So I'll have to go for the DAC units costing upwards in the thousands given my rig: top to bottom around $35K? What do you suggest, either from first hand or word of mouth?
- 9 posts total
- 9 posts total
You might want to start with something relatively inexpensive just to dip you toe in the water and see if you like the experience. If you're going to spend thousands, I would highly recommend you purchase from a dealer or on-line retailer that offers a money back audition period.
Schiit Audio offers DACs ranging from $99 - $2399 and have a 15 day money back trial period. Benchmark, Berkeley, Mytek and Lampizator make well regarded DACs at higher prices. There are many more. Take a look at the pages of ads in the Digital Category under the DA Converter section. That should keep you busy for a while!
I would suggest you read some reviews, check the forums here, and at Computer Audiophile and start creating a short list of DACs that interest you.
Ask questions. I wouldn't spend any money until you are comfortable that you understand what you need.
An Ayre Codex would be a good place to start. It's not that expensive, and can deliver high end sound. Since you already have a good system and know what you're doing, getting a cheap dac is the equivalent to getting an entry level CD player. It will sound OK, but if you're used to something better, you'll want to upgrade right away.
mac laptop or Windows?
what format (coding) are the files in now?
did you rip them from CDs? (Redbook) or get SACDs or other material on there?
some have said an SSD will give better SQ than using an HDD
some say an onboard processor using your CPU/GPU will give better SQ than most DACs
the Schiit Yggy is only a bit over $2k and is very well regarded (no DSD); Chord & Benchmark are also xlnt tho cost a bit more
I can tell you that an old DacMagic sounds quite good with an ARC pre-amp and maggie 3.7i speakers - it is what I use while looking for a better DAC.