May I revive this thread for a further take on this issue?
I am probably looking at the exact same options: IDA-8 or STA-9 + DAC-9.
As I see it:
The advantages of the IDA-8 are:
- One single equipment, less footprint (at least vertically!
), less cables
- One single remote control (more on this later, specially turning off the amp)
- More 'neutral' sound (this is where the real decision-making probably has to happen)
- Obviously the price!
The advantages of the STA-9 + DAC-9 are several, but for this comparison the key points would be:
- Separated equipment, room to grow
- DAC has true analog non-digitized inputs
- More power
These are the obvious ones, if I missed something, add it to the list please!.
So, down to the process I am battling with:
- I mostly hear Classical music, Opera and Mellow pop and ballads... acoustic music. Will the ultra-warm combo of 9s get in the way for the orchestra sound? Or is it so subtle I won't notice?
- The lack of a power down solution for the STA-9 has me really upset and baffled. Options suggested here are: leave it on always, or buy a remote controlled Outlet Conserve Switch Surge Protector? Really... so I would need, at the end of every night, to get up from bed and turn off the equipment? I really cannot believe that was the approach. You want to turn off your equipment? Pay $1000 more for the ST-10! This is absurd, and I am really, really torn about something so obvious and simple that should have made it into the STA-9 and which is also present on the STA-6!!!
- As I explained elsewhere, costs here vary a lot from the US, and for me, the IDA-8 would cost $1330 and the 9 combo would cost $2050. What is the perceived improvement of the STA+DAC scenario that would justify $700+ of difference? Is it something noticeable?
I am sorry for this questions, because in a regular scenario on a different country this would be easy: try both, keep your pick. That is not me though, I have to custom order either one or the other and will take as long as 60 days to get fulfilled. So, I really appreciate all the input I can get.
Thanks and best regards,