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Optical or USB output to use? MacBook Pro

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I'd like to find out how good is optical output module in MacBook Pro, Unibody? I've been told it is still cheap element that adds jitter and so on... Alternatively, I tried to use Airport Express which work fine with the optics: I really didn't find any sonic difference, which is surprise.


Let say I use short glass optical cable (Wire World Super Nova) to the external DAC, and then goes DIY tube amp, DIY wires and DIY monitors. So I'd like to find out the best option to get the music from MBP.


In other words: is the optical module really that much critical overall? What do you prefer, optical or USB and why?


Thank you.



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I was running USB out of my Mac Mini into a Musical Fidelity V-DAC.... into my heaphone amp!


Then I recently tried a high quality quartz optical cable out and to my surprise.... could not really tell a difference!


I'd say go with USB based on my findings.... but take into consideration that this is my headphone rig...


Have not tried it through my main sound system...


as the saying goes.. YMMW!






Drew.[br]Totem Model 1 Signature\'s

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If understood properly you want to use your present DAC.


1. You do not plan to listen to hires above 24bit/96khz . Use the optical out.

2. You are planning to use hi-res files above 24bit/96khz buy M2tech Hiface (99 Euro) and a coax cable.

3. For listening to readbook USB is OK (I suspect you have a generic USB DAC i.e. no special drives required

i.e max up to 24bit / 48kHz.


Firewire is also OK but you do not have a firewire DAC, or?






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