Need help with Audioengine A2 and DAC
Sep 30, 2011 at 4:50 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 11

BTX1

New Head-Fier
Joined
Apr 6, 2011
Posts
14
Likes
0
Hi there,

I'm super nooby to computer audio, I would really appreciate the feedback.

So I've been running Altec Lansing MX 5021 for about 7 years now, and I feel like to sell them and upgrade speakers and get a DAC. From my experience my 2008 Macbook Pro's sound card is pretty crappy, Lots of static noise from the headphone jack. I main use my speakers for music, and I can careless about the sound quality for movies and gaming. So I basically have 2 main questions:

Is getting the Audioengine A2 to replace the MX5021 an upgrade? I've researched some, and it appears to me that it will be an upgrade, but since I'm so new to this field so I would like to know your opinion.

I would like to buy a beginner DAC to work with my Macbook Pro, and so far I've only kind know about the Nuforce, Fiio, and Fubar DACs. Which brand would be a good choice? I don't want to spend over $250 on a DAC. So I was thinking about the Nuforce uDAC-2. Is it good enough to work with the Audioengine A2? Or should I get something like the Nuforce ICON? BTW, I don't use headphones with my computer, only speakers, so I could skip the amp part?

I live in Vancouver, the only place I know is Headphone Bar, and they only carry Nuforce and Fiio, and where else could I purchase a DAC in Vancouver, or any sites that ship to Canada? I found another thread that has a few links to Vancouver based stores, but I looked at the websites and they don't seem to carry DACs.

Thanks a lot.
 
Sep 30, 2011 at 5:44 AM Post #2 of 11

trog

500+ Head-Fier
Joined
Aug 6, 2011
Posts
907
Likes
24
For the $$ a T-amp and decent bookshelf speakers would give you better SQ for less money too 
tongue_smile.gif

 
Oct 1, 2011 at 5:42 AM Post #6 of 11

BTX1

New Head-Fier
Joined
Apr 6, 2011
Posts
14
Likes
0
I cannot recommend the HRT Music Streamer enough for a entry level DAC. For $150, it is one of the best values out there.
It will work great with your A2 and make it sing (sic) :)


Thanks. How does it compare to the Nuforce uDAC-2? And I saw it on Moon Audio, do they ship to Canada? If not, where can I buy it from?
 
Oct 1, 2011 at 8:25 AM Post #7 of 11

alexsj

100+ Head-Fier
Joined
Jul 10, 2011
Posts
151
Likes
13
Agreed about the HRT music streamer but you may prefer something with a volume pot and a headphone amp. I'm not a huge fan of the udac 2 (I owned and used one for a while) and I suspect you can find better at that price since there are a lot of products out there in that price range.
 
Oct 1, 2011 at 5:28 PM Post #8 of 11

BTX1

New Head-Fier
Joined
Apr 6, 2011
Posts
14
Likes
0
Yeah, I think it would be really nice to have volume knob. As far as I know that with a DAC the volume control on my Mac's keyboard will no longer work, correct me if I am wrong.
 
Oct 1, 2011 at 11:39 PM Post #9 of 11

Quantizer

New Head-Fier
Joined
Oct 1, 2011
Posts
4
Likes
11
Yeah, I think it would be really nice to have volume knob. As far as I know that with a DAC the volume control on my Mac's keyboard will no longer work, correct me if I am wrong.


The volume controls on my mac work with other DACs, but not with the HRT Music Streamer II.
(The controls are greyed out)

Since the A2s have a volume control, I don't think this to be too much of a problem.
When I connect headphones directly, I usually use the volume control on the player instead of the system volume control. (iTunes or VLC)

Thanks. How does it compare to the Nuforce uDAC-2? And I saw it on Moon Audio, do they ship to Canada? If not, where can I buy it from?


If you're just comparing the DAC sections, the Music Streamer is much better.
I don't know if Moon Audio ships to Canada, but I bought mine from Amazon. I'm sure they ship to Canada!
 
Oct 2, 2011 at 10:37 AM Post #10 of 11

alexsj

100+ Head-Fier
Joined
Jul 10, 2011
Posts
151
Likes
13
Yeah, I think it would be really nice to have volume knob. As far as I know that with a DAC the volume control on my Mac's keyboard will no longer work, correct me if I am wrong.


Check out the Audinst HUD-MX1 at around $190 and the new Fiio E-10 at $80. I agree with Quantizer about the SQ of the HRT music streamer II (I'm using it now as I write this) but it may not be as functional for the OP as a usb dac with a volume pot and a headphone amp.
 

Users who are viewing this thread

Top