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Topic: is it worth to buy an external dac ? (Read 4179 times) previous topic - next topic
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Re: is it worth to buy an external dac ?

Reply #25
I will use them to connect to my Yamaha A-S501

Do you have a SPDIF-Out on your PC?

Why not using the SPDIF-In of your Yamaha A-S501?

From the manual:
Supported digital audio format (OPTICAL/COAXIAL) PCM (2-ch) 192/176.4/96/88.2/48/44.1/32 kHz
PCM word depth 24 bit/16 bit

Your Yamaha is using a PCM5101APWR DAC with good specs.

PART NUMBER: PCM5101A
DYNAMIC RANGE:  106 dB
SNR :  106 dB
THD:  –92 dB

Service Manual: Yamaha A-S501
Specs: PCM5101


Re: is it worth to buy an external dac ?

Reply #26
Bear in mind that if the PC does have an SPDIF output (how many do, unless you've fitted a specialist sound card?), it could have significant jitter.
It's your privilege to disagree, but that doesn't make you right and me wrong.

Re: is it worth to buy an external dac ?

Reply #27
i'm talking about realtek , they don't release a lot of informations about audio chipsets
As a professional engineer (not audio), I could not build a system around components which had no published specification (for specifications which mattered in the final product).  The reason for that is lack of accountability: for a product to meet its specification, its components have to meet their specifications, or be subject to rigorous testing in-house to determine their specifications (an expensive process).

A typical consumer-grade PC is not aimed at audiophiles, so the makers are not concerned about audiophile specifications.  Therefore an audiophile user cannot rely on guaranteed performance for noise, THD etc.

There are three solutions to this:
  • Find an audiophile supplier of PCs;
  • Use an external DAC with published performance specifications;
  • Listen to (or test) the audio output from your existing PC and decide whether it is good enough for yourself.

Notebooks can get much better simply by unplugging from the mains and running off battery.

I realise you were wondering whether you would notice any improvement by switching to an external DAC and whether the investment would be worthwhile.  Unfortunately only you can decide that, it depends how good your ears are (and how much it matters to you).  Personally, I don't think I would notice any difference.  What you do get with an external DAC is better connectors (the 3.5mm stereo socket is a weak link)!
Hi
I was looking a friend 's computer , pretty good i guess , there is a MSI B350M Gaming Pro , with a Realtek® ALC887 high definition audio card
even looks a pretty desktop with 64Gb of ram , great video card , and fast fast ssd 980 PRO NVMe M.2 SSD 1 TB
i can't find any informations about the Realtek® ALC887 high definition , even should pretty old chipset on a good mothercard
the only informations i can find are these ...
Quote
1. Meets premium audio requirements for Microsoft WLP 3.10
2. Meets stricter performance requirements for future WLP
3. High-performance DACs with 97dB Signal-to-Noise Ratio (SNR), ADCs with 90dB SNR
4. Four stereo DACs (8 channels) support 16/20/24-bit PCM format for 7.1 sound playback.
5. Two stereo ADCs (4 channels) support 16/20/24-bit PCM format recording simultaneously
6. All DACs supports 16/20/24-bit, 44.1k/48k/96k/192kHz sample rate
and
Quote
The ALC887 is a 7.1 Channel High Definition Audio Codec with two independent SPDIF outputs. Featuring eight channels of DAC support 7.1 sound playback, and integrates two stereo ADC that can support a stereo microphone, and feature Acoustic Echo Cancellation (AEC), Beam Forming (BF), and Noise Suppression (NS) for voice applications.  ALC887 is designed not only to meet the premium audio performance requirements in current WLP3.10 (Windows Logo Program), but provides better characteristics for future WLP. That brings user real high fidelity of sound quality.

Re: is it worth to buy an external dac ?

Reply #28
Those things tell you the digital performance of the audio processing, they say nothing about the analogue performance.  Realtek (or whoever might supply an audio interface chip set) have no control over how a systems integrator actually uses the chips.

A 32-bit DAC would be of no use if the electronic noise floor is a 10-bit hiss!

To my mind, the most significant benefit of an external DAC is to get the analogue signal as far away as possible from the EMI within a PC, preferably on a de-coupled power supply.  BUT... if you can't hear any interference coming out of your PC (even over silence), then you don't need it.
It's your privilege to disagree, but that doesn't make you right and me wrong.

Re: is it worth to buy an external dac ?

Reply #29
Bear in mind that if the PC does have an SPDIF output (how many do, unless you've fitted a specialist sound card?), it could have significant jitter.

I don't think that is an issue at all? The audiophoolery business has been trying to provoke forth all sorts of jitterbug, and ... is there anything the buffer in the DAC won't handle? Another issue is that coax cables connect the devices electrically, so sending (analog!) noise out.

As for "how many do": I don't think those dual-function 3.5" SPDIF/headphone jacks outlets are that common anymore, but - HDMI to SPDIF, anyone?

Re: is it worth to buy an external dac ?

Reply #30
Those things tell you the digital performance of the audio processing, they say nothing about the analogue performance.  Realtek (or whoever might supply an audio interface chip set) have no control over how a systems integrator actually uses the chips.

A 32-bit DAC would be of no use if the electronic noise floor is a 10-bit hiss!

To my mind, the most significant benefit of an external DAC is to get the analogue signal as far away as possible from the EMI within a PC, preferably on a de-coupled power supply.  BUT... if you can't hear any interference coming out of your PC (even over silence), then you don't need it.
hi
they are cheap dac ,and they use usb to power up or as power supply
for example SMSL SU-1 Stereo DAC , seems it works great via usb
i'm thinking about Topping D10S and SMSL PO100AK , for the output
thanks