Does this DAC exist?

Well, LS50 Wireless does have a DAC inside it (its not fully class D digital), and the DAC is rather limited to max 192 khz sample rate and no DSD. But the real question is of course: does a KEF LS50 wireless sound better than the Dynaudio X14A with a good DAC?

I listened to the KEF LS50 passive and preferred the Dynaudio X14, but I know the wireless KEF sounds better than the passive one.

I have the Dac-9 in a system with my harbeth 30.1s. couldnt be happier with it. Definitely recommend adding it to the list of ones to consider.

My DAC is only 192K and no DSD should I feel left out?

Only if you want to listen to DSD. Of course you can get Roon to transcode DSD to PCM so it will work with your DAC.

Mine is 96/24 – imagine how I feel at night.

But at least I’ve got four of them (two in each speaker), so that should count for something. :slight_smile:

Sound preference is warranted. But your DAC comparison of the KEF LS50 Wireless is misplaced. The Dynaudio X14A does not do DSD nor >192 kHz sample rates, per se – because it subjects all inputs to an A/D conversion. Being concerned about DSD or >192 kHz sample rates upstream of the X14A is ill conceived, as the X14A ADC and DSP signal path likely is limited to 96 kHz.


Mine have 1 in each of 2 amps so does that make us equal :wink:

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I would prefer to have a fully digital path all the way to high-end class D amps, and no conversion up to that point (i.e. no DAC at all). But if that exists for DSD, I am sure its not cheap.

But maybe a high-end DAC to my speakers is a little overkill, the speakers sound awesome but are still fairly cheap compared to the type of speakers $1000+ DAC users typically have.

I second this - Matrix Quattro II DAC. Great DAC for the price

How about Schiit Gungnir?

Do note that all Schiit DACs do NOT offer DSD play, so you might want to look elsewhere.

There are decent dacs that fit the bill. Check out the new Cayin idac6, also Gustard A20H has a good rep. I must disclose though that I don’t have any personal experience (use) with these products.

What about the audiolab

AudioLab M-DAC+ is interesting, great reviews and seems to be fairly small.

About Gustard: if you don’t need the headphone amp (which I won’t), isnt the DAC-X20 Pro a better choice for the same money, or?

I might buy a new headphone, but for convenience I will buy a Bluetooth one so I won’t need the DAC for the headphone.

Btw, if I buy Bluetooth headphones, will I get better sound if I use the Bluetouth output from a DAC like the Matrix Mini-I Pro 2S than from computer? My digital brain thinks not, but I might be wrong here. Or is that Bluetooth on the Matrix for input? Seems wasteful if so.

Read this re: Bluetooth before settling on a device:

Glad (and envious) to read you’ve gone the Dynaudio route.

Teac DACs seem to have the features and reputation you’re looking for. They have great models for well under your budget range. Otherwise I’d be looking at the new Oppo Sonica DAC.

You might consider a DAC with a good headphone amp even though you don’t plan on using one right now. This would eliminate the Sonica DAC from consideration. Yours is a desktop setup and having a headphone plug available might be a future convenience - and could help the resale value when you upgrade down the road.

You are correct, and also most (all) high-end Bluetooth headphones comes with a cable for using it passively, to gain higher SQ and to be able to use it when batteries are down. So a DAC with headphone amp is a plus (I might get the Sennheiser 550 pcx later on, both for home use and when “on the road”).

And the Dynaudio x14a speakers sounds awesome, so quick and nimble it feels like they play everything so effortless. And the high-pass filter on them made connection to a sub easy and also enables them to focus on higher frequencies (they play surprisingly good bass though, i would not bother with a sub unless I already had one).

Teak DACs hasn’t got that good reviews (especially on WhatHiFi), but maybe I shouldn’t listen to much to reviews.

The Oppo Sonica DAC is still a work in progress. Basically, its firmware is still in beta – though it is a commercially available product.


I regularly read Archimago’s blogs so I’m familiar with his opinions on the Teac DACs. (It’s one reason why I thought the OP should consider one.)

I think the Oppo Sonica is just about ready. Seems to me all DACs go through a number of firmware updates the first few years. I really like Oppo gear. It performs well at its price point and I think it holds its value.


Also consider a previously owned Oppo HA-1. Though it’s going to be discontinued, it has a decent headphone amp and would be in your budget.

Anyone listened to the iFi Audio Micro iDSD BL? It does not have all I want, but I am somewhat attracted to the NOS thingie, letting Roon upsample and then have the DAC play with as few conversions as possible.

Its also a nice size and not that expensive.

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I own their regular version.
Love it!