More Amazing DACs for Peanuts

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wushuliu

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Re: More Amazing DACs for Peanuts
« Reply #360 on: 3 Dec 2018, 04:45 am »
The Sabaj DA2 just arrived, color me impressed.  Works fine with my Samsung phone and HP laptop, no issues with noises or anything.  Awesome detail, good headstage, great bass impact.  Download the new driver no issues.  This is my first ESS Sabre dac and although it was a little harsh at first, an hour of break in and it smoothed right out.   What is the complaint about these chips I keep reading about?  Everyone says "if you can deal with the ESS sound", which is...

 :beer:

wushuliu

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Re: More Amazing DACs for Peanuts
« Reply #361 on: 3 Dec 2018, 04:57 am »
smsl sanskrit 10th anniversary edition.. been using it a couple weeks.. sounds great, the remote control has a very nice volume up/down feature.. and it can take an external 5v power supply.. been using my jays audio 5v linear power supply.  very nice.  uses microusb though.. wish it was usb-b

Wow, might try one out for kicks. Haven't heard an AKM DAC in a while. 4-6 month DAC turnaround time has peaked and no new chips on the horizon so the new models have more and more features for less. This SMSL has coax AND optical AND NDK clocks AND a remote for $93? Amazing.

randytsuch

Re: More Amazing DACs for Peanuts
« Reply #362 on: 3 Dec 2018, 02:23 pm »
Wow, might try one out for kicks. Haven't heard an AKM DAC in a while. 4-6 month DAC turnaround time has peaked and no new chips on the horizon so the new models have more and more features for less. This SMSL has coax AND optical AND NDK clocks AND a remote for $93? Amazing.

On massdrop, but drop ends in 18 hours, for $75

uncola

Re: More Amazing DACs for Peanuts
« Reply #363 on: 3 Dec 2018, 02:55 pm »
wushuliu one guy on headfi reviewed it and said it wasn't quite as good as sabaj da3, but I really wanted something with a remote for volume and that I could use my jay's audio 5v lps on so this was perfect.  I like the sound a lot, seems warmer than the sabaj da3. 

here's a quick video showing the remote changing volume.  it's nice and smooth and responsive
https://youtu.be/wLsQ5BVWPFw

Letitroll98

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Re: More Amazing DACs for Peanuts
« Reply #364 on: 3 Dec 2018, 03:12 pm »
Update on the Sabaj Da2 I recieved on Nov 30.  I previously said no issues with android, then the next time I tried Spotify on my Samsung the dreaded buzzing, ok on Pandora.  Then the next day Pandora buzzing as well.  Google reveals otg usb reads the Sabaj as a hard drive or worse, a device that needs charging.  Unhelpful stuff about accessing the usb settings and changing to MIDI, most android phones won't let you access that.   Finally somebody says turn the app on before hooking up the Sabaj, bingo.   I remembered this is what I had done in the previous session by chance.  So far no more buzzing, I didn't read back through the thread to see if this had been covered or not.   Any experience with this from others?

skinnie

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Re: More Amazing DACs for Peanuts
« Reply #365 on: 4 Dec 2018, 07:08 am »
Hi, just registered on this forum mainly because of this thread  :D
I was searching for a DAC/Amp for my Alessandro MS1i (Grado, 32ohm)  headphones (and my laptop). As many of you the first results on google about "cheap" DACs point you Dragonfly Red and somo ifi models.
I was searching for something cheaper, and found some other models already stated here but also this ones:
https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/ES9038Q2M-XMOS-XU208-HIFI-audio-USB-decoder-DAC-support-DSD-Headphone-amp-out/253969030505

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/ES9028Q2M-ES9028-Hi-Fi-USB-DAC-SA9023-24bit-USB-DAC-Sound-Card-3-5-Headphone-Out/264059909676

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/TOPPING-D10-DAC-ES9018K2M-XMOS-XU208-USB-Optical-Coaxial-PCM384-Native-DSD256/352345849685

Does anyone have experience with any of this ones?

wushuliu

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Re: More Amazing DACs for Peanuts
« Reply #366 on: 5 Dec 2018, 06:05 am »
On massdrop, but drop ends in 18 hours, for $75

Got one from Amazon. It's a slick looking DAC. So far sound is woolly on low end and a bit splashy on highs but good overall. Maybe not as good as Sabaj DA3, but I no longer have one to compare. The other features and remote are excellent though.

baszek

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Re: More Amazing DACs for Peanuts
« Reply #367 on: 5 Dec 2018, 02:02 pm »
So to cut a long story - what is the best budget DAC right now ?
I am thinking about that SE4:
https://item.taobao.com/item.htm?spm=a1z10.3-c.w4002-15493940501.70.763e1cfaRvjmOk&id=568408593852
there are two version:
SE4-SE ~20.86$  SA9226 processing solution + ES9028Q2M  (supporting DSD)
SE4        ~28.16$  PCM2706 +  ES9028Q2M    (not supporting DSD = PCM2706)

What do you think about that DAC ? Is it ok - I heard it is quite good considering price/value.  :D

wushuliu

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Re: More Amazing DACs for Peanuts
« Reply #368 on: 5 Dec 2018, 03:45 pm »
So to cut a long story - what is the best budget DAC right now ?
I am thinking about that SE4:
https://item.taobao.com/item.htm?spm=a1z10.3-c.w4002-15493940501.70.763e1cfaRvjmOk&id=568408593852
there are two version:
SE4-SE ~20.86$  SA9226 processing solution + ES9028Q2M  (supporting DSD)
SE4        ~28.16$  PCM2706 +  ES9028Q2M    (not supporting DSD = PCM2706)

What do you think about that DAC ? Is it ok - I heard it is quite good considering price/value.  :D

I don’t have access to nor can I order from taobao so I dont know about those dacs. They do not sound familiar.

Letitroll98

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Re: More Amazing DACs for Peanuts
« Reply #369 on: 5 Dec 2018, 10:48 pm »
I don’t have access to nor can I order from taobao so I dont know about those dacs. They do not sound familiar.

They're the Breeze Audio/ Weilang SE4 dacs.  Two models with the same ES9028Q2M chip, different usb decoders so one does DSD and the other doesn't.   Looks like about a dozen different brands marketing the same unit.

baszek

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Re: More Amazing DACs for Peanuts
« Reply #370 on: 5 Dec 2018, 11:19 pm »
They're the Breeze Audio/ Weilang SE4 dacs.  Two models with the same ES9028Q2M chip, different usb decoders so one does DSD and the other doesn't.   Looks like about a dozen different brands marketing the same unit.
I will not listen to DSD files for sure - so should I go for PCM2706 version ? Probably  SA9226 is much better/newer decoder than PCM2706.

Letitroll98

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Re: More Amazing DACs for Peanuts
« Reply #371 on: 6 Dec 2018, 02:39 pm »
I really don't know much about the usb chips or the headphone amp chips, but you can find out a great deal about them in the web.  My guess is the dsd input is usb 2.0 and the other is 1.0 so it will work better with phones.  Since that's not your intended use I'd go with the better 2.0 usb if you can confirm that.

wushuliu

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Re: More Amazing DACs for Peanuts
« Reply #372 on: 6 Dec 2018, 04:31 pm »
My guess is the dsd input is usb 2.0 and the other is 1.0 so it will work better with phones.  Since that's not your intended use I'd go with the better 2.0 usb if you can confirm that.

Agreed.

baszek

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Re: More Amazing DACs for Peanuts
« Reply #373 on: 6 Dec 2018, 05:19 pm »
Agreed.
Ok - so I will choose SA9226 version. I am searching for DAC to use with PC and connect it to DIY TPA6120 headphone amp - so probably it would be better to have proper RCA sockets on DAC (I have some good quality rca cables) - but I will also find some rca to jack cable in a shelf ;-)

zerohour88

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Re: More Amazing DACs for Peanuts
« Reply #374 on: 6 Dec 2018, 05:24 pm »
So to cut a long story - what is the best budget DAC right now ?
I am thinking about that SE4:
https://item.taobao.com/item.htm?spm=a1z10.3-c.w4002-15493940501.70.763e1cfaRvjmOk&id=568408593852
there are two version:
SE4-SE ~20.86$  SA9226 processing solution + ES9028Q2M  (supporting DSD)
SE4        ~28.16$  PCM2706 +  ES9028Q2M    (not supporting DSD = PCM2706)

What do you think about that DAC ? Is it ok - I heard it is quite good considering price/value.  :D

I have the SE4 and have it hooked constantly on my PC for more than 2 months now, I think? Installation was fairly easy, Win7 needed a driver from them (available for download), works with all software and games. Output impedance measured at 11 ohms (I might need to re-measure using a lower resistor rating, used 100 ohm to load the DAC). Unfortunately I don't use Foobar so I can't tell you if that works, but I suppose it shouldn't be an issue. Android (Samsung S5), plug-and-play with the HibyMusic app (I like the HQ USB option more than the Onkyo app), no issues though it does drain the battery, as usual.

Basic Sabre sound (not really noticeable unless your gear is also really bright and "dry"), some minor hiss when used with super sensitive IEMs like the CA Andromeda (understandable due to the 11ohm OI), gets only a bit warm to the touch.

Ran most of my high-impedance earbuds (150ohms and above) and headphones fairly easily.

baszek

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Re: More Amazing DACs for Peanuts
« Reply #375 on: 6 Dec 2018, 05:48 pm »
I have found today also SA9227+ES9038Q2M combo boards = but price is higher than SE4 ;-) sth like 43$
https://item.taobao.com/item.htm?spm=2013.1.0.0.474c319dc3FiUe&id=575728410474

zerohour88

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Re: More Amazing DACs for Peanuts
« Reply #376 on: 12 Dec 2018, 04:04 pm »
I have found today also SA9227+ES9038Q2M combo boards = but price is higher than SE4 ;-) sth like 43$
https://item.taobao.com/item.htm?spm=2013.1.0.0.474c319dc3FiUe&id=575728410474

the specs are tempting, but isn't that a decoder board instead of a USB DAC?

Edit: ah, my mistake, its actually possible run as USB DAC

https://img.alicdn.com/imgextra/i4/0/O1CN01Vmx1qX1KykpXh8SX2_!!0-rate.jpg_400x400.jpg


It seems Breeze Audio has also released another ES9038Q2M based DAC, the SU2A

https://item.taobao.com/item.htm?spm=a1z10.3-c.w4002-15493940501.71.7c5a1cfaHNiEVT&id=581695887971