analog to digital to analog conversion


Potential stupid question alert.

There seems to be quite a movement of people favoring R-2R ladder DACs over chip based technology. A common impression is that the R-2R approach sounds less digital and more natural. When music is recorded, the analog to digital conversion is done using chip based converters, not some type of resistor ladder ... correct? So it would seem to me that a chip based solution that reverses exactly the digital encoding should be able to do a better job of restoring the audio back to its original analog state, retaining the least amount possible of "digitalness." What am I misunderstanding? 
jaybarnett
This is true.
FPGA rules. For now.

https://www.realhd-audio.com/?p=7251

May the peace of understanding....
the form or technology used for conversion one way or the other is less important than the result

once analog has been converted to digital it doesn't know what equipment was used to get it there
jjss49 - that makes sense. I'm just curious as to how an approach that is very different could do a **better** job of re-creating the analog output than a reversal of the process that put the analog into digital form in the first place. But I am ready to abandon this inquiry because it isn't a burning question - just a curiosity.
OP, you are on the right track, be aware that conventionally in most applications the performance of professional A/D convertors (in terms of accurately capturing the analog signal) actually exceed the performance of even the best D/A convertors.

Thus it becomes a matter of which technology one prefers to recreate the original analog information contained within the captured digital audio data stream.

Think of it like a phono preamp.  You don't necessarily know exactly what equalization was used, other than it's within RIAA specs, and there are different ways to implement RIAA equalization in phono stages.

Don't sweat it, just pick the one that sounds the best on a variety of source material.

I think a lot of DA conversion is filtering noise causing artifacts from the process and compensating for clock or other errors. 
AD conversion doesn’t have the same filtering and noise issues. By the nature of the process any frequencies above half the sampling rate are simply lost without a trace. The clock on the other hand is very important.

It’s a different process. Think of it more like a claw hammer than a screwdriver. 
“Think of it more like a claw hammer than a screwdriver.“
Somehow that is helpful.