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Dac recommendation for betted synergy with system

Rega

vineetrad

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Hi guys,

I need some help with achieving a better synergy and balance with my current powered speakers and subwoofer.

Currently I have a hifimediy Sabre 9108 dac that feeds into a Cambridge Minx subwoofer and then goes into a pair of Epos Aktimate powered speakers.

The current setup is quite accurate and has good clarity but is sometimes too analytical and fatiguing for longer sessions. What dac would you suggest that can make the setup more musical, laidback, more fun basically. I have also realized that I also prefer slightly rolled off highs and lush minds over ultra detail. I know a lot of options to do this can be by changing the speakers but that's currently not an option. Want to see if a more suitable dac can improve things.

The room has a decent damping with a mix of carpet, curtains. The speaker cables I bought from profx are decent and rca interconnects are Bainbridge - not expensive but not ultra cheapo. My music is mostly flac with some 320kbps. Dsd, and high resolution audio I don't need.

I guess a truly neutral dac isn't what I need to balance my bright system... perhaps something a bit warmer and slightly coloured?

I am considering currently the arcam Irdac, adding the the iFi Itube as a buffer stage, aune to mk2, the Music Fidelity v90.

Have tried the Dragonfly Red and Geekout 1000 which didn't do much. I guess the Sabres are not a good choice.

Do let me know your suggestions!
 

vineetrad

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Thanks! I am also looking at the Rega dac. I can fit it for a decent used price from the UK when I travel there in a few months. Would it be better than the arcam?


What about audio GD. I see there is a d-19 anniversary edition on sale currently in the forum.
 
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vineetrad

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Ideal situation is below 20k. Hard limit for an exceptional dac that fits my specific needs is 50k. My concern with the 50k is that my current speakers probably are not good enough to make the increased benefit of a 50k dac sufficiently noticeable. But willing to pick as an investment if the sound is something I can fall in love with ??

Please factor in that I can purchase used from the UK so 20k and 50k I guess can get me a bit farther than buying in India. Obviously though will prefer a quick India deal though. Am impatient ??

Have a pair of audeze sine headphones also that I am sure will appreciate the 50k dac.
 
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tuff

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Have you tried re-positioning the speakers? or some light room treatment? Like a rug on the floor can do wonders to harsh sounding systems. Are your walls bare naked with hard surfacing? Try some simple things like adding curtains or pillows to get the reflection points.
Try it before you spend your hard earned moolah on anything especially if you are happy with most of the performance. Maybe a pic of your setup will help.
 
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vineetrad

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Hi tuff,

As mentioned before the room has curtains and some carpeting. Yes I've done extensive speaker positioning, tried different toe ins and managed to eliminate most acoustic issues. Am happy on that front.

I know the dac is partly the problem because even with my denon d2000, audeze sine and HD 598 headphones the detail increases when I use this dac which is nice but it is fatiguing for longer durations
 
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JayaRaa

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look at meridian explorer, arcam irdac. both will fit well within your budget & absolutely ideal for your requirements.
 
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regeHA

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Thanks! I am also looking at the Rega dac. I can fit it for a decent used price from the UK when I travel there in a few months. Would it be better than the arcam?


What about audio GD. I see there is a d-19 anniversary edition on sale currently in the forum.

I have used both, and while I like Rega Research, Arcam won the DAC battle for my money very easily. It's one of the most enjoyable DACs I have ever heard, only bettered by the Schiit multibit DACs, but that's more of a personal thing/preference as some of us folks prefer the NOS DAC sound signature, and the Schiit's bring in some of that realism at a budget.
 
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vineetrad

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Oh that's interesting. I would have expected the Rega to have been better with the linear power supply compared to the Irdac's wallwart

Not looking at the Irdac 2 since it uses the sabre chip instead of the Irdac burr Brown.

On a completely different track, how about the Chord Mojo?
 
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vineetrad

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How much better is the Irdac over the older Arcam Rdac? If I am after the Arcam house sound that many of you have suggested will the Rdac suffice or is the Irdac much better and worth waiting a few months to get from the UK at a higher cost?
 
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vineetrad

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i used the meridian explorer usb dac and i think it will fit your needs.

Thanks. So Arcam and to a lesser extent Meridian seem to be the two main suggestions..

So it's between the arcam Irdac, Rdac, Meridian Explorer it seems? The main question for me I guess is without reinvesting 80k to several lakhs into a new amp and speaker combo will the additional benefits of the Irdac, Irdac2 be worth it over the cheaper Rdac and Explorer for my current mini systems of powered speakers and the Cambridge audio minx sub?

The more I read about the Chord it seems it moves things again towards the high derail less relaxed sound so that is out unless someone can tell me otherwise
 
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vineetrad

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Ok read up a bit on the recently launched Acoustic Portrait Swara at 20k and the reviews on hifivision by the few who tried it. Seems quite promising and the Nas wifi play functionality seems quite useful. Confused now..
 
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music4mhell

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Ok read up a bit on the recently launched Acoustic Portrait Swara at 20k and the reviews on hifivision by the few who tried it. Seems quite promising and the Nas wifi play functionality seems quite useful. Confused now..

I am in Bangalore, you can listen to my Mojo, i use it with my Genelec Speakers..!!
 
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