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Hard drive connectivity?


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I just got a 500 GB Western digital firewire drive to upgrade from a USB 1.0 hard drive that is fine for 16/44.1 up to 24/96, but which cannot handle 24/176 or 24/192 files. I cannot figure out the connectivity. There is one firewire port on my Macbook Pro, and it is hooked to a Weiss DAC2. Can I chain the fire wire devices: Macbook Pro -> HD -> DAC2? Can the DAC2, which has two firewire inputs, be linked to the computer and the HD simultaneously, as it were in parallel? There is a provision for a USB 2.0 connector on the hard drive, but the other end of the cable looks like a USB 1.0 connection? What's the story about that? To bamboozle me yet more, there is an input on the HD for eSATA. What kind of a cable goes in that port, and where does the other end of the cable go on the Macbook Pro? Is eSATA faster, slower, or just different from firewire and USB 2.0?

 

 

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Hi lapaix - You should be able to daisy chain the FireWire devices, but I recommend using the USB port on your hard drive and laptop. USB 1 and USB 2 have identical connectors. I can guarantee you that you'll get the High Sped USB 2.0 conenction if you use USB. This will separate your DAC from the Data nicely. eSATA is really cool and very fast, but laptops with eSATA ports are harder to come by. You can always get an eSATA ExpressCard, but that could be a story for another day :~)

 

USB -> Hard drive

FireWire -> DAC

 

You'll be all good.

 

Founder of Audiophile Style

UPDATED: My Audio Systems -> https://audiophile.style/system

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Thanks Chris. I set it up with the USB 2.0 cable as you suggested, but strangely, as with my USB 1.0 drive, when I play Kent Poon's 24/192 files I get a tremendous amount of "hash." This does not happen with 24/96 (either drive). I am very reluctant to spend $45 per 24/176 or 24/192 disk until I am certain everything is working perfectly. The DAC2 is certainly great on 24/96 files, and even garden variety CDs are superb, but I'd love to hear it on truly high res music. I found an eSATA PCI express card for ~$31, but still haven't located the right eSATA cable; I think I will go that route.

 

Another question entirely: I have a few Reference Recordings HDCDs and I wonder if the DAC2 is playing them as HDCDs or if that information is lost somewhere in translation.

 

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OK, eSATA should work excellent for you. eSATA cables are available everywhere. You should be able to order one with the ExpressCard.

 

The DAC2 does not have an HDCD decoder, but that's not the biggest deal in the world. I wouldn't worry about it. As long as you have the iTunes volume at 100% and the sample rate set to match the audio you're playing, the output should be bit perfect.

 

Founder of Audiophile Style

UPDATED: My Audio Systems -> https://audiophile.style/system

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