Cheap DAC + Cheap Changer =

Discussion in 'DACs' started by DAA, Nov 26, 2017.

  1. DAA

    DAA Member

    My old Sony ES changer recently bit the dust after many years. On a whim, I purchased a FiiO D3 off Amazon and pulled out an old, cheap Sony 5 disc I had in the basement collecting dust. Hooked up via optical input this sounds way better than it should! Compared to the Sony internal, much nicer. Color me impressed! Not that far off from my NAD 546...hmmmm
    E.Auer likes this.
  2. E.Auer

    E.Auer Super Member

    Lobster Pot
    "Cheap" Dac's have come a long way.

    GChief likes this.
  3. olson_jr

    olson_jr AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Pilgrim Hills Michigan
    So what you are saying is?

    Cheap DAC + Cheap Changer = hmmmm
  4. Poultrygeist

    Poultrygeist Addicted Member

    He's saying the $20 Fiio D3 sounds better than the DAC in his ESS Sony. I don't doubt it for minute.
    E.Auer likes this.
  5. mjw21a

    mjw21a Super Member

    Brisbane, Australia
    Yes, it's incredible just how good DAC's are these days. I'm a big fan of the Sabre based DAC's like the Gustard DAC-X12 and S.M.S.L M8.... The Wolfson chips aren't bad either (xDuoo TA-01 headphone amp) and the Sigma Delta chips (S.M.S.L SD1955+ Sanskrit Gen 2) are fantastic for TV and movies if not ideal for music.

    Thinking of trying a multibit DAC based on the Philips TDA1543 to see how it compares. Supposedly very organic and musical sounding though not the last word in detail.

    There are 3 others (Xiang Shen DAC-01A, S.M.S.L SD793-II, S.M.S.L M3) I've tried though I never looked into what they were running, having tried a few I'm not at all surprised you're getting great results. The M3 is a pretty lacklustre DAC though.
  6. savatage1973

    savatage1973 Super Member

    NW Pennsylvania snow belt
    Not surprising at all (at least to me)--DAC technology is light years ahead of where it was 10-20 years ago--and it has gotten sooooo much cheaper. It is kind of like computer technology in the late 80's through all of the 90's and even into the early 00's. I am in the camp (I'll duck now) of that a drive is a drive is a drive--that's it--a transport and laser to read the 1's and 0's--the DAC and analogue output stage do all of the "heavy lifting"--so any "dinosaur" with a digital out combined with a modern DAC (even a cheap one) is going to sound better. Drive/transport technology has not changed much in the last 3 decades, but DAC technology continues to evolve/improve.
    E.Auer likes this.
  7. Bob

    Bob AK Subscriber Subscriber

    West coast
    its not the price of the DAC back when it was MSRP'd for the audiophile, its what the
    DAC is bought at today, with all the competition. or get a CDP with discrete DAC circuits
    and compare.

    enjoy your new music.

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