Given high quality of Apple AAC encoder at 128 kbps it will have a high grade of transparency at 256 kbps.
Would either qualify as a low quality DAC that likely needs to be replaced, or are they both decent DAC?
I understand that following the DAC, a line amplifier must be present in both component. Is it possible that the difference I perceive comes from this amplifier?
Finally, in order to redo my test in a proper way, is it correct to volume match by reducing the output of the DVD player?