Review: E A D DSP-1000 mkII DA converter

Category: Digital

I have used this device for over a year now. When I first was in the market for a dac, I went with a cheap used Audio Alchemy Dac and jitter processor combo- big mistake. It was slow, sloppy, and had a buzz. I brought it back and got the DSP-1000. While it was much better, being faster and more powerful, I found it harsh for a while. I tried it on a friends system, and realized that it was some of the associated equipment at the time, as well as a REALLY dirty power grid. Upgrades in my power system and associated equipment and cabling really let this gem shine. The harshness is gone. Of course, I've switched back and forth between it and the various DACs listed in the similar equipment, and there's never any contest. The Marantz DACs are decent, but somewhat slow and sloppy, and don't image as well. The Rotel DACs are harsh. The toshiba DACs were harsh as well, though a re-working of the power supply alleviated much of this. The connectors on this DAC are tough, and the chassis likewise. I've popped the top, and it's lovely inside, nice parts laid out well.
This DAC is characterized by a very clean, fast sound, and really doesn't seem to exert too much influence on the system. Associated equipment is very important, this is a DAC that has no capacitors in the signal path and as such doesn't have "cap warmth".

I heartily recommend this DAC to anybody whose system is sounding overly slow or warm, or anybody with a well-balanced setup looking to upgrade their front end. I cannot in good conscience recommend it to users of "harsh" or bright equipment, as this very open DAC may exacerbate the problems.

Associated gear
B&W DM 605 s2 speakers
Acurus A100 amplifier
Various preamplifiers
Marantz CC-67 cd changer
Toshiba SD-3109 DVD player

Similar products
Internal DACs on:
Marantz CC-67
Rotel RCD-955ax
Toshiba SD-3109 DVD
Audio Alchemy dac set