I owned a few Peachtree products and always thought they sounded, well digital to be honest.
Very harsh and sterile.
I concur 100%.
Does the DAC offer filters?
Here is my recommendation for your ‘harsh sounding DAC issues.
i bought a LUMIN D1 5 years ago (uses the Wolfson DACS) - unbelievably good sound for 5 years. LUMIN mates the streamer to the DAC and generates the best sound - they have the best I pad interface - gets continually updated by LUMIN via the internet. You just have to hard wire via Ethernet cable to the LUMIN and run to your preamp either balanced or unbalanced ICs.
i just upgraded to the LUMIN T2 - (uses Saber DACS) - sound quality took another leap forward - more detail - bigger soundstage - lower floor - I am relistening to all my favorite albums (Tidal HiFi with MQA ) and I am hearing more detail than ever before.
Do yourself a favor - go with LUMIN and get back to enjoying the music.
Why don't you just switch over to the Cambridge Audio DAC Magic plus and sell the Peachtree? Unless you're the designer of the Peachtree, it seems like you've found a totally reasonable solution.
Always preferred Wolfson sound as far as chips go all the way back to my Cowon Z1 which still sounds better than my Astell&Kern.
Same experience here. Went from Cambridge with Wolfson to SABRE in Peachtree and never satisfied. Despite much higher price of the latter. Now changed back to the latest from Cambridge. Not near the end of the DAC road, but farther along.
If your DAC sounds a bit harsh with too much "sssss", check out an old Theta ProBasic III. You might be pleasantly surprised for like $500 or $600. I was.
My DAC-IT by peachtree audio is sounding harsh in my rig now.
What do you mean by “now?” Was it sounding fine before and now sounds harsh, or is the Peachtree new in your system?
Great input, thanks so much! I do like the dual Wolfson chip sound better than newer Sabre chip sound. The latter is very impressive but,,,,
I just purchased a Cambridge Audio CXC CD transport . Gonna compare it to my Arcam Player which sounds amazing. Arcam puts two Wolfson chips inside but it sounds better with an external DAC. Am really looking forward to a new CD transport/ player! I am selling my peach tree DAC , someone will dig it
In general I haven’t loved the sound of the Sabre-based DACs I’ve heard, with the exception of Resonessence (former Sabre engineers I believe) and the Merging (studio grade and $$$$) which leads me to wonder if the chips just need a certain amount expertise and finesse in implementation to perform their best... As opposed to eg Wolfson which isn’t the most transparent chip by any means but has always sounded pretty good to me even in very inexpensive products.
I agree with @taww, the Sabre chips are not an easy plug and play implementation to guarantee good sound. They do require some expertise and finesse.
I have a Peachtree Nova (& used to have a Nova125), The DAC in the Nova is as others mentioned, somewhat harsh. For the system I'm using it now, it is macmini/USB out/Audiophilleo/Nova. The Audiophilleo is converts my USB to Coax, which improves the sound out of the Nova DAC alot. Still not great, but much better.
I also use two Resonessence products: Concero HP and a Mirus. The Mirus is a great sounding DAC, highly recommended. Probably unnecessary to search out anything better. The Concero HP does a good job at its price point, and is a better sound than the Nova IMO.
My other main DAC is an NAD M2 Direct Digital amp. Also does a fantastic job. I haven't had a chance to compare the Mirus to the M2 since they are in different geographic locations and different systems.
I’m quite content with Schiitt Yggdrasil.
Very warm detailed sound.
I especially like the fact that you can upgrade it when new hardware becomes available. Prior dac was not R2R. Run it with a tube pre amp and Wow!!!
Buy yourself a benchmark DAC 1 for 400 -500 dollars on the used market and see where that takes you. You can run your CD player through that as a transport provided you have either optical or BNC digital outs. I find their products to be transparent to the recording but with a warm analog like sound. Their later models also have USB inputs.
iFi Pro iDSD DAC, best on the planet with a select-able tube stage and killer headphone amp. I just bought my 2nd one for my office rig, used at half price of new.
@captelee I have an Audio Mirror T3-SE, but also really liked that iFi DAC too (over a PS Audio Directstream & Lampizator Amber 3, for example). Glad to see some more people recommending it, it doesn't get enough press/attention.
if you have if the budget consider the PS Audio DirectStream DAC. It converts digital to DSD, and then outputs analogue that sounds better than any record I’ve ever heard. Coupled with some good music playing software it’s beyond superb.
@cal3713 you are correct about iFi.
Which iFi DAC have you tried?
The Pro iDSD has superior jitter and clock, which is what I feel really makes the sound stage. I listen to mostly rock and jazz and haven't found a better DAC, at any price point.
Even their Micro version is worthy at $500. I travel constantly for work and carry one with me.
I wasn't really happy with any chip based DAC. Went to a resister ladder dac and couldn't be happier.
What about the new version of Parasound zDac v.2? I am going to try out the iFi Pro iSDS DAC because you all recommend it highly. Means a lot to me your advice. Thank you!
listening to my Cambridge CXC transport into my DAC Magic plus headphone amp. Not much power but so so clean and true sound. No noise at all! No power but heck the sound is good
Can get by using my Grado headphones