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back to square one, i.e., in need of a DAC

192.91.75.29

Posted on December 21, 2020 at 22:46:48
BS64
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Posts: 2406
Joined: July 17, 2000
I thought I had the problem with the DAC inside my NAD L53 DVD/receiver solved. But the problem has come back.

After several minutes of digital input playback, whether it be optical (TV) or coaxial (SBT), the sound will cutout for a split second every minute or so. After a couple of more minutes the crackling begins. And eventually no sound at all other than faint crackling. Switch to analog out on the SBT and the music returns.

Hoping it might be thermal, I put a small muffin fan on top, blowing into the enclosure above where the digital inputs are. No help. It was not very warm to begin with so my hopes weren't high.

So, I'm leaning toward the Schiit Modi. Made in the U.S., only 99 bucks, simple front panel, and has the inputs I need. Should be a nice complement to a 14-year old receiver. And tie me over until it's time for an upgrade.

 

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I've got a Modi, but I'd go for the Topping E30 for $129 .........., posted on December 22, 2020 at 05:58:32
Cut-Throat
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Posts: 14939
Location: Minneapolis - St.Paul Area
Joined: September 2, 2000
Far more features (Includes a remote) and will sound a lot better also. I use the Modi for my TV in an adjunct area of my house.

https://apos.audio/collections/brand-spotlight-topping/products/topping-e30-dac

69 Reviews here and 63 give it 5 stars. I mean, for an extra $30, why wouldn't you?






 

$30 is not a deal breaker..., posted on December 22, 2020 at 06:57:38
BS64
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Posts: 2406
Joined: July 17, 2000
...I simply prefer an inconspicuous front panel display. Call me crazy (this IS an asylum), but SQ is not of the utmost importance. Bypassing the failing DAC in the receiver is.

But I see that the E30 has a remote. Keep in mind I'm trying to make this as user-friendly for my wife as possible. So once we (or she when I'm not around) get settled in on the couch and start watching a show or movie, which remote should we keep close by? The NAD or the Topping?

 

RE: $30 is not a deal breaker..., posted on December 22, 2020 at 07:58:50
AbeCollins
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Posts: 37218
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" So once we (or she when I'm not around) get settled in on the couch and start watching a show or movie, which remote should we keep close by? The NAD or the Topping?"

Of course you can set the Topping to Fixed output mode or crank the Volume up 100%. Then use the NAD remote that your wife is accustomed to. I like the Topping because the display gives you a good indication that it is working including the Sample Rate it is receiving on its input. If this is more of a distraction, you can cover the display and the unit itself is compact enough to tuck behind your amp out of view completely.... assuming you have some amount of space behind the amp.... or just let it hang back there ;-)

If you want something really small and inexpensive, there are several sub $30 class tiny DACs on Amazon. I had one hanging behind my entry-level Marantz integrated that we used in the family room. This was mainly to provide better audio for the flat screen LCD TV. The Marantz was driving a pair of bookshelf Tannoy speakers. See the Amazon link below.



 

Inexpensive Amazon Dac., posted on December 22, 2020 at 12:24:57
wheezer
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Posts: 4228
Joined: January 24, 2001
I bought this in Aug. 20 as a cheapo dac with a remote.
It did the job when my other Dac took a s**t.
The remote works but not well.
Only has optical/coax input.

Coming my way soon for the small system will be Topping E30.

Cheers,
W

 

Nice.... and it includes a remote. A good buy - nt, posted on December 22, 2020 at 13:11:43
AbeCollins
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.

 

Fiio, posted on December 22, 2020 at 14:21:50
BS64
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Posts: 2406
Joined: July 17, 2000
I bought a Fiio mini player for use in the garage and occasional cheap headphone use 4 years ago. It decodes FLAC, has great battery life, and is built quite well. If memory serves me it was around $200 at Frys. Very pleased with that purchase.

I would have gone with the Fiio DAC if Amazon had it available for immediate shipping as we need it for Christmas movies and football this holiday weekend. But unfortunately it's not available until next week.

I do appreciate the suggestions! Happy holidays to you and yours :-)

 

pulled the trigger, posted on December 22, 2020 at 14:25:00
BS64
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Posts: 2406
Joined: July 17, 2000
Thanks, Wheezer! The Prozor was available for immediate shipment, arriving tomorrow. I was hoping to have one in place for Christmas movies and football this weekend. Mission accomplished! Well, I guess I shouldn't count that chicken until it has hatched. I will keep you posted. Happy holidays to you and yours :-)

 

RE: pulled the trigger, posted on December 22, 2020 at 14:29:47
wheezer
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Posts: 4228
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Thanks, you as well.

A note on the remote: it's volume - up/down function is incremental so keep tapping the volume buttons until desired volume is reached.

 

I have the E30 and don't use the remote, posted on December 22, 2020 at 16:22:36
zacster
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Posts: 1669
Location: NYC
Joined: November 22, 2003
It just isn't necessary if you use it in DAC mode. It becomes a passive device as far as the user is concerned.

 

I have the D90 and use the remote all of time in Pure DAC mode ......., posted on December 22, 2020 at 17:22:55
Cut-Throat
Audiophile

Posts: 14939
Location: Minneapolis - St.Paul Area
Joined: September 2, 2000
Switching between USB Mode and Coax Mode and Optical Mode.... TV - USB Rpi and Coax Rpi -- Also Power off....






 

Congrats... , posted on December 22, 2020 at 17:28:16
Jonesy
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Posts: 2395
Location: Winnipeg, Manitoba
Joined: September 1, 2005
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  Since:
March 1, 2018
on the temporary solution.

Sorry to hear replacing the cable only lasted for awhile.

Cheers!

Jonesy




"I know just enough to get into trouble. But not enough to get out of it."




 

Like you..., posted on December 22, 2020 at 17:32:56
mlsstl
Audiophile

Posts: 523
Location: Midwest
Joined: September 1, 2015
... I have an E-30 and don't use the remote either. The unit is set to fixed volume out and I have no need to switch the E-30's inputs. The unit is an excellent buy for the money.

 

volume, posted on December 22, 2020 at 20:49:16
BS64
Audiophile

Posts: 2406
Joined: July 17, 2000
Thanks for the heads up. Ideally, I will set it to max volume and use the receiver's VC. Question is, will it remain at that level when it is powered down and back up again?



 

RE: Congrats... , posted on December 22, 2020 at 21:04:46
BS64
Audiophile

Posts: 2406
Joined: July 17, 2000
It was okay for a couple of weeks after swapping out that bad cable. Really strange. And the symptoms are not totally repeatable. I tried it this afternoon and as soon as it powered up there was no sound. No crackling, no audio, nothing.

I can't help but wonder if it has something to do with the incoming power to the input pcb. Without a schematic I doubt I will be able to narrow it down. But the sockets for the ribbon cables do have labels on the pcb for each pin. Maybe I can get my dvm leads in there and figure something out.

 

RE: volume, posted on December 23, 2020 at 08:11:26
wheezer
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Posts: 4228
Joined: January 24, 2001
Yes, it will remain at the previously set level.

 

Prozor DAC in the house..., posted on December 23, 2020 at 15:28:41
BS64
Audiophile

Posts: 2406
Joined: July 17, 2000


Thanks to all for your suggestions and recommendations. Wheezer, the Prozor is doing exactly what I need it to. Nothing more, nothing less. Less than $29, and delivered within 24 hours. Genius...

While I'm not a big fan of Amazon and e-commerce taking over the retail world, it's difficult to argue the value and convenience factors.

This past summer, the high voltage relay on one of our air conditioning compressors was welded shut. I found an equivalent on Amazon for $22(?) and it arrived within 24 hours. The closest retailer selling the same part was a 30-minute drive away and nearly 3X the cost. It was a no-brainer.

 

RE: back to square one, i.e., in need of a DAC, posted on December 23, 2020 at 16:15:57
svisner
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Posts: 679
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March 30, 2002
I have two Schitt Modi units and like both of them very much. Good DACs and good value for money. I am listening now to my desktop system using a Schitt Fulla and a set of HiFiMan planar headphones and I am very pleased. Try a Modi. Has every input I think yo could want.

 

RE: back to square one, i.e., in need of a DAC, posted on January 5, 2021 at 03:09:29
mikem
Audiophile

Posts: 159
Joined: September 23, 1999
I would step up to the modi multibit... better sounding , more "musical"

 

RE: I've got a Modi, but I'd go for the Topping E30 for $129 .........., posted on January 5, 2021 at 08:00:25
Audio Fan
Audiophile

Posts: 573
Location: Ontario
Joined: April 6, 2000
>> I've got a Modi, but I'd go for the Topping E30 for $129... Far more features (Includes a remote) and will sound a lot better also.

What makes you think the E30 will sound better, have you tried both?

I have a Modi and bought a Topping D50S. The Modi sounded a lot better. The D50S had very poor PRaT, music sounded dead and boring. I returned it because it had the worst sound of the other inexpensive DAC's I already owned (Korg, Schiit, XtremPro).

I highly recommend a Modi for the OP's needs.

 

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