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warren2503

Suggestions for dac

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This has really made the digital front end shine.

Highly recommended.

You should be able to get a secondhand unit for your budget.

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Thanks Guys I wont finalize a decision till the end of July still working through the list.

 

 

Warren 

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What about a Linn Selekt, have been playing with one for a week and its prettygood.

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I would suggest m-scaller with a used Chord dac such as Qutest which is well below 10k.

you have a feasible path to upgrade with chord hugo tt2 or even Dave in the future.

 

The combo of hugo tt2 and mscaller is amazing but needing lots of negotiation/waiting price

drop to make them close to 10k range. I went to the opposite path with hugo tt2 first and it sounds truely good

 

 

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Going to have a listen to a metrum jade in a couple of weeks - have had several great references and klooking forward to a listen 

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if ur budget ard 10k, maybe consider a Lampizator with directly heated triode output. Can do dsd as well. The new Atlantic models are good and big 7 and above are even better

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On 11/07/2019 at 8:01 PM, warren2503 said:

Going to have a listen to a metrum jade in a couple of weeks - have had several great references and klooking forward to a listen 

I will be interested to know how you get on.  Even klooking forward to it!   I have not go a handle on the sonic difference - if any between non oversampling and the more usual oversampling dacs.  

(My DAC search is over for now - presently hunting for a great phono stage).

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On 17/06/2019 at 8:19 AM, SL1200 said:

Yes, the Matrix Audio Element X is the best Amir at ASR has ever tested.  The Matrix Audio X-Sabre is the model I have and does not do streaming or headphone amplification.

I am currently in the market for a dac and streamer and just came across the matrix audio dacs and was wondering what the sound qualities it brings to your system? I currently have a pair of Focal Aria 936 Speakers driven by a Music Fidelity M6 500i Intergrated Amp. Do you think something like any of Matrix Audio Dac/Streamer would work well with my system? 

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Hello Jedi

I have heard the Arias, but not the MF.  Having said that my two cents worth is that integration / synergy is less important with CD players or DACS.  Basically just get the best you can.  (Amp / speaker and tonearm / cartridge  and speaker / room are the sort of areas where things really have to go together.)

In my case I had two digital sources - the Oppo 205 (used as a DAC and as an SACD player) and the Wyred4Sound DAC2 SE 2v2.  Together with the Matrix Audio all three used the ESS 9038 Pro chip.  Prior to the Matrix I could not tell the Oppo and the W4S apart - perhaps a smidge more warmth in the W4S but essentially the same.  

With all that in mind what did the Matrix Audio X-Sabre DAC bring to the party?  In terms of a change of presentation it brought nothing - no added warmth, no emphasis on tops, bottoms or mids.  It was just all round better.  This manifested itself in timbrel accuracy - Cellos for example sounded a little closer to real Cellos.  Soundstage was tighter ie a voice (be it a human voice or an instrument) was localised more accurately.  I don't get the 'beyond the speakers' effect but there was more depth - ie back to front - to the soundstage.  All in all the improvement was noticeable.  

Hope that helps.

 

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10k budget, easy, M-Scaler and the Qutest. 

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On 10/06/2019 at 11:02 AM, Stereophilus said:

Based on your setup, and $10k range, I would recommend you listen to a Playback Designs Merlot DAC.  I have heard it in my system compared to the PS Audio Directstream DAC, and I would rate it as one of the best DACs in that pricerange.

 

The Denafrips Terminator DAC is reportedly good as well, but not easily auditioned.

I'd agree with this. The Merlot is one of the best sounding DACs in that price range.
You might also want to check out some less expensive DACs like Mytek, iFi iDSD pro, and Benchmark. All punch above their weight price wise and have lots of features. The return on the dollar for  DACs drops off heavily somewhere above $1000-$2000 MSRP US. You still get improvements, but small improvements for a lot of money. The above DACs might satisfy you and then you will have more bucks left over for your vinyl setup. 

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Well I have listened to enough after now listening to the metrum jade. I just need to decide if I want the jade , onyx or pavane . Let’s see how the tax man treats me 

‘such an honest analogue sound 

lol 

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On 21/07/2019 at 7:39 PM, warren2503 said:

Well I have listened to enough after now listening to the metrum jade. I just need to decide if I want the jade , onyx or pavane . Let’s see how the tax man treats me 

‘such an honest analogue sound 

lol 

Out of interest, is that all you listened to?

 

For me the best part about getting to spend some money is getting to “test drive” all the possible options.  I know some people prefer to just get it over with ASAP, which can work as well, but it leaves a lot more to chance.

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Posted (edited)

Whatever you do audition first and as many different Dacs that you can.  I had a MScaler Qutest combo for a week and I thought it was highly overrated. Very digital etched sound. I have a Gieseler Gross with a linear PSU which I prefer by a long margin. It is more of a darker rounded sound. I am in a minority but I thought the Qutest was a really good Dac which sounded better without the M Scaler.  My wife who is unbiased and very musical preferred the Gieseler. 

 

Do do yourself a favour and contact Clay. Don’t assume more money means a better Dac. 

Edited by PKay

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2 hours ago, Stereophilus said:

For me the best part about getting to spend some money is getting to “test drive” all the possible options.  

 

+1, there are extremely dark horses out there.

 

Try a Gieseler, try a KillerDAC. You'll never get more for your money than from the local boutique industry. They're incredible value made possible only by virtue of the people making them. 

 

If you're happy to spend 3x the money on the same ideology from a company and not a boutique operator, a Lampizator is a close second...

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Whatever you do audition first and as many different Dacs that you can.  I had a MScaler Qutest combo for a week and I thought it was highly overrated. Very digital etched sound. I have a Gieseler Gross with a linear PSU which I prefer by a long margin. It is more of a darker rounded sound. I am in a minority but I thought the Qutest was a really good Dac which sounded better without the M Scaler.  My wife who is unbiased and very musical preferred the Gieseler. 
 
Do do yourself a favour and contact Clay. Don’t assume more money means a better Dac. 


I also compared Qutest to Gieseler Gross and preferred the Gross. The Qutest was tonally nice but soundstage, transparency and bass definition didnt come close to Gross. And that was before I added Kraftwerk PSU to Gross!

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