Yes a player and its either internal or external DAC will can make a big difference. Let us know the rest of your system and then it will be easier to recommend something synergistic.
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You would be better off to buy a new stand alone DAC, with newer chipset, and use your existing disc spinner as a transport. I would suggest looking at a Musical Fidelity M1 DAC which I believe is just a bit above your budget at $600, but worth the stretch if you can make it. The plus, beyond just the sound, it the flexibility it will give you to expand into digital music.
I am a little confused. You mentioned playing DTS CD and DSP-A1. Would
that be the Yamaha DSP-A1? And are you using the CD player as a transport
and let the DSP-A1 do all the decoding? If my assumption is correct. You
don't really need something with a great analog output stage and my
suggestion will be an Oppo BDP-93 for $500 new.
stands for digital to audio convertor. turns digital data into analogue so your preamp/amp/speakers can make music. they are in cd/dvd/ipods/computers et al. usually they are less than wonderful so in the last decade many companies have been making better stand alone units for audiophiles. for a more definitive answer go to wickipedia. hope that helps
Is yr Sony-7000 the old DVD player with the front face that slides down to reveal the drawer and buttons? If it is you should know that that particular unit was considered a giant-killer transport! I own one (not being used right now), I did some homework on the unit when originally purchased and it was very highly praised, especially if used with a Mietner DAC, but this was yrs ago. DAC might be the way to go, if not I'd opt for the Oppo.
Yes, if you have only a Toslink connected, then the Yamaha is doing all of the D/A conversation and making your music.
If you use RCA only to the Yamaha, the player is making the music with its built in DAC.
If you have both connections (RCA and Toslink) used, that would depend on what you have it set to do.
In general, the DAC makes more of a difference than the transport (no DAC) used, unless the transport is of poor quality, or not working as it should
When thinking about which unit is doing the digital to analog conversion, think of it this way:
If the cable(s) connecting the player to the DSP-A1 are analog cables (RCA) the signal is analog and the player has already done the digital to analog conversion.
If the cable connecting the player to the DSP-A1 is digital (TOSLink or Coax) the signal has not been converted yet and is still digital. Therefore, the DSP-A1 MUST do the digital to analog conversion...
Monterey, if you think the DAC in your Yamaha is superior, you will be shocked at what a newer DAC, stand alone, with the latest technology and higher BIT rates will sound like.
If you want improvement buy a stand alone DAC.
Look at Eastern Electric MiniDAC, Musical Fidelity M1DAC, or a used Bel Canto DAC 3.
You will get huge bang for your buck.
Garcia cracks me up yet again.
I say keep the Sony DVP S7000 sell the other CDPs you don't need/use and get an external DAC. At $500 you have a lot of options. Over $500 there are even more. To me 9 CDPs sitting around the house not in use isn't a good thing. Sell a bunch of them and take that money and add onto your $500 budget and get a DAC with a good quality Coax cable.
Yes, that's correct. Some also have a coaxial digital output that looks like a regular RCA line level cables(just one for stereo). If both have the RCA coaxial,plus Toslink, some like this(coax) as the preferred hookup, a lot of the time. The Toslink may be better for around TV's and other electronics that can cause electrical interference. This interference might cause something like harshness, or some other problem sound wise that you may not know, without doing an A/B between the two types of digital connection that are used. Also the quality of the DAC. A typical DAC that has been around for years, may just do CD's, and possibly two channel if your cable/satellite box if it has the proper output and settings. A DVD may not work through some of them(most likely in two channel) . A CD has only a 44.1 khz output. But some DAC's are capable of decoding more sources, that run at higher frequencies. I'm not up to date enough to give info for that. Google what you can, and ask here, and someone more up to date might be able to answer those questions. Also, if you use a coax digital cable(looks like regular RCA hookups), there are preferred lengths that work better. Someone else would give a better answer. I think mine is 1.5 meters, but can be wrong. The RCA type is made for digital, and using a regular RCA interconnect(for coax) like your using now, may not work right. I'll leave that for others. Wiki link for basic, and others might have better links. [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Digital-to-analog_converter]
Some also have a coaxial digital output that looks like a regular RCA line level cables(just one for stereo).Let me clarify. I mean one coax is used for multichannel/stereo, just like the one Toslink. If I made other errors, I hope they're found and get corrected by others.
That's a great Q, and sort of like asking if a great turntable, arm, and stylus may sound better than a good entry level turntable.
If you play disks through a PLAYER with DAC's (transports don't have DAC's), the PLAYER's DAC's produce analog signals. Now, they need to be converted back to digital in your processor, then, recoverted back to analog with the pro's DAC's. That process can sound funny and washed out.
This re-explains a couple members recommendations for additional clarity. I would recommend determining your best audio TRANSPORT connections first by reading both the CD players' and processors' manuals or calling them, then, connect your player as a strict transport. That bipasses the player's internal DAC's and sends pure digital signals to your pro.
Read the components spec sheets and look for required input and output specs. These technical specs need to match between your transport and pro for the best sound.
System-matching components together seems to be the holy grail in digital sound.
I use a separate system-matched transport for redbook, DTS, HDCD's, etc., and a OPPO 981 for multi-channel music and videos only.
For less than perfectly system-matched components, I've had the best results using glass optical digital cables. Optical cables bipass some technical sheet recommendations for wire connections. A glass optical cable may be best for your current CD player when set-up in the strict transport mode - again, read the tech sheets recommendations. You'll have to AB-test the digital cables and connections for comparison. I like Van Den Hul glass cables very much.
A great system-matched transport for redbooks, DTS, HDCD, etc., is hard to beat. I had to buy one myself to believe it.
I don't think so. Your current player will act as a transport and send data to the external DAC for processing. So long as you use the analog outputs of whatever DAC you choose and the analog inputs of your Yamaha you'll be ok. The Yamaha's DAC will be bypassed. Also check to see if your Yamaha has a direct mode or something along those lines. I had some Pioneer and Onkyo receivers that have a button you can press so a lot of video/digital functions and even the display will be turned off and the only the analog sections are used.