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Old 29th April 2012, 02:58 PM   #1
jjne is offline jjne  United Kingdom
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Join Date: Mar 2012
Default New or old?


I currently have as my main DAC, a TEAC D-T1. This has served me well and I'm happy with it. I also have a Creative SB0270 USB sound card, which I use in digital only mode into the TEAC, to provide computer audio from a small Net-Top which I control from an Android device. I also have a couple of other digital devices connected to the TEAC, one of which being a Cyrus dAD3 CD player. All works well.

Looking around on eBay for the latest product, I have found the following:

HA INFO DA1 WM8805 + WM8740 USB DAC + Class A Headphone Amp + USB Converter | eBay

This seems to tick the boxes on-paper: a good DAC linked to one of the best receivers, and built-in USB.

The question is; just thinking out of the box here, is the above device (or anything similar) likely to result in an audible improvement? I know that the TEAC was a good DAC for its day (I think it uses two parallel TDA1547s), but the newer devices are much more likely to be capable of eradicating jitter to a fair degree which is a concern when it comes to the USB box (the sound quality from the PC doesn't seem to be quite as good as the CD player, and I put that down to jitter on the USB device -- it couldn't be anything else, right?).

It's a fair chunk of wedge if there is to be no appreciable improvement though, so any thoughts would be much appreciated.
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Old 29th April 2012, 06:44 PM   #2
jjne is offline jjne  United Kingdom
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Join Date: Mar 2012
I'm actually starting to thing that my 'problem' may well be the Creative box.

Having taken it to bits it's a fairly standard AD1885/CA0185 sound card, which I believe is pretty low-end right?

Would I be better served just buying something like the HA Info U2 converter instead?

Would I be right in thinking that the TEAC is pretty much as good as the TDA1547 gets, and that the above Chinese DAC would need further tweaking to give of its best?
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Old 29th April 2012, 07:15 PM   #3
SoNic_real_one is offline SoNic_real_one  United States
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You will be better served by a SPDIF digital output than the USB one. The nettop doesn't have on motherboard SPDIF out?
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Old 29th April 2012, 07:37 PM   #4
jjne is offline jjne  United Kingdom
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Join Date: Mar 2012
It does, but I have not been able to get it to work correctly with Linux -- it outputs at 48k at all times.
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Old 8th May 2012, 11:22 PM   #5
jjne is offline jjne  United Kingdom
diyAudio Member
Join Date: Mar 2012
Right, I don't know what the problem was with the Creative, but having looked again at the Linux drivers for the built-in sound card's SPDIF output I now have it working, and the sound is indistinguishable from the CD source when playing FLAC files.

And I think I've found my own answer to the question of whether this Chinese DAC would be better than the TEAC. A month ago I ordered a Muse TDA1543x4 NOS DAC, fully expecting that this would somehow beat the TEAC, given the reviews.

Well it doesn't. It's not bad, but I have to say that both the DAC7 in the TEAC, and the TDA1305 in the player-transport itself have the Muse licked. The Muse sounds slightly dull, muddy in complex sections of music, and lacking in soundstage.

It's something I've found in a lot of these Chinese 'audiophile' modules now. Lots of hype, reasonable sound, but when it comes down to it no match for proper hifi kit from 10-20 years ago.

And they say that all CD players sound the same
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Old 13th May 2012, 07:41 PM   #6
ram333 is offline ram333
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Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: UK
Curiously, I've found that true of a lot of European hifi. A lot of marketing hype (check the Musical Fidelity website), people convincing themselves what a wonder product it is, then 6 months later (or sometimes sooner) selling it on.

I recently bought a Musical Fidelity M1 DAC and found it to be very lacking. I really wanted to like, considering the 400 I paid for it, but even after 90 hours 'burn in' the sound was very mediocre.

I then bought a HA INFO U2+ USB DAC for 46, and find it generally speaking better than the M1 DAC! There were 2 areas that the M1 was better in sound quality...timing and slightly better detail levels. But apart from that it was a very dull DAC.

I've bought a lot of Chinese HiFi products over the years a few have turned out to be poor or average but more often than not I've pleased with them especially considering the price!
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Old 11th August 2012, 05:48 PM   #7
grinccaffe is offline grinccaffe  Croatia
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Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Zagreb
Default Ha Info da1 dac/amp

Hi, I'm Croatian and I also noticed that Ha Info DA1 DAC / amp.
The forums have no experience described. I decided to buy it for $ 159.00 including postage.
I will use two inputs for PC and Squeezebox clasics. Analog output for stereo preamp and a digital output to the AV receiver. I believe that this will work well.
If up to now, someone already has experience with these devices, it would be nice to be sharing with us.
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