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currentflow 5th November 2010 02:59 PM

USB DAC recommendation
As per title, I'm looking for a USB DAC for use with a netbook running Ubuntu. Could anyone recommend a device please? I was considering the Cambridge DacMagic at around 220, but would consider a kit-based or DIY DAC. An S/PDIF and/or optical interface would be useful (for another PC) although not essential.

Thanks in advance.


mickeymoose 8th November 2010 03:02 PM

You did not mention bits + sample rate needs or the purpose for the unit, but check out the T.I. PCM2902. I am in the process of designing a board (dual channel line in/out). Unfortunately the PCM2902 is limited to 16 bits and 96kHz.

jrenkin 8th November 2010 03:08 PM

Lots of good feedback on twisted pear audio Buffalo II.

nightanole 8th November 2010 04:04 PM

Best usb powered non diy one ive seen: HRT Music Streamer II High Resolution USB D/A Converter: Electronics: Reviews, Prices & more

currentflow 8th November 2010 10:47 PM

Thanks for all of your suggestions. I don't yet know what bit/sample rates I need although this appears to be limited with a USB interface. I am really looking for the best sound reproduction for around 200 or less.


Francec 21st November 2010 08:53 AM

My suggestion is purely out of self-interest; AMB u1. I like the small size and seeming full features and would love someone to give one a test run.


MrSlim 4th December 2010 04:05 AM


Originally Posted by Francec (
My suggestion is purely out of self-interest; AMB u1. I like the small size and seeming full features and would love someone to give one a test run.


Well, if you mean the Gamma 1 (aka y1) , it works fine with Linux. I have a Gamma2, which uses the inputs of the Gamma 1 (s/pdif and USB) and it works great (Gamma 2 is a modular add-on to Gamma 1)

kevinahcc20 4th December 2010 01:02 PM

I recently picked up a Hlly DMK II Dac-Preamp on eBay for $294 shipping included. Has USB, Coax & Optical ins plus analog, does up to 96K/24 & a remote for source selection/volume/balance. This lets you handle a wide range of digital sources and vinyl with an outboard phono preamp. I'm very pleased with the sound & convenience of this compact unit.:cool:

tvrgeek 17th December 2010 05:52 PM

Very happy with a cheap "Muse" brand Chinese e-bay unit. Clearly better than my high end Rotel. I do want to build a better power supply for it. Not USP powered though. Small enough you could build a battery pack. Cambright and PS are well received, but one would have to convince me they actually sound better, or if the bucks were better spent on cans or more music.

Dane 17th December 2010 06:50 PM

I've run the NuForce uDAC on a laptop running Ubuntu from a USB memory stick. It recognized the DAC, and the media player played fine through it reading my FLAC files from another portable drive.

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