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Old 6th October 2011, 12:40 PM   #1
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Default Which USB DAC kit?

I need a USB Audio DAC that I can plug into my computer. The onboard sound is horrible and I just know moving the DAC to the outside of the computer will give me much better sound.

A couple years back I trialed a $500 or so BOSE USB Audio computer speaker set and it sounded pretty nice--I didn't end up keeping it. I think a lot of the reason why it sounded good was that it had its own DAC.

Now I have a Behringer A500, Infinity RS2001 bookshelf/monitor speakers. All I need now is some way to get a good clean signal to the amp from my computer.

I want something that sounds really good but doesn't cost over $75. Either a kit or a preassembled unit.

Any suggestions would be greatly welcomed, thanks!
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Old 7th October 2011, 02:24 AM   #2
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Musiland Monitor 01 on ebay at $80
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Old 7th October 2011, 03:50 AM   #3
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I'd handle it in two stages - for the DAC, the FiiO D3 looks unbeatable at $30.

Inside FiiO D3 H i F i D U I N O

Its only SPDIF so you need a USB-SPDIF converter for which this one does nicely:

HA info U2 USB to SPDIF(AC3 DTS) USB to SPDIF Converter | eBay

The $20 'sticker price' is faked because they're charging a criminal $20 for shipping. But overall at $40 delivered its a snip and these together fly under your budget by $5.
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Old 7th October 2011, 05:09 AM   #4
josha is offline josha  United Kingdom
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Hi - maybe also have a look at the DACDIR9001+PCM2706+WM8740 kit - these are 22.80 +15.00 shipping in the UK and all you need is a transformer. If you email the seller they will also quote you for soldering the SMD devices as well (essential in my opinion). There's a big thread on here about it in 'digital source' as well and you get the option of SPDIF or USB.

Cheers, Josh
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Old 7th October 2011, 05:55 AM   #5
Vladco is offline Vladco  United States
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Quote:
Originally Posted by josha View Post
Hi - maybe also have a look at the DACDIR9001+PCM2706+WM8740 kit - these are 22.80 +15.00 shipping in the UK and all you need is a transformer. If you email the seller they will also quote you for soldering the SMD devices as well (essential in my opinion). There's a big thread on here about it in 'digital source' as well and you get the option of SPDIF or USB.

Cheers, Josh
Not exectly. In USA this board assly from $44 wihout case, usb cord and power supply. It's 9vas wall wart. You may have it laying around. Acually this board sound decent - much better than computer output. It made mine computer speakers listenable. Big thread is about it bigger brother $60+ wm8740 X2.
These boards need smd soldering (one dealer offer $10 sevice I gess) and transformer.
Vlad
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Old 7th October 2011, 03:29 PM   #6
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Thanks for the help

I went ahead and ordered the fiio d3 from amazon for $28. It'll be here tomorrow (1 day shipping for $3.99!).

Is there another high quality usb to spdif converter that doesn't cost an arm and a leg. That one from China will take weeks to get here Would like something I can order from Amazon, as I can get it by tomorrow
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Old 7th October 2011, 05:15 PM   #7
josha is offline josha  United Kingdom
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$44? that's a big hike - and you're right about the case etc. (I'm so used to having things floating about on pieces of wood I forget about the cases!) - I didn't know about the wall wart though.

That d3 looks excellent btw but I can't find many usb to s/pdif converters, most of them seem to output on optical only. The one that abraxalito mentioned looks like your best bet!

Cheers
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Old 7th October 2011, 06:35 PM   #8
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I'm tempted to just fork out $114 for the V-LINK "USB to SPDIF" converter. it is 24/96. I don't know how good the V-LINK is or if there is another one better that is perhaps even less money. Is the $20 (+$20 shipping) one as good or better?
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