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Reasonably priced good quality 6 or 8 channel USB DAC?

amirm

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And in case anybody is following this thread because of interest in multichannel DACs as that's how this thread got started.
I got an email from Octo Research as I'm still on their list and I read that @amirm has the Octo Research DAC8 for testing :)
Testing is almost done. Will finish and post tomorrow! :)
 

amirm

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pos

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Do you remember what was wrong with it?
Can't remember exactly but I think I listed the problems somewhere around these forums.
The output was quite noisy to my taste, and it was nothing like random noise, more like USB or sync noises...

I also did not like the general layout of the machine, with long synchronization times upon sample rate changes.
 

dualazmak

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chebum

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Sorry for recovering such and old thread. I was searching for a multi-channel DAC and reading it through.

By the way, Bruno Putzeys did implement a linear-phase acoustical crossover in the Grimm audio LS1, as well as in the Kii ;)

In LS1 whitepaper they discuss why linear phase filters isn't a good idea: https://www.grimmaudio.com/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/speakers.pdf
They propose IIR filters for XO and FIR for phase recovery afterwards.

I have done this, you can make the filter minimum phase. I have done this as a test to try and reduce latency for theatre duties. Short version is It really doesn't sound as good. Poorer imaging and less clarity.

I also tried both. Linear phase filters had more interesting sound, but IIR filters were more comfortable during longer sessions.
 

dualazmak

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Sorry for recovering such and old thread. I was searching for a multi-channel DAC and reading it through.

In LS1 whitepaper they discuss why linear phase filters isn't a good idea: https://www.grimmaudio.com/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/speakers.pdf
They propose IIR filters for XO and FIR for phase recovery afterwards.

I also tried both. Linear phase filters had more interesting sound, but IIR filters were more comfortable during longer sessions.

You wrote; "but IIR filters were more comfortable during longer sessions.".

In my multichannel multi-amplifier project with software crossover, I am eventually using software crossover EKIO, and "EKIO uses IIR filters. The processing is done using a cascade of second order transposed direct form II biquad sections. Every calculation is done using 64 bit floating point numbers." Please refer to here and here for the details.

Also in my post here, I confirmed "EKIO gives no audible post-ringing nor pre-ringing at all in my rather sensitive test environment with -12 dB/Oct LR filters."

I agree with you that IIR XO filters by EKIO are really comfortable during longer listening session.
 

pos

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Ongii

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I know about the ESI Gigaport EX.
I hope it will be reviewed soon.
 

Ongii

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So, after weeks of reading these forums... I suspect the best solution (price/value) are interfaces like Motu 8A.
 

tvrgeek

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So, after weeks of reading these forums... I suspect the best solution (price/value) are interfaces like Motu 8A.
A year later. When thinking about a new amp, all the ones on my short list do not have a HP filter like my POS Parasound 2125 does. I have an X-Kitz crossover, but it does not sound as clean as the spec would suggest and I have to add an output mute before it is useable. So, I was looking for a 3 channel DAC. Use Equalizer APO/Peace as the crossover and the small amount of eq I use. Is the Motu M4 still tops in this? I assume, not clear, the master volume does all four channels, not the two for the phones.

Before anyone says 2 DACs and use the PC for volume, heck now. Analog volume control for me.

That OKTO looks slick, but I don't need 8 channels unless I bi-amped the mains. Guess I could, but that means two more amps, not one. Goes down a rabbit hole on that quick! Actually, the 4 channel Arcam 50W might do just fine. A thought. Gee, if they just made a 3 channel for under a grand! Any other options? I was about to buy an M2 for my bench anyway.
 

somebodyelse

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My interpretation of the manual is that the volume control (marked 'Monitor') only changes the level of the 'monitor' output channels 1 & 2. The 'line out' channels 3 & 4 seem to be fixed level.
 

Pabloaguas

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I agree- 3 channel would be perfect.

I understand that this forum is more for home audio. However as an audiophile, I always want to have the best sound when I DJ. So for my PA system I bought this:

DBX Driverack Venu 360 — It is a 6 channel DSP with multiple inputs and 6 balanced XLR outs. It has two, multichannel SPDIF inputs (AES). It only functions at sampling rates of 48 or 96khz. It has a retails for $1200 but can be had new for $500 at PAS. The auto eq, crossovers, compression/limiters and time delays work very well for quick setups.

I’m not sure what componentry compliment it contains, but maybe someone here knows or maybe it has already been reviewed. Please let me know if you find any of this info.

In my PA system it is quiet, smooth and creates a massive soundstage with depth and width and height much larger than what it “should” be. I have not yet hooked it up to my Audio Note amp and speakers so I have not had the time compare it to my Tubadour3 or Shit Gumby.

Please if anyone has any comments or experience with the DBX VENU 360 here LMK.
 

mdsimon2

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A year later. When thinking about a new amp, all the ones on my short list do not have a HP filter like my POS Parasound 2125 does. I have an X-Kitz crossover, but it does not sound as clean as the spec would suggest and I have to add an output mute before it is useable. So, I was looking for a 3 channel DAC. Use Equalizer APO/Peace as the crossover and the small amount of eq I use. Is the Motu M4 still tops in this? I assume, not clear, the master volume does all four channels, not the two for the phones.

Before anyone says 2 DACs and use the PC for volume, heck now. Analog volume control for me.

That OKTO looks slick, but I don't need 8 channels unless I bi-amped the mains. Guess I could, but that means two more amps, not one. Goes down a rabbit hole on that quick! Actually, the 4 channel Arcam 50W might do just fine. A thought. Gee, if they just made a 3 channel for under a grand! Any other options? I was about to buy an M2 for my bench anyway.

I cannot think of any multichannel DAC that has analog volume control (Okto definitely does NOT).

MOTU Ultralite Mk5 has a volume knob and you can select which of the 10 channels it acts on. It is probably the closest thing available currently to the Okto at a reasonable price ($600). From a measurement standpoint it also has a better ADC than the MOTU M2/M4.

Michael
 

mdsimon2

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I agree- 3 channel would be perfect.

I understand that this forum is more for home audio. However as an audiophile, I always want to have the best sound when I DJ. So for my PA system I bought this:

DBX Driverack Venu 360 — It is a 6 channel DSP with multiple inputs and 6 balanced XLR outs. It has two, multichannel SPDIF inputs (AES). It only functions at sampling rates of 48 or 96khz. It has a retails for $1200 but can be had new for $500 at PAS. The auto eq, crossovers, compression/limiters and time delays work very well for quick setups.

I’m not sure what componentry compliment it contains, but maybe someone here knows or maybe it has already been reviewed. Please let me know if you find any of this info.

In my PA system it is quiet, smooth and creates a massive soundstage with depth and width and height much larger than what it “should” be. I have not yet hooked it up to my Audio Note amp and speakers so I have not had the time compare it to my Tubadour3 or Shit Gumby.

Please if anyone has any comments or experience with the DBX VENU 360 here LMK.


I think the review is rather harsh but the Venu 360 is definitely not any where close to SOTA analog performance.

Michael
 

tvrgeek

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Hmmm. Well, guess I should take a good look at my amp input and see if a 4 channel Alps pot will feed them OK and just DIY a passive pre and feed it with a pair of Atom+ or something.

The salesman at Sweetwater suggested a Black Lion IO box as better than the MOTU. Never heard of them and a bit more expensive. But they seem to make only a 2 or 16 channel.

Bummer on the Okto. It looked interesting. Digital volume is fine in the studio when you are starting with 32 bits. ( that's why they do it) but not when you are starting with 16. Yea, your threshold of hearing is supposedly set so the LSB being the same step should nonmatter, but I disagree Your hearing articulation changes with volume too. Actually, at Who concert levels, you probably can't hear 6 bits for a week :)
 

digitalfrost

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For what it's worth, I used an RME Digiface to create my own multichannel DAC. It can support >= 8 channels via dedicated other DACs (SPDIF or ADAT). That said, nowadays I would probably just buy a Fireface and be done with it.
 

mdsimon2

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Hmmm. Well, guess I should take a good look at my amp input and see if a 4 channel Alps pot will feed them OK and just DIY a passive pre and feed it with a pair of Atom+ or something.

The salesman at Sweetwater suggested a Black Lion IO box as better than the MOTU. Never heard of them and a bit more expensive. But they seem to make only a 2 or 16 channel.

Bummer on the Okto. It looked interesting. Digital volume is fine in the studio when you are starting with 32 bits. ( that's why they do it) but not when you are starting with 16. Yea, your threshold of hearing is supposedly set so the LSB being the same step should nonmatter, but I disagree Your hearing articulation changes with volume too. Actually, at Who concert levels, you probably can't hear 6 bits for a week :)

If you cannot hear any noise with no input signal (which is feasible with an Okto dac8 pro or MOTU Ultralite Mk5 and low noise amplifiers with competent gain staging) how is digital volume control going to degrade anything?

Michael
 
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