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RME ADI-2 DAC Thread

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  1. oqvist
    Yes they dont have the exact same sound signature
  2. JerkChicken
    I’m tempted to get a separate amp for my Ether C Flow. But to be honest i’m pretty satisfied how it sounds SE as is.

    Not sure how much “more” will I be getting with more power?
    cardeli22 likes this.
  3. CaptainFantastic
    Thanks. Understood. Not the "exact" same. But is the difference better clearly, or just better perhaps for some? (I am not talking about cases where more power is needed - the ADI-2 has plenty for most) I am asking because I went down this road with the Gilmore Lite Mk2 based on advice in this forum and ultimately I went back to ADI-2 alone. I genuinely wonder if in most cases adding an amp to the ADI-2 is just for the love of the gear and resulting in fact in more cables and needless complexity.
    bidn, cardeli22 and Phoniac like this.
  4. mixman
    Ho do i get the bit rate to update from Roon via optical? I know I can do it via USB, but the optical connection sounds better on my PC.
  5. bryceu
    I think the amp inside the ADI-2 is actually quite good, but there is definitely an improvement with the 789.
    The 789 has a bigger stage overall, much more depth, as well as better dynamics. The ADI-2 can seem a bit compressed in comparison and delivers an inferior imaging experience.
    The ADI-2 sounds busier as a result of the smaller stage and lack of layering/
    The 789 does a better job resolving micro-detail.
    The ADI-2 has a slight mid-bass hump, and some sub-bass roll-off. The 789 feels more linear and reaches deeper. In terms of bass the 789 also has significantly more punch.
    The 789 is overall cleaner, clearer, and faster.
    The 789 is phenomenal. The ADI-2 DAC is a nice built in amp to an amazing DAC.

    I almost exclusively listen to the 789 via XLR, however, for the sake of comparison I was just listening to the 789 via the 1/4" to give a more direct comparison. Everything I mentioned holds true via the 1/4" output of the 789.
    I'm currently listening through the Auteurs, but the improvements from the 789 over the ADI-2 amp was even more noticeable with the Ether 2 and about the same with the Clear.
    CaptainFantastic likes this.
  6. oqvist
    I don´t dare to speak for others but on the LCD-2 it was a clear improvement but that requires power to blossom. HD 800S that one also performed what I consider better. Bryceus finding works well with those headphones. For someone that spend a fortune on a RME DAC the THX 789 AAA could be considered very cheap and a bargain so yes I am happy I spent the extra.

    With easier to drive headphones there should be less of a difference and there is tons of ways to tune the sound with the dac if you have the energy. I kind of like it simple and don´t tinker anything.
    bryceu likes this.
  7. mixman
    I actually believe the two amps are closer than that. After many different comparisons I think the ADI amp is slightly cleaner and does micro detail a bit better. Yes the THX does dynamics better as it should. Where the THX really excels is soundstage it's deeper and wider than that of the ADI. The ADI in general gives you a more intimate presentation. Right now, I have three amps comparing them the THX, RME and the Liquid Platinum. They each have their strengths and weaknesses. I can't say any blows away the other. Obviously the THX is the bargain......if you can get it, but if you don't really need the extra power, not sure I would wait six months to get one.
    cardeli22 and bryceu like this.
  8. bryceu
    Agreed more intimate on the ADI. I didn't mention speed in my comparison but I think that's where the 789 is pulling ahead in clarity and being cleaner since it just feels so precise and exact, especially during busy songs. I got lucky to get the 789 in the second drop, and before the price went up, and yea for the price it's a bargain. Between the ADI and the 789 I don't see any future solid state upgrades necessary. I'm definitely looking forward to getting a tube amp again in the future to harmonize with the Auteurs.
    Either way the ADI is a fantastic piece of equipment, arguably one of my favorite audio purchases to date.
  9. mixman
    Just got a Verite, so I am trying to see which is the best amp for it.....between the THX and LP.
    cardeli22 likes this.
  10. bryceu
    Dude congrats! The Verite is on my endgame HP list.
    I tried to buy one from the recent TSAV sale but I was about 5 hours too late to notice it and Alan said they were all gone :’(
  11. mixman
    Oops, I got the last one from TSAV. Breaking it and my ears in!
    bryceu likes this.
  12. bryceu
    Well enjoy :) Love to hear impressions with the ADI + 789.
  13. organ_donor
    Is there difference between single & balanced from Adi 2 to thx 789?

    I have the exact same setup and currently using rca from dac to amp. Been wondering if I should I upgrade to balanced cable.
  14. bryceu
    I'm not noticing much difference between the two. A bit hard to A/B since volume match isn't possible (xlr +6db). The only two things I feel like I noticed were more bass texture over balanced and a bit flatter sound with RCA. But I'm completely open to this being placebo.
    organ_donor and Darthpool like this.
  15. Tsukuyomi
    So i'm not sure if anyone else here has a similar setup as myself,
    I'm using a BeyerDynamic DT1990 pro with the RME ADI-2 DAC and i've owned them both for over a year.
    And... holy F, i love this pairing. CLEAN CLEAN CLEAN CLEAN CLEAN CLEAN CLEAN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    In songs where there are pauses between riffs or vocals, the silence is space level clean! its unbelievable.

    I Just love this RME so much, for me, this is end game. i'm done when it comes to DAC/amp, the only thing i would add not change is have a balanced amp to pair with the RME since im lacking a balanced output. thats it.

    Satan, I love this little box of magic <3 so amazing
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