Noob DAC question
Sep 3, 2009 at 2:49 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 3

gitplayer

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Ok I've read through the different posts on here and am still confused about DACs.

First off, I listen to lossless music on my comp and have a Dell XPS 435 with the basic soundcard that came with it. I do all my listening with headphones - Senn 650's.

Anyways I was looking at different DAC's to get, so I can start building a decent listening system. My question is do I need to get a better soundcard as well if I end up going the DAC route, or does your soundcard not matter if you have a DAC? Thanks in advance.
 
Sep 3, 2009 at 3:35 AM Post #2 of 3

punkaroo

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A DAC will bypass the internal sound card in your computer.
 
Sep 3, 2009 at 3:41 AM Post #3 of 3

Seaside

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DAC is digital to analog converter.

When we're talking about DAC here in head-fi, we're talking about external DAC that is of good quality dedicated for music listening. What it does is, accepting digital signal from your PC via USB, optical or electonical interface, converting it to analog form, feeding it to your speaker/headphone so that you can hear it.

Soundcards and onboard sounds, they all have an integrated DAC section in it. They are sitting inside the PC, some are descent, some are crappy.

So you now can see they are basically the same except few differences.

If you use your headphone plugged directly to onboard... then... Your Senn 650 deserves better treatment, seriously. Get better soundcard/dac and an amp.
 

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