To DAC or not to DAC

Discussion in 'Hi-Fi and General Audio' started by alby, Sep 11, 2006.

  1. alby

    alby Its good enough for Jazz!

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    I have an Arcam 7se upgraded to CD 82 Spec , a nice CD player but I know there is a lot more music to be extracted , I am considering either getting a DAC , but being a novice in this area am not sure what to look for , or the easy choice of replacing the CD player , any ideas for a DAC virgin ?

    Alby

    System

    Arcam 7se - CD 82 upgrade
    Marantz PM 7200 (preferred over Pioneer A400 - see other post)
    Reference Audio speakers (a bit like PMC FB1s)
    Cables Kimber silverstreak and 8TC
    Yello power cables

    My LP12 sits in its box unused at present.

    Music
    Choral / Classical / guitar / pop and rock
     
    alby, Sep 11, 2006
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  2. alby

    peez

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    you could get audiocom or trichord to upgrade the clock and power supply - they have great feedback on what they can achieve.
     
    peez, Sep 11, 2006
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  3. alby

    Garmt

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    That's great advice! If that's not great enough an upgrade, you need to think about replacing the complete player. Most DACs are held back by the transport.
     
    Garmt, Sep 12, 2006
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  4. alby

    zanash

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    The limit of the arcams is the psu ....get the diodes upgraded to schottky's and revel in the extra info when the noise floor has dropped.

    But you could go for the Moonlabs ........or lite dacs both thourghly good and excelent value if your tight of pocket !
     
    zanash, Sep 12, 2006
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  5. alby

    alby Its good enough for Jazz!

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    Thanks for the advice , I am getting info and prices but essentially the decision seems to be

    Get the Arcam Modded - Power supply , Clock , doides - but is the unit worth the £500 ish investment

    Get an external DAC ( but which one ?) - then change the Arcam at a later date

    Replace the Arcam now - while it still has some second hand value

    Still note sure which .:confused: :confused:
     
    alby, Sep 13, 2006
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  6. alby

    RolfeZ

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    Dac1

    Put a DAC1 after it. That'll do the trick. If you're low on cash then sell the Arcam and buy a cheap CD og DVD player with digital out to feed the DAC1.

    Regards
    Rolf
     
    RolfeZ, Sep 13, 2006
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  7. alby

    zanash

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    Sorry............ no that will not do

    transports play a big role in the overall sound.....getting a cheap dvd and a dac will not be as good as using the arcam and a cheap dac. The old saying still holds true ...rubish in rubish out.

    The arcam is not worth spending £500 or £100 .....you can swap the diodes for a parts cost of under £20 fitted well that depends who you contact. I would not spend too much elsewhere on the internal .....why not get a behringer src 2496 at £99 to run off the back of the arcam .....I think you would be pleased at the low cost and the performance.
     
    zanash, Sep 13, 2006
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  8. alby

    alby Its good enough for Jazz!

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    How easy is it to swap the diodes - it is not a job I have done before but am reasonably competant with a soldering iron in that I have resoldered and rewired circuits in guitar amps and pedals .

    Regards
     
    alby, Sep 13, 2006
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  9. alby

    zanash

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    remove the pcb and should take twenty minutes for all ten [?] use a desolder tool to give a nice clean hole ...make cetain they go in the right way round, resolder snip the leads and refit the board.

    11DQ10's are very good for the cost about £1 each but ther are better but the cost rises too......
     
    zanash, Sep 13, 2006
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  10. alby

    RolfeZ

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    I didn't believe it either, but try and be surprised. I think most dealers have a 30-day return policy. I haven't tried ultra-high-end drives, but I haven't seen any drives that don't get the 0s and 1s off the disc either. Even the cheapest CD-drive should work as long as jitter is not too huge. Incidently digital interconnects shouldn't matter either as long as they're 75 ohm (or reflections ruin your bit-stream) - that last point is not my own experience but copied from a danish hifi-magazine (that does run ads for expensive CD-player makes)

    Regards
    Rolf
     
    RolfeZ, Sep 13, 2006
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  11. alby

    Mr_Sukebe

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    Can't say I'm convinced. Used to run my external DAC from a semi cheap Pioneer 575a DVD player (which is meant to be one of the better ones). My Meridian 500 transport is definitely better.
     
    Mr_Sukebe, Sep 13, 2006
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  12. alby

    RolfeZ

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    The DAC1 (from Benchmark) is supposedly immune to input jitter to a very large degree. I can't tell the difference and a respectable danish hifi magazine also found it to be so. Try and see (listen). Regarding cables, the "doesn't matter" bit regards the digital, not the analogue cable. There is some difference on the analogue side between cables.

    p.s. sorry for the OT comments,

    Regards,
    Rolf
     
    RolfeZ, Sep 13, 2006
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  13. alby

    mr cat Member of the month

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    in my experience - I had upgraded my transport from a yammy to my nad (same dac) and there was a huge improvement...
     
    mr cat, Sep 13, 2006
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  14. alby

    alby Its good enough for Jazz!

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    Still pondering but having looked further into it

    External DAC looks the best option , then look for something to replace the Arcam with but
    Behringer src 2496 - seems good but a low WAF (a bit industrial looking)
    Benchmark DAC1 at £725 a bit more than I can afford
    Litedac - seem good value
    Moon - could not locate

    Alby
     
    alby, Sep 13, 2006
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  15. alby

    Tenson Moderator

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    Also consider the Behringer DEQ4296, it is the same DAC as the SRC but for an extra £100 you get digital room correction as well.

    Am I the only one who thinks maybe an amp upgrade is more in order than a CD player?
     
    Tenson, Sep 13, 2006
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  16. alby

    alby Its good enough for Jazz!

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    Tenson " Am I the only one who thinks maybe an amp upgrade is more in order than a CD player? "

    No I quite agree I do need a new amp and am looking to spend about £1000 but I cannot quite make a decision as to which to choose - Integrated - 100 watts plus - far to much choice

    Thanks Alby
     
    alby, Sep 13, 2006
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  17. alby

    Mr_Sukebe

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    Unfortunately yes. I used to own an Arcam 7se, and can confirm that it was completely overhyped and easily blown away by a number of CD players and DACs out there.

    Ref the transport issue, my own Bel Canto Dac2 is meant to be "jitter resistant" and "transport independant". Can't say I'm convinced.
     
    Mr_Sukebe, Sep 13, 2006
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  18. alby

    Tenson Moderator

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    Its a CD82 not a 7SE, as it was upgraded. I was under the impression the CD82 is a pretty fair player really. I doubt the Behringer stuff would improve on it in stock form, though the room correction of the DEQ is a big upgrade.
     
    Tenson, Sep 13, 2006
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  19. alby

    pixies a menace to society

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    why can't you be a nice and cuddly little kitty like mr cat?

    just one look at his avater and i purr and stroke my knee:JPS:
     
    pixies, Sep 13, 2006
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  20. alby

    zanash

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    she's very friendly and only get red eyes when she hungry.........

    actually she sneezedv as I took the photo ....so you get a real birds eye view!
     
    zanash, Sep 14, 2006
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