• WANTED: Happy members who like to discuss audio and other topics related to our interest. Desire to learn and share knowledge of science required. There are many reviews of audio hardware and expert members to help answer your questions. Click here to have your audio equipment measured for free!

SMSL DL200 the best ever value DAC/AMP?

I have a degree in Biochem and Molecular Biology and can assure you that getting vaccinated has noting to do with "crap poison".. the amount of poison you get injected with is far lower than what you get from drinking a single beer.

But that wasn't my point.
Dear Lambo1985 travels AudioSCIENCEreview propagating his own personal BELIEFS and trying to convince that what he BELIEVES is superior to the SCIENCE that this site is all about.
People like me came here to get away from this stupidity that has taken over Head-Fi and other places.

If these people could just accept the scientific FACT that there are dozens of factors affecting what they PERCEIVE in their "tests", that would already make everything a lot easier. But they behave like braindead cult-members who insist that science is fine as long as it doesn't interfere with their beliefs!


And no, I didn't say that all DACs sound the same.
I said that the human hearing is so bad that beyond a certain noise floor, we cannot possibly make out any differences anymore. Not in trained listening tests and most definitely NOT in listening to music! Just like there has never been a blind ABX test that ended successfully for any participants.
Everything that's been done on here where people had a high hit rate with acoustically transparent devices turned out to be mostly due to "cheating"... (where people would look at the waveforms OR focus on the silent parts of the sample files to differentiate the noisefloors at volumes they would never listen to)
And every other scientifically sound ABX blind test ever conducted failed to provide ANY indication that there were people out there that can reliably tell the difference.

In actual listening tests (blind ABX), even after training sighted (and finding clear differences!), people couldn't even discern between crappy measuring PA amplifiers and super clean measuring high-end amps costing 100x as much.

Now, I'm not gonna accept that our dear Lambo here is the chosen one, the one and only human being among millions that can actually hear the differences between dozens of devices clearly!

Humans have this sickening tendency to ALWAYS believe that they are "at least" better than average.. in everything.. That's fine by me.. who wants to admit to be below average, right?!
But when random people insist that they belong to the top 0.001% of the population and refuse to provide any proof, that rubs me the wrong way!


And no, @Qu@rk , this is not off-topic at all.
This topic is about the DL200 being "the best ever value DAC/AMP" because it provides transparency and all the features most anyone could wish for at an incredibly competitive price.
And dear Lambo here is arguing that it's well worth spending twice as much for the SAME features and the same transparency, because HE, the chosen golden Lambo of the audiogods, can clearly HEAR the difference.
You can appeal to authority all you want. There are many in your field that are coming arond. Your profession has been captured. This last fiasco so called vaccine has done more damage the trust of "vaccines" than I ever could so let's not discuss this here. It's not the place. I won't be trusting any of it regardless what you say, and you won't look or listen to me. So let's drop it.

I just got the DL200. Initial impressions are it has a sheen that the Modi doesn't. Maybe it needs a bit of breakin and for me to settle on a filter. But as it stands at the moment, I prefer the Modi as it makes my linton's sound more .. Velvety. That is about all I can say at the moment. And as you all know, it's all subjective.
 
it of breakin and for me to settle on a filter. But as it stands at the moment, I prefer the Modi as it makes my linton's sound more .. Velvety. That is about all I can say at the moment. And as you all know, it's all subjective.
I take this back. No way I'd be able to A/B these and tell the difference. All this huff fluff over DAC's and lately the whole "Cheap" Class D amp thing is blowing up nice on comments all over videos.. Gonna be a popcorn weekend! :)
 
Sounds to me like you expected an improvement from a device that couldn't possibly bring you what you hoped for and your disappointment turned you away from enjoying music.
I'm fairly convinced that the DL200 won't "improve" your sound.. even if the DAC could make the tiniest bit of a difference, the fact that the DX3pro + uses the "same" chip as the DL200... I dunno, man..
(ESS9038Q2M vs ESS9039Q2M is not really a difference worth mentioning)

Considering that you are using professional grade ultra-linear studio monitors, I'd suggest you start looking into different speakers that provide a more "lively" sound signature.

If you feel like the Genelecs are "the real deal", then I'd suggest experimenting with placement of speakers, acoustic treatment of the room, and other measures that actually affect the sound.
The reason for getting the DX3 Pro+ was not to get a better sound, it was only to be more futureproof with headphone amp and there was a some kind of problem with usb-hubs and the Pro-Ject dac I can't remember anymore. I think the usb-hub thing was the 1. Reason. I didn't expect a better sound. I just remember that I didn't like the sound as much for some reason and I never liked it as much compared to the previous devices. I will report here about the DL200. Call me crazy, I have just now found that many other people feel the same way about the DX3 Pro+.
 
Hi.
I know that dl200 has a built-in HP amp and su-6 is only a Dac, I wanted to know if su-6 is a better dac than dl200.
I want to use it to connect it through USB to my mini PC that I use as a streamer/media center and the rca output to my Yamaha integrated amp and listen music on my tower speakers and ofcourse the Yamaha amp has a built-in HP amp, so HP amp of the dl200 is not a must for me and the dac quality is more important but if the dac quality is the same as su-6 or "better" I will go for it.
Thanks.
 
Hi.
I know that dl200 has a built-in HP amp and su-6 is only a Dac, I wanted to know if su-6 is a better dac than dl200.
I want to use it to connect it through USB to my mini PC that I use as a streamer/media center and the rca output to my Yamaha integrated amp and listen music on my tower speakers and ofcourse the Yamaha amp has a built-in HP amp, so HP amp of the dl200 is not a must for me and the dac quality is more important but if the dac quality is the same as su-6 or "better" I will go for it.
Thanks.

Both are transparent DACs.. and offer the same filters.. no audible differences to be expected.
 
The reason for getting the DX3 Pro+ was not to get a better sound, it was only to be more futureproof with headphone amp and there was a some kind of problem with usb-hubs and the Pro-Ject dac I can't remember anymore. I think the usb-hub thing was the 1. Reason. I didn't expect a better sound. I just remember that I didn't like the sound as much for some reason and I never liked it as much compared to the previous devices. I will report here about the DL200. Call me crazy, I have just now found that many other people feel the same way about the DX3 Pro+.
You aren't crazy. My impression, is the DX3 Pro+ is comparatively thin (less detailed) in the mids and sharp on the treble compared to its closet rival the CL200/DL200 (I have all 3). - If you like a more relaxed and fuller/more balanced presentation, you'll probably like the DL200 more.
 
Both are transparent DACs.. and offer the same filters.. no audible differences to be expected.
Thanks. So if the DAC of dl-200 has the same quality as su-6, I think the dl-200 is worth the extra 20$ for the HP amp and I'm going for it.
 
I recently bought the D-6s DAC and ended up seeing the DL200 and picked it up as well. I was able to measure both with an AP and the performance looks near identical. They both sound great and the DL200 drives all my headphones really well. With the features and price it was a no brainer for me.

I attached some snippits from the AP showing THD+N Ratio vs frequency for TRS, RCA and headphone out with the 7 different filters. I was able to get about 3W out of the headphone amp <1% THD at 1khz with a 16 ohm load.

All I can say is I'm thankful for Amir and others who take the time to make these measurements!
 

Attachments

  • High_gain_max_vol_headphone_out_16_ohm_load.PNG
    High_gain_max_vol_headphone_out_16_ohm_load.PNG
    77.1 KB · Views: 96
  • THD+N_Ratio_vs_Frequency.PNG
    THD+N_Ratio_vs_Frequency.PNG
    177.7 KB · Views: 96
  • THD+N_Ratio_vs_Frequency_Headphone_out.PNG
    THD+N_Ratio_vs_Frequency_Headphone_out.PNG
    116 KB · Views: 100
  • THD+N_Ratio_vs_Frequency_RCA_out.PNG
    THD+N_Ratio_vs_Frequency_RCA_out.PNG
    178.2 KB · Views: 89
I recently bought the D-6s DAC and ended up seeing the DL200 and picked it up as well. I was able to measure both with an AP and the performance looks near identical. They both sound great and the DL200 drives all my headphones really well. With the features and price it was a no brainer for me.

I attached some snippits from the AP showing THD+N Ratio vs frequency for TRS, RCA and headphone out with the 7 different filters. I was able to get about 3W out of the headphone amp <1% THD at 1khz with a 16 ohm load.

All I can say is I'm thankful for Amir and others who take the time to make these measurements!
But what's the point of measuring THD+N at frequencies above Nyquist? For BW80k Fs should be at least 192 kHz.
 
But what's the point of measuring THD+N at frequencies above Nyquist? For BW80k Fs should be at least 192 kHz.
I was trying to replicate as best I could Amir's measurement of the D-6s attached below for reference. But yes, lowering the bandwidth wouldn't show that distortion rise at HF. To my understanding, the harmonics for the HF distortion rise would be out of the audible band anyway.
 

Attachments

  • SMSL_D6s_THD+N_Ratio_vs_Frequency.PNG
    SMSL_D6s_THD+N_Ratio_vs_Frequency.PNG
    165.5 KB · Views: 56
I now have few hours with DL200 after selling se DX3 Pro+. To my ears, this device sounds noticeably better. I can finally enjoy music again. I know this sounds crazy. I'm using it with speakers and headphones (Genelec G2 and Beyerdynamic 900 PRO X). I was amazed how natural everything can sound. The sound overall feels somehow more softer and dynamic. More everything. This even works with my LG C3 42" with DP7 setting. ALSO the LG can control the volume with the Magic remote, I didn't expect this. You just have to search se s.m.s.l name and it can find it and it worked. This is great!
 
I was trying to replicate as best I could Amir's measurement of the D-6s attached below for reference. But yes, lowering the bandwidth wouldn't show that distortion rise at HF. To my understanding, the harmonics for the HF distortion rise would be out of the audible band anyway.
Ok, but the same question for Amir. If I understand correctly, 48kHz is the sampling frequency here. This means the filter will suppress all frequencies above ~24 kHz: h2 for frequencies above 12 kHz, h3 for frequencies above 8 kHz. With suppressed harmonics it is impossible to carry out an adequate THD+N calculation. BTW I don’t understand why in some cases your THD+N increases steeply after 10 kHz, it’s strange. Usually in such cases THD+N, on the contrary, falls.
Here, I measured THD+N vs Frequency @192 kHz BW90k for DL200 (I don’t remember the filter). Even at such a band, higher harmonics are still cut off. Your THD+N result is slightly better, but this is probably due to the filter operating at a low frequency.
DL200 THD+N vs F.png
 
I'm really impressed with mine so far; it's been a superb addition to my office system and has really helped my JBL 308P MK II's sing even better!
 

also can get it from here
 
Hello,

I have a question about this DAC/AMP. I actualy have an old JDS LAB ODAC+O² combo but i want something more recent. Is this DAC is ok or for 200-300€ i can have a better one ?

Thanks for your help.
 
Hello,

I have a question about this DAC/AMP. I actualy have an old JDS LAB ODAC+O² combo but i want something more recent. Is this DAC is ok or for 200-300€ i can have a better one ?

Thanks for your help.
Hi @NOD33! Welcome to ASR!

The DL200 is a fully transparent DAC, that means it outputs your music and only your music without adding anything to it.

Objectively speaking, you could spend 15 000€ on a DAC and still not get any better sound quality than what the DL200 offers.

As a DAC+Headphone Amp combo unit, the DL200 is about as good as you can get for 200-300€.

If you don't need a built-in Headphone Amp, then you can spend some 50€ less and still get the same sound quality, with something like the SMSL D-6.
 
Hi @NOD33! Welcome to ASR!

The DL200 is a fully transparent DAC, that means it outputs your music and only your music without adding anything to it.

Objectively speaking, you could spend 15 000€ on a DAC and still not get any better sound quality than what the DL200 offers.

As a DAC+Headphone Amp combo unit, the DL200 is about as good as you can get for 200-300€.

If you don't need a built-in Headphone Amp, then you can spend some 50€ less and still get the same sound quality, with something like the SMSL D-6.
Hi StaticV3,

Thank you for your answer.

My use is 70% music on my headphone and 30% youtube. So i need the headphone amp. :)

But with all "low cost" DAC/AMP, this DL200 is really good ? Will i see a real difference with my ODAC O² ?
 
But with all "low cost" DAC/AMP, this DL200 is really good ? Will i see a real difference with my ODAC O² ?
While the DL200 is a better DAC+Amp with very little noise and distortion on its outputs, I would not expect audible improvements compared to your JDS, so long as the JDS gets loud enough for you without any obvious clipping issues.

The only situation in which I would expect an audible improvement with the DL200 is if you're using headphones with <45Ω impedance, and the JDS is clipping before you can reach your desired volume.

In that case, the DL200 can give you some extra volume.

Though in that case, I think you'd be better off pairing your JDS with an external Headphone Amp like the Topping L30II, as that would give you even more output capability for driving challenging headphones.
 
While the DL200 is a better DAC+Amp with very little noise and distortion on its outputs, I would not expect audible improvements compared to your JDS, so long as the JDS gets loud enough for you without any obvious clipping issues.

The only situation in which I would expect an audible improvement with the DL200 is if you're using headphones with <45Ω impedance, and the JDS is clipping before you can reach your desired volume.

In that case, the DL200 can give you some extra volume.

Though in that case, I think you'd be better off pairing your JDS with an external Headphone Amp like the Topping L30II, as that would give you even more output capability for driving challenging headphones.
I have 2 headphones, both are 250ohms, 770Pro and 990Pro.

But i'm not closed to buy others later.

I see the SMSL C200 seem not bad too. It currently at 175€ on amazon.
 
I have 2 headphones, both are 250ohms, 770Pro and 990Pro.

But i'm not closed to buy others later.

I see the SMSL C200 seem not bad too. It currently at 175€ on amazon.
I'd advise you to buy new DACs and Amps only if they solve a particular issue that you're having.

If you have money left over, and the current DAC and Amp are doing their job fine, then you're much better off spending that money on some new music or headphones.
 
Back
Top Bottom