Consider the Bluesound Node 2i. It streams and includes a decent DAC. You can always upgrade to a better DAC later and continue to use the Bluesound for streaming.
- 16 posts total
- 16 posts total
wouldn't something like the Schiit Valhalla, or even the lyr with the DAC module be something to look at both would leave you more then enough for a good set of phones.
I also like the idea of using a bluesound node as a streamer DAC.
I've been happily surprised at the Schiit products I have bought. Grungnir MB and Loki. Schiit did make their start in the headphone amps and DACs after all.
+1 for the valhalla 2/bluesound combo. The DAC in the bluesound is actually quite nice, especially given the price. It uses a burr brown chip if you are at all familiar with those. I would think for moderately priced headphones it would work well. I've got one in my stereo setup, however I use an external DAC. I've heard streamers sound better but you'll pay up for it. Something like the stack audio link would be the next step up - but the volumio software isn't great for playback, I much prefer blueOS. Keep in mind the bluesound sounds much better with a wired ethernet connection.
So, my bias right now I'd to minimize cost to get up and running now with the intention of upgrading components in the future. My first shot at a very cost-effective system would be:
Chromecast Audio > FX Audio DAC-X6 > Sundara phones
This is going on the premise that the phones mucho important and that the Sundaras are not too hard to drive. This setup would only cost about $450 and would get me started. Nobody has commented on the Sundaras, but from what I've read they would be better for the things I'm looking for than the Sennheiser 6XX although I am concerned a bit about their reliability. Anyone out there with experience with both the Sundaras and HD6whatevers?
Alternatively, there's the used Node 2 with Sundaras that would probably up the cost by about $100 or so. This sounds like money well spent until I realize I'll probably replace the Node with something like an Innuos and Amethyst when I get more serious about this down the road, which brings me back to going with the minimum cost option above. Thoughts?
The Schiit options also sound really good, but now I'm starting to up the cost factor, which I'm loathe to do since I'll end up superseding them with better components not too far down the road. Anyway, thanks again for all the good recommendations and looking forward to further thoughts.