer playback through a seperate DAC.
  5. Alexnova
    So I'm still getting PCM then over a coax? I heard about the copy protection a few months back and only being able to use HDMI, which isn't a problem with me since I have it on this receiver.
    Schiit said that they would be having a DSD solution to their DAC lineup that wouldn't require us to send in the DACs. So that means they must have a separate add on to input the HDMI connection.
    Considering the price is very good for the Bifrost, I think I will just move forward purchasing it and wait for the upgrade down the road.
  6. FraGGleR
    I'm thinking that DSD capability is being added via the USB boards to play DSD files from a computer.  That is the way most DSD capable DACs work right now.  I haven't done a lot of research on it specifically, but I haven't seen nearly any HDMI enabled DSD DACs pop up.
  7. Alexnova
    Ah I see.
    I mean its just a matter of slotting in a USB board right (when Schiit makes their DACs DSD compatible)? I'm not going to buy a USB board since I'll be on coaxial until they get that DSD solution out.
  8. Radioking59

    Maybe depending on your player but it will be limited to 16/44 or 48 (I'm not sure which one). You will not get the full resolution due to copy protection.

    I'm not so sure about DSD being through a new USB board. I specifically asked Jason this question before ordering my Uber Bifrost with gen 2 USB and he said neither board will be rendered obsolete by the DSD solution. I also wouldn't count on it including HDMI. There are significant costs to license it.
  9. FraGGleR

    Interesting info on the Schiit upgrade. Maybe the new board will take an I2S signal from the USB and sit on the main DAC board. I think USB is the only input other than hdmi that can handle DSD. Doubt they would do another back plate with a new input jack.
  10. banger
    Wyred 4 Sound DAC2 streams native DSD from a music server or PC using USB.
  11. cimbolic

    But will it be playing DSD natively or just converting to PCM?

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