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In Reply to: RE: A waste of money... posted by kentaja on August 04, 2017 at 11:18:22
Let me ask a question that really belongs in the high-rez forum (where the discussion has died out) but is related to the current discussion. How about megabucks for digital sources? People will spend huge sums for complicated multi-box setups. Is this sensible?
For a more focussed discussion, relevant to me personally, what about the Marantz SA10, a CD/SACD/DAC that is selling for about $7,000. It does seem to have quite a bit of engineering and some fancy construction. It also has a unique DAC (not really a DAC at all, according to some.)
But will it really sound that much better than, say the Marantz SA14? The SA10 uses a similar
system to the PS Audio Direct Stream, I think, but the latter requires two boxes and will cost even more.
This is of some (maybe academic) interest to me because I bought an SA14 a year or so ago.
SACD's sound very good indeed, but CD's, although pleasant are still pretty boring compared to my vinyl system, by and large (not always, depends on the discs). I think somewhat wistfully of the SA10....
IME spending megabucks on digital set-ups does not yield the same levels of improvement as with vinyl.
To be fair I have not played with many megabuck digital set-ups. My wallet can only afford so much. So I have decided to spend the money on vinyl and digital while very nice sounding is my secondary set-up.
I do have several friends with expensive digital set-ups and yes they are better in every regard versus my digital set-up but the difference is not that great IMO. Certainly not given the dollar differences in the systems.
When you ask whether something will "sound better" you're asking for a subjective opinion. Therefore, you should be the only person to answer that question for yourself because what sounds better to one person might not sound better to another. You know what they say, "Beauty is in the eye of the beholder."
If, on the other hand, you're asking whether it takes $7000 to achieve objective accuracy, I don't think so. I think my $1000 TASCAM DA-3000 DSD recorder is very accurate. At least when I copy a vinyl record, the digital copy sounds exactly like the vinyl record to me. I also think the DA-3000 sounds good, but that's just my subjective opinion. You might think otherwise. Therefore, it's always best to determine sound quality for yourself since you're the only person who must be satisfied.
' I think my $1000 TASCAM DA-3000 DSD recorder is very accurate. At least when I copy a vinyl record, the digital copy sounds exactly like the vinyl record to me.'
Interesting but in the end this really tells us nothing about the merits of your vinyl set-up or any vinyl set-up. It tells us that a digital copy can be a very close copy of the original. That is a great thing but means nothing when it comes to merits of spending $5K, $7K or $20K for a phono cartridge.
A good friend had a ZYX airy that I listened to quite a bit. He had it mounted on a VPI superscoutmaster running into a bunch of very nice VAC electronics, sonus faber speakers and cardas cabling. His system was excellent and satisfying but to my ears not as detailed, dynamic, or balanced as mine. However, when we start talking about > several thousand dollar cartridges, we are veering OT.
I do think we all agree that what we are seeking is a system that we find satisfactory for ourselves. I essentially arrived there several years back although I have made a couple tweaks in the last 1.5 years of so since I moved into a new home. My own several decade search took me well past < a thousand dollar cartridges and the search continued until I found the current ebony lps.
I also have a system upstairs. My analog front end is my rega planar 3 with dynavector 10x5 into a sim 310lp. Its pleasant but nothing like the main system.
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