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A/D converter


ronfint
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I'm currently using an Apogee Duet as an A/D converter for the purpose of digitizing LPs. I think that it works well, but I'm wondering what converters (upper limit $2500, say) would make a major difference in quality. I have a DAC (Weiss DAC2) that I really like; so I don't want to buy an A/D + D/A converter. Also, I won't consider converters that will force me to jump through hoops to connect to my computer (MacBook Pro). Maybe now I've reduced the field to Apogee -- I'm not sure.

 

Anyway, if someone has a favorite converter that they think is much better than a Duet, I'd like to hear about it.

 

Thanks,

Ron

 

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Apogee Rosetta 200 ($1795) with the X-Firewire expansion card ($355) for a simple connection. I know you don't need the DA but there really aren't a lot of options for strictly A/D purpose with simple connectivity given your price range. Most A/D converters out there would require you to go through a few hoops considering your Macbook Pro.

 

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

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+1 on the ULN-2 recommendation.

 

This device is designed to work with Macs only.

 

The preamps/ADCs are spectacular, and would beat out anything in your price range IMO.

 

Check Gearslutz though for more informed opinions.

 

clay

 

 

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These are some interesting suggestions. I wasn't aware of the Benchmark product.

Would there be limitations on its utility coming from a usb connection? I know that digital out via usb has problems with 96/24 (except for asynchronous usb). Would digital in have the same problems?

 

The ULN2 does look great -- but somehow I feel foolish having an extra dac in my living room.

 

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"The ULN2 does look great -- but somehow I feel foolish having an extra dac in my living room."

 

It's sooooo much more than a DAC. It does everything, and stuff you can't even imagine.

To not get one for that reason would be to cut off the proverbial nose, IMO..

 

That said, I sometimes feel foolish using it (mostly) as just a DAC. ;)

 

John Atkinson uses one for on location Stereophile recordings. It's that good, although he's also using the Mic pres.

 

clay

 

 

PS, USB is NOT Benchmark's strength, IMO. I would NOT switch from your current Firewire to USB, in any event.

 

 

 

 

 

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Hi Ron - USB out does not have problems with 24/96 as a whole. Certain USB implementations such as Benchmark's handle 24/96 without any issues whatsoever. There are other USB DACs that use inferior technology and only go up to 16/48k. I haven't used the Benchmark ADC but I'm willing to bet the digital input would not have any glaring problems.

 

Founder of Audiophile Style

Announcing The Audiophile Style Podcast

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you and Clay may have a point on the ULN-2 with its firewire input into a mac. I'll pass on making comments on the Rosetta and the Benchmark should be a test as far as I am concerned.

 

Ron, with your permission I would like to add one more unit to the list, but you should know I represent the product line first:)

 

Jesus R

www.sonore.us

 

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thanks for having an open mind. Lynx Studio Technology has a unit called the Aurora 8 with a firewire interface and its under your posted max cost. It has 24-bit/192kHz Mastering Quality A/D and D/A Converters. I know you asked for just the ad converter, but this is worth taking a look at. Call Lynx tech support and ask them to compare it to the Appogee;)

 

Clay, no more than the ULN-2 is a stand alone....hehehe I thought the firewire aspect might get you excited though:)

 

Jesus R

www.sonore.us

 

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"Clay, no more than the ULN-2 is a stand alone....hehehe I thought the firewire aspect might get you excited though:)"

 

Re my standalone comment, I meant as opposed to a PCI card. I had forgotten about the Aurora. Yes, he would need/want the Firewire option, which unfortunately puts it at 50% premium over the ULN-2 (based on B&H prices - $2295 for Aurora and $1495 (via "email me a lower price" option) for the '2). Maybe you can cut that difference in half for him? :)

 

Looks like it can handle up to 192k (can you confirm, the page is a bit misleading), whereas the ULN-2 maxes out at 2 channels and 96k.

 

http://www.lynxstudio.com/product_detail.asp?i=50

 

As I suggested upstream, Ron might want to check Gearslutz for more informed opinions on the ADCs. I assume you're not interested in the Mic Pres, Ron?

 

clay

 

 

 

 

 

 

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my bad I misunderstood you!

 

Actually, the specs are misleading so I looked at the info for the firewire interface and it is up to 96k only....DARN IT. Any dealer can work with him on the price, but it can't be posted.....strick rules apply

 

Ron, don't sweat it we like doing this.....

 

Jesus R

www.sonore.us

 

 

 

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Perhaps these are questions best answered by mastering engineers that use and compare ADs as a profession. Mastering engineers have high standards and credible reference points.

 

I know factually there are several engineers in the bay area, (San Francisco, CA), that actually calibrated 8 ADs for to evaluate for their work. I'll see if any of them have the time to comment.

 

Best regards,

 

Tim Marutani

 

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Regardless of the opinion, mastering engineers have been working with these tools, (ADs), on a daily basis for quite some time. They can even identify the most favorable sample rates ADs and DAs preform and most can tell us why.

 

I mention this as needle drops, (analogue capture), is a timely process. It may be a shame to transfer 500 albums only to discover a better method was obtainable.

 

Perhaps within this forum one should also discuss defining methodology.

 

Best regards,

 

Tim Marutani

 

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makes me want to hit the estate sales this weekend and put my card to work:) It would be interestig to hear the sample rate recommenadtions, but your own dac will have a bunch to do with that right?

 

Jesus R

www.sonore.us

 

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... you might want to read some of the information on:

http://www.clickrepair.net/

 

I`m currently fronted with a friends Vinyl collection (about 4000 LPs), and also thinking about how to get this properly done.

As Tim just suggested, its better to think twice _before_ any action has been taken ...

 

I´m also thinking about a resolution to get the RIAA done by the software (recording without a phono pre-amp).

See also: http://www.channld.com/pure-vinyl.html

 

Cheers

Harald

 

Esoterc SA-60 / Foobar2000 -> Mytek Stereo 192 DSD / Audio-GD NFB 28.38 -> MEG RL922K / AKG K500 / AKG K1000  / Audioquest Nighthawk / OPPO PM-2 / Sennheiser HD800 / Sennheiser Surrounder / Sony MA900 / STAX SR-303+SRM-323II

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"...but your own dac will have a bunch to do with that right?"

 

Yes, and there's also a practical matter here, unless one has unlimited disk space and high bandwidth (Firewire800 or e-sata).

 

96kHz files take up about 33Mb per minute (I didn't 'do the math', just eyeballed some files in my library); where as 192k should clock in at twice that. I didn't record these, but presume them to be 24bit due to the size. For those that even thought twice about ripping to lossless (as opposed to AIFF/WAV), the increase in file size from a jump to 192 would need to be weighed against the sonic benefits.

 

Clay

 

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