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  1. #11
    Administrator Tracy Rainwater's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by moomoomoomoo View Post
    For audio, any of the X.05's are MUCH better than any of the X.03's. Even trying a 95 could be a very pleasant surprise. Used 95's are still pretty reasonably priced (low $400's on ebay)
    I agree the x05s are known for much better DACs. I'm thinking of trying one of the Schiit Audio Multibit DACs. There are a lot of people who swear by them and they are certainly priced right. This way, I can use the SPDIF for my Oppo or Pioneer Elite player and have USB if I ever integrate a laptop or NAS.

  2. #12
    Senior Member moomoomoomoo's Avatar
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    Interesting. I took a quick look. The headphone amp is a nice touch. I haven't read any reviews, but since I don't have any $'s these days anyways....

    The 1 thing I would personally check is if the preamp's volume control is analogue (a good thing) or digital (a not so good thing). Also too bad it doesn't do dsd/dsf. That's one of the main reasons I really wanted a 205.
    Passive Preamp: Mod Squad Deluxe; Amp McCormack DNA-1 Mod 1; Hi Rez & blu-ray/DVD Front End: Oppo BDP-95 With Region Hack; CD front end: Esoteric P-10->Kimber/Illuminati Digital Cable-> PS Audio SL3; CD Recorder: Tascam 900SL; Cassette Deck: Nakamichi DR2; Speakers (2.0): NHT 2.5I; Analog Cable: Tara Analog Standard, Pandora & Omni Bi-Wired Speaker Cable; Various aftermarket power cords; Power Conditioner: Adcom, Televsion: Vizio E55-C1

  3. #13
    Administrator Tracy Rainwater's Avatar
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    I was looking at the Modi Multibit and the BiFrost Multibit. They are DACs only, no volume control.

    Actually in reference to volume controls, from what I have read, it was just the opposite. Many manufacturers, Paul McGowen at PS Audio, for example, say that they use digital volume control, actually Gain Cell as they call it, is better. Stating that analog potentiometers do strange things to the audio signal.

    If you search YouTube for PS Audio, Paul covers the topic in several of his videos. Of course, I don't have to worry about that as PS Audio DACs are way out of my budget ($1700 - $6899).

    I'm thinking in the under $500 range.

  4. #14
    Senior Member moomoomoomoo's Avatar
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    Interesting. I used to read Stereophile & Absolute Sound religiously (it's been quite a few years) & at least at that time they said to stay away from digital volume controls because according to late 90's "conventional wisdom" they worked partially by lowering the bit rate.

    Re PS Audio: The 96/20 DAC is mentioned earlier was $100 more than the Oppo 95 & that's in late '90 dollars! Those Oppos were amazing deals.
    Passive Preamp: Mod Squad Deluxe; Amp McCormack DNA-1 Mod 1; Hi Rez & blu-ray/DVD Front End: Oppo BDP-95 With Region Hack; CD front end: Esoteric P-10->Kimber/Illuminati Digital Cable-> PS Audio SL3; CD Recorder: Tascam 900SL; Cassette Deck: Nakamichi DR2; Speakers (2.0): NHT 2.5I; Analog Cable: Tara Analog Standard, Pandora & Omni Bi-Wired Speaker Cable; Various aftermarket power cords; Power Conditioner: Adcom, Televsion: Vizio E55-C1

  5. #15
    Administrator Tracy Rainwater's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by moomoomoomoo View Post
    Interesting. I used to read Stereophile & Absolute Sound religiously (it's been quite a few years) & at least at that time they said to stay away from digital volume controls because according to late 90's "conventional wisdom" they worked partially by lowering the bit rate.
    My bad, I had misunderstood what Paul was saying. His "Gain Cell" is actually analog but varies the volume by controlling the amp's gain.

    Here's a link to the PS Audio site explaining it a bit better. https://www.psaudio.com/stellar-gain-cell/

    I really want one of his preamps with the built-in DAC but I have never had one that didn't have some sort of bass and treble controls. I'm not sure I would like not having them as I have never been a "run it flat" kind of guy.

  6. #16
    Senior Member moomoomoomoo's Avatar
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    IMO, the advantage to no tone controls is it removes a signal path that can add small amounts of distortion to the music. I actually use a Mod Squad (now McCormack) passive preamp (it's basically a very high quality switch box that doesn't plug into the wall).
    Passive Preamp: Mod Squad Deluxe; Amp McCormack DNA-1 Mod 1; Hi Rez & blu-ray/DVD Front End: Oppo BDP-95 With Region Hack; CD front end: Esoteric P-10->Kimber/Illuminati Digital Cable-> PS Audio SL3; CD Recorder: Tascam 900SL; Cassette Deck: Nakamichi DR2; Speakers (2.0): NHT 2.5I; Analog Cable: Tara Analog Standard, Pandora & Omni Bi-Wired Speaker Cable; Various aftermarket power cords; Power Conditioner: Adcom, Televsion: Vizio E55-C1

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