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  1. #1

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    Default I will be buying a DAC this week, what one should I choose?

    My wife is giving me her blessing to go ahead and pick one even though I just bought a gaming pc


    My question is what one? I have never even owned a good cd player as everythings been focused on everything but 2 channel music. I am all done with HT for the moment so this week I will probably just be reading a whole bunch about Dacs

    My budget is around $2000 and don't want to go higher and there are many good options out there. It needs to be black even though silver or white sounds the same as I want to to blend with my gear. Right now all I have is my laptop as a source for delivery nothing more. I don't really know where to buy music from thats good quality or what programs to run to play them

  2. #2

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    Quote Originally Posted by polkfarmboy View Post
    My wife is giving me her blessing to go ahead and pick one even though I just bought a gaming pc


    My question is what one? I have never even owned a good cd player as everythings been focused on everything but 2 channel music. I am all done with HT for the moment so this week I will probably just be reading a whole bunch about Dacs

    My budget is around $2000 and don't want to go higher and there are many good options out there. It needs to be black even though silver or white sounds the same as I want to to blend with my gear. Right now all I have is my laptop as a source for delivery nothing more. I don't really know where to buy music from thats good quality or what programs to run to play them

    Well its not just a DAC but the Benchmark DAC1 HDR comes to mind. Its a combo DAC/Pre with a remote. Only connection lacking is TT. It gives you options later on to add more stuff than just your computer.

    Just my .02. I want one myself someday for my 2 channel system.
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  3. #3

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    I know benchmark has the dac 2 now and I like the idea of a dac with a preamp built in as its kinda like ... instant 2 channel just add music

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by polkfarmboy View Post
    I know benchmark has the dac 2 now and I like the idea of a dac with a preamp built in as its kinda like ... instant 2 channel just add music
    Yup, dont know if the DAC 2 has a remote though....
    Advice is free, the Flea Market is earned - F1Nut

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  5. #5

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    I just spoke to a guy on audiogon he has a wyred4sound dac 2 listed for $1075. The bad news is that its in silver so strike that option even though that is a killer price on that and it too has a pre and remote

  6. #6

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    w4s dac2

  7. #7

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    Just make sure you get one that's indestructible!
    Good music, a good source, and good power can make SDA's sing. Tubes make them dance.

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by bklynNupe View Post
    w4s dac2
    I know I am like ... WHY!!!!!!! does it have to be silver lol. I have never saw the price on that dac that cheap before

  9. #9

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    well, it's kind of black with the trim.
    I guess you can hold out if even a little silver is a non-starter.

    Quote Originally Posted by polkfarmboy View Post
    I just spoke to a guy on audiogon he has a wyred4sound dac 2 listed for $1075. The bad news is that its in silver so strike that option even though that is a killer price on that and it too has a pre and remote

  10. #10

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    http://app.audiogon.com/listings/da-...1341-conway-ma

    or the newer one:
    http://app.audiogon.com/listings/da-...26-penfield-ny

    Both great DACs the MK2 being black but honestly if it sounds good I wouldn't care too much about what it looks like.

    There are a TON of Dacs Wyred is a good one too, so many, Esoteric also good, just going to come down to what you can find.
    Wadia has a small one thats black that performs well. Another forum that had a member that upgraded from the Wadia to the Esoteric 07 mk2 and was very happy with it. However the new 07 is around 4K or so.

    http://app.audiogon.com/listings/da-...60-florence-ma
    Last edited by cstmar01; 03-08-2013 at 05:01 PM.
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  11. #11

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    I caught mine for about the same price with shipping and didn't regret it one bit. it is a good price.
    Quote Originally Posted by polkfarmboy View Post
    I know I am like ... WHY!!!!!!! does it have to be silver lol. I have never saw the price on that dac that cheap before

  12. #12

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    If all you have is a laptop for a source, don't waste $2K on a dac.

  13. #13

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    That pwd in silvers really tipping me over the edge for $1350 lol

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    Higher end Audio gd big boy, i.e., nfb-7 or 8. It'll blow that w4s out of the water. I might have one for you.

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    Quote Originally Posted by heiney9 View Post
    If all you have is a laptop for a source, don't waste $2K on a dac.
    Huh? If he's running lossless files with a bitperfect media player, there's hardly a better digital source.

    I'm interested in the rest of the rig though, cuz the 2k may be able to be triaged in a more effective way.

  16. #16

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    W4s dac2
    No Way But The Hard Way, So Get Used To It!!!

  17. #17

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    I used to own the W4S Dac2 (in black...). Sold it to someone here. I ended up buying a Marantz SACD player that can also function as a Dac. I like the sound just as much as the Dac2, it's less money, plus you can obviously play SACD's! Check out the Marantz SA8004. If you get it, you'll thank me. Oh, and it's black.
    Good music, a good source, and good power can make SDA's sing. Tubes make them dance.

  18. #18

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    My rigs just a ht setup with an anthem d2 and anthem amps I have exp1 speaker cables and ic's and will be using Martin logan Vista for 2 channel listening

  19. #19

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    Dude, you could go way cheap by just getting a usb>spdif converter hooked straight into your pre/pro, then spend the extra 1.7k elsewhere.

  20. #20

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    If you are not using USB then this is it.
    http://www.audioadvisor.com/prodinfo.asp?number=BYBDA1

    If you need USB then spend a few extra dollars.
    http://www.audioadvisor.com/prodinfo.asp?number=BYBDA2

  21. #21

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    I heard the bryston bda1 and was not really loving it but it was a local demo and it was using paradigm speakers. The bda 2 though is only a few hundred more so I will get my read on with that

    As far as buy the usb>spdif converter hooked straight into your pre/pro, spend the extra 1.7k elsewhere. I have thought a little along those lines but I figured if I start with a nice dac then I can tough it out till I get a nice 2 channel amp then start on things like a good tube pre and higher end cables

  22. #22

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    Quote Originally Posted by polkfarmboy View Post
    I heard the bryston bda1 and was not really loving it but it was a local demo and it was using paradigm speakers. The bda 2 though is only a few hundred more so I will get my read on with that
    So many variables you never know what you are listening to. I upgraded from a Benchmark DAC1 to the BDP1, and love it. It gets good reviews except for the USB, which sucks. The BDP2 fixes the USB issues, and has newer DAC chips. It is supposed to be a bit better than the BDP1. I am sort of thinking of getting one for myself, but maybe a little later since I am really happy with both the two channel and HT at this time.

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    I'm very happy with my Cambridge Audio Azur 840C CD player that also functions as a DAC. Actually, I was so pleased with the first one I bought that I bought a second one to use my my second system.

    However, this model has been discontinued an replaced with the Azur 851C, which also serves as a digital preamp. I haven't heard one, but if it sounds as good as the 840C, it's worth a listen and it's in your price range.
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    Quote Originally Posted by falconcry72 View Post
    Dude, you could go way cheap by just getting a usb>spdif converter hooked straight into your pre/pro, then spend the extra 1.7k elsewhere.
    I would go this route. I doubt a separate DAC is going to be much of a bump over the D2.

    If you want to buy a DAC, you could do the Wyred4Sound DAC2 and use the HT bypass in it. Personally, I like to use ARC in two channel as well. I found this to be better than a separate DAC.

  25. #25

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    I got a lot of experience with many different DAC's now Including the DAC 1 from Benchmark. We have a used one that you could get a killer deal on but we also have the brand new DAC 2. We also got in the Teac DAC's that I have not personally tested yet. we got Peach Tree , Cambridge , the Dragon Fly , man we are loaded with DAC's.

    if you join our website www.audiolab.com , you will get a discount. Also mention you know me and further your discounts. if you want to PM me , we could discuss your needs , price further or do it here. Either way I can help you get into a killer DAC for a Killer price.
    Dan
    My personal quest is to save to world of bad audio, one thread at a time.

  26. #26

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    Get one of those Audioquest Dragonfly's and spend the rest on music.
    Or hookers and blow.

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    Quote Originally Posted by heiney9 View Post
    If all you have is a laptop for a source, don't waste $2K on a dac.
    *shakes head*

  28. #28

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    Quote Originally Posted by nwohlford View Post
    I would go this route. I doubt a separate DAC is going to be much of a bump over the D2.
    If you do go this route, the USB>SPDIF converter to get is the Stello U3. Beats the pants off the Audio GD Digital Interface and Musical Fidelity V-Link, both of which beat the pants off the internal USB solutions on most USB/DACs.... including the Bryston BDA and the W4S DAC2.
    Last edited by falconcry72; 03-08-2013 at 07:21 PM.
    2-Channel:

    Source 1: PC
    Source 2: Rega Apollo CDP
    USB > SPDIF Converter: Stello U3
    DAC: Audio GD NFB-7
    Preamp: Audio Research LS-15
    Power Amp: BAT VK-500
    Speakers: Magnepan 3.7's

    HT:

    Source 1: HTPC
    Source 2: Oppo 103
    Pre/Pro: Marantz av8003
    Power Amp: Rotel RMB-1095
    Fronts: LSiM-705's
    Center: LSiM-704c
    Surrounds: LSiM-702's
    Subs: Dual SVS PC12-NSD's

  29. #29

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    Quote Originally Posted by falconcry72 View Post
    If you do go this route, the USB>SPDIF converter to get is the Stello U3. Beats the pants off the Audio GD Digital Interface and Musical Fidelity V-Link, both of which beat the pants off the internal USB solutions on most USB/DACs.... including the Bryston BDA and the W4S DAC2.
    You forgot the Emotiva DAC.

  30. #30

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    Quote Originally Posted by BlueFox View Post
    You forgot the Emotiva DAC.
    Isn't "emotiva" and "DAC" an oxymoron?
    2-Channel:

    Source 1: PC
    Source 2: Rega Apollo CDP
    USB > SPDIF Converter: Stello U3
    DAC: Audio GD NFB-7
    Preamp: Audio Research LS-15
    Power Amp: BAT VK-500
    Speakers: Magnepan 3.7's

    HT:

    Source 1: HTPC
    Source 2: Oppo 103
    Pre/Pro: Marantz av8003
    Power Amp: Rotel RMB-1095
    Fronts: LSiM-705's
    Center: LSiM-704c
    Surrounds: LSiM-702's
    Subs: Dual SVS PC12-NSD's

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