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Thread: DAC's

  1. #1

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    Default DAC's

    Would I benefit from a Dac? I am torn right now between the Jolida CDP in the flea market and my Oppo. To buy the Jolida I would have to return my Oppo. The Jolida does not support SACD which is a major concern with me. I was wondering if buying a Dac would be the best of both worlds? The problem is I would only have around $250 for a Dac. So I guess what I am asking is. Will the Jolida CDP sound better than my Oppo with a $250 Dac?

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    It depends the DAC. I had a modded Jolida JD-100 with upgraded tubes and tried a bunch of different DACs to try and beat it. Eventually I found one that came very close ($200 used), and one that beat it $400 used. If you are buying new then I don't know any for $250 that could beat it.

    Plus there are no DACs out there that will do SACD, they will do the CD portion but not the SACD portion so that point is moot.

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    It depends on 2 things; first, a $250 DAC would most likely not be worth the bother; second, do you want a dedicated CD player?

    IMO, the Jolida would be better than the Oppo with a $250 DAC. In fact the Oppo would be better than the Oppo with a $250 DAC....
    Last edited by steveinaz; 02-07-2008 at 03:38 PM.

    Transport: Oppo BDP-103/USB HDD (flac)
    DAC/Preamp: Benchmark DAC/PRE
    Power Amp: Parasound HCA-1500A
    Speakers: Harbeth Compact 7ES-3 Monitor
    Cables: Kimber Hero/8TC; DH Labs D-75

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    Yes.

    But I don't want to lose the ability to play SACD. I guess if the redbook SQ was going to be increased significantly that I could justify the swap.

    Would the redbook sound quality be increased significantly if I went with the Jolida? I am assuming it would. But $500.00 is a major purchase for me. That would actually be the most expensive piece in the rig. I just don't want to make that big of a commitment for only marginal gains.
    Last edited by nikolas812; 02-07-2008 at 03:53 PM.

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    I'd stick with the oppo until I was ready to spend a lot more for something. After all, its always cool when an upgrade really blows you away rather than being slightly better in a few areas. The oppo's sound pretty nice and something simple like some dynamat on the chassis will give you a good amount of upgrade. Just one opinion out of thousands though. :)
    Vinyl, the final frontier...

    Avantgarde horns, 300b tubes, thats the kinda crap I want... :D

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    If you get a chance to try a decent DAC in your rig take it. If you can borrow one from a friend do it, if you see a great deal on one where you wouldn't lose any money reselling buy it. You will see a variety of opinions but use your own ears.

    IMO a $250 DAC can make a very noticeable difference using a OPPO. I preferred a <$200 DAC to my Pionner Elite ($900 when I bought it), a dvd player.

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    That is pretty much my thinking on the subject. If I am not going to be blown away by the difference. I can not justify the swap. I was hoping somebody would jump in here and say I would be blown away by the sound of the Jolida compared to the Oppo.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gaara View Post
    If you get a chance to try a decent DAC in your rig take it. If you can borrow one from a friend do it, if you see a great deal on one where you wouldn't lose any money reselling buy it. You will see a variety of opinions but use your own ears.

    IMO a $250 DAC can make a very noticeable difference using a OPPO. I preferred a <$200 DAC to my Pionner Elite ($900 when I bought it), a dvd player.
    I am kind of scared of the dac now. I did not know they could not handle SACD. I didn't think it mattered. I assumed it was just cleaning up a signal that was being sent to it no matter what the signal was. Sacd, Redbook, HD cd and so on. I am learning a ton through this site but at times it seems to be a bit overwhelming. So how would a dac even work with Oppo. Could I only listen to standard CDs and not the SACD''s anymore. Or could I listen to the SACD's but only the SQ of the standard CD's would be increased?

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    You can run your digital out from the Oppo to your DAC for Redbook CD's, and keep your RCA's connected for SACD output. This is what I did with my Denon DVD-2910.

    Transport: Oppo BDP-103/USB HDD (flac)
    DAC/Preamp: Benchmark DAC/PRE
    Power Amp: Parasound HCA-1500A
    Speakers: Harbeth Compact 7ES-3 Monitor
    Cables: Kimber Hero/8TC; DH Labs D-75

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    I am useing a Jolida intergrated tube amp. So could I run the rca's from the dac to the Aux side on the amp and the analog rca's to the cd side of the amp and toggle from one to the other?

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    DACs are limited on what they can do. There are no outboard DACs to my knowledge that can do SACD. That said you can still play the cd portion through them, just like you could with the Jolida.

    For $250 you will be hard pressed to find a DAC that will beat the Jolida. As I said before I tried many cheap ones and only found one that beat the Jolida, and it retails for $500+.

    Yes you should be able to do that with your integrated.

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    So is my Jolida doing the processing? Or is the Oppo? I don't understand. I thought the oppo was processing the signal that was being sent to the Jolida.

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    I'm talking about the Jolida CDP when I say Jolida. If you bought it then yes your Jolida CDP would be doing the processing.

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    Quote Originally Posted by nikolas812 View Post
    I am useing a Jolida intergrated tube amp. So could I run the rca's from the dac to the Aux side on the amp and the analog rca's to the cd side of the amp and toggle from one to the other?
    Yes.

    Your oppo dig out (Redbook CD) to the dac. dac analog out--->"aux" on the Jolida
    Your oppo analog out (SACD)--->"cd" on the Jolida

    Transport: Oppo BDP-103/USB HDD (flac)
    DAC/Preamp: Benchmark DAC/PRE
    Power Amp: Parasound HCA-1500A
    Speakers: Harbeth Compact 7ES-3 Monitor
    Cables: Kimber Hero/8TC; DH Labs D-75

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    Quote Originally Posted by nikolas812 View Post
    Would I benefit from a Dac? I am torn right now between the Jolida CDP in the flea market and my Oppo. To buy the Jolida I would have to return my Oppo. The Jolida does not support SACD which is a major concern with me. I was wondering if buying a Dac would be the best of both worlds? The problem is I would only have around $250 for a Dac. So I guess what I am asking is. Will the Jolida CDP sound better than my Oppo with a $250 Dac?
    Personally,an oppo with a 250 buck dac is a waste of money.If SACD is a concern of yours,then why are you looking into the Jolida? Look for a good sacd player.Plenty to chose from.But if you only want to spend under 500 bucks,then keep the oppo.You won't get that much of an improvement untill you start comming up to the 800-1000$ used players.
    legacy Focus 20/20
    Butler tdb 2250
    Pioneer 59AVI
    Pioneer BDP 320
    50 in. Pioneer Kuro pdp 5010
    FX 500 surround
    Reality cables
    Pioneer elite vsx21
    Sonos-Cullen mod.
    Audio Metallurgy GA-0 digital
    PS Audio Quintet
    Cary Xciter dac

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    It doesn't look like I am looking at the Jolida CDP anymore. I have learned a lot from this short thread and it looks like I'll be hanging onto the Oppo for a little while longer. Thanks for everybodys input Though I am still interested in trying a Dac someday.

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    You won't get that much of an improvement untill you start comming up to the 800-1000$ used players.
    Since this thread seems to be over, I'd like to jack the $hit out of it. . . but not in a perverted way.

    So, Tony and others, what used $800 - $1000 players would you look at for solid redbook and SACD. That's more or less what I've been looking at for a while. I've had a cheapish transport with a Theta DAC for some time now. Looking to best that $500 investment with a standalone in the $500 - $1000 range. Prefer $500, though :)

    Lexicon RT-10
    Marantz SA-14, SA-8260, etc.
    Denon 5910
    PE 79avi
    ?

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    Thread jack away.:D But I would be interested in trying that theta if possible. I was actually looking at one of those before I started the thread.

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    Quote Originally Posted by AndyGwis View Post
    Since this thread seems to be over, I'd like to jack the $hit out of it. . . but not in a perverted way.

    So, Tony and others, what used $800 - $1000 players would you look at for solid redbook and SACD. That's more or less what I've been looking at for a while. I've had a cheapish transport with a Theta DAC for some time now. Looking to best that $500 investment with a standalone in the $500 - $1000 range. Prefer $500, though :)

    Lexicon RT-10
    Marantz SA-14, SA-8260, etc.
    Denon 5910
    PE 79avi
    ?
    The Marantz 8260 is also well respected as a Redbook player. If I were an SACD listener, in this price range, I'd go marantz.

    Transport: Oppo BDP-103/USB HDD (flac)
    DAC/Preamp: Benchmark DAC/PRE
    Power Amp: Parasound HCA-1500A
    Speakers: Harbeth Compact 7ES-3 Monitor
    Cables: Kimber Hero/8TC; DH Labs D-75

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    Thanks, Steve. Marantz 8260 on the short list. Is the SA-14 a better player, or just an earlier SACD offering, thus the high MSRP? I don't need the balanced it offers so that's not really a plus for me.

    You won't get that much of an improvement untill you start comming up to the 800-1000$ used players.

    TonyB, I'm calling you out. . . where's your list of the best $800 - $1000 CD/SACD players? I've got an itch that I need to scratch!!!

    The plan is to pick up a couple and have a shoot out. Plan to get the Lexicon locally, a Marantz, and maybe something else. . . let me know if I'm missing any killer sources from my list.

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    any other ideas on best SACD / CD players in the $500 - $1000 used price range?

    Lexicon RT-10
    Marantz 8260

    Plan to pick both of these up and maybe more if I get some other good ideas. Just missed out on a SCD-S555ES and highly modded Denon 3910 or those would be joining in as well.

  22. #22

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    http://cls.audiogon.com/cgi-bin/cls....lay&1207543084
    http://cls.audiogon.com/cgi-bin/cls....lay&1207504703
    http://cls.audiogon.com/cgi-bin/cls....lay&1205340049

    Just a few to wet you whistle on.Also as previously mentioned,Marantz is no slouch either and are all over Audiogon.
    legacy Focus 20/20
    Butler tdb 2250
    Pioneer 59AVI
    Pioneer BDP 320
    50 in. Pioneer Kuro pdp 5010
    FX 500 surround
    Reality cables
    Pioneer elite vsx21
    Sonos-Cullen mod.
    Audio Metallurgy GA-0 digital
    PS Audio Quintet
    Cary Xciter dac

  23. #23

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    Thanks for the ideas.

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