Oppo Sonica DAC (an affordable ES9038PRO Sabre DAC)

Discussion in 'Dedicated Source Components' started by mtoc, Sep 11, 2016.
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  1. jgwtriode
    Your explanation of how you connect your devices is confusing...nevertheless the point of a dedicated PCIE USB Card is to get it off the dirty noisy bus and power supply of your computer. It runs with a seperate power supply from the computer.

    You may think you are hearing black noise free USB from your computer. I can assure you that you would not say that if you run your USB from a dedicated card with seperate power supply. Even the basic Paul Pang V2 will easily let you hear the difference!
    escknx likes this.
  2. escknx
    Tried my best, i'm not native English speaker )
    No, I said that my USB with Sonica is very noisy.
    I get black background when no USBs connected at all. If I feeding Sonica optical signal then I have dead black background on Burson amp, except high volume, when RCA cable gets some interference.

    But if I use all-in-one Burson Conductor via USB, I have dead black background regardless of volume. It wont be improved by any external adapters since there is nothing to improve.

    I get noise only when using external USB hooked DACs connected to Burson AMP via RCA. These separate power supplies may fix that, but its a bit of an overkill for me, I'd better just stick to all-in-one solutions, since they sound awesome.
  3. dawktah2
    I am planning on connecting the Sonica DAC directly to my Synology NAS over USB. Will this play gapless or is this device not playing gapless regardless of connection?
  4. margolbe
    I've been very disappointed that Oppo is not treating Sonica owners the same way they treat owners of their blu-ray players.

    The BDP-205 Blu-Ray player and the Sonica have basically the same audio section. However, while the BDP-205 owners have MQA, able to use the player as a Roon endpoint, and are able to use the switchable filters in the DAC, this is not an option for Sonica owners. I was so annoyed by this, that I just wrote an email to Oppo voicing my complaint.

    After all, this is not a cheap product, and for a product that's to be a streaming solution, its hard to imagine why we wouldn't want MQA, Roon and switchable filters.

    After this experience, I doubt I will every purchase anything other than a Blu-Ray player from Oppo (not even so sure of this anymore). I purchased the Sonica expecting their would be upgrades, like there are with their Blu-Ray players, but am very disappointed that they seem to care so little for Sonica owners.
  5. wallaby1170
    ^ Those are the reasons why I returned my Sonica.
  6. ekrauss
    I can see that some people might want to use the Sonica DAC as a Roon endpoint, but that is not the Sonica DAC’s purpose. Rather, the Sonica DAC becomes part of Oppo’s Sonica ecosystem and integrates over WiFi with other Sonica products, all controlled by the Sonica app. In a way, Roon and Oppo are competitors so I can see how Oppo has chosen not to integrate Roon into its ecosystem.

    As far as MQA support, MQA is essentially a stillborn technology without any audible benefit, and very little compression benefit. It seems to be just a way for the MQA company (newly separated from Meridian) to make money and the record companies to impose a form of DRM on music again. There is not much material available on MQA other than Tidal, so I can’t see how MQA would be a selling point. I see it going away soon.
    polecrab and Peterde like this.
  7. margolbe
    Your explanation makes no sense given that this functionality is available on a player very similar to the Oppo.

    I feel that Oppo does not give the same attention to products other than their Blu-Ray players.

    However, if other owners write to them and express their frustration, perhaps they will do something.
  8. ekrauss
    It makes perfect sense to me. The Oppo BDP’s are not part of the Sonica ecosystem, and are not competing with Roon as Sonica is. I am not sure if the BDP’s are officially certified as “Roon ready” anyway—although obviously they are working with Roon now. As far as MQA support, I do not believe it is supported in any Oppo product (nor should it be, IMHO, because it would be a waste of engineering resources. There is extremely little MQA content available. If it ever takes off, perhaps it would make sense to support it. Right now, however, to include it merely to be “buzzword compliant” would not be a good idea, IMHO).
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2017
  9. margolbe
    You are misinformed. Check the website and look at the beta firmware for the 205 that supports MQA. Yes, it makes sense to give MQA support to a blu-ray player and not to a DAC specifically designed for audio and has Tidal built it. And, Tidal has many MQA offerings, and it will only get bigger once Sony gets on board. I also doubt that people who buy the Sonica DAC care about the Sonica speakers, which are a cheap, non-audiophile products.

    And, how do you know what Oppo's marketing plans are for the Sonica. Do you work for Oppo? You appear to be only guessing their intentions.
  10. Peterde
    MQA bites ! Why bother with it ? As has been said before it's over-complicated and little more than a new way for the Rights Holders et al to make money. Even on really good quality audio equipment you won't hear the difference between MQA and CD quality. But then there will always be those who swear black and blue that they can tell the difference but, more often than not, it's usually just their imaginations taking over.

    I certainly don't want to start a big **** fight about MQA - I'm simply stating my opinion which happens to align with many others I have read on this and other forums.
  11. wazzupi
    Sonica or 2qute or marantz hd-dac1
  12. jgwtriode
    Before you decide check out the EVS tweak shop online. The Oppo is capable of sounding far beyond its original capabilities. Yeah it doubles the price but you have something that competes or betters most of what's approaching 10K$!
    Ric will blow your mind!
  13. wazzupi
    Im thinking of buying the refurbished version too
  14. kiras
    Does anyone know if there is a way to restore the first firmware?
  15. jgwtriode
    Yup...bought mine slightly used. It's quite good...but Ric's mods will take it to an elite performance level!
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