Budget DACS. USB DAC for a typical computer


2019-07-11 02:00:26




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Many users of PCs and laptops would have to sound their devices more efficiently. Built-in sound cards, this effect is not achieved. And here on the scene external of the entry-level, which is able to convert and produce high quality sound. Budget DAC is a very useful thing, if the PC owner is an audiophile. However, audiophile DACs can't be budget. This is more for lovers of quality sound. Whatever it was, it is necessary to consider the most popular models to select the best processor. The point is not easy. See for yourself.

budget DAC

Why do we need DACs

The fact that the built-in sound card can not provide a decent sound (especially with acoustic system-class). Even in the most built-in of "zvukovoe" and shows a sampling frequency of 192 kHz and a depth of 32 bits, it is not so. But the external DAC is quite capable of providing such quality sound. But when such a device is also decent. Although there are very cheap models that connect to a PC or laptop using a USB connector. Such devices look the optimal solution for the average user. But to audiophiles and professional musicians, this processor will not fit.

external DAC

However, DAC is one... To ensure the quality of sound is important not only to the audio processor. Critical and other system components: the computer, acoustics and the rest. In order to successfully use a USB DAC, you need to have the appropriate PC. About it now and we'll talk.


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Selecting a PC

The body of audioprocessor can affect any vibration and any light. So the computer has to be perfectly quiet. Ideally noiselessly. The trouble is that most of the "boxes" do not know how. They roar with all their coolers, as "Ferrari" on the afterburner. Therefore, to use DAC, the best option is a laptop. Ideally an ultrabook (they are quieter). Hypothetically, the system unit also can be made to run silently, but to do it categorically it is not recommended, because you can impair the cooling system and the whole system will be covered. Laptop - the best solution. Now, you can select budget DAC with high-quality sound.

Arkam irDAC

This miniatury external DAC is hard to call the budget. Its price is probably approaching the cost models of medium level, but it's worth it. It enables trouble-free conversion on standard 24/192, it has a bunch of connectors for stereos and headphones and interacts with the computer via USB. The gadget is even equipped with a remote control. But it looks like it at the flea market bought. Officially Arkam is geared for Apple devices. But he copes, and many other devices. All anything, but somewhat frustrating the lack of balanced outputs to connect the passive monitors. For the price could include them in the set.

Whatever it was, Arkam irDAC is the best budget DAC with amplifier. Though without the support of the balanced outputs and DSD. But it's not terrible. Many entry-level models are limited in the additional options. And this processor is no exception.

Cambridge Audio DacMagic Plus

This is a real harvester for lovers of quality digital audio. This device has everything (except DSD support): balanced outputs, a standard 24/192, headphone amplifier, and much more. And it costs much cheaper than our previous "patient". Budget DAC from Cambridge promises users high-quality sound without any significant material costs. However, provided that the other components of the system is also the proper level. To achieve a good sound would be impossible.

DAC budget dac

Things that are now offered on the market, the audio processor from Cambridge is the best solution. Balancing quality and prices is almost perfect. By purchasing this DAC budget Dac to regret just do not have. You will always have an almost professional sound.

ASUS Xonar Essence STU

This is one of the best audio processors on the market today. However, he possesses all the put options. There is even a balanced output with phantom power. And it is very rare for devices of this class. Format audio 24/192. Plus support for DSD. This budget DAC China produces, but it doesn't make them worse, because in the middle Kingdom learned to do high-quality equipment. The only trouble is that to find this creation from ASUS is not very easy. It is a terrible deficit. Because the demand is just inhuman.

However, this processor is one of the best decisions for decorating your home Studio. Optionally, you can connect the speaker system multi-band or single-band Studio monitors. The last option can give very interesting results. Since this USB DAC is quite cheap to afford it can almost everyone. But we should not forget about quality speakers.

Denon DA-300USB

Miniature DAC for home use will not leave anyone indifferent. This budget DAC is quite capable to satisfy even audiophile. It has all the options, put a good processor: high impedance headphone amplifier, all the necessary connectors, support DSDthe format 24/192, attractive appearance. What else is needed for happiness? But most importantly - its price. It is still cheaper than the ASUS, but not inferior to him in quality and functionality. To connect with a PC using the USB connector. However, this is a standard feature of audio processors entry-level.

budget DAC headphone

This device can be used as a budget DAC headphone. It differs from the portable audio processors only for those that take it somewhere with a little hard. But the sound quality is much better. And he will perfectly fit into any interior thanks to its unique design. Everything is strictly according to the classical canons.


It is the undisputed leader. And not only on the quality of the sound. He has a complete set of interfaces to connect akusticheskih systems. Featuring a user here has balanced outputs, RCA jacks, coaxial and optical connectors. In General, all that is necessary high-quality professional device. And the price is slightly higher than the previous candidate. This "monster" will become a worthy decoration of any interior and provide excellent sound. There is also support for DSD. And it will agree, well worth it. Budget DAC of this level is rare. So don't even think twice.

budget DAC China

However, if we buy a device of this level, you should attend the relevant columns. An audiophile "Golden rule" States that a sound system should be one and a half times more expensive than a used processor. Only then will reveal its full potential.

Sound card vs DAC Budget

Many people think that if you put in the PC sound card advanced level, it can easily replace any DAC. This statement does not have the right to life. The fact that an adequate map that is able to produce what I was capable of even with a budget DAC worth a lot. For purely practical reasons should not get involved in such nonsense. And not to forget that the sound card due to its design there can not be any extra connectors (balanced type).

the best audio DACs on the budget DVD

So comparing the "sound card DAC vs budget" is completely useless. Even due to the design features separate audio processors is preferable. Not to mention the price and sound quality. So not worth chasing the built-in options - they would still not better. Worse. And more. Even prosumer solutions are fabulous money.

A Little about DVD

The budget players sometimes set a very good audio processors. However, the use of such devices as a DAC is extremely difficult. Not to mention the fact that the full functionality of even the cheapest CPU from them is difficult to achieve. The best audio DACs on budget DVD, of course, provide sound quality, but they are greatly reduced in functionality. And for many it is the deciding factor.

budget DAC with high-quality sound

These devices enough to play movies. With music they also do a good job. But to somehow connect to this device adequate sound system is not possible. Not to mention Studio monitors, which require a balanced connector. However, on the other hand, for home use such system should be enough.

A Little about the CD

This is a separate issue. High-quality CD player can not be budget. It must have the technology to absorb vibration and compensate for read errors. Otherwise the sound quality will be disgusting. So if you do not know what to choose - budget CD player or a cheap DVD DAC, it is better to give preference to the latter. And the CD is already hopelessly outdated. On the standard player it will be impossible to listen to Hi-RES stereo. But on DVD easily.

And besides, a DVD is a more versatile solution than even the coolest CD player. Because if you want the latest you may watch a movie. But with a conventional CD player, this just will not work. And still a better choice than a budget processor, no. The main thing - to equip it with a good sound system.


Select the processor - it was quite difficult. Among the variety of models to choose a good budget DAC is not easy. But there are some interesting solutions for the right price. It is important to remember that the processor is only the tip of the iceberg. Because without sound system the appropriate level, all your efforts will not succeed. Why would you listen to the sound from the DAC on the tweeters from Genius? Expect your desires according to the financial possibilities. And choose something decent among the variety of work it will be. There are a lot of good audio processors entry-level price range up to fifty thousand rubles.

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