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Sabaj D5: the DAC that is unquestionably a digital to analog converter

Discussion in 'Dedicated Source Components' started by Dadbeh, Apr 6, 2019.
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  1. Baten
    "No no no!!" Is an argument to some people. :|

    Ouch, sad news :frowning2:
  2. sandman2575

    Yikes! That's alarming. Does raise questions about Sabaj's qc in my mind...
  3. PolloLoco
    The report of bwcgrx's D5 failing so soon is alarming. Knock on wood, I've been using mine an average of 2 hours a day since April 3 without issue . . . hopefully that continues to be the case.

    The comments above about a dual DAC - had originally been a concern for me, when I decided to return the Topping DX7S and keep the D5. But I've read that the ES9038Pro of the D5 has 8 separate DAC cores, so unless it was implemented incorrectly - it should still be fully balanced technically. For me, it subjectively sounded better than the DX7S - and relative to the volume knob position, the amp appeared to be 20 to 30% more powerful.

    It's disappointing that this DAC hasn't gotten to any professional reviewers. The glowing review on audiosciencereview.com for the Sabaj Da3 was the biggest reason I got the Da3 then took a chance on the D5. Getting a review sample to them should have been a priority in my opinion.

    *edit* I thought I had it for several months, but I only got it on April 3. Hopefully it continues to work great. I listen to it at least 2 hours each morning before work - more on the weekends.
    Last edited: May 21, 2019
    MarCo7, Baten and sandman2575 like this.
  4. Dadbeh
    personlly I dont buy things solely based on reviews and measurements but like i mentioned before DA3 was my favorite sounding sabre DAC period so I purchased based on that. it has been on continuously on for the last week. fingers crossed but one or two problems do not mean it is a trend. every product might fail. I dont think that we need to be worried just yet. if 3 out 5 fail then it could be an issue. mine with HD650 sounds sublime.
    Baten and sandman2575 like this.
  5. sandman2575
    I did wind up picking up the D5 from Amazon. bwcgrx's experience gives me a little pause but it's encouraging to hear that others have been using without trouble.

    As a neophyte I'm afraid I don't have a lot to add in terms of critique other than to say that it sounds very nice indeed, as others have reported. But as I say, I don't have too much to compare it to. I have a Dragonfly Red that I use with my PC, which also sounds perfectly good but is no match for the D5, I should think.

    I have the D5 connected via coax to a Bluesound Node 2i (itself having ethernet connection to modem). Listening mostly to Qobuz. Can't seem to get higher than 96KHz on the hi-res albums, though that sounds good. Also listening to my own FLAC files from ripped CDs (those all 44 KHz of course).

    Sounds great with my Senn 660S, and even better with my LCD-Xs.

    Sorry, "sounds great!" isn't much of a review -- but it's sincere! : )
    bwcgrx and Dadbeh like this.
  6. bwcgrx

    Hopefully I got one of the few duds in production. It worked marvelously for the three whole days I had it. I was fully planning on keeping it despite also owning an RME ADI-2. When it went south I just decided to request a refund instead of a replacement as the only features it had which were different/better from the RME were the I2s input and balanced headphone out. I'd say those features are more different than better.

    sandman2575, I hope you and all others who jump on the D5 bandwagon have better luck than I did. I feel that it is a good unit and appears to be designed and engineered quite competently. Who knows I may decide to buy one again later on in the year if it goes to $400 or less in a sale.
    sandman2575 likes this.
  7. sandman2575
    Sorry you had to be the one to get the lemon (if that's what it was), bwcgrx!

    Setting up the D5 firsthand certainly does not give one concerns as to build quality. It is very solidly built, good heft, and pleasingly streamlined. The remote control is cheap plastic, but it does the job.

    At $445 on Amazon (with the $25 coupon applied), the D5 seems reasonably priced for what it gives you -- compared to similar devices retailing for $500 like the Monolith THX Desktop or the Topping DX7S.
  8. Researcher
    Leaning towards monolith 788 (dual 4493, and dual amp 788). Just wondering your opinions! Actually would buy su-8 along with AAA799; but the amp is out of stock at massdrop.
  9. PolloLoco
    Yours were the options I was considering also. Along with the Topping Dx7s which is available at Massdrop now for $350.

    If you get the SU8 and eventually the THX amp, that's probably your best option. The reviews of that amp are impressive... Make sure you get the SU8 version 2, version 1 had issues.

    If you go with the Monolith, read the review on audioscience.com. I hope firmware updates have fixed the issues, but that review scared me away.

    I know one shouldn't fixate on reviews, but with no ability to audition, I often rely on reviewers I've grown to trust.
    Researcher likes this.
  10. Researcher
    I have Ether C Flow with 23 ohm impedance. Unfortunately, there is no information on output impedance of the D5 on any official website.

    I am now on Loxjie P20 with high impedance of output, which makes the sound quite bad, i believe.
  11. PolloLoco
    Based on that info I might not recommend the Sabaj D5. I mentioned hiss out of the balanced port with sensitive iems. So I suspect impedance maybe as high as 10 ohms... that said, I believe my Sony MDR7520 are 32 ohms and they sounded great.

    Oddly enough I have the Loxjie P20 too. I use my Modhouse Argons on it, and they sound great even at 50 ohms. The recommended ratio of 10:1 doesn't really apply to planars. My MDR7520 do sound tinny distorted out of the P20.
    Researcher likes this.
  12. Researcher
    will pass D5 then. Thank you for your info.
  13. Researcher
    Hello, could not resist, and bought! However, i cannot see any sampling frequency rate over 48 khz. I tried to configure it. No luck ! Actually i see 768 khz, and can select this highest rate from a drop-down menu. Then the selected rate turns out to be down to 48 khz when playing the music.

    The system that i have is like macbook pro -Audioquest Forest usb c to b - Sabaj D5 .
    Last edited: May 30, 2019
  14. sandman2575
    @Researcher -- at the risk of being the one to pose the dumb question -- you're sure the music files you're playing are higher resolution than 48 KHz?
    Researcher likes this.
  15. Baten
    You are configuring this in AudioMIDI settings?
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