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Old 17th September 2010, 08:52 PM   #1
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Join Date: Sep 2010
Default Budged DAC ( Usb or otherwise )

Hello , i am searching for a good DAC for future hi-fi setup. I will be using a PC as a digital source -> DAC -> LM3886 diy chipamp -> Fullrange horns

I am currently looking at : Musiland monitor 2 US and HRT music streamer II. From what i have read , the musicstreamer is better but if i understand correctly i would also need a pre-amp to use it , and that is too much for me atm. If anyone has better ideas/suggestions on other USB DACs+Preamps i would really appreciated. Also please check that i am right on needing a pre-amp , if not , i would go for the musicstramer.
Price range is 100-200$ , maybe a really tiny bit higher.

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Old 19th September 2010, 12:46 AM   #2
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What do you mean by "needs a pre amp"? Both have opamp buffered out puts. Both need "A" volume control. Both are to a point, the same. Its just down to which dac chip you like.
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Old 19th September 2010, 01:46 AM   #3
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After looking at both, they both use the same dac chip, and the monitor 01 us is basicaly the same as the music streamer II (usb powered).
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Old 19th September 2010, 04:08 PM   #4
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Yes but the monitor has a volume control and the music streamer II doesn't. I thought that meant one had some kind of amp and the other not. I don't have a complete understanding of audio.. yet , i hope .
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Old 19th September 2010, 05:07 PM   #5
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Um can you send me a link? Ive looked at the innards of both units via searches. I cant find a monitor 2 US with a volume control on the front. All the ones i see have rca out and 2 headphone outs, thats it. No volume control.

personally id go with music streamer II. It requires no special drivers, and can do 24 bit/96khz (the limit of driverless usb). Also you speak with humans. Go head and try it, they answer my questions even on Saturday. Also i like the layout of the streamer II more, not much to clutter the signal. The monitor has several bandaids and custom drivers + firmware updates to get the 24bit 192khz usb 2.0 spec. The just made a mini pc with a programable gate array chip that actually boots.

On the audio end they are almost carbon copies of each other. Both use the PCM1793 dac chip. Both use 1 opamp to convert the balanced dac out to unbalanced rca out and also act like a buffer.
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