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New to CA: DAC Question


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I currently have a desktop music system using a Squeezebox (until I can reclaim the living room from my kids, then I plan on upgrading). I am looking at several DAC's (Music Hall dac 25.2, V-Dac, and the PS Audio Digital Link III). I have not listened to any of them yet but is there a way to determine what these will do when fed a hi-res file? For example, if I were to try and play a 24/96 file through the V-Dac would it accept it? And if so would it downsample them upsample it? The specs on these don't seem to provide this information.

 

Thanks

Mark

 

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Hi Mark,

 

As a very general rule counts : when you really know what to look for and how to interpret specs on it, and it is not in the specs, it won't do it.

 

I hope this can help you; I find this to be true always.

 

Peter

 

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XXHighEnd (developer)

Phasure NOS1 24/768 Async USB DAC (manufacturer)

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Mark, the Music Hall DAC upsamples to either 96 or 192khz selectable. The V-DAC and PS Audio DLIII both upsample to 192khz without an option for eliminating it. If you are looking for something that will pass different sample rates straight through I would look at other options. Personally I don't like my audio upsampled, to my ears the music takes on a sonic signature that leaves little variation when switching between sample rates that takes the fun out of having different quality material. Just my preference though. I will look around at other converters and let you know.

 

david is hear[br]http://www.tuniverse.tv

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Mark,

Do you intend to connect the DAC directly to your computer or continue using the squeezebox but the digital output?

 

If the latter, then your squeezebox / squeezecenter is already downsampling to 16/44.1 so what sample rates the DAC can accept is irrelevant.

 

Eloise

 

Eloise

---

...in my opinion / experience...

While I agree "Everything may matter" working out what actually affects the sound is a trickier thing.

And I agree "Trust your ears" but equally don't allow them to fool you - trust them with a bit of skepticism.

keep your mind open... But mind your brain doesn't fall out.

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Actually, the Squeezeboxes (either Classic or Duet) can handle 24/96 and 24/192 res tracks by downsampling to 24/48 (via SOX). I would certainly recommend a DAC that can handle at least 24/96 streams (if not 24/192) to make it somewhat future-proof! Alternatively, you might consider the Transporter, which natively handles 24/96 without downsampling.

 

Squeezebox Touch/Benchmark DAC-1 and Oppo BDP-95 > Conrad-Johnson CT5 preamp and Premier 350 amp > ML Summits. Member of the Suncoast Audiophile Society.

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Sorry, you're right it downsamples to 24/48. But whatever it downsamples to there is a conversion done.

 

I was just trying to male the OP aware before he bought a DAC then wondered why he wasn't getting 24/96 into of from his squeezebox, not saying he shouldn't buy a 24/96 capable DAC.

 

Eloise

---

...in my opinion / experience...

While I agree "Everything may matter" working out what actually affects the sound is a trickier thing.

And I agree "Trust your ears" but equally don't allow them to fool you - trust them with a bit of skepticism.

keep your mind open... But mind your brain doesn't fall out.

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My intention would be to us the DAC directly from the computer as a separate source. I have two squeezeboxes that I use as a inexpensive version of "whole house" audio which works fine so I don't necessarily need to change that. I also what future proof any purchase of a DAC. Based on what I have read here there are only a few DAC's that handle up to 24/192 natively.

 

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Take a look at the AQVOX, handles up to 192 kHz/24 bits, has the option to defeat upsampling and a good headphone amplifier. However, like in many other DACs the maximum transfer rate will depend on the type of connection used. Usually USB is used only up to 48 kHz (can go higher in USB 2.0 protocol but manufacturers avoid this because needs specific drivers), Firewire 800 goes to 192 kHz like in the Weiss Minerva, Toslink up to 96 kHz although it can handle 192 kHz in certain cases, coax 75 ohms and AES/EBU 110 ohms up to 192 kHz).

 

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