Audio Research DAC 8 Jitter problem

booaaaa -- Wed, 12/29/2010 - 02:49

anyone experiencing jitter with the DAC8? i am running it with mac mini and amarra as software. thanks.  

microstrip -- Thu, 12/30/2010 - 19:36

I have used it with a PC and MediaMonkey and everything went perfectly first time. Great sounding DAC.

Priaptor -- Sun, 01/16/2011 - 09:03

 I will say, last night was an eye opening experience.  My dealer lent me his DAC 8 to compare to my PS Audio Wave/Bridge setup.  
I used Pure Music's front end with iTunes, played nothing but 176/24 and 192/24, using the DAC 8 strictly through the USB input.  
The difference was fairly significant.  The PSA is a much better computer DAC, period, end of discussion.  All was set up properly in the ARC.
I cannot speak for the ARC in comparison to the PSA with transport as I have heard both on my dealer's system using a transport and both sounded excellent and too close to call.  However as a computer solution, the PS is much better.  
If ARC is considered "state of the art" in their USB connectivity and computer interface, then "state of the art" has a ways to go before these high end manufacturers develop a real computer solution.  Personally, I think PSA is there and just needs to tune up their user interface. I am not trying to justify my PSA as IF the ARC was indeed superior I was willing to purchase it and my dealer was willing to work with me.

Sam -- Sun, 01/16/2011 - 12:53

I don't know if ARC has updated it's USB yet. When AT reviewed it the USB was better then other USB but still compromised. Since that review new developments have happened over just the last year. And it's called Asynchronous USB. An example is the ayre DAC, the dCS DAC, and wavelengthaudio licensing their technology to some others. So, IF the Arc u compared to the ps audio is that previous version then the comparison is not even fair. It would be interesting if you could compare the ayre DAC to your PSA set up and report the findings. That might be a better shootout between the two. But don't know if ur dealer carries that. Please share other tests u may do with the readers here.

Priaptor -- Sun, 01/16/2011 - 14:15

I compared it to the latest ARC DAC 8 with "USB 2.0 HS interface" and their latest mac drivers, 1.28. In fact they are listing it under their "new product" list. My understanding is that it is indeed the new Asynchronous USB interface. I really wanted to like the ARC better, but the difference was huge. Unfortunately my dealer does not have the Ayre or the DCS for me to compare.

Guitardave -- Sun, 01/16/2011 - 16:39

You need to be sure the volume is not above about 60% on your computer or the dac8 will sound distorted. I imagine that is what the original poster was hearing. Also, the USB review mentioned in an earlier post was on the dac7, not the dac8. Newer software makes the volume adjustment automatically on the dac8.
Asynchronous is just one way to deal with jitter, which arc could obviously have used if they felt it superior.

Priaptor -- Sun, 01/16/2011 - 16:49

In my trial with the ARC DAC 8 I tried different volume levels on Pure Music' s interface. Taking the level above 0 db causes much distortion and automatically resets when you use iTunes volume control..

Anything at or below 0 was set automatically by the iTunes volume.

In comparing the ARC DAC 8 to the PSA WAVE/BRIDGE combo I checked to ensure that all computer settings were indeed correct and made sure that both the computer and DAC were indeed auto switching which they were.

suheil atallah -- Sun, 01/08/2012 - 21:18

please, can somebody explain why you need to reduce the output level?, if you do then you will reduce bit resolution.

Nicholas.Bedworth -- Wed, 01/25/2012 - 21:41

Presumably you'd want to have bit-perfect transport to the DAC, and do all attenuation there, assuming that's possible with the DAC 8.

Nicholas Bedworth  
DigitalDirect Media Services, LLC    Text/voice 1.808.372.2883 (GMT -10)   nicholas [dot] bedworth [at] digitaldirect [dot] com (nicholas.bedworth@digitaldi)

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