List of DACs "Under $450"

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JohnR

Re: List of DACs "Under $450"
« Reply #20 on: 11 Jan 2012, 02:24 am »
The purpose of the higher priced DACs, for me, is just for technical comparison. I am not trying to catalog all DACs, just lower priced DACs; some higher priced ones have been added for WOW factor.

Are the prices of the DIY options the raw boards/components only? (i.e. not including case, power supply etc)

Do you include digital crossovers with digital input and analog output (as they are, after all, DACs)?

Netdewt

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Re: List of DACs "Under $450"
« Reply #21 on: 11 Jan 2012, 03:07 am »
Are the prices of the DIY options the raw boards/components only? (i.e. not including case, power supply etc)

Do you include digital crossovers with digital input and analog output (as they are, after all, DACs)?

Yes, and some of them are totally made up. I wanted them to place somewhere on the list, so I gave them all a price. I honestly have no idea what some of the DIY DACs would cost, plus it all depends on if you build cheap or expensive. Some DIY kits come with PSU, most don't... ideas on how I should do that? Some of the DIY DACs listed are just plans, no one even makes a board (like the ezDAC, and the discontinued Monica).

No, honestly I've never heard of a digital crossover before. I vaguely understand what crossovers do for speakers, that's about it. I made this list to learn because I don't do this for a living, it's just a hobby, and one of many.

The criteria for the list were:

- it must be an external DAC, so that it can be used in a stereo system easily, no plug in cards to other components or internal PC cards

- it must have outs to an amp, headphone out only DACs are excluded

- it must be a stand alone unit - I realize this excludes great stuff like the Peachtree integrateds and CD players with digital inputs, but it just gets too confusing. Although I did include headamp/DAC combos because there are a lot of them and they don't seem to add to the cost too much

Rocket_Ronny

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Re: List of DACs "Under $450"
« Reply #22 on: 11 Jan 2012, 03:11 am »

I think that Netdewt has done an amazing job compiling the list of dacs under $450.00 and even though it includes higher priced units I would hate to see this thread moved.

I still think Netdewt has too much time on his hands.  :lol:


Rocket_Ronny

JohnR

Re: List of DACs "Under $450"
« Reply #23 on: 11 Jan 2012, 07:45 am »
No, honestly I've never heard of a digital crossover before. I vaguely understand what crossovers do for speakers, that's about it. I made this list to learn because I don't do this for a living, it's just a hobby, and one of many.

It's like a DAC, except that instead of a single channel out, it has two or more. You can still use any of them with just a single output channel output though.

I'll post some links for consideration a bit later.

mouse

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Re: List of DACs "Under $450"
« Reply #24 on: 12 Jan 2012, 06:07 am »
The list is a great reference tool.  Thanks for putting in the time.

charmerci

Re: List of DACs "Under $450"
« Reply #25 on: 12 Jan 2012, 07:57 pm »
I noticed that you only listed the inputs on the DAC's. When I was searching for a cheap DAC with a headphone jack, it was important that I also had RCA outputs. (I bought a NuForce uDAC2 that also has a coax output.)

I noticed that outputs aren't listed. I know it might more work that you might not want to do. Just saying.

Netdewt

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Re: List of DACs "Under $450"
« Reply #26 on: 12 Jan 2012, 08:07 pm »
The criteria for the list were:
- it must have outs to an amp, headphone out only DACs are excluded

All DACs on the list should have RCA outs, unless I missed some. I suppose it's possible that one with only balanced outs got on the list, but I'm pretty sure everything has RCA. If it only has headphone out, I meant to exclude it completely from the list.

Is that what you mean?

charmerci

Re: List of DACs "Under $450"
« Reply #27 on: 13 Jan 2012, 06:27 am »
All DACs on the list should have RCA outs, unless I missed some. I suppose it's possible that one with only balanced outs got on the list, but I'm pretty sure everything has RCA. If it only has headphone out, I meant to exclude it completely from the list.

Is that what you mean?

Yup, sounds good! (Pun intended.  :green:)  Now that you mention that headphone-out-only DAC's are excluded, I noticed that the Fiio's aren't there.

Poultrygeist

Re: List of DACs "Under $450"
« Reply #28 on: 15 Jan 2012, 01:36 am »
I've enjoyed the Audio-gd NFB-11. It is a combo DAC/Pre/HP amp with high/low gain controls, volume control, RCA outs and USB/optical/coax inputs. At $250 it's C&C.

wisnon

Re: List of DACs "Under $450"
« Reply #29 on: 5 Mar 2012, 12:09 am »
Did everyone see this cheerful review?http://stereomojo.com/Grant%20Audio%20Tube%20DAC11.htm/GrantAudioTubeDAC11.htm

Letitroll98

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Re: List of DACs "Under $450"
« Reply #30 on: 5 Mar 2012, 04:47 pm »
Well now I see it.  Pretty glowing review.

brother love

Re: List of DACs "Under $450"
« Reply #31 on: 5 Mar 2012, 05:16 pm »
Did everyone see this cheerful review?http://stereomojo.com/Grant%20Audio%20Tube%20DAC11.htm/GrantAudioTubeDAC11.htm

Thanks wisnon !  :thumb:   I'll reference this in the Cheap & Cheerful DAC-11 thread.

makevisible

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Re: List of DACs "Under $450"
« Reply #32 on: 20 Mar 2012, 04:00 am »
This is a great list. Very helpful. Thanks.

Noseyears

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Re: List of DACs "Under $450"
« Reply #33 on: 17 Apr 2012, 12:08 am »
Did everyone see this cheerful review?http://stereomojo.com/Grant%20Audio%20Tube%20DAC11.htm/GrantAudioTubeDAC11.htm

This dac is built by Yulong. Chinese company but they have demonstrated that cheap doesnt mean poor quality.

Lyndon

Re: List of DACs "Under $450"
« Reply #34 on: 17 Apr 2012, 01:31 am »
Netdewt,
This is diy, but should come under your $450 mark, or get very close.  I'm listening to Sheldon's dac
for the past month, and it is really good.

Link:
http://getinthewoodchipper.com/?p=302

dB Cooper

Re: List of DACs "Under $450"
« Reply #35 on: 17 Apr 2012, 03:13 am »
It would be nice to see a similar list of headphone amps...

tomwhite

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Re: List of DACs "Under $450"
« Reply #36 on: 11 Jul 2012, 01:08 am »
It would be nice to see a similar list of headphone amps...

Been working on a list for a while, but they are mixed with 1k amps. Will try to have this organized soon.

mick wolfe

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Re: List of DACs "Under $450"
« Reply #37 on: 18 Jul 2012, 09:57 am »
I started making this list over on AudioKarma, just thought I'd share here too. The list has expanded beyond a $450 limit, in many cases just for comparison, but that price point and under is still the focus. I got the $450 number from the Cambridge DacMagic. It was the most expensive DAC I could see myself buying when I started the list. For the record, I still do not own a proper DAC because I can't decide!  :|

There are plenty of holes in the data. If you can help or have anything to add, post here and I'll see what I can do, or send me a message and I'll add you as a collaborator.

List of DACs "Under $450"

I'm basically looking to spend under $500 as well and the first two that got my attention were the Schitt ( hope the spelling is correct )Bifrost and the Grant Fidelity Tube DAC 11. The Tube DAC gets some praise here at AC while the Bifrost seems to have a following over at AudioAsylum. However, neither seem to be a slam dunk in their stock form, but that's just me trying to read between the lines.

tricka

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Re: List of DACs "Under $450"
« Reply #38 on: 18 Jul 2012, 10:05 am »
Bifrost first last and in between. Heard in a 50 k syatem last week and it didn't disgrace itself.

Needs 150 hrs burn in. Optical is better than spdif. DO NOT get the usb verison - the toslink from a Mac is better.

cheers


adydula

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Re: List of DACs "Under $450"
« Reply #39 on: 27 Jul 2012, 02:16 pm »
Do you have the ODAC on the list from:

http://nwavguy.blogspot.com/

$99 from JDSLabs...

Have one on the way!
Alex