They're both trash. Buy a decent one-box unit and be done with it. The Sony CDR-W66 is my recommendation, albeit an unpopular one. If you insist on a separate DAC, go with the best Apogee your budget will allow.
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If you are looking for a lowcost solution for an old CDP the Art DIO is the best deal.If you want better it will cost you.
If it was the best sound at the show I cannot see how so many people would be fooled.
I am having mine modded also.Modding is the best bang for the buck in Audio.If you want better sound you will pay much more.
My speaker's,amp,Passive Pre and DAC will be all modded.The only other way to cut cost is the used market,but you have to be very selective.
Just a follow-up to what I had written about the ART mod from Bolder.It is well worth it.I only have the smART version,but I plan on getting the MENSA version in the future.
A very important thing to get is another PS rather than using the one that comes with the stock DIO.I bought the Atari PS which cost me like $13.Waynes cost like $125 which is to much for me,but it is no doubt better.There is another that can bought which at the moment I cannot remember what the name of the manufacture,but it can be bought at Ratshack for $25 I think.
Another thing,if you are using a Passive Pre-Amp as I do then it would be beneficial to leave the value of the output resistors set to 7v in order to get as much gain as possible from the DAC.
Good luck and happy listening!