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Starting Point Systems portable NOS DAC

Discussion in 'Portable Source Gear' started by cjg888, Mar 12, 2014.
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  1. Jimster480

    I haven't turned mine up past 40%, I don't want to find out how loud it goes as 40% is already uncomfortable.
  2. gvl2016

    What I was trying to say these speakers require very little power to be loud, laughable 3W from my tube amp is enough to be uncomfortably loud. The solid state built in amp in yours is even more powerful, so no surprise it gets loud.
  3. Jimster480

    It has 50W RMS per channel I believe.
    And actually the 40% volume is when using my headphone out on the TV set to line out (variable) and then plugged into "aux" on the speakers.
    I believe it has some resistance for "aux" as it probably expects a powered signal.
    When using it in Optical mode I can only push "volume up" about 5-6 times on the remote before its getting into the "uncomfortable" territory.
  4. axtran
    Everyone's feedback here has me wanting to pick up one of these DACs to pair with my Lyr 2 for a little "warm and natural" sounding setup.
  5. axtran
    Ordered one! Can't wait to get it in and share my experiences. I usually have a hardware EQ inline with my desktop setup that's a pain to disconnect from the chain, so I really welcome the ability to have another setup.
  6. rikk009
    I got this nice little DAC but can't find comparisons to other R2R DACs would like to see an extensive comparison to Modi MB being in the same price range.
  7. Jimster480

    I almost bought one but ended up with the Topping D30 instead (DS based).
  8. gvl2016

    They are very different DACs and therefore hard to compare, MMB is more upfront and detailed, this DAC is softer sounding or less precise if you will. MMB is oversampling vs NOS here. All comes down to personal preferences and matching with the rest of the system, need to try it for yourself.
  9. GearMe
    Listening to some Clapton on this little box thru the Emotiva BasX A-100 and HD650s...very nice pairing. The 'Sennheiser Veil' is nowhere to be found! :D
  10. earwego
    I too have been considering the Starting Point DAC-3, and so it's useful reading this thread. However picking up on the quote above - if the TDA 1543 is not a very good DAC then 'why' would Vertex choose this DAC chip over others, then spend all their engineering expertise around this chosen DAC to then sell their masterpiece for close to £11,000!

  11. Jimster480
    Because audiophiles buy stupid **** based on nonsense marketing and giant prices.
    It probably sounds worse than my Topping D30 or the oDAC lol
  12. gvl2016
    Hard to say, if one wants to create a NOS DAC these days you don't have too many options as far as the DAC chips go, and TDA1543 is easier to get. It is also easy to work with as it is pretty much a complete solution into your design and you don't have to put together special hardware and/or write code to glue the DAC chip to "marry" it to digital audio interfaces chips which is what Schiit does in their multi-bit DACs. So maybe the answer is the vendor doesn't have expertise in this area? As far as prices go, they just slap whatever they feel audiophiles with deep pockets are willing to pay.
    Jimster480 likes this.
  13. richard51
    You are right about audiophile, they are easy to condition and program.... But your own taste about Odac and Topping as perfect audiophile machine is only another audiophile twisted conditioning, it is the reason why for you other audiophiles are stupid who dont buy that and pay for more....

    I wait myself for this dac and will report here....This dac has a great merit, his cost is very low.... And the review are unanimous....
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2017
    rikk009 likes this.
  14. Guidostrunk
    I'm currently using a tda1543 chipped tube dac.


    Bought this dac used for $175 shipped. Spent 2 months with it , and my Theta Pro Gen V. I no longer have my Theta dac. The naturalness, and realism of the Nixon dac completely won me over. I found the Nixon dac was meatier in note presentation. More 3D than the Theta. The Nixon dac has a much more liquid like flow to the sound. Imaging is much more focused and the separation and placement of the images are more precise in their places. Holography is off the charts.

    Anyone considering a tda1543 chipped dac. I think you'll be pleasantly surprised by what you're hearing.
  15. Jimster480
    Eh I just referenced those two because they have very good performance for the price.
    But there are a number of them which are better from many different brands.
    As someone into computer electronics I understand that the chips that these devices are made of have gotten cheaper and cheaper every year and sound technology isn't even close to be considered "cutting edge" anymore.
    These chips are created on older processes which have been perfected and are able to be produced in bulk with almost 100% yields.
    Take for example the TI OPA2134 or the LM4562... Neither of these is more than $2.
    The PCM1792 is around $5... even the ESS9018K2M or 9028Q2M is < $20 in most decent quantities.
    As NwAvGuy proved with his ODAC it was able to be built for $125.
    So these people charging $2000-20000 they are just building in their costs of production (because they expect close to 0 orders) and massive profits (because business obviously).
    Not because the performance is "worlds ahead" of any mass produced DAC or those built by bigger corporations with more mfg tech.
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