What Multi Channel DAC?

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jmdesignz2

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What Multi Channel DAC?
« on: 23 Sep 2016, 12:02 am »
What Multi Channel DAC?
Currently using a Metric Halo LIO 8 in my main system with Aerial 10T (v2) and McCormack DNA1 DLX monoblocks. Sounds pretty good but I've run into some niggling issues and wondering if there is a better way out there.

I need at least 4 channels so I can run my dual subs + the mains and would be nice to have all 8 to run a center channel and perhaps some rears later.

Source is Macbook pro hi-rez files output through firewire to LIO8 via Decibel. Would like to retain Macbook pro output as I have integrated my DVD player via pass through to the LIO8 which works amazingly well.

Thanks for any suggestions :)
Oh yeah - budget is sub $4k

richidoo

Re: What Multi Channel DAC?
« Reply #1 on: 23 Sep 2016, 01:32 am »
Exasound e28  Starts $3300

Mike in NC

Re: What Multi Channel DAC?
« Reply #2 on: 10 Oct 2016, 07:02 pm »
Another DAC to consider (at a lower price point than the exasound) is the Lynx Hilo. This pro/consumer unit can be used in a 2.2 system, because it has a main output and a monitor output with independent DACs. I have used it for a 2.1 system connected to a PC by USB, so it can receive the 4 channels.  There is a firewire version for slightly more. You would have to see if its features are right for you. The sound in excellent -- some users prefer it to more expensive DACs. 

The Hilo is available at a Head-Fi discount: http://www.head-fi.org/t/552695/lynx-hilo-new-offering-from-pro-audio-company

I have not heard the exasound, but someone I respect thinks highly of it.

HTH

bmoura

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Re: What Multi Channel DAC?
« Reply #3 on: 1 Nov 2016, 10:21 am »

richidoo

Re: What Multi Channel DAC?
« Reply #4 on: 1 Nov 2016, 03:38 pm »
Another good one from the pro side is RME Fireface with 8/8ch io.
http://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/FirefaceUC

The advantage of the "audiophile" brands over the pro audio brands is more refinement.

mojave

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Re: What Multi Channel DAC?
« Reply #5 on: 1 Nov 2016, 05:20 pm »
I still have a Lynx Aurora 16 Thunderbolt and have used a Lynx Halo. However, what I use now is the MOTU 1248. It has the best sound quality and the best drivers I've ever used. It can can be used with Thunderbolt, USB, or Ethernet on a Mac. It (and all MOTU DAC's) and the Lynx Halo are some of the few DAC's that have DC-Coupled analog outputs. This eliminates phase shift and rolloff in the bass output of the mains or subs which happens on most DAC's. For subwoofer use, the MOTU has PEQ filters for reducing peaks caused by room modes. The MOTU can be completely controlled with a web browser or the iOS app.

Besides sound quality, the MOTU 1248 has these benefits over the Lynx products:
  • Automatic sample rate switching
  • App support and web browser control
  • Routing of any input to any output
  • Two high quality headphone outputs - can be used simultaneously with analog output, but with different content from the analog outputs if using JRiver Media Center
  • Multi-client ASIO driver
  • Output trim range of 24 dBu for matching speaker levels
  • Lowest noise floor of any DAC
  • Auto-mute on ESS Sabre DAC chips so no pops on turn on/off even if amps are on - the Lynx products have the loudest pops of any audio device I've used
  • High pass filter available if using ported subwoofers
  • Parametric equalization on both the inputs and outputs of all channels
  • 32-bit volume control can be used if supported by source software
  • Source software only needs to dither to 32-bit output if source software supports it
  • Unused channels for listening room/theater can be used simultaneously for other zones in the house

The MOTU Ultralite AVB and Ultralite-MK4 do have 8 outputs. However, they have 24-bit DAC chips which pop on turn on/off and don't sound as good as the 32-bit Sabre chips.

scottm_dj

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Re: What Multi Channel DAC?
« Reply #6 on: 6 Oct 2017, 01:15 am »
I have the exasound e28 and love it--one of my favorite pieces of equipment.  It works fantastically with J River off a laptop and let's face it Oppo's built in DAC will never be made multi-channel.   You can find these for about half off the retail price on the used market--especially with the e38 now on the scene.  I would love to have that with the upgraded PRO chip, but obviously would be substantially more. 

bmoura

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Re: What Multi Channel DAC?
« Reply #7 on: 15 Oct 2017, 04:24 pm »
Let's face it Oppo's built in DAC will never be made multi-channel.

Depends on which Oppo product you have.
The Oppo 103, 105, 203 and 205 all offer Multichannel DSD 64 and FLAC music file playback.


Mag

Re: What Multi Channel DAC?
« Reply #8 on: 15 Oct 2017, 05:05 pm »
I'm using a Bryston BDA-1 analog outs to Bryston SP2 in digital mode. Previous to that my receiver was a Yamaha, but the Bryston SP2 is in another league. So the signal is going through 2 dac's.

Currently I use the SP2 balanced outs to a mixer for 4-channel stereo. Don't use a sub, don't need one as I get plenty of bass, but I was using a sub before it crapped out.

With my cd player I use its internal dac and use the SP2 in bypass mode to mixer for 4-channel stereo. :smoke:

scottm_dj

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Re: What Multi Channel DAC?
« Reply #9 on: 19 Dec 2017, 01:02 am »
Depends on which Oppo product you have.
The Oppo 103, 105, 203 and 205 all offer Multichannel DSD 64 and FLAC music file playback.

Yes....locally off a flash drive it does all that...but I was speaking of USB in MultiChannel support.  The Oppos will never offer this.

I may upgrade my Exasound E28 to the E38 for the Pro ESS chip but i need to make sure i could sell the E28 first.   Preliminary stages...