Desktop Setup

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Rodney9
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Desktop Setup

Post by Rodney9 » Wed Jan 02, 2013 5:46 am

Hello, I am confused in what to get.

I have a old desktop computer sitting next to my NAD C375BEE amplifier connected from the single audio out on the back of the pc to 2 rca's on the amp playing through Sonique floor speakers.

It works, but sound levels are much lower then CD and the quality is lacking even though I have ripped my CD's in the flac format.

Can I get anything recommended on a low budget, say under $300, to increase the volume and most importantly quality.

Thank you'
Rodney
Music is Magic is Music

BusinessEvolution
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Re: Desktop Setup

Post by BusinessEvolution » Wed Jan 02, 2013 3:20 pm

if you are using the line out on your pc it might not be providing a line level signal.
Sources: Asus Essense STX, MA Stagedac
Amps: Talisman T-33H
Headphones: MS-PRO, ATH-A900, Audeze LCD-3
Earphones: SE535

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mallethead
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Re: Desktop Setup

Post by mallethead » Wed Jan 02, 2013 4:52 pm

Hi Rodney

1. Line level is controlled by your PC volume and whatever media player you are using. Check media player volume at maximum.
2. Quality is lacking because you have good quality sound files they are more than likely being processed by an inferior quality built-in soundcard on your PC.
3. If you want better sound quality buy a USB DAC that will plug into any USB port on your PC and bypass the built-in DAC once you have settings done.
This site has a range of them- check them out and then fire any questions at them.

Rodney9
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Re: Desktop Setup

Post by Rodney9 » Thu Jan 03, 2013 2:27 pm

The reviewer of Whathifi thought the DACMagic 100 lacks sparkle and dynamics sounding a little bland.

Fed a 16-bit/44.1kHz rip of Dusty Springfield’s Son Of A Preacher Man, the DacMagic 100 serves up an open, spacious sound. Vocals are given space to breathe and, even with a mix of instruments thrown in, everything knits together well.

Move on to Emeli Sandé’s Heaven and the Cambridge paints a tonally even picture with well-mannered treble and weighty, precise low frequencies.

Detail levels are good for the money, although the track doesn’t quite have the same impact or dynamic reach as when it’s played through rivals such as the Arcam rDAC.

REM’s Losing My Religion in 24-bit/192kHz form sounds pleasant, but lacks sparkle and emotion.

For the money, the DacMagic 100 is an attractive and competent system booster, but it isn’t quite the best in its class. For this kind of money, and provided we didn't need the input flexibility offered by the Cambridge Audio, we'd go for the HRT Music Streamer II, a simple USB-only model, or – for a bit more choice whent it comes to inputs – the Arcam rDAC.

http://www.whathifi.com/review/cambridg ... cmagic-100
The cambridge-audio-dacmagic-100 does seem to fit my bill and will be able to take the pc and tv, but the HRT Music Streamer II is only $150.

Has anyone have opinions on the cambridge-audio-dacmagic-100 ?

Rodney
Music is Magic is Music

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Drubbing
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Re: Desktop Setup

Post by Drubbing » Thu Jan 03, 2013 2:47 pm

My experience with $100 external DACs has been underwhelming. There's a reason why stuff like Cambridge costs more. I've been very happy with the original DACmagic for 4 years or so.
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