1. Time for some upgrades in server hardware and software to enhance security and take AK to the next level. Please contribute what you can to sales@audiokarma.org at PayPal.com - Thanks from the AK Team
    Dismiss Notice

Any recommendations on a PCM1794A based DAC?

Discussion in 'DACs' started by Decibel_116, Apr 27, 2018.

  1. Decibel_116

    Decibel_116 AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,876
    Location:
    Madison, Alabama, USA
    I have been comparing the numbers on the current DAC chips and the Burr Brown (TI) 1794A has my attention. It has a S/N of 127 dB in stereo mode and 132 in mono mode. It has an "advanced segment" architecture and seems to be one of the better, if not the best, 24 bit DAC ICs in production. I have seen some custom and DIY designs that measure extremely well. There are also a number of Chinese made 1794A-based DACs. Both dual and single versions are available. However, I cannot find any reviews of these online. There is one model that has a single 1794A by "FX Audio" that uses an external wall wart power supply. There is a dual 1794A model with dual power supplies by "Breeze Audio". All of these are available on Ebay in a range of prices, but all reasonable for a high quality DAC.

    I would appreciate any discussion of PCM1794A DACs. Especially reviews and/or comparisons to other DACs. In particular multi-bit models.
     

     

    Please register to disable this ad.

  2. Decibel_116

    Decibel_116 AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,876
    Location:
    Madison, Alabama, USA
    Nobody has any experience with this?
     
  3. E.Auer

    E.Auer Super Member

    Messages:
    2,034
    Location:
    Lobster Pot
  4. gvl

    gvl Super Member

    Messages:
    1,012
  5. E.Auer

    E.Auer Super Member

    Messages:
    2,034
    Location:
    Lobster Pot
  6. gvl

    gvl Super Member

    Messages:
    1,012
    It is "classic" :)
     
    E.Auer likes this.

     

    Please register to disable this ad.

  7. Decibel_116

    Decibel_116 AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,876
    Location:
    Madison, Alabama, USA
    Not sure what you mean by “a long way”. Not trying to be a smart ass. The 1794A specs are not classic by any means. Seems like a very hi performance piece. I’m wondering why more OEMs are not using them for their hi end products.
     
  8. botrytis

    botrytis Trying not to be a Small Speaker Hoarder Subscriber

    Messages:
    29,346
    Location:
    PODUNC USA......
    Just because the chips says that S/N ratio, does not mean the DAC will be at that point.. A DAC is over all S/N measurement, not just the chip.

    It will not do DSD and it's max is 192/24 so it is a little out of date.
     
  9. Decibel_116

    Decibel_116 AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,876
    Location:
    Madison, Alabama, USA
    Ah, the DSD aspect makes sense. However, I see absolutely no use for anything above 192/24 for playback only purposes. I personally don’t use DSD, so that is not a consideration for me. I may have to explore the DIY route.
     
  10. dmckean

    dmckean AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    355
    Location:
    San Diego, CA
  11. gvl

    gvl Super Member

    Messages:
    1,012

     

    Please register to disable this ad.

  12. Decibel_116

    Decibel_116 AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,876
    Location:
    Madison, Alabama, USA
    Thanks for the heads up. I did read about some issues with him. I did find a review of the FX Audio SQ-5. It was a good review but they reported that it left out detail with orchestral pieces. To me, that is a bid no no. I saw the DDDdac on the diy forums that tested wonderfully. Not sure I have the time to invest in such an over-the-top build.
     
  13. JoeESP9

    JoeESP9 ESL's & tubes since 83

    Messages:
    16,277
    Location:
    Philadelphia PA
    I would never buy a DAC or any piece of audio gear based on specs. For me, what matters above all else is the sound. Of course YMMV.
     
    invaderzim and GChief like this.
  14. E-Stat

    E-Stat AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    6,186
    As for me, I find more of the audible differences in DACs lie with the implementation of the analog output stage and the power supply.

    Recently, I upgraded the OPA2134/OPA2604s in a Music Hall DAC 25.3 with Burson FET modules and enjoy improved focus and resolution. It employs a nice R-core transformer based linear power supply and uses a PCM1796 converter chip.

    Especially based upon the potential performance from but a single part.
     
  15. Decibel_116

    Decibel_116 AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,876
    Location:
    Madison, Alabama, USA
    I agree that implementation is key. However, you must also have a great basis which is the DAC itself. The chip provides the baseline of potential performance, but the analog back end will determine what gets out. I have been using an Aragon D2A which has older R-2R DACs and a fabulous discrete analog section. It’s great for 16 bit, 44.1/48khz material. I am looking to possibly getting something that will play 24 bit, 96/192khz files. Thus the impetus for my inquiry. Thanks to all for replying so far.
     
  16. BillWojo

    BillWojo AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,712
    Location:
    Burlington, NJ
    If you like older DAC's than check out a Parasound D/AC-1000. It uses two BB PCM63P-J chips and is way over built with 3 linear power supplies. A company in Germany sells upgrade's that will allow it to handle 24bit/96khz. Stock it is awesome on Red Book material.

    BillWojo
     
    Decibel_116 likes this.

     

    Please register to disable this ad.

  17. stoutblock

    stoutblock If it sounds good, it is good... Subscriber

    Messages:
    9,584
    Location:
    Northwest USA
    If you like the old Burr-Brown chips check out the PCM1704UK DACs at Audio-gd. Some of the best made.
     
  18. Decibel_116

    Decibel_116 AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,876
    Location:
    Madison, Alabama, USA
    Are those considered better than the PCM63K chips?
     
  19. gvl

    gvl Super Member

    Messages:
    1,012
    1704s are 24-bit newer TI-design chips vs. "only" 20 bits for PCM63, however I came across some opinions that PCM63s were the best sounding chips BurrBrown made, but I have no personal opinion on this matter. Neither is no longer in production. It is more of a question when the overall DAC design matters more than the chip. Both are true multi-bit chips, vs. the 1794A which is a multi-bit/delta-sigma hybrid.
     
  20. stoutblock

    stoutblock If it sounds good, it is good... Subscriber

    Messages:
    9,584
    Location:
    Northwest USA
    kingwa was was one of the last to build with the burr brown chips and probabaly the longest run of experience. I have owned a few and I think they are something to hear.
     

Share This Page