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I need help selecting my 1st DAC


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Hello

 

im reaching out to all the knowledgeable guys here on the forum. This will be my 1st DAC and need some guidance and direction.

 

Looking for a DAC to connect to a new Mac mini I just bought. Need advice on something that would work well with my system components. I'm thinking $1400 max but don't want something that's overkill for my gear or not good enough either.

 

Needs to have DSD support. This is very important. I have a lot of ripped SACDs

 

i have a Marantz SR6009 AVR that could act as a pre amp if need be.

My Marantz feeds a Rogue Atlas tube amp and Vienna Acoustics Motzart Grande SE speakers.

 

thanks for your input.

Lumin U1 Streamer - Holo May DAC

REL Acoustics S/510 Sub Woofer

Hegel H590 amp KEF Reference 3 loudspeakers

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Hi. Do you have access to dealers you trust, in order to get a demo DAC or two inhouse? We will give you 50 recommendations, but they mean very little compared to what the DAC does in your system.

 

What kind of music do you listen to? How would you describe your perfect sound quality (ie do you love tube warmth, soundtsgaing, depth, imaging, tones and timbre, detail, hyper detail "I never heard that chair creak like that", ....probably all of the above..but how would you rank them? And how would you describe your system today? Does it tend to, when given a new piece of equipment, risk leaning too warm, too clinical, too this, too that?

 

Many find the DACs based on SABRE chips to be hyper detailed but requiring a good dose of tube warmth...which I would guess you already have. So that is a good thing, since SABRE dacs appear in your budget range.

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Hi. Do you have access to dealers you trust, in order to get a demo DAC or two inhouse? We will give you 50 recommendations, but they mean very little compared to what the DAC does in your system.

 

What kind of music do you listen to? How would you describe your perfect sound quality (ie do you love tube warmth, soundtsgaing, depth, imaging, tones and timbre, detail, hyper detail "I never heard that chair creak like that", ....probably all of the above..but how would you rank them? And how would you describe your system today? Does it tend to, when given a new piece of equipment, risk leaning too warm, too clinical, too this, too that?

 

Many find the DACs based on SABRE chips to be hyper detailed but requiring a good dose of tube warmth...which I would guess you already have. So that is a good thing, since SABRE dacs appear in your budget range.

 

Wow that's a lot to think about but do have some thoughts.

 

I really don't have any local dealers.

 

I listen to mostly to Jazz guitar, piano and sax music that has quiet passages. Also a little more rock based stuff sometimes such as Steely Dan.

 

I do like warmth in the sound and that's when I added the tube amp and it's been great.

After that detail and depth would be most important followed by the others.

 

As far as my system when playing some music through the Marantz (it has some kinda built in DAC) the sound maybe a bit too warm and lacking in detail.

Lumin U1 Streamer - Holo May DAC

REL Acoustics S/510 Sub Woofer

Hegel H590 amp KEF Reference 3 loudspeakers

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Well,

 

I ended up going with the Oppo HA-1 headphone/preamp/dac ($1199).

This unit seemed to meet my needs for connectivity over the other DACs.

 

The headphone output and home theatre Bypass were the deciding factors for me in the 1000ish price range. I selected it over the Mytek Stereo 192 ($1495) and Wyred 4 sound DAC1-LE ($999).

Lumin U1 Streamer - Holo May DAC

REL Acoustics S/510 Sub Woofer

Hegel H590 amp KEF Reference 3 loudspeakers

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