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MidPriced DACs — Part VII

Hello Digiphiles,

There seems to never be enough midpriced DACs out there for your dancing and dining pleasure. I’m up to 89 now!

An example of one of the new entries is the DSD-capable ARK MX+ DAC from AURALiC.

The ARK MX+ DAC

In related news, the 13th edition of Hifi Zine is out, and I have a piece in there about EQ plug-ins for audiophile players…Check it out.

MidPriced DACs — Part VI

Hello Digiphiles,

I’m up to a frankly incredible 86 DACs in my list of mid–priced DACs. In related news, the 12th edition of Hifi Zine is out, and I have a piece in there about shopping for DAC. It’s a 10,000 foot view, but you may find it interesting.

An example of one of the new entries is the very capable X-Sabre DAC from Matrix Digital Audio.

 

 

Matrix Audio’s DXD-capable X-Sabre DAC

P.S. – Let me know if there’s a DAC in the $500 to $2k price range that I’m missing…I’ll add it ASAP!

MidPriced DACs – Part V

Fresh off a recent presentation on computer audio for Analog Audio of MN, welcome to version five of my mid-priced DAC survey…The updated version adds several new products, so I’ve added an asterisk to those that are new to v5. Once of the new entries is RATOC Systems’

 

RATOC Systems’ lyrically named RAL-24192UT1 DAC

 

I want to again thank everyone for coming out to the session. I had fun, and I hope y’all enjoyed it as well!

Aufmerksamkeit übergeeks! Send me suggestions for new additions to the list! Until the next revision…

Enjoy!
OMas

MidPriced DACs – Part IV

OK, enough with the French, am switching to roman numerals! Welcome to number four of my mid-priced DAC survey…The updated version adds Audiolab’s $900 M-DAC;

 

Hey all you übergeek audiophiles out there, send me suggestions for new additions to the list! Until the next revision…

Enjoy!
OMas

MidPriced DACs – Part Trois

Hey folks,

As I dredge up more DACs for your comparison pleasure, I add ’em to the table. The updated version adds the current version of the Music Hall dac25, an easily upgradable DAC that takes kindly to better voltage regulators and op amps…

The Music Hall dac25.3

Music Hall’s latest DAC, the dac25.3

Enjoy!
OMas

MidPriced DAC Survey — Part Deux

Hey folks,

Around Black Friday, I put together a survey of some mid–priced DACs to use with your computer and hi–fi system. Since the original posting, I’ve found a few more to add so, instead of updating the original post, I’m going to continue to update the stand-alone table; one chart to rule them all!

Take a look at the current version with four additional DACs

Let me know if you have a correction or suggestion…If it’s within the US$500 to $2000 price range, I’ll add it!

OMas

HR Playback Host

On Dec 8, 2012, Marco, one of my TS&G readers in Italy, wrote me with the following:

“Hello!
I’m reading your book today, and It’s very easy to read, complete and interesting. Next year, I’ll be buying an iMac and I’m undecided which of the following configurations to go with:

Configuration 1
– iMac 21,5″ CPU – i5 2,7 GHz Ram – 8 GB
– External SSD 40 Gb for the OS
– External HD to store my music, (upgrade to NAS or RAID ASAP)

Configuration 2
– iMac 21,5″ CPU – i5 2,9 GHz Ram – 8 GB Fusion Drive – Double Boot (partition with OS dedicated to the music server)
– External HD to store my music, (upgrade to NAS or RAID ASAP)

Thank you for your advice.”

Since I wanted to answer Marco’s question, I thought you might be interested as well in my thoughts on this…

My advice for an ideal configuration based around and iMac would be an iMac 21,5″ ( i5 2,9 GHz), with the cheapest internal “normal” drive you can buy. Here in the US, that means a 1TB, 5400 RPM, Serial ATA drive. Then, buy a big SSD (I like the 240 GB OWC Mercury Electra 6G at MacSales.com), remove the 1 TB internal drive, and replace it with the SSD. Now you’ll have a fast Mac, which will serve you longer as things inevitably need more compute power over time, and a fast SSD internal boot volume. If you partition the SSD, you can have your dual boot version; one partition for day-to-day work, and the just other for audiophile enjoyment.

Drop the 1 TB rotating media factory drive that came with the Mac into an external case, and use it as your Time Machine volume. OWC also sells their On-The-Go Pro “Add your own Drive” enclosure kit, which is perfect for repurposing that factory drive.

The minimum factory complement of RAM is 8 GB, which is fine for most work, including file-based music playback. If you’re rich you can always swap it later for more…Combine that host with an external volume or RAID (you need to protect your music library, don’t you?) to store your music and, wow, you have a very nice host!

Happy HoliDACs!

This blog entry was first published as Happy HoliDACs on Blogcritics…

It’s Black Friday and, at least in my neighborhood, it should be White Friday. It started snowing late yesterday afternoon and, by this morning, we had a nice white covering. This weekend, it’s your duty as a conspicuous consumer to go out there and do your part for the economy so, I’ve got a little survey of some mid–priced DACs to use with your computer and hi–fi system.

By now, you probably know that a DAC, or Digital Audio Converter, is a hardware device that converts digital audio, in any of several forms, into analog audio that our analog ears can listen to. You probably already own one…Your cell phone has a DAC in it to turn digital voice data into a conversation with your better half or the pizza delivery man. Your computer already has one, either in-built or as an add–on “sound card,” to get audio out of the box. This collection of DACs are for those handful of us who want something better than motherboard audio for their music and are willing to fork over more than chump change to get it.

TS&G Hardbound Arrives • Part One

…took a heckofalot o’ time, almost a month.

I’m more than happy to report that the hardbound version of  To Serve & Groove: A Comprehensive Compendium of Numerically Disposed Mellifluous Servitude is out and in the wild. About 200 pages, a perfectbound A5 (148 x 210 mm or 5.8 x 8.3″). Color cover, black and white interior.

To Serve & Groove: A Comprehensive Compendium of
Numerically Disposed Mellifluous Servitude

A link to the PDF preview of the book

New Book Due – To Serve & Groove

Hello dear reader,

In case you’ve been wondering why the tumbleweeds have been tumblin’ here at The Bitstream, read on… Read more…

Product Review: Soundmatters foxLv2 Hi-Fi Bluetooth Speaker

An edited version of this article was first published as Product Review: Soundmatters foxLv2 Hi-Fi Bluetooth Speaker on Blogcritics.

Soundmatters foxLv2 Bluetooth

You may well be shopping this week, attempting to get a head start on your holidaze. A popular item are iPod docks which, while being a great idea, have a major problem; They’re either tethered to your car or a wall outlet for their oh so necessary power feed. Portable speakers also have their downside, namely fidelity. They sound about as good as that oatmeal box+string telephone you made when you were a child. Read more…

RedMere to Announce Single Cable HDMI Solution for Apple Products

This article was first published as  RedMere to Announce Single Cable HDMI Solution for Apple Products on Blogcritics…

RedMere, a pioneer in smart active cable technology for HDMI, will announce Monday a new, single–cable solution for mirroring the iPad 2 and iPhone 4’s display to an HDTV. The new connection products will be available to US consumers this summer through RedMere’s ecosystem of brand name marketing and technology partners. Read more…