Can you explain some of the advantages and disadvantages of a powered speaker like the Audioengine A5's vs the B&W 685's? With the B&W will the quality of my Amp/Receiver be the key to how they sound?
I'm liking the A5's because they are right in my price range for what I want to start with. Later on I will add a soundcard, or possibly a standalone DAC, but more than likely a soundcard for now.
Originally Posted by chasefrench
I was not saying otherwise. I would expect a 200$ DAC would produce a good enough signal for a 2000$ system. The reason I said that was my Xonar Essence used to send a digitall signal my Music Fidelity DAC and very recently that broke. So I switched to the analogue signal from the Asus and was pleasently impressed. It wont be as good as what you mentioned. But its ability to do everything is an advantage for its price. The difference over onboard is very noticeable on higher end systems. The most noticeable thing is that you no longer hear the hdd clicking and cpu ticking over. It is just a good starting point for someone who hasnt yet experienced proper hifi.
Some of the reasons you listed are why I feel like a soundcard will fit me best for now.
Originally Posted by Shiobock
I wasn't implying I thought you said otherwise
But I did say the superiority of $200 DACs is debatable because for instance the Maverick D1 has the same DA-chip as the higher-end X-Fi cards, so that sort of makes it seem less "hi-fi".
Then again, if the Maverick D1 actually is a lot better than say an X-Fi card then it must be because it has it's own quality power supply and higher quality components and you can disconnect it from the computer's common ground by using S/PDIF TOSLINK, all these little things added might improve the sound, and that'd make sense since the only issue with computer sound cards is the unrefined power and EMI they're getting from other components and fluctuating current levels. Also I bet you already know all this but I'm just stating my trail of thought for everyone else hi-fi curious browsing the thread
Actually I sort of want the Maverick D1 just because it has a DA-chip I've already heard in the X-Fi sound card form, so I can evaluate and sort of compare it's tube and solid state pre-outs and the headphone amp to the normal X-Fi sound card, it sounds such a cool experiment for a hair under $200 with the shipping costs I just got to do it.
I'm listening, thanks for sharing.
Sadly there is little to no hope for converting my music collection I currently enjoy from mp3 to anything else. This is partially why I don't want to go full out on a system, but I still want an improvement like many of you stated will happen even with mp3.
What I am looking for is separation of each individual sound (I say each sound, not instrument, because EDM usually just has different sounds lol) into a more enjoyable presentation that doesn't get blurred together at times (live recording could also be a cause of this, there is usually a lot of cheering in the set).
I want noticeable but soft (?) highs that won't hurt my ears when a girl with a high pitched voice is singing or a random high pitched note comes on.
I want fast responsive bass that doesn't distort, but is accurate and still delivers a punch because most of my music has low octaves in its roots.
If I had to choose, I would pick separation and accurate representation over bass punch...just so you know what page I'm on.
I listen to music pretty much any time I am home. If no one else is here and I can, I listen to it extremely loud (like can be heard from a house away).
I sometimes scoot my chair across the room and sit facing my speaker and just let the bass hit me in the chest and enjoy some of my favorite tracks.
Please don't laugh at me, but this is what I have
I can probably sell them to a friend along with my Kenwood KR-A4040 and keep my NAD 7130 for possible future use.